Tag Archives: foodie

Lunch With the Girls at Oggi’s in Rancho Carmel Plaza

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It’s not everyday that I get the chance to go out and spend an afternoon with my sister, Rholnna, and my niece, Mei-Lin, so it’s wonderful when that opportunity happens.  Since my sister’s family lives in Rancho Bernardo, I headed north a couple of weeks ago and we decided to eat at Oggi’s Pizza & Brewing Co., located in Rancho Carmel Plaza in the Carmel Mountain Ranch area.  Oggi’s is a family spot that my husband, son and I like to frequent because of their delicious menu and sports bar surroundings.  I’ve watched quite a few San Diego Chargers games at Oggi’s!

I’ve always had their pizza, sticking with favorites like The Works or The Heavy Weight.  For this outing, I decided on the Prosciutto Mac & Cheese because I have this secret goal to try a “mac & cheese” dish at every restaurant that offers it!  I’m glad I strayed from my norm because this version was absolutely delicious.  The three-cheese blend elbow pasta, baked with crispy prosciutto, broccoli and crushed red peppers looked great in the menu description, and was even better on my plate.  I guess I’ve met my new favorite! My sister and niece both felt like pizza for lunch, but had different tastes in which ones they wanted, so it’s great that Oggi’s offers several sizes, including a personal size.  We had a fantastic time, but it’s easy when there’s great food in a fun atmosphere!

Oggi’s Pizza & Brewing Co. is located at Rancho Carmel Plaza, 10155-10195 Rancho Carmel Drive, San Diego, CA 92128.

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Prosciutto Mac & Cheese

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Personal Size “Create Your Own” Pizza

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Kids’ Mini Cheese Pizza

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FTC Disclosure:  I received compensation to patronize a business at Rancho Carmel Plaza.  Although I did receive compensation, the opinions in this post are strictly my own.

(Photos by Rholnna Jiao and myself)

Blogsgiving 2016

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I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving!  Our family Thanksgiving happens annually in Las Vegas and it was filled with fun and food, and of course a little shopping.  But prior to our family gathering, I celebrated “Blogsgiving” with a few blogger friends at Hotel La Jolla where we previewed the new fall menu at CUSP Restaurant by Chef Ingrid Funes.

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Our table was dressed with gorgeous flowers by Melissa from Madmade Designs and Louie from 656 Photography documented the entire evening!

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I was in superb company with these beautiful bloggers!

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Above: Tiffany of Glitz & Glam By Tiff, Moi & Paulina of Lil Bits of Chic

Below: Maria of Savvynista, Kali of In-Spades, and Jenna of Lucky Little Mustard Seed

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Bloggers doing what we do best!

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This is the Fall menu for Cusp Restaurant, and we pretty much sampled a bit of everything!  But I’ll feature what I ate that evening, which was simply amazing!

My appetizer was the Crab Cake with sweet and sour bell pepper relish & green goddess sauce (above, in front of the Crispy Pork Belly).  My main dish was the Lobster Gnocchi with Mushrooms & Kale as my side dish.  Both dishes were savory and absolutely delicious!

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I closed the evening with a Sweet Potato Tartlet with cinnamon ice cream.  I think heavenly would be the appropriate way to describe this delectable dessert!

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Chef Ingrid Funes came to meet with us during our dinner.

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We had a blast all through the evening, sharing stories and laughing (a lot)!

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After dinner, Louie from 656 Photography captured more pictures, including this one we’re all calling our “Real Housewives of San Diego” pose.  Maybe someone can come up with a bloggers version for reality TV?

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Our lovely co-hosts for the evening, Jenna and Paulina!

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 Many thanks to Hotel La JollaCUSP Restaurant, their staff and Chef Ingrid Funes for the delicious dinner.  Thank you again to Melissa from Madmade Designs for the lovely floral table setting and to Louie from 656 Photography for the amazing photography.

Special thanks to Jenna, Paulina, Maria, Tiffany and Kali, who I’ve come to know and love as my friends.  It was a great evening filled with laughter and I was glad to have spent it with all of you!

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Eternal Summer Snacking with Chobani Mezé Dips!

