Sep 30

Restaurant.com // Save Money when you dine out.


Restaurant.com 191x60 blue banner

Who doesn’t like to save money when dining out?

Restaurant.com offers a national directory including thousands of restaurants and a number of exclusive online merchants. You can search for restaurants by state, city, neighborhood, zip code, cuisine type, or restaurant name. Restaurant.com also offers Specials by Restaurant.com, the latest in dining bundles, travel, and entertainment deals with top brands.

It’s a great way to try new restaurants at a discounted price. I have discovered new favorite restaurants by using these certificates in different cities around the country.

The $25 Restaurant Gift Certificates for $10 provide value at thousands of restaurants nationwide. They also have multiple promotions a month where you can save even more off the original retail price of dining certificates!

Screen Shot 2014-09-30 at 4.51.19 PM

Right now you can purchase a $200 restaurant.com gift card for only $40. Yes, that’s 80% off!! (Deal available until October 13, 2014)

Screen Shot 2014-09-30 at 4.40.35 PM

 

And right now you can get $25 gift cards for only $3!


I love restaurant.com gift cards. It makes dining out more affordable and restaurant.com gift cards make great gifts!

 

 

Have you used restaurant.com? What restaurants have you visited with a restaurant.com gift certificate?


 

No Comments

This entry was posted in Restaurant Review and tagged on 30 September, 2014.

Sep 30

Cevich // Union Square

Screen Shot 2014-09-18 at 2.44.49 PM

Ceviche is a seafood dish popular in coastal regions of Central and South America, especially Peru and Ecuador, where it originated. The dish is typically made from fresh raw fish cured in citrus juices, such as lemon or lime, and spiced with ají or chili peppers.

Ceviche is one of my favorite dishes, we had our favorite spot in Somerville, Machu Picchu, we loved to go to when we were living in Boston. So you can understand my excitement when I heard about Cevich, a restaurant specializing in ceviche.

Cevich, located in Union Square, has a fast food feel. You walk in, order at a counter, and then take it to go or sit at one of the few counter seats looking out onto 15th St.

IMG_9325

Here, ceviche is assembled in one of six styles.  Some are relatively authentic, while others were clearly invented by the owners. These styles are available in two sizes, medium ($12) and large ($14) . Each serving allows you to select one of the three types of seafood—shrimp, salmon, and tilapia—or an exotic mushroom medley, or you can combine two or three for an additional $2. Daily specials are also available, and range from squid to pollock. Add ins, including guacamole, avocado, extra sauce, and bacon (really? Bacon?) are also available for an extra $2.

The seafood here is fresh, and they use local and sustainable ingredients whenever possible.

IMG_9329

We tried the Wild Tiger, “Leche de Tigre,” the traditional Peruvian citrus with red onion, red pepper, and cilantro. At first we loved it, but as we got to the bottom it was overly tart. There was an abundance of citrus in the sauce. We were expecting the traditional crisp citrus taste, which we got at first, but then it was just too much.

We also tried the Lime N Da Coconut, made with Caribbean coconut ginger sauce with mango, carrots, red onion and cilantro. Although I’m somewhat of a purist when it comes to ceviche, I really enjoyed the coconut flavors. The sauce was light and refreshing, and the carrots added a nice crunch that you don’t usually find in ceviche.

IMG_9328

Ceviche Bowls are also available for $13.50. The bowl comes with a base of you choice—mesclun greens, coconut rice, or quinoa. Then you select your seafood and pick a style.

The menu also includes three types of tacos, served on gluten free corn tortillas. Burritos are not gluten free, but they are working on a gluten free tortilla.

Screen Shot 2014-09-20 at 3.59.25 PM

Cevich on Urbanspoon

No Comments

This entry was posted in New York City, Restaurant Review, Seafood, Union Square and tagged , , , on 30 September, 2014.

Sep 29

ENLIGHTENED // The Good For You Ice Cream

Screen Shot 2014-09-21 at 6.36.41 PM

At last, an ice cream that makes you feel as good as it tastes! ENLIGHTENED offers a healthy, delicious product that will make you rethink ice cream. Packed with protein, fiber and flavor— and light in calories, sugar, and fat— this is a tasty treat you won’t feel guilty indulging in.

ENLIGHTENED is made with all natural gluten free ingredients. ENLIGHTENED contains no artificial flavors or added sugar. ENLIGHTENED ice cream contains milk and is made in a facility that processes nuts and soy.

An ice cream that is low in calories and high in protein and fiber sounds too good to be true right? WRONG!

