Cold Process Coffee along the Hudson

Earlier this year I wrote about a coffee tasting that one of our friends hosted with a new line of gourmet coffee beans, Lamill. Well, I’m not going to say that my blog post gave our friend, Eric, the “press” and start he needed to take Lamill to a wider audience, but I will definitely let you think that if you want.

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Eric recently opened Cold Process Coffee & Tea as part of the redevelopment of Pier 57. Pier 57 is a 170,000 square-foot covered, open-air public market. Business are housed  in recycled and creatively refitted shipping containers. The market is New York’s first large-scale concentration of year-round, affordable work/sell space for artisans and other small businesses. Cold Process Coffee & Tea made their debut last month and have plans to be there through October. There are currently 4-5 other booths in the space with room to add more.

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Cold Process Coffee is a unique way of steeping coffee grounds in room temperature or cold water for an extended period. This lends well to an espresso based iced coffee with more flavor and certainly more caffeine than regular iced coffee.

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On Saturday, Matt and I decided to run down along the Hudson River to Eric’s new “office.” As you can see from the pictures, it is an incredible space (much too hip for Matt and me). The only suggestion I would make would be to add some delicious treats to the menu.  The counter space looked a little lonely and I bet a homemade chocolate chip cookie and would go great with the iced coffee… now I wonder who you could ask to make you some (wink, wink).

It was very inspirational to see our friend taking a passion and turning it into a business. We were psyched to support Eric and definitely encourage anyone to stop by and get your daily caffeine fix. And who know’s — you just might wait in line behind a celebrity!

Fighting Poverty… and Vampires?

Matt and I watched all three seasons of The Walking Dead in approximately 3 weeks. We became obsessed with the idea of a zombie Apocalypse and the precautions we should be taking now to prepare should one ever occur (Matt wants to buy guns while I would prefer crossbows). Well, with the season premier of HBO’s True Blood just a couple weeks away, it is time to shift our attention from zombies to vampires.

This morning I was in Brooklyn visiting one of the non-profits that Robin Hood funds. This program, Green City Force, trains young people from low-income backgrounds for sustainable careers, while reducing green-house gas emissions, and building a greener city. And apparently they are also helping the residence of this NYCHA community ward off vampires.

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They recently created a massive garden for the residence, with 6 large raised beds, containing leafy greens, herbs and tons of garlic. So now, when the vampires attack, I know where to go!

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OMG – We’re Adults!

"Heeeeey. Today is my Birthday"
“Heeeeey. Today is my Birthday!”

Today is Matt’s 30th Birthday! Not only is this exciting because it means we get to have cake and celebrate but it also means that Matt can stop reminding me at every change he gets that I am 30 and he is 29. Honestly, the 3 months between our Birthdays are the worst. To be honest, I don’t mind that I am a little older than Matt but I don’t need to be reminded of it all the time.

We kicked off the celebration a little early last night with a dinner party at our friends apartment. We have known Lucy and Smeets since our early days in Boston and have continued to remind friends over the years. They are lovely people with whom we’ve taken a few ski trips , gone to many dinners and shared more than a few glasses of wine! A couple week’s ago we celebrated Lucy’s birthday together with a dinner at Peels, one of my favorite NYC restaurants. That night we ordered some oysters for the table and got to talking about how Matt and I have recently gotten into oysters. It just so happens that Lucy’s uncle owns an oyster farm in Cape Code, Sweet Neck Farms, and knows a thing or two about the slippery delicacies. I mentioned that I really wanted to learn how to shuck them so Matt and I could enjoy them at home (and not have to pay the ridiculous price of $3 per oyster at a restaurant!) So I was pleasantly surprised when Lucy called me on Tuesday night to tell me that her uncle had shipped her some fresh oysters and invited Matt and I over for a shucking lesson and dinner party.

Now, this may shock you – but this was the FIRST real dinner party that Matt and I have ever been to. I know – weird. I think it is because NYC apartments are so small, that very few people have dinner tables so we always go out to dinner. It is sort of funny because the only person I can think of who has an actual table in their apartment, which chairs and adult things like that, is Kinsella – and his version of cooking is opening a can of soup (which IS pretty impressive). We’ve had many a football watching party at his place, but those normally involve Bleeker Street pizza and eating off our laps (please don’t mistake my tone for judging – Matt and I sit on the floor and eat off a coffee table at home).

It was nice to play house for a little with Smeets and Lucy and feel like real adults. Thanks for keeping us classy guys!

 

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Here is Smeets in the Kitchen - hoping that rubs off on Matt!
Here is Smeets in the kitchen – hoping that rubs off on Matt!

 

Fish Out of Water

This weekend, Matt and I decided to take a day trip out of the city. Living in New York can be particularly challenging in the winter. Unless you are a committed skier, you find yourself never leaving the city. And even though New York is a big city, let’s be serious, never leaving a 23 square mile island, filled with 1.6 million people, can make you a little stir crazy.

