Tuesday, March 27


Sunday night arrival in Chicago, and late dinner in need, our concierge at the Radisson Blu Aqua recommended this restaurant. "Tavernita, a sexy, spirited, modern restaurant that offers a diverse mix of dishes inspired in Spain and Latin American flavors. Designed to encourage sampling and sharing, the small-plate menu will offer something for every taste." It was a nice surprise to find out it's Chicago Restaurant Week. The decor and the ambiance is very chic. Music was a little loud, but we could still have a conversation and enjoy it.

We went with Restaurant Week Menu, of course. Great options, even for my vegetarian friend. Our meal started with tasting of kegged cocktails, and two starters.

the turista - hornitos tequila blanco, preserved cherries, grapefruit, black pepper syrup, lime, bbq bitter
booty collins
- green tea-infused absolut vodka, passion fruit, lemon, cayenne, yohimbe
pork belly bocadillos - apple jam, pickled red onions, brioche
escalivada - eggplant, red peppers, hazelnut romesco, goat cheese

Small Plates
artichoke salad - roasted beets, arugula, valdeon blue cheese, artichoke chips
brussels sprouts - chestnuts, val d'aosta fontina cheese

Our large plate was house-made pappardelle, with mushroom ragout and manchego cheese, it was so good!

Saturday, March 17

East Lansing High School Theater presents "Hairspray"

East Lansing High School Theater presents "Hairspray",
The Broadway Musical,
at ELHS Auditorium, March 16-25.

Enjoy the 1960's style dance music and rhythm and blues!
We're going back to 1962, Baltimore, Maryland, where teen Tracy Turnblad dreams to dance on "The Corny Collins Show". When she gets the gig, she's a celebrity overnight and begins a campaign to integrate the show!

Show times are Mar 16, 17, 23, 24 at 7:30 pm
Mar 21 at 7:00 pm
Mar 18, 25 at 2:00 pm

For more information, click here.

Tuesday, March 13

Radisson Blu Aqua Chicago

I recently stayed at the Radisson Blu Aqua during a visit to Chicago, and would highly recommend this hotel to anyone looking for a great stay at the heart of the Windy City. It's just a walking distance from Millennium Park, Michigan Avenue, and Navy Pier. The hotel was definitely outstanding - my friend and I enjoyed every aspects of our stay. Staffs were wonderful, very friendly and helpful!

Stunning lobby with full-wall fireplace and comfy seatings, very cozy...


Lobby area

Lobby area

Hallway, with chic wall art, on our floor.

Loving the unique flooring and carpet color in our room. Very comfortable bed and pillows.

The bathroom was very hip with cool sliding glass door and rain shower. Also nice lighted closet.

Overlooking Navy Pier and Lake Michigan from the balcony of our room on floor 13, what a great view! Beautiful hotel, great location, and excellent services -- this first Radisson Blu property in the US by Carlson Group has it all! I believe this hotel has become my new favorite place to stay in Chicago :)

Sunday, March 4

Chicago Getaway

Spending a few days in Chicago a couple weeks ago, and it was a blast! Since the boys stood us up for a mid-winter break trip, it was just Lynne and I who headed to Chitown - we had a lot of fun, good eats, and relaxing days.

Overlooking Navy Pier from our room on floor 13 at Radisson Blu Aqua Hotel

Beautiful day to visit Chicago. It was sunny, and pretty warm for February temperature.

A walk through Millennium Park

Jay Pritzker Pavilion and Great Lawn - the centerpiece for Millennium Park

Every trip to Chicago, we always have pictures taken with Cloud Gate sculpture in Millennium Park. I wasn't going to do that this time. But while we were walking around to the other side, I discovered "the other side" of "The Bean" was also amazing! I can still see myself and the reflection of the city skyline - though it doesn't have a bean-like shape from this angle.

Museum fun at The Art Institute of Chicago. Amazing collection!

I love love love visiting Chicago :)

Friday, March 2

MSU Museum Chocolate Party Benefit 2012

The Michigan State University Museum held its 23rd Annual Chocolate Party Benefit February 26th, at their usual venue - the Kellogg Hotel and Conference Center. This popular fundraising event is a showcase for chocolatiers from the Greater Lansing and Mid-Michigan area. It has been one of my most favorite culinary events I look forward to every single year!

This year the event takes its inspiration from a new "Cabinets of Curiosities" exhibit featuring rare and unusual natural -science specimens and historical objects from the MSU Museum's collection. The Chocolate Party Benefit is one of the few professional culinary events in the country open to general public with area chefs and culinary students competing to create elegant, edible masterpieces.

Guests also enjoyed museum's display while indulging themselves with all kind of chocolate creations - for a worthy cause. The MSU Museum stewards nearly 1 million objects, artifacts, and specimens, which are housed in four buildings across the MSU campus -- many dating back to the museum's founding more than 150 years ago. Recently, Chocolate Party proceeds have helped with the purchase of items such as protective cabinets and preservation equipment.

Toward to the end of an event, winners of the competition, as well as the People's Choice Vendor were announced and awarded.


All participating sponsors were from all over Michigan. Local restaurants, caterers, bakeshops, candy makers, and other vendors shared their chocolate creations.

This year's participating chocolatiers included American Crepes, Awesome Chocolates, Bake N' Cakes, Caruso"s Candy Kitchen, How Sweet It Is, Second Floor Bakery, The Sweet Cake Company, and Wright Endings.

Until next year...

Source of information: Michigan State University Museum

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