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There are certain glasses of wine you just can’t keep your nose out of, and this is definitely one of those. On my most recent trip to Sonoma County, I had the pleasure of dining with people who were true local experts, and they did an excellent job of choosing wine. As much as I like to be handed the wine list, in cases like this, it is so much more fun to try what the locals recommend.

girl and the fig wine and avocado toast This Westerhold Family Vineyards Syrah from Bennett Valley was everything I love about Syrah from Sonoma County, elegant yet bold, with deep, dark fruity notes and a bit of spice, and a nose that just smells like Sonoma to me. As the sun went down around us on that beautiful patio at The Girl & The Fig and the day went from dry and hot to cool and breezy in that classic Sonoma style, I couldn’t help but breathe deep in that glass. . . wines like this are definitely for savoring with as many senses as possible.

Let’s also talk about what’s in front of that bottle of wine, shall we? That’s The Girl & The Fig avocado toast, topped with smoked trout, egg, olives, tomatoes, and sunflower sprouts, in addition to all of that avocado deliciousness under there. Could there be a more heavenly meal? I think this wins for the best avocado toast I have ever encountered.

Happy Wine Wednesday, friends! What wines have you been loving lately?

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Tags: California wine, Food, Sonoma, Sonoma County, Syrah, Travel, wine of the week

Just order everything, is the advice that I would give for those thinking about visiting the newly opened Townshend restaurant in Quincy. Its location is a little odd; it’s in the same building as my doctor, so my arrival brought back less-than-stellar memories of having malaria this winter and feeling wretched, but once inside the actual restaurant, the space is bright, rustic, and lovely and lacks that doctor’s office smell.

Our group of four was seated at a table next to the window, where we could view the comings and goings of Quincy, which is a busy place! We started with cocktails, mine the Brooklyn: a simple and delicious mix of rye and orange bitters, served nice and cold.

Rye and Orange Bitters

We were all hangry and decided we needed appetizers in addition to entrees.

beet salad

The beet salad with whipped ricotta was one of my favorites. It was so simple but so well done, and it made me feel healthy after constant indulgences of late.


Arancini nestled in a flavorful tomato sauce were stuffed with peas and guanciale, a delightful, rich pairing.

grilled asparagus

Roasted asparagus with bacon cream was heavenly. Seriously, I always want my asparagus this way.

burrattaBurrata with spiced honey and toast was another crowd favorite, and our server kindly brought us extra bread for the burrata and all of the other bits of sauce left on the appetizer plates. We weren’t leaving a drop of anything behind!


For  my entree I went with the seared trout with fingerling potatoes, grilled spring onion, and chorizo. It was perfectly cooked, just falling off of the crispy skin, and so full of flavor. It was exactly what I wanted.

I also had a few bites of the hanger steak my husband ordered. It was tender and garlicky, served with a crispy potato rosti, which was like a really crispy hash brown.

hanger steak

We shared a bottle of Gruener Veltliner with our dinner. I am normally a big fan of Gruener, but this one was very acidic to me.

landhaus mayer gruner


amaro digestif

Before we left, we were treated to little splashes of Amaro as a digestif. It was just another small touch in already excellent service to end the night. We really loved our experience at The Townshend; it was one of the best meals we have all had in recent months, and since all four of us eat a lot, that’s saying something!

Did you try any new restaurants over the weekend?

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Tags: cocktails, Dining out, new, Quincy, Restaurants, wine

We skipped right through spring, and lately it has felt like summer is in full effect. I will take it! I  wouldn’t mind summer three seasons of the year, to be honest. Just in time for summer, Dorchester has a new ice cream spot, and we were delighted to attend the opening party last week.

Chill on Park is in the Fields Corner neighborhood of Dorchester, near Dorchester Ave and the baseball fields there. It’s a busy area and the perfect spot for an ice cream and coffee shop.

The space is really beautiful, modern, bright, and peaceful. It’s well designed and offers free WiFi so would be a great place for a meeting or remote work.

Chill on Park

They offer a variety of different ice cream flavors, shakes, ice cream pies, and other treats. The salted caramel moose tracks was my favorite ice cream, but there are many more I want to try. Everything here is local, from the staff, hired through local groups like the Boys & Girls Club, to the ice cream, which comes from Puritan Ice Cream in Roslindale. I love Dorchester, so when I see people investing in businesses and kids in the neighborhood, I am always happy to support.

Chill on Park

One of the perks of the opening party were adult milkshakes, which won’t be served regularly. They were delicious though, and they gave me ideas for making similar treats at home. I had the Irish milkshake, and it was outstanding.

boozy milkshakes

oreo milkshake

The Cookies & Cream was good too!

The party also featured a cake made by one of our favorites, Green Hills, another Dorchester business, and cookies made by Haley House. How great would it be if all businesses in our area leaned on one another with such support?

Green Hills Bakery cake

Chill on Park is the perfect place to go to fix that sweet summer ice cream craving while helping to build a business that is in turn striving to be something bigger in the community. I wouldn’t hesitate to visit again, especially when nieces and nephews are visiting. I am also looking forward to Chill on Park’s coffee.

Chill on Park Dorchester

I was invited to this event as a guest and treats were complimentary. All opinions are my own.

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Tags: coffee, Dorchester, ice cream, openings

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