Iris – NC Museum of Art

Last I night I decided to head over to the NC Museum of Art. I hadn’t been since sophomore year and really wanted to walk through the sculpture park (which I later learned is much more expansive than I had originally thought). If you’re a Duke student and haven’t been to the Museum yet, please do – it boasts a wonderful collection with some impressive special exhibits (Edward Munch is there now and Still Life Masterpieces from the MFA in Boston opens tomorrow). And it’s also free, so you really have no excuse.

View of the Museum from the Sculpture Park trail.

Meals, however, are unfortunately not free. In my impromptu decision to visit the Museum, I totally forgot I have the appetite of a sixteen-year-old boy, meaning my stomach is essentially a bottomless pit. For example, after my lunch yesterday, I preceded to go back and buy a second lunch. And then a snack. You think that’d be enough to hold a reasonable person over for 3 hours, right? Yes, but then again, you’re just assuming I am a reasonable person.

So, I show up to the Museum, ravenous, and proceed to skip all the fine art and head straight to the Museum Cafe (or should I say, Iris). The menu looks fantastic, but my heart dropped when I realized a salad would put me out $14. It was a damn good salad though. Spinach, dried cherries, apples, walnuts, and gorgonzola cheese with this awesome maple dressing. Now that I’m looking on their online menu though I’m seeing that they’ve got “seared scallops, light red curry lemongrass broth, coconut milk, fresh ginger, shiitakes, sesame seeds, and forbidden black rice” for $15. Forbidden black rice?!?! I’m pretty sure I need that right now. I swear I didn’t see that on the menu last night or else I would have ordered that in all of 0.0001 seconds. Did enjoy the salad though, all $14 of it.

See that tiny biscotti in the back? It’s unbelievably good. And they gave me two of them (fist pump).

Birds nests…or the dreadlocks in my hair I wake up to every morning.

I didn’t just drive half an hour for the food though, although who am I kidding, that’s definitely something I’d do. I did end up walking the sculpture park and it is beautiful! So nice to do at sunset. Inside the Museum, there was live music, drinks, and a lot of people much older than myself. I enjoyed it though, and altogether, had a very relaxing evening.

Art.

And some more art.

Magnolia Grill… IS CLOSING?

Magnolia Grill in Durham is currently ranked #11 nationally by Gourmet Magazine. Unfortunately, the owners of Magnolia Grill have decided to hang it up. They’re looking to relocate to start an amazing new establishment elsewhere. Heartbreaking, I know.

I was fortunate enough to be able to enjoy these gorgeous dishes with one of by best friends, Amanda and her family. Thank you Jones’!

I’ll let these incredible dishes speak for themselves.

Don’t forget dessert!

Before Magnolia Grill closes (this is happening very soon), Goalie Spoon HIGHLY recommends that you try to visit for a walk in meal, ASAP!

Love always,

Goalie Spoon

The Parlour Ice Cream Truck!

It’s been a while dearest foodie friends, but Goalie Spoon is back with a look at The Parlour, an ice cream truck that cruises the Durham streets offering decadent frozen treats. This ice cream is for real. My family owned and leased out a bunch of ice cream trucks for years while I was growing up, so I know my ice cream. We’re not talking about bomb pops or screw balls with this truck, though. Check out this sugar cone of Salted Butter Caramel and Maple Walnut… yum.

Maple Walnut and Salted Butter Caramel

Many of the food trucks in Durham perpetuate their businesses using social media web sites. @ParlourDurham tweets out where they’ll be and the customers come in droves! They’re great about getting back to people who tweet at them.

You can order your ice cream in a cup or choose from a sugar or waffle cone. My mom thinks the colorful plastic cups are “fun!” and I absolutely agree. Aside from cups and cones, you can order your ice cream in a float of various sodas (the root beer float is amazing enough that it’s Kait’s cover photo on facebook) and delectable ice cream sandwhiches.

The key to a perfect ice cream sandwich experience is to let it thaw out for a little while– the cookies will be perfectly soft after about 10-15 minutes.

Goalie Spoon urges you to try this place out. Not eating this ice cream should be considered a felony in North Carolina. The Parlour has a great website! Here, take a peek. Check out this page to see all of their incredible flavors.

The sheer joy in this picture survives its blurriness because the Parlour is just that good. Go get some! The truck is so cool- a miniature bus turned retro ice cream ‘parlour’ on wheels.

Love,

Goalie Spoon

p.s. We’ve missed you!

Mad Hatter’s Breakfast (Durham, NC)

Mad Hatter’s is a charming little restaurant and café right off of Duke’s east campus. Although they are great for lunch and dinner (amazing fries with delectable sauces, chicken caesar wrap, tomato mozzarella sandwich, goat cheese salad, etc.)  they have some amazing breakfast options that Goalie Spoon hasn’t been able to find anywhere else in Durham so far.

