Fox in the Snow Cafe

{by: alicia} The next time you’re in Italian Village, and in the mood for a pick me up, do yourself a favor and check out Fox in the Snow Cafe.

Since opening its doors in October, this cafe has amassed quite a following (myself included) thanks to its amazing atmosphere (so much natural light! so open and modern!) and wondrous drinks and pastries (HOMEMADE POP TARTS–hand pies if we’re being literal). It makes me curse my decision to live up north.

When I first heard about Fox in the Snow in late summer/early fall, my interest was immediate. THE NAME ALONE. I mean, have you SEEN a fox in the snow? It looks something like this.

Courtesy of zastavki.com

Courtesy of zastavki.com

Did you hear that? I apologize for shattering your eardrums. It was me making this loud “eeeeee” sound I do when something too adorable for words. Then I saw the official logo and knew I had found something special.

BEST LOGO.

BEST LOGO.

There is nothing better than a pouncing, hoppy fox. NOTHING. Exhibit A:

Sometimes, I overhype things in my head and end up being disappointed. In this case, my first visit confirmed my suspicions: THIS PLACE IS BOMB.

Pastries from Fox in the Snow Cafe Columbus

Fox in the Snow Cafe

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On my last visit, we made sure to get a variety of pastries and unanimously declared everything amazing. Cinnamon rolls? AMAZING. So soft, perfectly spiced with cinnamon, and the icing wasn’t cloying in the slightest. Also. The lattes (AMAZING) were beautiful and a perfect complement to our baked goods.

Fox in the Snow Cafe drinks

Also amazing were the egg sandwich and hand pie (aka the homemade Pop Tart). There were rave reviews on these, my friends. Look at the flaking crust on that pie. I can hardly contain myself.

Fox in the Snow Cafe Hand pie and egg sandwich

Now let’s take a gander at the doughnut, plump with various fillings and dusted with sugar. I know. By now you are filled with longing and don’t know what to do with yourself. I understand. Scroll on down to get the details to plan your own visit!

Fox in the Snow cafe doughnut
To experience the wonder that is Fox in the Snow, head down to 1031 N. 4th St. Tuesday through Friday from 7a-5p and the weekend from 8a-6p. Parking is available in the lot and on the street.

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Guest Posting at Live Columbus

{by: alicia} For those of you who have been reading for awhile, it will not come as a shock to hear I am obsessed with Instagram. Being able to microblog, while having an excuse to blast food pictures on the reg, really does it for me. So when Andrea at Live Columbus asked me if I would like to take over the official Live Cbus Instagram account for a day, I WAS ALL OVER IT.

My assigned day was yesterday (Sunday), and my first stop was Becker’s neck of the woods to help her move.Weinland Park, Short NorthBecause being up early is the worst, I convinced her that we needed coffee from Fox in the Snow Cafe to get our heads on straight.

Coffee from Snow in the Fox Cafe.

A latte and a cappuccino.

I fell in love with this place from the start when I saw the adorable fox logo. It reminds me of one of my favorite videos. I also loved the ample amount of baked goods packing the counters.

Pastries from Snow in the Fox Cafe

After getting our caffeine fix, we worked steadily through the morning packing up Becker’s house.

Cat

We were starving by the afternoon, so I ran down the street to get carryout from one of my favorite places.

Katalina's Cafe Corner

Get the pancake balls and pulled pork tacos.

Once satiated, we were back on the clock packing, loading the truck, and cleaning up her apartment. Finally, at 7 p.m., Becker hit the road for Boston. I dragged my weary body to Powell to reward my efforts with beer at the new Prohibition Gastro Lounge.

Prohibition Gastro Lounge Powell Ohio

When it was time to go home,  I couldn’t in good conscience leave without a treat from the Jeni’s across the street. It was a chilly night, so I got a nightcap of the richest, most delicious hot chocolate (currently only served at the Powell and Clintonville locations). I earned it, after all!