ENLIGHTENED Ice Cream Fudge, Coffee, Orange Cream, and Toasted Almond bars nutritional information:

Screen Shot 2014-09-21 at 5.52.11 PM

ENLIGHTENED Ice Cream Peanut Butter bars contain 80 calories, 9 grams of protein, and 5 grams of fiber. They contain only 3 grams of sugar and 2.5 grams of fat.

So how does it TASTE?

ENLIGHTENED ice cream is actually an ice cream bar on a stick; easy to eat and portion controlled. It is best when you let it temper for 3-5 minutes before eating.

IMG_9386

The fudge flavor was my favorite. Smooth, rich, and decadent, it is a chocolate lovers dream. The fudge had the strongest flavor of the three I tried.

My local grocery stores only carried three flavors— fudge, coffee, and peanut butter. I would love to try the toasted almond, but unfortunately I cannot find it anywhere.

IMG_9427

I didn’t like the peanut butter; I thought the texture was a little chalky. In all fairness, I never eat anything made with peanut butter or peanut butter flavored.

You can find ENLIGHTENED ice cream at Whole Foods, Food Emporium, and food stores throughout NYC. In and around Boston, it’s available at Whole Foods and Shaws.

Screen Shot 2014-09-21 at 6.36.51 PM

Disclaimer: I received these products for free to sample and review for my blog.  I was not paid for my review and all opinions are my own.

No Comments

This entry was posted in ice cream, Kosher, Product Review and tagged , , on 29 September, 2014.

Sep 28

VoilàVe Dead Sea Mud Mask & Hyaluronic Acid Serum

Screen Shot 2014-09-20 at 5.16.41 PM

VoilàVe, is a fast growing skincare, beauty, and health care line based in Northville, MI. All of their products are made in the USA using only the finest ingredients.

I recently had the opportunity to try two of VoilàVe’s products: The Dead Sea Mud Mask and the Hyaluronic Acid Serum.

Screen Shot 2014-09-20 at 4.43.02 PM

I’ve been seeing Hyaluronic Acid Serum everywhere lately and I’m glad I finally got the chance to check it out.

So, what is Hyaluronic Acid?

Hyaluronic acid is a polysaccharid found naturally in the human body. It not only helps cushion and lubricate joints, but is also a major component of skin tissue. The skin holds almost fifty percent of your body’s hyaluronic acid in the skin. It is also found in joints connective tissues and eye fluids.

Hyaluronic acid serums plump and moisturize skin, help heal and comfort skin, and prevent fine lines and wrinkles.

So what makes this Hyaluronic Serum better?

Most hyaluronic acid serums have a high molecular weight, which means they sit on the surface of your skin. Unlike other hyaluronic acid on the market, VoilàVe’s serum combines both low molecular & high molecular weight hyaluronic acid. This allows DEEP penetration into the epidermal layer of the skin where it supplements the water loss and helps restore the skin’s natural cell regenerative qualities at the root level.

Directions:
Apply to skin in a thin layer and allow to dry. Use sparingly at first and work up to the desired amount that works perfectly on your skin type. Use a moisturizer after applying. Apply morning and evening.

The serum is thick and you only need a little. After rubbing it on my face, my skin felt instantly smoother and more hydrated. My skin not only felt this way but it LOOKED smoother and healthier too. I was impressed; I was not excepting this instant result.

Hyaluronic Acid Serums can be very expensive but this serum is available on Amazon for $24.95— 63% off its original price of $67.95!

I have heard so many wonderful things about facials from Dead Sea mud but know that I could never afford to go to a spa to have one. So when VoilàVe sent me their Dead Sea Mud Mask along with the serum I was super excited! I actually tried this product first.

This mask is organic and all natural, which is one of the reasons I really like it, and is made with mud imported from the Dead Sea in Israel.

Screen Shot 2014-09-20 at 5.23.16 PM

This mud mask provides a gentle facial exfoliation and deep cleansing. The mask has a slightly earthy smell when you open the jar, but there is no scent or odor when you put it on your face. It dries quickly and easy to remove.

Screen Shot 2014-09-20 at 5.33.02 PM

BENEFITS:

This Dead Sea Mask is also available for purchase on Amazon for 50% off!

No Comments

This entry was posted in Product Review, skin care and tagged , on 28 September, 2014.

Sep 27

Day By Day Beauty Vitamin C Serum

Screen Shot 2014-09-23 at 5.38.04 PM

Day by Day Beauty’s Exclusive Vitamin C Serum provides thirsty skin with antioxidants & rich, hydrating ingredients.