We tried to plan a weekend getaway to somewhere like the Catskills, the Berkshires or Lake Placid but our timing wasn’t great – with the combination of President’s Day Weekend and MA/NY school vacations, everything was booked. So instead, we rented a car for the day and drove out to NJ.

We drove out to High Point State Park for a little cross-country skiing. Although the north-east received a big storm only a week ago, a lot of the snow had melted so the coverage on the trails wasn’t great. However, it was well worth it – just to get out of the city. Oh yeah, and to see Matt on cross-country skis for the first time. That was fun too!

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Holiday Mystery Trip

When Abby and I were younger, our parents used to take us on mystery trips. Sometimes things were trips that we earned (I sort of remember earning one for reading a certain number of pages over the summer one year) and sometimes they were completely random and spontaneous. Sometimes they were big trips, like to Boston to see The Secret Garden, The Nutcracker or The Red Sox; while other times they were small, like a trip to McDonald’s for Happy Meals or to King Cone for ice cream and the Merrimack playground. Needless to say, the trips were always a lot of fun so it is no surprise Matt and I have taken this Brethauer family tradition and incorporated it into the Englehauer family.

So what’s better than a mystery trip? A mystery trip that has a holiday theme – that’s what! So I was really excited when I found something fun and a little different for Matt and I do to this holiday season.

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On Saturday night Matt and I took the Metro North into the Bronx to go to the Botanical Gardens  – a place neither of us had visited for the Holiday Train Show. The trip started off pretty great – Metro North leaves from Grand Central Station, which is seriously a beautiful NYC landmark, and one that Matt and I don’t visit too often. When we take the train to Boston or the Long Island Railroad to the Hamptons, we leave from Penn Station (a not so beautiful landmark). Walking through the giant concourse, I will immediately transported to Harry Potter’s King Cross Train Station and Matt to Taggart Terminal from Atlas Shrugged (and yes, that statement pretty much sums us up).

It was a quick train ride and we were transported into a much darker and quite neighborhood. The grounds at the Botanical Gardens are beautiful and walking over to the train show, I was happy. That’s when things started to go wrong.

I had been to a train show before with my dad. It was in our hometown in the cafeteria of the middle school. There were probably 50 – 75 train collectors who brought their train sets and created incredible landscapes for their trains to run through. The level of detail was amazing, speaking with the owners was actually really interesting and after we left, my dad went home and got out his old train set and set it up. So when I found out about the Holiday Train Show at the Botanical Gardens I knew it would be just as good — and assumed it would probably be even better since, this is New York after all. Well – I was wrong.

There were probably 6, not more than 7 trains at this show. And while there were some pretty incredible things there, sadly they weren’t the trains.

The main feature of the show were the replica buildings, all New York City historical landmarks, that were made from plant parts.

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Don’t get me wrong, they were impressive, but when you go expecting trains, it is hard to really get excited.

Thankfully, Matt was a good sport about everything and we ended up having an ok time. Mat said it best “even though it wasn’t the best mystery date ever, it was definitely better than no mystery date!”

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The Hiatus is Over [hopefully]

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So, many of you have reached out to my personally to say “what the heck is going on? where did you blog go?” Well let me explain quickly.

First this happened.

Which led to this to try to help.

Oh yeah, and this too.

(both of which are taking up a LOT of time)

However, I’ve made a decision to bring my blog back. The lead up to Christmas is my most favorite time of the year, especially in New York. There are so many incredible things to experience and blog about – I just can’t pass them up!

So hang tight, I hope to revive my blog, just in time for the holidays.

A Bed Fit for a Princess (and Prince)

When Matt and I moved in together my sleep quality plummeted. I tend to move around when I sleep and Matt is a very light sleeper. This is a deadly combination for any married couple.

Every few weeks, one of us would end up sleeping on the couch. Not really the ideal way to start a marriage. After complaining about this to my colleagues for months on end, they finally convinced me that I need to do something about it.

So two weeks ago, after returning from vacation, Matt and I entered the world of adulthood and bought a big kid bed. After spending 2 hours in Sleepys, testing out nearly ever mattress, we decided on a Serta. We were having trouble deciding whether or not we should get a spring or tempur-pedic mattress. This one has a spring mattress with a tempur-pedic pillow top – the perfect solution.

The sheep was really the biggest selling point for me. Unfortunately it wasn’t until after we purchased the bed that I realized he didn’t come with it.

Matt made a big push for us to upgrade to a King. Although our bedroom isn’t really big enough to reasonably fit a bed this size, his argument that 90% of the time we spend in our bedroom is in the bed was pretty convincing.

So now we have a room with a bed in it –  a lot of bed!

 

Oh yeah… and some bikes. Isn’t city living the best?