Jeni's hot chocolateIf you are located in Columbus and would like to take over the Live Columbus IG account, email livecbus(at)gmail(dot)com to inquire.

Sunday Brunch at Ethyl & Tank

{by: alicia} It has come to my attention that we’re running out of new places to have brunch–we like long, lingering breakfasts, okay? Recently, Alexis and I had to get together to figure out some tech stuff (which meant it was going to be awhile), so deciding to do it over food was easy. The real issue was where and what food. After much thought, it occurred to me that we had talked about trying Ethyl & Tank once or twice, but never actually did it. Decision made, we gathered our laptops and met on campus for a long meal. But first, coffee.

Mocha for me, coffee for her.

Enormous mocha for me, thimble of coffee for her.

I think there was originally some foam art in my cup, so it was a little disappointing not to actually see it. No matter, the mocha was delicious. But if you’re looking for something a tad stronger, there is a Bloody Mary bar to cure what ails you.

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While warming up with our beverages, we glanced over the menu and had the usual argument over who was ordering what (we get food envy quite often).

Ethyl & Tank MenuEver since our taco truck adventure, I have been having a love affair with anything that sort of resembles what we ate, so I immediately claimed the breakfast tacos.

Ethyl & Tank Breakfast Tacos

Egg, chorizo, avocado, lettuce, cheese, and cilantro sour cream on the side.

They weren’t quite as authentic (obvs), but they did the trick. While I’m a sucker for tacos, Alexis can never say no to corned beef and hash. Our server told us the corned beef is made in-house, plus it came in an iron skillet, so I think she made a good choice.

Corned Beef & HashWe stayed for awhile to solve our technology woes (still not solved), and I liked that though we were checked on often, we didn’t feel like we had to rush out. After a hilarious live chat with tech support (holler at Braxton C.), we decided to call it a day, but first we went upstairs to check out the second level.

Birdseye view.

Birdseye view.

There’s plenty of seating on the second level if you want to get away from the hubbub, plus there’s the added benefit of an arcade.

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Real talk: I hate Rampage, but Street Fighter II is my jam–I was always Dhalsim. Those long limbs were unstoppable.

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As you can see, there’s a lot going on here. I’d call it a coffee shop/pub/choose your own adventure. It’s really whatever you want it to be. Want to have a latte and do some work? You do you. Would you rather watch the game and have a brew? Go for it. A quick meal? They’ve got you. Need a stress break in the arcade? I think you know where I’m going with this, so I’ll stop and give you the details.

Ethyl & Tank is located at 19 E. 13th Avenue, Columbus, Ohio. Hours are Monday through Sunday from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m.

TBT: A Compilation

{by: alicia} I feel like it’s been ages since I’ve last blogged. I don’t have a lot to report, so prepare thyself for a bit of a photo dump/catchup. I’ve been busy with working, life, the usual. Other than focusing on work, I’ve been trying to enjoy these last remnants of warm weather. The high on Saturday is 52 degrees–she says as she sobs in earnest. Fall, you’re pretty but kind of a jerk.

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Deception.

I celebrated the sunshine with a long overdue trip to Coppa Gelato where I indulged in scoops of pumpkin and bourbon meyer. Dear Westerville, why aren’t you closer to me? I need access to this gelato at all hours of the day.

Coppa GelatoI also got motivated to try some other new-to-me eateries. You’ll see, once the cold rolls in, I will never want to leave my house again. So I’ve got to get going while the going’s good. That is, unless Alexis drags me out. She excels at that.

Anyway, Thom and I finally went to Pizza Cucinova (aka the Chipotle of pizzerias) and really enjoyed it. The personal pies start at $5, but for only $8 you can have unlimited toppings. Once you get through the usual assembly-line rigamarole, they toss your pizza into a super hot wood-fire oven for a few minutes until it looks like this:

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Give me all the peppers, sausage, and fresh basil.

