A-Frame, Los Angeles

I’m back in LA for a bit and finally made it to A-Frame, one of my favorite restaurants in the city.  A-Frame has a super eclectic menu of deliciousness.  My staples there are usually the Vietnamese Style Drip Coffee (which will keep you up all night so drink with caution), Furikaki Kettle Corn made with corn pops, Cracklin Beer Can Chicken, and the Island Farmer’s Market Salad.  If you go, be prepared to share your table with some strangers!  (This is not the place to dine if you’re hoping to have a super private conversation.)

A-Frame, 12565 Washington Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90066.

© Sarah Milstein 2013

Trekking, Chiang Mai

Some of my favorite places on the planet are those I knew nothing about prior to going.  Chiang Mai was one of them.  We had some of the best Thai food I’ve ever had, walked through rice fields, saw leeches grow from the size of ants to giant slug-like things, crossed a bamboo bridge (I was terrified), and forged a river on an elephant.  The moral of the story is, wear shoes, the leeches won’t get you!

© Sarah Milstein 2013

Essaouira, Morocco

I discovered the cumin I had brought back from Morocco for my mom in the back of her cupboard and it made me nostalgic.  (It also made for an excellent addition to homemade pumpkin soup!)

In any event, I decided to re-post some photos I took in Essaouira,* a port city on the Atlantic Ocean, filled with vibrant colors and smells.

*I originally posted these photos from Essaouira a few months ago, but I decided to re-post them here in a better format!

© Sarah Milstein 2013

Je T’aime, Paris

Him: You speak really good English for an Italian.

Me: (I laughed.)  Thank you, but I’m American.

. . .

Him: You know the “ulk”?

Me: Huh?

Him: You know, the “ulk”?  (He puffs out his chest.)

Me: What? Ohhh, you mean the hulk.

Him: Yes, the “ulk.”

And so went many of my conversations.  I love how I would say something in French and nobody would understand me, and I’d repeat it one octave lower and suddenly people knew exactly what I was trying to say.  I’ve realized it’s the same in reverse.

Two nights before I left Paris, I was talking to a guy from Corsica and he asked me what I liked about France.  Here’s the long answer I couldn’t come up with on the spot.

Je t’aime, Paris.*  I love your cheese, especially the compté.  I love that I can sit in a café for literally hours and nobody will ask me to leave.  Plop me in any park, and I’m happy.  The Luxembourg, Bois des Vincennes, the Tuilleries.

French sounds so f**king sexy, even if you’re describing a medical ailment.  Paris is designed for the romantic hypochondriac.  Find me a street without a pharmacy on it.

Everyone is in love here.  Even if it is just for one night.

I could eat pain au chocolat everyday.  In fact, I basically did.  I love that whatever part of my baguette I didn’t eat, I could use as a baseball bat within 24-36 hours.

I love that people are present and not on their phones texting.  I like that all the tables face the street.  I love the vélib’ and the metro.  I like that the streets don’t go straight and sometimes I didn’t end up where I was trying to go.  But Paris, you keep me on my toes.

Maybe I do wear rose-colored glasses, but I’m not taking them off.

*So maybe I didn’t answer his question about France, but I love Paris and Corsica and all the other cities I’ve visited.

Apple Hill, Placerville

I remember going to Apple Hill as a kid and eating corn dogs, apple pie, and caramel apples (maybe not all at the same time).  I also liked to pick out our pumpkin for Halloween.  If you want to beat the crowds, go on a day like today, but it wasn’t quite as exciting as I remembered.  Maybe it’s because I’m not 10 anymore, but it was a bit of a ghost town and there were no pumpkins yet.  If you go, try a Mutsu apple and eat an apple turnover at Boa Vista Orchards.  Both were so good, we got a bunch to take home!

Boa Vista Orchards, 2952 Carson Road, Placerville, California, 95667.

Although much of the experience of going to Apple Hill is about eating, you can also go wine tasting, pick apples, fish, and shop for crafts.

© Sarah Milstein 2013

Floating Markets, Bangkok

In 2009, after taking the bar exam, I traveled to Thailand and Japan.  One of my favorite parts of the trip was visiting one of the floating markets in Bangkok, Thailand.  I hired a boat, expecting to be one of many people on it, and ended up getting a private tour.  My guide’s generosity and kindness have always stayed with me.  She shared her stories and all of the food that she bought with me.

© Sarah Milstein 2013

Jaco, Costa Rica

A few years back, I went to Costa Rica to take surf lessons, paddle board, do yoga, and hike with Del Mar Surf Camp.  Turns out surfing is not my forte; every day marked a different injury, but watching the sun go down from a surf board is definitely one of the best ways to end a day.  Unfortunately, I didn’t have a camera on the water, but here are some other photos from the trip.

© Sarah Milstein 2013

Big Sur, California

Debating whether to take a road trip along the California Coast?  Do it.  And definitely stop in Big Sur (but be sure to fill up your gas tank before).  Famous for its views, and its expensive gas, Big Sur is one of my favorite places on the planet.

These are photos from a road trip several years ago.

© Sarah Milstein 2013