These ingredients naturally brighten skin tone, diminish superficial fine lines and wrinkles, reverse sun damage effects, lighten acne scarring, restore healthy elasticity, clarify skin, shrink pores & retain moisture.

This serum is safe & effective for all skin types, including sensitive skin. Day By Day’s premium formula is plant-based, made without parabens, alcohol, or fillers. And of course made Cruelty-Free in the USA.

Ingredients: Deionized Aqua (Water), Organic Aloe Barbadensis Leaf (Aloe), Sodium Ascorbyl Phosphate (Vitamin C), Methylsulfonylmethane (MSM), Cassia Angustifolia Seed Polysaccharide (Botanical Hyaluronic Acid), Hamamelis Virginiana (Witch Hazel), Kosher Vegetable Glycerin, Carbomer, Arginine, Organic Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba Oil), Tocopheryl Acetate (Vitamin E), Phenoxy- ethanol, Ethyl Hexyl Glycerin, Organic Centella Asiatica (Gotu Kola Extract), Organic Equisetum Arvense (Horsetail Plant Extract), Organic Pelagonium Gravoleons (Geranium Extract), Organic Taraxacum Officinale (Dandelion Extract).

Day by Day Beauty’s unique Vitamin C Serum is:

With every order, you also receive a free eBook download “Sexy Skin Secrets”, a 45 page guide to your most beautiful skin now and for many years to come. This was key because I wasn’t entirely sure what to do with the Vitamin C Serum.Screen Shot 2014-09-23 at 5.37.49 PM

 

The overall tone of my skin is more even and brighter, and my pores are smaller. I can wear this all day without feeling greasy by the end of the day. You don’t need much, it goes a long way, and the 1 oz. bottle will last you a while.

Screen Shot 2014-09-23 at 5.38.31 PM

Day By Day’s Vitamin C Serum is available on Amazon for only $19. This is such a steal as the retail price is $89!

I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Tomoson.com. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

 

No Comments

This entry was posted in Product Review, skin care and tagged , on 27 September, 2014.

Sep 26

Wine Club from Uncorked Ventures


Screen Shot 2014-09-24 at 3.05.01 PM

Uncorked Ventures is a different kind of wine club. First, they are a family owned and operated startup based just outside of San Francisco. Secondly, instead of buying wine through middle men and distributors, they spend time in wine country getting to know winemakers, vineyard owners, farmers and other directly involved in the creation of wine…how do I get this job?

In any case, if you’re interested in trying a couple of wines rated at 90 points or above by major wine critics then look no further. Uncorked Ventures Wine Club features wines from California, Oregon, and Washington. A great majority of these wines come from small artisan producers whose wines are not widely available.

Screen Shot 2014-09-24 at 3.05.15 PM

Uncorked Ventures offers 3 different wine clubs so you can chose the one that meets your likes and price point.

Screen Shot 2014-09-24 at 3.07.35 PM

Special Selections is prefect for those with discerning taste. Reserve Selections is for those who only the finest will do.

But if you’re like me, and enjoy trying new wines without breaking the bank, then the Exploration Wine Club is for you. Discover the beauty of wine Exploration, knowing that you’re going to receive 90+ point quality in every bottle and top value under $50. From the hidden gems uncovered by Mark and Matt in their journeys through California, Oregon and Washington wine country, Uncorked Ventures’ Exploration wine club brings you a delicious bottle of red and white every month.

IMG_9370

With my wine I received information about the wines, vineyards, and makers. I don’t usually, as in never, drink chardonnay. It was nice to try a wine I would never try on my own. And I actually liked this one. What do you know.

Uncorked Ventures also makes a great gift! You can opt for 1 month, 3 months, 6 months, 12 months, quarterly, or every other month for any length of time.

And, if you decide to re-order any of the wines you tried you can get free shipping by adding your order to your next wine club shipment. I don’t know any other wine club that offers this.

I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Tomoson.com. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.


 

No Comments

This entry was posted in gift, Product Review, subscription, wine and tagged , , , on 26 September, 2014.

Sep 25

Gluten Free Options at Tavola // Hell’s Kitchen

So far I love living in Manhattan. My neighborhood is full of restaurants and I’m so excited to try all of them, eventually. My cousin took us to Travola to celebrate our recent move to NYC. He loves this restaurant, and now I know why.

Tavola means “table” in Italian. The cuisine here is based on regional Italian fare, mainly Puglian, Roman, and Sicilian. Inspired by owner Nick Accardi’s extensive travels to these regions, especially the town of Castelvetrano, the source of Nick’s family roots, Tavola offers quality Italian cuisine made with regional ingredients, including single estate castelvetrano olives and extra virgin olive oil, which he exclusively imports and can be purchased at Tavola.