That was successful meal number one, or number two if you count the gelato. Amazing meal number two (or three, why do I complicate things) was at a place I’ve been dying to try for weeks. After seeing photos all over Instagram and the local blogs, I finally made it out to Super Chefs. This local breakfast spot is quickly becoming an institution with its out of control combinations, comic-inspired menu items, and outrageous presentation.

Despite us going on the same day a second location opened in Gahanna, there was still a 30-40 minute wait. WORTH IT, GUYS.

The Juggernaut at Super Chefs.

The Juggernaut at Super Chefs.

This beast, or juggernaut rather (X-Men puns left and right!), consisted of red velvet waffles sandwiching fried chicken, candied bacon, fried egg, and two types of cheeses. There was even a drizzle of maple syrup and a side of strawberry compote because why not.

After that life-changing event, I swung by Mission to get my greedy hands on some Intelligentsia coffee. Thanks to the helpful barista, I walked away with a cup of Kunga Maitu. This Kenyan brew has notes of pineapple, pink grapefruit, buttered rum, and hibiscus. It’s a little pricy, but I usually justify everything with shouts of “treat yo self!

Mission Coffee

Unfortunately, my bout of good luck ended about here. After the coffee break, I stopped by my cousin’s house to care for her pets while she was out of town. Wouldn’t you know, I couldn’t find the cat, searched high and low, and in an effort to find it, locked myself out of the house. With my cousin’s blessing, I popped out a screen and proceeded to break into her kitchen window. Naturally, this was the moment the cat decided to reveal himself.

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THIS JERK.

After climbing into the sink and laughing hysterically, I made amends with the jerk and went about my merry way. The rest of the weekend was less eventful, thankfully.

Tuesday night, Alexis and I went to a blogger event at Denmark. Since this is a cocktail bar, you know we had to order some crazy concoction. Correction: Alexis did the ordering for the both of us and struck gold twice.

Denmark Hall

Nightmare on Vine Street and the Bee’s Knees.

She’s been on a massive honey kick lately, so her drink of Bombay, honey syrup, and lemon was a no-brainer. Since I am an indecisive sort, she directed me towards the Nightmare on Vine Street, and I’m glad I listened because it was amazing. I wish Denmark had a description on its menu, but it contained Oyo vodka, vanilla peppercorn, some sort of extract, and something else–dear lord, how I have botched this drink. I’m not doing it any justice, so do yourself a favor and try one the next time you’re around the Convention Center.

Actually, do yourself a favor and get out there before the weather completely turns. It won’t be long before I’m crying about ice and snow and posting 900 photos of soup. I know, much to look forward too.

Thursday Ramblings

{by: alicia} It’s been a couple weeks since my pity party about the weather changing, and I’ve come around (but barely) by focusing on what’s fun about autumn. People think football is fun, right?

Ohio State Buckeyes

Last weekend, Alexis kindly gave us tickets to the Buckeyes game since she’s a fancy staff/faculty member. We had so much fun–mostly because we were busy being ridiculous and not actually watching the game. To everyone whose earshot we were in, we apologize for our inane topics of conversation and me (accidentally) throwing my bratwurst. Whoops.

Blog favorite Megan was also in attendance, and we had a grand old time spending a majority of our day at the tailgate, walking eight hundred miles, cramming into my clown car, and ending up at the barcade (where we nearly conked out while our husbands played Off Road). To think I had ever worried that I wouldn’t see her or Alexis once I left my old job. I feel like we see each other more than ever!

It helps that we make an effort to plan girls’ night once a month. Our last outing was at the newish Cray Eatery & Drinkery. They are located in the old Wonder Bread building and specialize in sliders and batshit infused vodkas. We made sure to dabble in all the things.

Cray Eatery

Fried green tomatoes, fries, and fried olives–I detect a pattern.

Gummy Bear Martini from Cray

A whimsical gummy bear martini.

