Chrissie Dines Out: Sushi

Welcome to my first post of my new restaurant review series: Chrissie Dines Out! In today’s post, I’ll be sharing with you some recent eateries of my favorite cuisine – SUSHI!!

The NYC dining out life has really transformed and has been totally giving off that European outdoor dining vibes. Restaurants have come up with some really pretty and interesting dining experiences and honestly, I’m kinda liking it. Granted, the reason why outdoor dining is a thing right now is because of Covid-19, but I mean, hey – let’s make lemonade out of lemons!

Mido Japanese
Located on the Upper West Side, this place hands down has the best price for sushi lunch. The entire lunch menu is $12 and there’s even 50% off all beer and wine. YUMMMM! You have an option of 3 rolls, a Sushi Set (6Pcs Sushi & Salmon Avocado Roll), a Sashimi Set (12Pcs Sashimi & side of rice), or a Sushi & Sashimi Set (3Pcs Sushi, 6Pcs Sashimi & Salmon Avocado Roll) for $12 each! If you’re not a fan of raw fish, no worries – this place has got you covered with their Teriyaki or Tempura Bento Boxes.

I ordered the Sushi & Sashimi set and paired that with a cold glass of Sauvignon Blanc. The meal was truly delectable and I would 100% go back to try out their dinner options.

Sushi Sen-nin
This lovely restaurant is located in Midtown right near Herald Square and has the most yummy drinks that goes great with their fresh sushi. The sushi rolls prices can range between moderate to pricey, but I believe the quality of the fish totally makes it worth it. Their drinks here are also phenomenal – I had their seasonal summer moscato sangria!

Despite being situated in Midtown Manhattan, there are plenty of tables for outdoor dining and the decorations are beyond cute. The planters contain actual basil and mint – how cute and organic!

Zurutto
Situated on the Upper West Side, this eatery is famous for its ramen and gyoza. While I did have a bite of ramen from my friend’s bowl (the soup is super rich), I’m here to share with you their classic tuna poke.

They unfortunately do not have a lunch special, but I would say the prices are moderately priced for an Upper West Side location. They gave me plenty of fresh tuna pieces, along with some other toppings. It’s a classic dish and the perfect meal to stay cool while eating on a hot summer day.

Xoxo, Chrissie Carly

So tell me, where have been some local sushi restaurants you’ve been to recently?
Comment below on some of your favorite NYC restaurants!

Feature Fridays

DIY Home Offices
Living in a NYC condo with my parents and sister means that there is definitely not a place where I can have my home office. My mom, sister, and I usually work at the dining room table, but what’s a girl to do if she wants her own space??

Please, step into my office!

This DIY office is built from a yoga mat, cushions, two wooden stools, and a wooden board. Creative, right? I created this office in the corner of my room and I have to say myself…it’s quite efficient and I’m really loving it.

Sidenote: this also turns into a mini DIY church on Sundays!

Vanderpump Rules & Real Housewives of Beverly Hills
Anyone who knows me knows that I love reality tv. There is nothing better on a Friday night to settle in bed with a glass of wine and catching up on the newest episodes of Vanderpump Rules and Real Housewives of Beverly Hills. Ohh…the drama!

Fuzzy Socks
To all my fellow friends whose feet are always cold, you can probably relate to this one! My condo has hardwood floors all throughout and while it is much easier to clean the floors, my feet are constantly cold. Fuzzy socks are such a vibe (and mood!) and nothing beats that warm cozy feeling of putting on your favorite pair of fuzzy socks and just sitting back and relaxing.

Xoxo, Chrissie Carly

Little moments of joy during Covid-19 part 1

Watching Frozen 2 with my twin sister
My sister and I have always been huge fans of anything Disney, especially with the movie Frozen (hello SISTERS!). So when Frozen 2 became available on Disney Plus, I immediately asked my sister to watch it with me and let me tell you, this movie DID NOT DISAPPOINT!

I won’t spill any movie details or spoilers, but this movie brought me so much joy because I love seeing the sister bond between Elsa and Anna. Elsa, Anna, and Olaf always makes me smile and having my sister laughing right along with me made this movie even more memorable.