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It’s been crazy busy at the Chen household lately mostly because it’s summer, which means Dominic is out of school and we can travel or attend more family events.  Sometimes during the summer, we have impromptu visitors or we end up becoming the meeting place for pre-concert or pre-movie gatherings.  To help with entertaining around this time, the folks at Chobani sent me this fun infographic to help either plan a special summer event or help with what to do if you have simple soirees like we occasionally have.

Chobani is my go-to brand for Greek yogurt, so I’m excited to try their new Mezé Dips!  They have four great flavors to choose from, but I think Roasted Red Pepper will become a favorite.  So cheers to eternal summer snacking and let me know in the comments on how you throw a fabulous summer get together!

Fashionably Late: Catching Up on 2016 Events!

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I know I’ve been very laxed when it comes to my blogging lately, and I apologize!  My son has been away at his grandparents in Las Vegas for the last two weeks, so I have to confess that I’ve been catching up on some much-needed sleep.  But now to get caught up on my blogging, I’m posting about events that I missed over the last few months.  I’ll also be putting up my concert catch up posts and I think I’ll be all caught and ready to put up my newest posts about recent events and product reviews!


DANCE DANCE RESOLUTION – 1/31/16

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My husband and I were invited by Delicious Buzz to attend the “Dance Dance Resolution” event presented by the international travel company Gogobot San Diego and a local non-profit organization, The Seany Foundation.  It was held at The Rancho Santa Fe Motor Club & Storage and although it was quite the storm outside, it was a fun night of food, drinks, dance battles and pug kisses by Chole (with her mommy Heather of The Stylish Bisou).


THE BEAT CLOTHING SPRING FASHION SHOW – 2/21/16

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Back in February, The Beat Clothing stylist Astrid Montalvo invited me to check out her fashion show in Carlsbad.  Unfortunately due to some scheduling issues, my niece, Mei-Lin and I missed the actual fashion show, but I got to photograph some of the lovely models afterwards, and Mei snapped a picture of me with Astrid!


LATINO FILM FEST FASHION SHOW AT FASHION VALLEY – 3/18/16

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Bloggers were invited to attend Fashion Valley’s 2nd annual “Celebration of Fashion” runway show for the 23rd annual San Diego Latino Film Festival.  The event was emceed by Paola Hernández-Jiao and Abelardo Rodriguez and featured men’s and women’s fashion.  My favorite was the fringed skirt by Scotch & Soda, featured in the video above.  Look at that swing!


BERRY BEST CHOCOLATE FEST – 3/19/16

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My mother-in-law had a booth for Bathologie, one of her direct sales companies at The Berry Best Chocolate Fest at Liberty Station, so I took that opportunity to hang out with my son and enjoy the festivities.  Rather than all of the wonderful chocolate, Dominic decided he actually loved the Belgian waffles from the Marcel Waffle Truck.  I wholeheartedly agree!


RECORD STORE DAY 2016 – 4/16/16

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 I spent Record Store Day this year at Record City in Hillcrest with my friend Rob and blogger friend Laura of Laura Neuzeth.  This was probably the most organized RSD I had ever been to, and I think I found a new spot for every RSD from now on!  The trick is to get there incredibly early (I got there by 5:30 am and there were still people there before me) to ensure you get your choice of what you want.  They didn’t have everything that I wanted from “The List” (post about it here), but I did come away with an awesome haul!


SPRING FLING EVENT AT GO GIRL SPA – 4/23/16

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Also back in April, I attended the “Spring Fling Event” at Girl on the Go, a night spa in the Golden Hill area.  I enjoyed the free cocktails, hanging out for a bit with Tatum from Love Tatum, and then I purchased a little something from Style on the Go.  Of course, since the Marcel Waffle Truck made an appearance, I had to bring something home for Dominic!

Foodie Fest Encinitas is Tomorrow!

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Sorry for the lack of posts lately!  I’ve been quite busy trying to fit everything in and I’m finally getting around to doing some product reviews and concert posts (in fact, I’m going to see The Cure tonight).  Before I do, I wanted to share pictures from a wonderful event I attended with my good friend Angi last week, which was the Discover SD Foodie Fest Media Party.  It was a preview of Foodie Fest Encinitas, happening tomorrow.  At the preview, we got to sample a nice little selection of the vendors that will be there, and the event included tunes by The Fab Lushes and a fun little photo booth.  Thank you to Tiffany of Delicious Buzz for the invite, and you can find information about the event below.  Did I mention Angi won us tickets to KAABOO?!