Cray Eatery

Like 900 sliders.

When the weather gets chilly, all I want to eat is comfort food. I made this happen recently with brunch at the aptly named Double Comfort (Alexis’ review lives here).

Double Comfort

Fried chicken as far as the eye can see.

And by indulging at a new place by my neck of the woods called Mezcal Cantina & Grill.

Mezcal

Fries + tacos throw me off, but I will allow this.

I also bought myself presents in an attempt to put me in an autumnal mood. When I say presents, I mean frivolous groceries. (Also a bonus sweater cape. Ask Alexis to tell you about her BLARDIGAN.) I came home recently with bags bursting with pumpkin-inspired goodies (damn your siren song, Trader Joe’s!), and now I want to stock up on some holiday candles (said in the voice of the SNL Target Lady).

But that doesn’t mean I’ve completely embraced fall. I’ve been desperately clutching at some of my summer favorites while I still can. Favorite number one is iced coffee. One chilly morning last week, I had my seat warmer on while I sipped my freezing drink–talk about denial.

Since I can no longer find Cold Brew Coffee Concentrate at TJ’s anymore (shaking fist in rage), I have been on the hunt for decent replacements. Remember our chat about Fresh Thyme? It was there I found High Brew, which isn’t too shabby when on the go.

High Brew

But even better is the homemade coffee concentrate I made earlier this week–BEST ICED COFFEE I’VE HAD ALL SUMMER (technically it’s still summer, guys). And it’s so stupidly simple. I can’t believe how long it took me to try this. All you do is coarsely grind some beans until you have 3/4 cup, combine it with 3.5 cups of water, cover it, let it sit at room temperate for 24 hours, strain, and serve.

I used my French press which made this even easier–just make sure to save the plunging part for the very end. I stored this concentrate in mason jars and combined it with twice as much milk and ice (use a 1:2 ratio).

Okay, I’ll calm down now. Let’s talk about summer favorite number two: ice cream.

Graeter's Coconut Chip--ah-mazing.

Graeter’s Coconut Chip–ah-mazing.

Um, I really ought to consider my own affogato now that I’m eying these photos side by side. And sorry, no ice cream recipe. My standby is called “go to the store and buy a pint.” I stubbornly refuse to let ice cream go. Weather be damned. One time, I made my sister go to Handel’s with me during a blizzard. That is commitment, and I’m sure she secretly thought it was worth it. Right, Becca?

Some things I have let go of? Open-toed shoes and shorts. Despite my penchant for iced coffee and iced creams, I don’t actually like feeling cold. I’m officially a walking contradiction. The saga continues.

Eating in Charleston

{by alicia}–Ohh, you guys. I had this carefully crafted post all written and ready to go, and then my computer decided to crash and ruin everything. So here we are, for the second time, to recap all of the glorious things I consumed in Charleston. Forgive me if I come across grumpy and/or concise, but my rage meter is beyond measure. SO LET’S GET STARTED.

Since we drove into Charleston bright and early, our first stop was at Black Tap Coffee. I couldn’t help but fall in love from the moment I walked in–the interior was all minimalistic with clean lines and full of natural light. Plus, my coffee was on point. This doesn’t strike me as the type of place that would franchise, but I wish they would.

Iced Coffee from Black Tap Charleston, SC

The simple syrup was genius. I hate the gritty residue sugar leaves behind, so it was amazing being able to seamlessly blend in this sweet, magical elixir. Such a simple (ha) concept, and it was all over Charleston. Why don’t I ever see this in Columbus? Am I going to the wrong coffee houses?

You know what else is genius: coffee + booze. There’s this great place off King Street called Kudu Coffee & Craft Beer, and though I can’t vouch for the beer (twas too early for me), I can recommend their other type of brew.

Kudu

While waiting for my drink, I noticed a little courtyard–isn’t this picturesque? And there’s that creeping fig again. I wish we had the time to sit back and enjoy the scene, but we had to hit the pavement to our next stop.