Mat Hatters Restaurant and Café

They have the classic Hatter Breakfast which comes with eggs however you’d like them, potatoes, fruit and sunflower toast. If you’re looking to do something a little bit different though, feast your eyes on these two delicious options.

Nine magical little Silver Dollar pancakes. I went with strawberries, but you can add whipped cream, chocolate chips, or all of the above to your own private pancake heaven.

Silver Dollar Pancakes with Strawberries

A breakfast burrito fit for mexican royalty. Complete with tomato salsa, black beans, cilantro, onion, scrambled eggs and your choice of bacon, sausage or mushrooms. Mad Hatter’s also has some of the most potent coffee in Durham in terms of caffeine.

Breakfast Burrito

Mad Hatter’s is the perfect place to snuggle up with a great meal, great beverages and a big pile of work. Stay as long as you’d like (if you can find a table) and fill up your coffee cup as many times as you need. Remember to bring your headphones, it can get noisy from time to time. If you do find yourself headphone-less, the outdoor seating is a wonderfully peaceful option on a sunny Durham day. The Goalie Spoon frequents this lovely little Durham establishment and we’re confident that you should, too. Happy Leap Day!

Good Morning, Parker and Otis (Durham, NC)

Parker and Otis is, simply put, a magical spot in Durham. I’m keeping this post short and to the point, but if I were to post pictures of P&O, they would be slightly reminiscent of Foster’s Market but with a much wider range of selection of goods, higher ceilings and more natural light streaming in through large windows. Parker and Otis is right around the corner from Brightleaf Square. I highly recommend giving them a try for breakfast, lunch or dinner. Whether you’re a “local” or more of a “cupcake,” Parker and Otis has something for everyone, including their own quirky t-shirts with words like these on them.

Here’s the breakfast I went with: Black Forest ham and asparagus scramble with a side of fruit. Delectable.

It was a gorgeous day to relax at one of their many outdoor tables. The view overlooked the endearing area between Duke’s East campus and downtown Durham. This post is a bit of a tease but I promise you this much: good things come to those who go to Parker and Otis.

An Adventura Cubana at Gregoria’s Kitchen (Durham, NC)

On our team, we have “families” within the team that we grab dinner, watch movies, or just hang out with a few times throughout each semester. My family (Mie, Sydney and Taylor T) decided to embark on a journey to a restaurant in Durham where we’d never been before. Gregoria’s Kitchen. We stumbled upon a neighborhood gem complete with an intimate atmosphere and authentically delicious Cuban food. Arriba!

Gregoria's Kitchen 2812 Chapel Hill Road, Durham, NC

We were pleasantly surprised by many aspects of our Cuban adventure. First was the romantic atmosphere inside the small but lovely establishment. The music ranged anywhere from Pitbull to traditional Latin instrumental pieces. It was a great addition to the atmosphere – we danced in our seats at least two times. Sorry guys.

We ended up sitting in the back room, right around the corner from the room pictured above. Both areas were warm and quaint. We started the meal off with two appetizers to split between the four of us.  The first were Empeñadas Espinica y Queso (spinach and cheese turnovers). They came bearing the first foody surprise on the side — a delicious tomato and avacado salad with a light lemon juice dressing and cilantro.

Empañadas Espinicas y Queso

Next up was the calamari. To be honest, I was weary of Cuban calamari but my qualms were quickly put to rest. Hellooo squid.

Calamari, yum.

HEADS UP: Alright, I have to be honest. The service at Gregoria’s was not exactly a five star performance. We had to ask for bread to be brought out and water refills were not being poured liberally. Although we were abnormally hungry and thirsty that night, we were some of the only people there and were not waited on as diligently as we would have liked.

ANYWAY- The bread was very good. Maybe better than the bread though, was the roasted red pepper spread that was brought with it. Check it out. We couldn’t get enough!

Bread and Roasted Red Pepper Spread

For the main dish of the evening, everyone chose one of the steak options as Gregoria’s is a Cuban Steakhouse, after all. I went with the Ropa Vieja. If you know Spanish, you know that this means “old clothes.” Let’s just say I’m glad I ordered it despite the appetite  curbing name. I was presented with a delicious portion of shredded skirt steak served over a bed of roasted tomatoes, beans, herbs and garlic. These ingredients all came together seamlessly in a collective broth of all of the heavenly  coexisting flavors. To top it off, a fried and flattened plantain (banana) wafer rested decoratively on the delicate strips of steak.

