Friday, April 17, 2015

Pappalecco's and the Divine Affogato

Have you ever heard of something so wonderful that it just couldn't be real? 

Well, I'd heard rumors. Whisperings, if you will, of a drink called the affogato. Now, maybe I'm just very behind the times and you all are fully aware of what that delightful concoction is.....but please humor me and allow me to explain. 

An affogato is gelato, any flavor, that is then deliciously drowned in hot espresso. As you can imagine this melts into the most delectable of coffee dreams. Sigh. 

So. I obviously pursued every lead until I found a location that makes affogatos. And, don't laugh, we dressed to impress for our first meeting with this caffinated minx.

Rumor had it, that Pappalecco's was the place to find what we were looking for. Off to Little Italy we went. 

After braving the pain that is parking in that area, we were richly rewarded by finding truth in these coffee rumors. 

Just one more close up for this divine beauty? 

It really is wonderful to have friends who are just as obsessed as I am about these kinds of things. Gloria decided on Nutella for hers and I couldn't resist the hazelnut.

I imagine this is how a leprechaun looks when holding his pot of gold, crazed look in his eyes, utter disregard for the double chin a maniac grin inevitably brings out....

Mine! All mine!!!

Gloria took a slightly more cautious approach...

And then fell into raptures, as is tradition.

Unfortunately, though I have tried many times, I cannot survive on coffee and dessert alone. Luckily, Italians have never been known for a lack of satisfying foods. Pappalecco's quiche and salad were no exception. 

 More than satisfied with the outcome of our quest for yet another incomparable coffee, we went for a lovely stroll and even made time to stop and smell the flowers.

Such a lovely day! I highly recommend Pappalecco and strongly encourage you to try the affogato!!!

Their facebook can be found here:

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Quest for Coffee : Cafe Bassam

On a beeeyoootiful California day, Ashley and I went in search of that most sought after morning necessity, that glorious concoction, that tempting seductress.....COFFEE.

We were headed to Cafe Bassam of Banker's hill, Mr. Fancy Pants of the coffees if you will.

It was quite obvious when we found it. I mean, there was a sign, of course. But also because it had the right feel...Cafe Bassam is not just Mr. Fancy Pants, he's also Mr. Eclectic-hey-i-have-cool-stuff-piled-in-my-old-house-please-sit-down-anywhere-just-move-those-old-sextants-over-to-that-pile-of-beatles-records. And would you like some tea?

Seriously, if you'd like tea, they've got tea coming out of their ears.

And other bits and bobs and wonders.

But most importantly, they had coffee. Delicous, perfectly made, piping hot, wonderful coffee.

And really, if you're going to sit down somewhere that basically is your heretofore unmentioned uncle's super cool fire hazard of a house, it would be rude to have coffee and not order food.

Especially when it is as good as this.

Even that doll down there is like damn that food looks good!

In all seriousness, Cafe Bassam is a wonderful cafe with great atmosphere, delicous food and coffee worth coming back for. 

It's located near Little Italy and Balboa Park at Banker's Hill, if you click the link it will take you to their website and you can find your way from there! Cafe Bassam.

 As for me and Ashley? We strolled off into the sunshine, ever in search of the perfect cup of Joe....and the next new coffee adventure...

After all.....adventure is out there.

Sunday, April 5, 2015

The Horton Grand Hotel

I have a habit of collecting places in my head that have to be visited. 

I'm constantly searching for new little hideaways to explore; old vintage shops, quirky cafes, dive bars, historic landmarks....yes, I'm one of THOSE people. 

Recently, I got to knock out two of my most prized must-be-visited places from my list. 

On a particularly beautiful day, we meandered into the sun drenched courtyard of The Horton Grand Hotel, former home of Wyatt Earp, and...

 I was not disapointed. Fairy lights in an open air courtyard? Check.

Rustic brick and classic wrought iron railings? Naturally.

Gorgeous historically accurate details ? But of course.

The classiest whiskey bar I've ever had the pleasure of being served in? Naturellement!

It was everything I had hoped it would be, with the added benefit of serving delightful drinks at surprisingly fair prices.

After spending the morning feeling like a princess exploring a castle, I'm not even going to  try to hide the fact that I was feeling quite Belle-esque (from Beauty and the Beast) making the next stop on our wanderings an obvious choice. 

The downtown Library. I'm telling you, if heaven ends up being a library I won't be upset.

Despite the fact that I feel practically reverent in the presence of so many books, it's hard not to be silly when everyone is so quite.

 We may or may not have caused some disturbances and giggled like school children at some point.

We eventually settled down enough to stop and enjoy the view of the clock tower and the Coronado bridge.

This paticular library has something like 8 stories, including a cafe and a sitting area up near the roof.

But much much better than that....they have this.

A Rare Books library. Which is, to state the obvious, rare. 

Seeing as how it was closed the day I was there, I did what any self respecting bibliophile would do and added it right to the top of my list.