Kudu

A stop that happened to be Sugar Bakeshop. I guess I wasn’t too heartbroken.

Sugar Bake Shop

You know what goes well with coffee? Cupcakes.

Sugar Bake Shop

We walked away with caramel, coconut, and of course, vanilla (because that is the flavor I measure all bakeries against, plus I’m boring, shhh). But it’s okay! I made up for it when we went to Kaminsky’s. This dessert bar is a tourist hotspot–like lines wrapped around the building hotspot. I think we waited 30+ minutes for a table, but I assure you, it was BEYOND WORTH IT.

Kaminsky's menu, Charleston, SC

A shot of the menu. They have all sorts of drinks and ice cream treats on it.

There isn’t a printed bakery menu as the offerings depend on whatever is in the display case, and it’s ever changing. The case was jammed full of temptation–some of the cakes were massive. And though this was an insanely difficult decision, we ended up snagging the last slice of coconut cream cake and a massive hunk of chocolate brownie cake (with vanilla bean ice cream). This was the perfect night cap. It’s lucky we don’t live here, or our health and bank account would hate us.

Coconut Cream Cake from Kaminsky'sChocolate Brownie Cake from Kaminsky'sBesides top notch coffee and sweets, the general food scene was impressive. Our first meal was at S.N.O.B. (Slightly North of Broad), which I highly recommend. The food is bistro-style lowcountry fare, and everything we ate was so delicious. Thom’s burger and chips were some of the best I’ve ever had–the house made chips were tossed in cayenne, sugar, and maybe paprika? Oh man, so good.
SNOB, Charleston, SC

In contrast, our last meal was at The Rarebit (also eclectic comfort food. I detect a theme). He had the hot chicken, and I went all out on country-fried steak with the most delicious (aka carby) sides.

Rarebit

I was all over my plate, but not so much husband’s food. I have to say I was disappointed by the lack of hot in the “hot” chicken. It wasn’t that long ago I tried the real deal in Nashville (and burned my face off in the process), so perhaps my standards were too high? At any rate, he liked it.

We’ve covered food, coffee, and dessert, so let’s talk about booze–namely the two bars that really did it for me. The first is The Blind Tiger. It’s old, historic (the building was erected in 1803), and I just loved the vibe. Plus they had cider on tap (it is the summer of cider after all), so it wasn’t that difficult to win me over.

The Blind Tiger

“Where did you pinch the hooch rummy? Is some blind tiger jerking suds on the side?”

The second place is the Rooftop at the Vendue. Um, guys, I wish I knew this hotel existed when I was booking our room. The concept is “experiencing art out of the frame,” so the interior was just beautiful and jammed with sculptures, painting, and modern art. We were entranced by everything during the short walk from the entrance to the rooftop elevator. I don’t know about the rooms, but it’s in a great area, is beautiful, and has a rooftop bar–stay here!

IMG_1414The rooftop bar was a lot of fun, and would be perfect if you have a big crowd. There are all sorts of nooks and crannies to hang out in.IMG_1483 IMG_1482The drinks are a tad pricy, but it’s vacation, right? 
Rooftop

We only had two days to cram all sorts of amazing things into our faces, but I think we did okay, considering there are only three meals in a day (a travesty).

Other places you should try:
Hominy Grill: You WILL need a reservation at dinner (as I learned the hard way), but if all else fails, grab some carryout from the window.
Husk: This establishment has won all sorts of awards for their amazing cuisine. Make sure to get a reservation here as well.
Poe’s Tavern: It’s Poe-themed (I’m already sold) and the menu is nothing but booze and burgers (still sold). Only catch is that it’s on Sullivan Island (20 minute drive). Plan a beach day and grab some lunch here.