Facetiming and having wine nights every Friday with my girl friends
Now that we are all under #Stayathome guidelines, my girl friends and I have had to change our ways of catching up with one another: Face timing and drinking wine every Friday. Even though we’re all at home, it’s great just talking and laughing about each other’s stories of random things that we all experienced throughout the week. It definitely makes staying in on a Friday night more bearable.

Afternoon coffee and tea time with my mom on the balcony
Every Tuesday at 4pm, my mom and I would have afternoon tea (for her) and coffee (for me) on our balcony. Prior to this pandemic, my mom and I would rarely have a chance to really sit down and have deep talks. Sure, I would talk to her whenever we were at home, but something about drinking tea/coffee on our balcony just made the mother-daughter moment more special. We laughed and talked about everything ranging from what was for dinner to breakups and relationships.

Reflecting and expressing gratitude on a daily basis
With so much uncertainty going on, it is so easy to just focus on the chaos we are facing right now. I can listen and watch the news every minute of the day filling my mind with statistics of people who tested positive for Covid-19 or watching unemployment numbers going up. Now while it is great to be informed for current events, I believe that there are still blessings and gratitude to be found during this time. So at 8pm every night, I like to reflect on the day and jot down some things I am grateful for. Reflecting and expressing gratitude each day has truly helped me stay calm and see the light even during this tough time we are all facing.

Xoxo, Chrissie Carly

So tell me, what are some joys you’ve experienced during this time?

Chinese New Year Food, Festivities, and Traditions

Happy Chinese New Year (or Happy Lunar New Year)! 新年快樂! 恭喜發財!

Chinese New Year is probably one of my favorite holidays during the year! It’s a time of wishing prosperity and good luck & fortune to those around you, spending time with family, and of course – for those who are not yet married – receiving 紅包 (hong bao) or red envelopes filled with money.

Chinese New Year lasts for a month, but in my family, we celebrate it for 15 days. As of today, we’re in the 2nd week of the Lunar New Year. During this time, we eat plenty of good food ranging from little snacks like little turnip cakes and 湯圓 (tang yuan) which are little sweet glutinous rice balls to elaborate 8 – 12 course family style dishes. Usually, when visiting someone’s house, the host will have a big red round or flower shape container with different compartments filled with an assortment of candy and nuts. In my house, we keep it less traditional and simply use a three-tiered glass plates to hold these goodies.

During Chinese New Year, it is tradition to decorate the house with red decorations since red is seen as a lucky color. Red Chinese Lanterns are hung around the house and in the streets. In my house, we are a bit less traditional and we simply have huge red flowers (gladiolus) as the centerpiece on our dining room table. We also will have a plate of candy specifically Ferraro Rocher chocolates, pistachios and oranges (or tangerines) throughout the house. Oranges and tangerines were common food symbols for wealth and good luck. It also meant abundance and happiness. It’s also custom to give oranges and candy (Ferraro Rocher in my family) when visiting family members and in exchange they will give you oranges and some sort of candy when you leave.

Now my favorite tradition is receiving 紅包 (hong bao) – usually when visiting a family members house! These red envelopes contain money and are given to younger family members who are not yet married. Once married, you then start giving out red envelopes. That said, some employers may give their employees red envelopes during this holiday to wish them luck and fortune in the new year. The red envelopes come in many beautiful design with gold lettering or cute cartoons and sometimes, it even comes in pink!

The festivities that take place outside are joyous, loud, and everyone from little children to grandparents will come out to celebrate as a community. Dancers perform lion dances at different stores and businesses in hopes to bring them good luck and prosperity in the new year. Some places will even hold a fireworks ceremony to scare away any bad luck and evil spirits that may be lingering in the new year.

Chinese New Year is an exuberant and fun holiday meant to bring families together to welcome in the new year together. I look forward to it every year and I wish every one of my readers a prosperous year filled with good luck and fortune!

**Please note: the traditions listed above are traditions in my family. Each family’s traditions may vary.

Xoxo, Chrissie Carly

Do you celebrate the Lunar New Year? What are some traditions you follow?

If you don’t celebrate the Lunar New Year, what’s your favorite holiday to celebrate?