The menu features a variety of gluten free options from salads, and appetizers, to pasta, fish and filet mignon.

Wood roasted Pimientos de Padrone ($8), a traditional Spanish tapa from the Galician region, is one of Jeremy and my favorite dishes. We just spent a week in Galicia and ate countless Padron Peppers, and we just had to order them.

IMG_9374

This is a great dish for sharing. Although we enjoyed them, we’re not sure if these were not the “real” deal. In Spain, the peppers are drenched in olive oil then grilled. Here, it was very similar, but not nearly as blistered.

The Grilled Local Calamari ($14.50) was by far our favorite. Served on a bed of greens with lemon and capers, the dish was fresh and light.

IMG_9379

For my entrée I tried the Vongole; Manila clams, roasted garlic, Italian parsley, pepperoncino, and olive oil.

IMG_9378

Any pasta dish can be substituted with gluten free penne for an extra $2. While I enjoyed the dish very much, the pasta was great and cooked to perfection; the portion was a bit small for $19.50.

One thing to note, they will not substitute any sauce on any dish. So if you are like me and can also not eat dairy, most of the pasta dishes are off limits. This is too bad because I really wanted to try the wild salmon and pesto dish without the cream sauce.

Over all we all enjoyed our night at Tavola. We loved the ambiance. The vibe is welcoming and not too casual but not too over the top either. Jeremy and Rob loved the pizza (not gluten free L) and I would recommend you try it for brunch, lunch or dinner if you are looking for an authentic Italian meal with plenty of gluten free options.

Screen Shot 2014-09-20 at 3.51.11 PM

Tavola on Urbanspoon

2 Comments

This entry was posted in Hell's Kitchen, Italian, New York City, Restaurant Review and tagged , , , on 25 September, 2014.

Sep 24

Gluten Free in Southern Maine // York, Kittery, and Ogunquit

Screen Shot 2014-09-18 at 3.33.44 PM

In August Jeremy and I took a weekend trip to Ogunquit, Maine. The weather was a little chilly but we had a great weekend spending time with his family, walking around the town, and dining out of course. Below are a few of the places we went to during our 3 day trip. I didn’t include the first night, we ate at a restaurant that was not very gluten free friendly.

When Pigs Fly Pizzeria, Kittery, ME.

Huge selection of craft beers and ciders; including Glutenberg and Fatty Bampkins Maine Hard Cider.

IMG_9116

You have two choices 4.75 oz or 16 oz, whichever one you are in the mood for.

There are many gluten free options on the menu including appetizers, salads, and entrees.

IMG_9117

Greek salad ($12): baby greens, pepperoncini, tomato, olives, cilantro, mint, pickled red onion, pickled cukes, herb vinaigrette.

When Pigs Fly Breads on Urbanspoon

A Lifestyle Emporium, York, ME.

IMG_9119

A Lifestyle Emporium is bringing York a new kind of store— one committed to offering a marketplace of healthy products in an eco-friendly environment. All products have to meet at least one of the following criteria: clean, organic, locally or globally sourced, fair-trade, environmentally gentle, or cruelty free. There are dozens of gluten free options. The made to order wraps can be made on gluten free wraps.

A Lifestyle Emporium Juice Bar on Urbanspoon

IMG_9139

Nubble Lighthouse

Fox’s Lobster House, York Beach, ME.

Fox’s Lobster House offers lobster at a great price. Starting at $15.95 for a 1-1/8 pound lobster, they had the best prices we saw all weekend. When in Maine you MUST order Maine Lobster! For $18.95 I got a 1-1/4 lb lobster and two sides.

IMG_9143

Fox’s also offers gluten free pasta for an additional $1 that can be subbed in any of their pasta dishes. But, I do have to say the management here leaves much to be desired. We were a party of 16 and they wanted to charge us $2 per person for bringing in our birthday cake. They don’t offer GF desserts so ordering from them was not an option. Obviously, we took the cake outside.

Fox's Lobster House on Urbanspoon

Amore Breakfast and Café, Ogunquit, ME.

I never expected to find gluten free pancakes in Ogunquit and was surprised when we walked into Amore and saw that, not only did they have gluten free pancakes on the menu, they also had gluten free waffles and bagels! I can’t tell you the last time I had a waffle. This one was delicious. They also have soy milk available for coffee and drinks.

IMG_9140

Have you been to Southern Maine? Where do you eat?

Amore Breakfast on Urbanspoon

1 Comment

This entry was posted in Maine, Restaurant Review, Travel and tagged , , on 24 September, 2014.