Ropa Vieja

Don’t worry, we didn’t forget about dessert. We ended our flavor-packed meal by sharing three! I took a chance on the flan that no one else ended up wanting to take with me. If you’re a flan lover though, feast your eyes on this coconut flan dream come true.

Coconut Flan

The next delightful dessert was the flour-less chocolate cake. It didn’t taste flour-less to us, but allegedly it was. The kiwi and cream garnish didn’t hurt its cause at all. A lovely cake indeed.

Flourless Chocolate Cake

The final dessert that was bestowed upon us were the creampuffs. I guess they don’t have a Spanish name, but the vanilla cream center and the flaky puff, if you will, tastes the same in every language — and it tastes good.

Cream Puffs

Aside from a bit of slow service and waitresses that were less than attentive, our visit to Gregoria’s Kitchen was enchanting and easy on the wallet. The Goalie Spoon approves this restaurant.

Bollywood…in Durham?

Warning: I have no photos for this evening’s meal. I feel, however, that it would be wrong to exclude a delicious dinner just because of my unfortunate lapse in judgment. Tonight, a good friend of mine and I ventured out to Fullsteam Brewery to indulge in some good ol’ home-cooked Indian food. Apparently Fullsteam does this every Monday and changes up the menu every week. On board for tonight was:

Chicken Tikka Masala: All-natural, succulent, boneless, marinated, grilled chicken enveloped in a sublime cardamom-tomato-cream sauce.

Palak Aaloo: A robust ensemble of fresh spinach and potatoes with a dollop of butter.

Dal Tamatar: Comfort food… red lentils with tomatoes and cumin.

Basmati rice with spices

Garlic naan

Fresh cilantro chutney

Hershey Kisses!

I’m definitely going back, and this was actually my first time at Fullsteam! Such a cool atmosphere with communal picnic tables and a few old arcade video games. Also, something to definitely keep in the back of your mind is that they’re hosting a Mardi Gras party next Tuesday from 4 PM to midnight. Here’s the info, since I’m sure it’s going to be awesome: http://www.fullsteam.ag/events/mardi-gras/

Chocolate, pretzel-covered goodness – The Washington Duke Inn

I know, I'm drooling too.

To commemorate our first pre-game practice of the season (one more sleep!) – several of us went out to celebrate with some fine dining at the Washington Duke Inn. The WaDuke boasts a phenomenal menu that I could write about for quite some time, but I’m fairly sure in doing so I would bore you to death. So, I’ll just briefly showcase this gem of a dessert I stumbled upon this evening, and call it a night.

It’s called the Pretzel Crusted Ice Cream Sandwich. And boy, is it good. What you see in the above photo is roasted chestnut ice cream smashed between two homemade whoopee pies drizzled with salted caramel sauce and chopped pretzels.

It is divine.

Foster’s Market (Durham, NC)

Everyone can find something to eat at any time of the day at Foster’s Market. They serve breakfast, brunch, lunch and dinner – all with varied menus. It’s also a place where great wine, 7-pepper jelly, Barefoot Contessa mix’s, almost any kind of candy, hand painted dishes and so much more can be purchased.

Image

Foster's Market

Foster’s always amazes me with their creative and delectable side dishes. From cheesey chicken spaghetti to their always awesome mac & cheese, Foster’s always serves up seriously savory specialty sides. When I go to Foster’s, I usually stick with the sandwich and wrap menu, select one of their many beverages from the fridge and order a small portion of one of their scrumptious salads.

Here’s how to navigate Foster’s in a  few easy steps, depending on what you’re looking for.

Step 1. The entree.

Select a sandwich or wrap from these two menus. Don’t like what you see? Create your own sandy or wrap with whichever bread, meat, veggies and spread you’d like. You can also add a cup or bowl of soup to the mix. There is always a vegetarian and meat option for soups. Your server will give you a ticket during step 1. Don’t lose it! You’ll need it to tally up your bill as you move along through the next few Foster’s steps.

Image

Wrap Menu and Kids Menu

Image

Sandwich Menu

Step 2. Salad station.

Make a pit stop here if you’re interested in some fruit salad, caesar salad, mixed greens or tarragon chicken salad to name a few. Just say ‘when’ and your friendly server will give you just the right portion on a beautifully hand-painted plate.Tickle your taste buds and your aesthetic inclinations with a simple side salad.

Image

Salad Station

Step 3. Grab a drink.

Foster’s can accommodate you whether you’d like some water, coffee, tea, soda, beer or wine. Most likely, you’ll hit up the fridge, just to the left of the salad station. This is where you can find bottled water, juice, soda and both imported and local beers. A server can help you choose the right beer for you whether you like something smooth and simple or if you’re a hopisaurus.

Image

Bottled Drinks

Image

Coffee and Tea

Step 4. Eat and enjoy!

