Seasons 52 is known as a fresh grill and wine bar offering flavorful dishes that change seasonally. Additionally, all dishes come in at under 475 calories! We tried it for the first time a few weeks ago at the location in Tysons Corner Mall. My oh my were our expectations blown out of the water. The clean and casual meets refined atmosphere, the polished and friendly restaurant staff, and truly scrumptious yet healthy food offerings. Of course, we were seeing The Dark Night Rises after dinner and the popcorn, candy, and Coke splurge was already planned rendering our healthy meal ruined HA. In any case, you must try Seasons 52 and if Kristine is serving, you want her. She was an absolute pleasure- the kind of waitress that you will talk about like I am now because she was so great.
The slideshow above showcases our meal experience including starter and entrees. We were offered dessert at the end which includes a number of choices from Season 52′s “Mini Indulgences” menu. I had to snap a photo at the very least! We had a little back and forth going on the appetizer choice having already chosen our entree selections. My main dish choice was the Wood-Roasted Pork Tenderloin accompanied by herb polenta, cremini mushrooms, broccoli, and a shallot Dijon glaze. I love me some polenta! Bryan had a craving for the Roasted Artichoke-Stuffed Shrimp including wilted leaf spinach, pasta pearls, and a clam cioppino sauce. We knew we wanted to try flatbread to start since our friend, Fahad, highly recommended it. The trouble was that both of our top choices featured some of the same main ingredients in our entrees. What a conundrum! Would it be Spicy Chipotle Shrimp with grilled pineapple, feta cheese, and roasted poblano peppers or Steak and Cremini Mushroom with fresh spinach and blue cheese crumbles. Ultimately, we asked the waitress for her input and she quickly offered that Spicy Chipotle Shrimp was the way to go. This means I won . All kidding aside, we both won in the end because this whole dinner experience was superior to many other dinner outtings we’d had in the past. We look forward to trying the next seasonal menu they have to offer. There you have it- a glowing recommendation for Seasons 52!
To finish off our remaining crab left overs, we pulled out one of Bryan’s grandfather’s pasta sauces out of the freezer to make crab pasta. The Ercolano family sauce recipe is bar none. Feel free to make it more often, Bryan. No room for subtlety here. This was a super easy meal- simply heating up some sauce, throwing in some crab, and preparing the whole wheat angel hair.
I plan to do more “Week Of’s” in the future. One being a week of ___ fresh herb. I hate hate hate when you buy a big bunch of herbs and you only need like a tablespoon for a recipe. Next thing you know the leftovers have started going bad in the fridge and you have used 2% of it. Rant complete. How do you all deal with left overs?
As mentioned the other day, we had a good amount of crab left-overs to consume. Between these delicious omelets and a crab marinara pasta, we met making good use of the left-overs with success. I got girlfriend bonus points for making breakfast in bed for Bryan too! <3 Here is how I threw together the spicy crab and cheddar omelets:
Ingredients (Per Omelet):
- 1/2 cup leftover crab (backfin/jumbo lump) meat
- 1 tsp olive oil
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- Sriracha sauce
- 1 TBSP water
- 2 eggs
- nonstick spray
- Few pinches reduced-fat shredded cheddar cheese
- Salt and pepper, to taste
1. Heat a small saute pan over a medium heat. Once adequately warm, add olive oil, crab meat, lemon juice, a few dashes of Sriracha, and a little S&P. Saute around for a few minutes and reduce heat to low to keep warm.
2. Next, spray another small saute pan with ample nonstick spray. Whisk eggs, a more dashes of Sriracha, and a little S&P together.
3. Heat nonstick sprayed pan over a medium heat for a minute or so and add your egg mixture. As the eggs starts to set, you will want to maneuver the edges with a spatula gently to get the uncooked eggs to the sides. Once there is no more egg flowing to the sides, add your crab down the middle of the omelet and sprinkle a few pinches of shredded cheddar atop it.
4. Using spatula, gentle fold one side over the other and garnish with some parsley. Nom nom!
A few months ago we decided we’d round up some couples and host a crab feast. We were able to round two fantastic couple groups. Bryan grabbed his work bff and I grabbed one of mine (it’s a toss up with my friend Claire and my work husband (WH), Gleason) and their sig others. Claire’s husband’s younger brother was also in town so he would join the fun! After lots of research, we decided we’d grab Maryland Blue Crabs offered from a local restaurant called Quarterdeck. For about $40/ person, everyone could have between 6-8 crabs each depending on the available size that day. We simply had to call a half hour- 45 minutes early and they would steam and season them for us to pick up.