Cheers and have a great weekend!


Foodie Fest Encinitas

When: Saturday May 21, 2016

Time:  11am to 4pm

Where:  The Lumberyard Encinitas

Buy tickets here!


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Delicious Kombucha by Living Tea Brewing Co.  Loved the blood orange tea. Refreshing!

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Favorite main dishes & appetizers of the night: Poke by Mission Avenue Bar and Grill; Vella Cheese Company Dry Monterey Jack Cheese from Gourmet Culinary; Deviled eggs by Local Tap House; Bacon wrapped pork belly drizzled in honey by Barrel Republic; Pork bahn mi by Frazier Farms Market. Yum!

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Ah-mazing dessert dishes by Bistro West & delicious caramel by Cheryl’s Caramels!

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The Fab Lushes!

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Fun at the photo booth!

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Angi had the winning raffle ticket for 2 passes to KAABOO!  We’re going on Saturday September 17!

The Cheeses of Europe Pop-Up at Fashion Valley

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I love attending events that are different from what I’m used to, especially at a place like a major shopping mall.  Recently, I attended the media event for “The Cheeses of Europe” pop-up shop held at Center Court at Fashion Valley.  It featured several varieties of cheeses from Europe (mainly France), offered at a lower price point.  The Cheeses of Europe is presented by The Cheeses of France Marketing Council, and their hope is to build awareness and demand for The Cheeses of Europe in the US and the world through national and regional programs.  My favorite cheeses of the sampling were the creamier ones and the salted butters.  Although I didn’t purchase any that night, I’m happy to know that these cheeses are available at any local Whole Foods, because I will most definitely be trying some of the fabulous dishes on their recipes page.  Without a doubt, The Cheeses of Europe know how to Make it Magnifique!

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Wine and champagne was available to try with all of the wonderful cheeses for the evening!

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The dishes in this mini-sampling were so delicious!

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It was great to check out all of the tasty cheeses with Lilia of Curls and Fashion and Vanessa of Fashion Mixtape.  One of my favorite cheeses was that Paysan Breton whipped cheese, and another favorite was the Baked Brie with Chipotle Mango Honey Cilantro Shots from the flight of dishes pictured above (pictured bottom right).

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Of course I downloaded the app!

Cave Tools Kabobs Skewer Set Review: Perfect Party Food!

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New Year’s Eve is upon us, which means parties galore!  My husband, Deon, is quite the BBQ connoisseur and is known to create some fabulous meals on his Traeger Grill for several parties here right at home, especially during football season.  Recently, Deon made amazing kabobs with the Cave Tools Stainless Steel Kabob Skewers Set.  He really liked the overall design, especially how the skewers set on the rack (they can be set in eight different positions).  He also thought the “built-in-food-slider” was the most convenient part of the skewers, in addition to how easy they were to clean.  Above all, the kabobs were evenly cooked and didn’t stick to the grill because the rack sits right atop it.  Overall:  These are Deon approved!   So if you’re looking for a dish that will be a hit for your next party and have a great grill like we do (we have the Traeger Junior Elite Grill), grab this great skewer set from Cave Tools (check out below how fantastic his kabobs turned out).  Cheers and see you in the New Year!

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To purchase your own Cave Tools Kabob Skewer Set, click the links below AND, you can get 15% off with the following code!

Kabob Set 15% Off: LHWJZQMZ

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B0117OY5IA/ref=sr_1_23?ie=UTF8&sr=8-32&me=A3IEEDMWTA8OSP&keywords=kabob+set&linkCode=as2&tag=hyacinth17-20

Cave Tools: http://cavetools.com/products/kabob-skewers-rack/?utm_source=Blogger&utm_medium=Review&utm_campaign=KabobSet

FTC Disclosure:  I received product in exchange for a product review.  Although I did receive product, the opinions in this post are strictly my own.