Take a seat – there are seats throughout the market and a great selection of outdoor seating as well. Relax and take in the warm and cozy country store ambience. Foster’s is also one of the best places to eat outside on a sunny Durham day.

Image

Indoor Seating Area

Step 5. Indulge in some dessert.

Foster’s has a fantastic selection of desserts. My personal favorite is the chocolate pie but they have everything from key lime pie to seasonal fruit pies to lemon bars and brownies to pretty much every cookie you could possibly imagine. If you have room for dessert, take advantage of the succulent selection at Foster’s.

Cakes and Pies

Step 6. Shop while you digest.

On your way out, take a look at the myriad of products that Foster’s Market has to offer. Make a Valentine’s Day dream come true this year by bringing home that specific type of candy that’s tough to find – you can count on Foster’s to have it in stock. From Warheads to Godiva chocolate to Big League Chew and Fun Dip, Foster’s has it all. Image

Their collection of both red and white wine is wonderfully extensive and absolutely worth checking out.

Image

The Goalie Spoon dipped into this chicken caesar BLT wrap this evening, my go-to choice. With a nice tall glass of ice water and a beautiful plate of fruit salad, this was a perfect post-practice meal. Just enough savory caesar, bacon, and chicken to juxtapose against the sweet and succulent fruit – put more simply, YUM. At Foster’s, they heat the wraps just enough to melt the cheese and to ensure that the dressing is warmed to perfection. The red wrap is eye catching and satisfying to eat, too. Without knowing I was a food blogger, my server asked me if there were any specific fruits that I would like more of in my fruit salad. It was then presented it to me as stunningly as you see it below. The plates that the salads are served are on sale at Foster’s. I’ve seen brown, red, blue, yellow and green on sale before. How great does my fruit salad look on the brown one?

Image

Chicken Caesar BLT Wrap, Fruit Salad

Foster’s Market does it all. Their extensive collection of just about everything, delicious food and great customer service gives them the Goalie Spoon stamp of approval. They even do catering for special events and even family dinners for busy parents. Check out their website – it’s great! You’ll find all the info you’ll ever need here – http://www.fostersmarket.com/

Thanks for reading this Goalie Spoonful, be sure to check back soon for more!

Jimmy V’s Steakhouse and Tavern (Cary, NC)

When my roommate’s dad celebrates his birthday, he likes to do so generously. My roommate’s father Grant was awesome enough to treat us to dinner last night for the occasion. Happy Birthday Grant!!

We entered a dimly lit establishment and made our way to the bar to find Mr. Wenger and his friend Drew. The bar was sectioned off from the rest of the restaurant by a solid wall that was about 5 ft. tall topped with sheets of opaque glass that reached about 5 ft. higher than that. When we turned the corner to the restaurant, we saw our huge rectangular table covered with a white table cloth, awaiting us. The table had four small lanterns to help light the table which would have otherwise been tough to navigate with how little light was in the restaurant. The playlist of soft rock hits was delightful. It felt as though we were being serenaded by John Mayer, Sheryl Crow, Jewel, and acoustic versions of Maroon 5. The atmosphere was comfortable and very relaxing.

For starters, our waiter and waitress (yes, there were two) brought us an amazing seafood platter to share. Complete with fresh crab meat, giant shrimp and AMAZING scallops that melted in our mouths, this platter went perfectly with the aerated cabernet sauvignon. The wine was the smoothest red I’ve ever had! I’m not a true connoisseur but it was fantastic, that’s for sure.

Seafood Platter

After a brief but wonderful affair with the seafood platter, the french onion soup came out, piping hot. It was hard to get a good picture of the garlic bread, but it was delectable. It was definitely the best garlic bread I’ve ever had. Pardon the picture but the lighting was really working against me.

Garlic Bread

I couldn’t have been any more in love with this bread UNTIL there were two thin slices of it in my french onion soup! Covered in luscious cheese, nonetheless. Dreams really do come true.

French Onion Soup

The final chapter of this scrumptious meal came in the form of Chicken Oscar. Grilled chicken breast and fresh crab meat with béarnaise sauce, asparagus and mouthwatering, creamy garlic mashed potatoes.

Chicken Oscar

I honestly can’t remember ever being as full or satisfied as I was after this incredible meal. I definitely recommend Jimmy V’s but be warned: It is VERY expensive. I thought that the food was worth the price, although some people who ordered the steak weren’t ecstatic about their meals (and I also wasn’t the one paying this time). The Chicken Oscar gets the stamp of approval, though. The Goalie Spoon is extremely fortunate to have parents and friends whose parents are willing to take them so such unbelievable dinners when they come in for special occasions and games. Be on the lookout for more Goalie Spoon coverage soon!