Sep 23

Delight Gluten Free Cookbook Review & Giveaway

Screen Shot 2014-09-23 at 10.04.52 AM

Vanessa Weisbrod, the Executive Editor of Delight Gluten-Free Magazine, an international publication geared towards people with food allergies, celiac disease, and other medical conditions relating to food, brings her loyal following another serving of 150 gluten free recipes that are quick and easy to prepare.

The Delight Gluten-Free Cookbook (Harlequin Nonfiction, October 2014) is a great cookbook for beginners new to the gluten free diet who don’t want to sacrifice great tasting food. Chock-full of innovative recipes, adventures in gluten free baking, and inspired food and cooking pairs, The Delight Gluten Free Cookbook appeals to both novice and experience gluten free foodies alike.

Giving up gluten doesn’t mean you have to give up the foods you love, and gluten-free eating is about to get easier—and more delicious—than you ever thought possible!  Vanessa offers us recipes for the favorites you’ve been missing and helps to discover new ones, including:

• Sparkling Cider Apple Fritters

• Prosciutto and Pineapple Stuffed-Crust Pizza

• Honey BBQ Sloppy Joes with Apple Cabbage Slaw

• Apricot Pesto Turkey Melt Sandwich

•  Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Cookie Cheesecake

•  Skinny Guava Mojito

Sneak Peak! I made the Lemon Cranberry Pistachio Brown Rice Pilaf:

IMG_9444

It was delicious and full of flavor. The next day, when I heated up the leftovers, it had even more flavor.

IMG_9429

I’m still getting used the lighting in my new kitchen, so bare with me with the pictures in the next few days! I hope to get it down soon.

Vanessa provides detailed charts and grocery store shopping lists to help you navigate gluten free living, along with beautiful, full-color photographs of almost every recipe are provided throughout the book, which makes the recipes look even more appealing than the already sound. Each recipe includes the nutritional and allergen info; always a plus.

Featuring allergen-free options, everyday basics and recipes fit for holiday celebrations, The Delight Gluten-Free Cookbook will make eating fun again, and proves that gluten-free can be full of flavor! You can pre-order this cookbook on Amazon for $16.46. Once published, the list price will be $21.95.

Not only was Vanessa and the team behind the Delight Gluten Free Cookbook kind enough to send me an advanced copy, but they are also offering one lucky reader to win a copy of this cookbook! To enter, simply click on the rafflecopter below.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

This giveaway will end on September 28, 2014 at 11:59pm. Open to U.S. residents only.

9 Comments

This entry was posted in cookbook, Giveaway, Product Review and tagged , , on 23 September, 2014.

Sep 22

Product Review: MIRA Stainless Steel Lunch Jar

Screen Shot 2014-09-21 at 1.34.30 PM

One way I save money is by packing my own breakfast and lunch for work every day. Not only does it save me money, but gluten free options can be limited in my neighborhood. And this is where MIRA’s stainless steel lunch jar comes into play.

MIRA’s high-quality insulated food jar from keeps your healthy, homemade, and delicious lunches and snacks hot for up to 5 hours or cold for up to 10 hours in this insulated jar.

The 10 oz capacity jar has a heavy-duty feel, with a premium grade 18/8 entirely stainless steel interior. The outside is a pretty rose pink color with a brown lid that twists in. It is secure and leak-proof.

Now that the weather is getting cooler I’m back to eating oatmeal for breakfast. So I decided to test out my new jar this morning. I made rice and tested how long it would stay warm. Two hours after putting the hot rice in the jar it was still hot. Five hours later it was warm.

I can see myself using this all winter long for making oatmeal before work, hot soups for lunch, and warm drinks. The jar can also keep food cold for up to 5 hours. This will be perfect for the beach next summer! Keeping fruits and lunches cold at the beach without bringing my over-sized cooler is nearly impossible. But now I can simply pack it in my MIRA jar! Can’t wait!

The jar is also BPA free and contains no phthalate. The 10oz (300ml) capacity makes this insulated lunch jar the perfect size for a filling snack or a lunch side. MIRA also makes a variety of jars from 5 oz. to 16 oz. The wide mouth and tapered body makes this container easy to eat from and easy to clean.

So what are you waiting for? Take back lunchtime with something fresh and delicious, packed in a MIRA food jar. Mealtime is about more than just eating, so enjoy it! You can purchase this 10 oz. MIRA jar on Amazon for $22.95— 53% off its retail price!

I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Tomoson.com. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

1 Comment

This entry was posted in Product Review and tagged on 22 September, 2014.