Food & Drink The Enduring Joy of a Well-Kept Restaurant Journal
A Taco Bell in Las Vegas is the only one with a taco-themed wedding chapel — take a look inside
Wedding planner Victoria Hogan told Insider she's averaging about 30 weddings a month at the Taco Bell Cantina on the Las Vegas Strip.Taco Bell's flagship Cantina restaurant in Las Vegas, Nevada, is the only Taco Bell with a built-in chapel. Enter the restaurant from the action-packed Strip, take the stairs, and you're standing in a serene wedding chapel … that's Taco Bell-themed.
My restaurant list-making habit became a near-obsession in 2019, while I was studying abroad in Europe. I needed to remember the pillowyI ate at in Berlin, that crisp jianbing I devoured at in Milan’s Chinatown, and the perfect brioche aux pralines I demolished at in Lyon. When I returned to the States, I realized that this list-keeping was the perfect way to log all of my eating adventures.
Now, I make one of these lists in my Notes app each year, documenting hundreds of meals. Each entry consists of the singular best item I had at a meal, what restaurant I ate it at, and the date. I include the latter for each meal in hopes of being able to track down the same dish twice, but more importantly, because each date links the meal to a specific moment in my life.
Why This Classic Romanian-Jewish Dish Is Nearly Impossible to Find
When said aloud, the word sounds almost like music: Mamaliga. An almost-facsimile of polenta, the cornmeal-based dish mamaliga is native to Romania and neighboring Moldova, as well as parts of the Ukraine. Written as mamelige in Yiddish, and mămăligă in Romanian, the dish inspires an almost romantic yearning, particularly among Ashkenazi and Romanian Jews. In his famous song “Rumania, Rumania” originally recorded in 1925, Yiddish theater actor and singer Aaron Lebedeff extols the delights of the eponymous land through its comestibles: “Vos dos harts glust kenstu krign: A mamaligele, a pastramele, a karnatsele, Un a glezele vayn, aha…!” (In English: “What your heart desi
When people ask me where I like to eat and what they should order, I can send them this intel. During my second week working at Bon Appétit, we were asked to contribute to a staffof the best things we’d eaten that year. Luckily, I knew just where to turn: to my Notes app, of course. Showing my intricately organized lists to brand new coworkers was the kind of party trick I thought would make them immediately see me as bizarre and obsessive. Instead, they were intrigued.
This incessant list-making is mostly for me. Looking back at past years’ lists has a transportive power. I see that I had a phase during my senior year of college when I made weekly pilgrimages toin Philadelphia, trying a new pastry each visit, and another in the summer of 2019 when I only ate . As I look back on these lists, I remember a particularly delicious Wednesday experiencing my very first Bufalina Fried Chicken sandwich with a coworker after we waited in the snow for an hour. There’s the lamb shoulder I feasted on at , and the cheese naan at that I savored with a friend while visiting London, a snapshot of my life just one day before COVID-19 officially became a pandemic.
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Sure, a photo is a great reference, but there’s something even more intimate and personal about these lists. They’re my bulleted love letters to the restaurants I can’t live without. They’re a way of expressing my appreciation for the industry I love most, without worrying about whether mydinner pic will perform well on social media. I love a good food photo as much as anyone, but my lists of meals enhance and add context to those snapshots. You might be surprised by how much pleasure you find in curating lists of your own, building an archive of cherished moments.
When it comes time to try new restaurants, there’s another list in my Notes app for that (because, of course there is). At this point, I know my methods might seem a little over the top. Sure, my approach is a little intensive. But I’ll do whatever it takes to remember the green curry snails I ate aton July 7, 2018 at 5 p.m.
This Vintage Pitcher Makes My Home Feel Like My Favorite Restaurant .
Money can’t buy happiness, but it can buy a vintage party pitcher from Etsy.We had the option of ordering any of the restaurant’s cocktails by the pitcher, and we went with the Ecstasy of St. Theresa, a combination of fermented rice syrup, Cap Corse, gin, and bubbly wine, topped with skewers of castelvetrano olives. We were excited about the super-sized cocktail, but as it turns out, that wasn’t even the best part.