With the end of 2016 approaching, I like to look back and list some of my favorite bites this year. They include some from the Washington, D.C. area and some from my travels.
Reuben Egg Rolls
DGS, Mosaic District, Fairfax, VA
I love DGS‘s take on the egg roll. The crispy roll is stuffed with shredded corn beef and sauerkraut and served with a spicy russian dressing. They are so good; I can make a meal out of these! Yummy!
Spaghetti and Meatballs
Aggio, Ashburn, VA
There is something comforting about a dish of spaghetti and meatballs. When you eat Aggio‘s take on this simple meal, it is like eating a big hug. The pasta is perfectly al dente and the rich, tomato sauce has been slow cooked and is served with a flavorful meatball. Delicious!
Roasted Salmon with Asparagus Risotto
Bastille, Alexandria, VA
Bastille is my favorite hidden gem in Alexandria. This dish which features roasted salmon is cooked to perfection. But I love the way that Bastille serves it with creamy, asparagus risotto.
Chicken Salad Sub
Chase The Submarine, Vienna, VA
I LOVE this sub at Chase the Submarine! I think it is one of the best chicken salads I have tasted. The chicken is mixed with a spicy mayo, topped with peppery arugula and served on a sesame seed bun. I wanted to go back the next day and order another one it was that good.
Croquetas and Empanadas
Colada Shop, Sterling, VA
I was very excited when Colada Shop opened because of my love for cuban food; the food of my childhood. I love their Sterling location. On a warm day, you can sit outside, watch people and eat some tasty food. These croquetas and empanadas are the best I have tasted here in the D.C. area. Can’t wait to try their downtown location when it opens.
Nitro Brewed Coffee
Junction Bakery, Alexandria, VA
Technically this is not a bite, but I just love the nitro brew coffee at Junction Bakery. This ice coffee packs a punch. There is no need to add sugar or cream because the coffee is so smooth. I always enjoy it with one of the bakery’s tasty, baked goods.
Outside of the D.C. Area
Barrio Urbano, Phoenix, AZ
When I visited Phoenix this year, I was excited to try some authentic Mexican food. Barrio Urbano is one of Chef Silvana Salcido Esparza’s restaurants, well-known for her Mexican cuisine. This dish is a must try! Marinated pork, slow roasted overnight, just falls apart. Served with black beans, pickled onions and corn tortillas. Heaven!
Eataly, Chicago, IL
Just walking into Eataly is a foodie’s dream. Besides all the mouth-watering and diverse selection of food items, there are some enticing restaurants to try. At La Piazza eatery, we stopped for a casual lunch and ordered this burrata which was served beautifully. This delicate bundle tied with a chive leaf was served with plump, juicy, cherry tomatoes. The burrata was so creamy. The cheese oozes on to the plate when we cut into it. Glorious!
Roasted Pork Platter
Brasa, Minneapolis, MN
I always say that when you travel, it pays to talk to locals and ask them where they like to go eat. You get to try something that is a favorite that is not aimed at tourists. In Minneapolis, we went to Brasa, where we enjoyed this delicious meal. The slow roasted pork was tender and the side of pink beans and yellow rice, a typical Caribbean inspired dish, was yummy.
Izzy’s Ice Cream, Minneapolis, MN
This is one of the best ice creams places I have ever tried. Again, thanks to a local that suggested it, Izzy’s is worth a trip. I love all the unusual ice cream flavors. Mine was ginger ice cream, passionfruit sorbet and topped with their “Izzy scoop”; a smaller bonus scoop of your choice. Mine was a scoop of grapefruit sorbet. Refreshing! Nice treat after walking around and seeing this beautiful city.
Tres Leches Torte
Mariposa, Sedona, AZ
Sedona is a magnificant place. We happen to stop at Mariposa which was a lucky find. Mariposa sits up high on a bluff and has one of the most spectacular views I have ever seen. The dining room has floor to ceiling windows that lets you get lost in the landscape while you dine. This Tres Leches torte is elegant and decorated with delicate, eatable flowers and fresh berries. Topped off with sweet, creamy milks.
There are many more dishes I wish I could have added to my list. I post my favorites all year-long on Instagram. Follow me there. Happy 2017 everyone. Hope it brings you some amazing adventures in food!