Nashville Pt. II

{alicia}

Day two of our Nashville adventure started in the hipsterish and adorable realm of Hillsboro Village. If you like vintage items, whimsical curios, and amazing food, you want to be here. Apparently, Ben Folds calls this area home. Seeing that Alexis and I have a date with him and the Columbus Symphony this summer, this felt right.

Hilsboro Nashville

We encountered a lot of lines during our trip, but this was especially present when went to the Pancake Pantry for breakfast. An alarming queue snaked around the building, and with grumbles of a “one and a half hour wait,” Becker and I made a hasty retreat. We found a thirty minute line at Fido. Much better, and this turned out to be an unexpected success.

First, let’s talk about the best iced coffee of my life. It’s called the Grey Skies, and was recommended to me by a genius barista. This caffeinated wonder is made from coconut milk, bergamot simple syrup, espresso, and milk with chocolate shavings. The flavor is delicate yet complex, just sweet enough, and utterly delicious. Now, where the hell do I find bergamot simple syrup?

Grey Skies at Fido Nashville

The food was also stellar. No matter how hard I tried, I could not take an attractive photo of my huevos rancheros. Just trust me when I say it was a triumph on a plate, and paired with the iced coffee, I was in a state of rapture. Sister’s breakfast of whole wheat pancakes plus accoutrements was also a victory (and much more attractive to photograph).
IMG_0280Afterwards, we explored the village and poked around the various shops. I recommend Hillsboro on a day when you have time to take a slow, deliberate walk. There’s a lot to see, and since price points vary depending on the store, it’s perfect for all budgets.

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Our favorite place was Pangaea. Packed with an eclectic assortment of gifts, clothing, and accessories, it was totally up our alley. I wanted to spend all the monies here.

Pangaea Nashville

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As you can imagine, we left Hillsboro with all kinds of souvenirs–including a bonus parking ticket. I’m probably a dummy, but I’m used to parking machines where you pay upon leaving. This is not the case with the lots in Hillsboro. Make sure to pay in advance and try to anticipate how long you will be there and add an extra hour for a good measure. There aren’t flat rates (as far as I could see), but you can also find street parking and avoid this headache all together.
Hilsboro NashvilleSeeing that we had a rambunctious evening ahead, we spent the rest of the afternoon dozing by the pool. A couple hours later, food motivated us to shower and get out the door. We wanted to try The Pharmacy, but we quickly changed our tune once we were confronted with a two hour wait. No matter, we got an early start on Broadway instead.

Nashville BeerBroadway is a lot like Bourbon Street (excluding the open containers) right down to its touristy vibe. In fact, a guy at Arnold’s advised us to go to Midtown to do as the locals do, but I had to stick with the status quo my first go around. This main drag contains gift shops, bars, live music, and all of the nightlife you could ask for.

AT&T Nashville Batman Building

Batman?

As a result, you’re going to encounter a lot of bachelorette parties.

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Becker and I struggled a bit on Broadway. If you’re a country fan, it’s going to be easy to find suitable live music. We had to traipse around until we stumbled upon a group called Smoke ‘n Guns at The Second Fiddle–we were completely won over by their covers of Forgot About Dre and Waterfalls. I was also won over by the lively crowd and wanted to plant there all night. Becker told me this wasn’t allowed (jerk), so we eventually stumbled along Broadway to pop in and out of the other establishments for a drink.

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No, you can’t drink that.

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I like to end my boozefests with copious amounts of food, so we had a late dinner at Merchants. I don’t know what’s going on in this next photo, but it’s obvious that I am quite the comedienne.

MerchantsMerchants has an upstairs dining area that is a bit more upscale (so Becker tells me), while the downstairs is a bit more casual. All I know is that the servers wear suspenders, and you’re served popcorn in lieu of a bread basket–I don’t know what else you really need in this world. Well, I guess time. More time would have been nice! You can cram a lot in two days, but there is still so much I want to see and do. Looks like a Nashville Pt. III is in order.