As for the crab feast logistics, we had each group pay their way for the crabs and bring their fav adult beverage. We would be providing chips and guac, homemade pulled pork sandwiches, fresh corn on the cob, and s’mores (we have a firepit in our backyard). I cannot express to you how excited I’d been to buy two items relevant to this feast. One being JUMBO marshmallows for the s’mores. They are massive- like the size of a fist. Swoooon The other item being a Butter Boy. You insert a half stick of butter at the bottom and remove his head to reveal a bit of the butter stick protruding. You simply glide this along your corn on the cob. It was a whopping $6 at Bed Bath and Beyond and brings me way more joy than any $6 kitchen item should. In no way is this depressing. You know you want one…
Bryan owned the pulled pork as he is the guru for that thrown together kind of crockpot recipe. Fun Fact: his best batch was this one time he came back fairly intoxicated from a night having drinks with friends. Since there were 7 of us, we bought something like 9- 10 lbs between 2 pork shoulders (including bone and fat). Luckily, we own 2 crock pots. Bryan has a fancy pants one equipped with digital timer. Mine is a standard one with Warm, Low, and High and thus GASP!… you have to manually time whatever you’re concocting. Timing with regard to cooking is not B’s strong suit. Sorry babe for the call out. He had started the pulled pork preparations too late the evening before. As such, he had to set an alarm to wake up around 4 am to shred the pork and add some additional ingredients. He got a great middle of the night snack in. It was so good in fact that a pulled pork sandwich was his choice for the next morning’s breakfast. He had more later that day too. Luckily, there was plenty to share haha.
We had a good amount of crab and pork left over to carry us through the week. Everyone hit the ready to move on to satisfying their sweet tooth at the same time. We also had an impending thunderstorm to worry about. To the backyard we went to roast those massive ‘mallows! The chocolate bars had melted a bit too since we were outside making the s’mores even more fantastic. Stay tuned this week for our use of the left over crab…
I love those on a whim delicious meals and was fortunate to start my day with one today. I had to get some routine car maintenance this morning so B followed me to drop my car at Midas for the day. On the way back, Bryan was telling me about this highly Yelp rated taco/burrito spot down Columbia Pike he had heard of. I explained I was down to try it sometime, but my head (and stomach) jumped elsewhere. It landed on breakfast tacos from District Taco. On Saturdays from 8 am – noon in the Courthouse neighborhood of Arlington there is a great farmers market featuring around 30 vendors. Fresh produce, dairy, meats, among other food items are sold there. Admittedly, we’ve gone by it a number of times just never bought anything or have a solid perusal. We still didn’t purchase anything today either. Oops. The mission was to obtain breakfast tacos after all! District Taco comes to the farmers market each week offering up corn or flour tortilla breakfast tacos as well as burritos from their traveling food cart. I already know how ENAMORED I am by District Taco for lunch or dinner. They have a freestanding location in North Arlington (the one we frequent), a location in NW DC, and the traveling food cart. I like to think of DT as a fresher, more authentic Chipotle. Each day DT makes everything from scratch. Looooove. I’ll share those food porn pics another day not to worry!
For $5, I got 2 breakfast tacos in corn tortillas as I feel corn trumps flour any day of the week. Here is the nitty gritty on the contents of my tacos:
- Egg, cheese, chorizo sausage, pico de gallo, and guacamole
- Egg whites, bacon, fresh jalapeno, pico de gallo, and pinto beans
To make this breakfast even more champion-like, I paired it with a Starbucks Iced Skinny Caramel Macchiato. I think I could bang out a do over like right now actually. If you are an Arlington/DC resident or ya know what just let’s get really real here… a DC metro area resident/commuter, you are cheating yourself if you don’t find a way to try District Taco. My name is Carrie Bean and I approve this message.
My friend Zari and I just completed three days of badass workouts together. On Sunday, we did a favorite spin class of mine at Revolve, the Barre Ride (read more on what that class entails here). She had recently bought a LivingSocial deal to try out Revolve which I was thrilled about of course. This morning we did another spin class together at the ungodly hour of 6 am. What about Monday you ask? Well, yesterday it was my turn to try out a workout and gym I’d never done before. LA Boxing is gym offering intense kickboxing, boxing, and MMA (mixed martial arts) classes as well as private training of said techniques. In addition, a few pieces of cardio and weight lifting equipment are available to its members. As you can see from the picture above, there is a boxing ring for the those private training sessions and then a huge area with many bags hanging for the classes. I cashed in on my freebie class which would be the Kickboxing format.
I had a little anxiety characteristic of trying something new, but I felt well-prepared with my frequent participation in a cardio kickbox class at my gym. Remember this? I’m savvy with my jabs, crosses, upper cuts, hooks and various kicks just not with a bag involved. The class boasts a total body workout and I think it lives up to that promise. Cardio as well as upper, lower, and ab strengthening exercises were incorporated across the duration of the class in addition to the punch/kick sequences. I could have done better with kicking the bag had I been shown technique before class, but I felt good about my punches. Punching something as opposed to the air in my cardio kickbox class was pretty amazing. The music was good and loud- just too loud to hear the instructor. Unfortunately, the instructor that was supposed to teach the class was a no show so the instructor who taught us was pulled in at the last moment. As a result, Zari mentioned that the class was not as fluid and well executed as they usually are. All in all, I got a great sweat in, but as is the case with other specialty gyms where they offer one main type of fitness option it is not for me at the membership level. I need a lot of variety or become bored quick and notice my exercise productivity wanes. Can’t have that!
Who else goes to LA Boxing or has taken a class? What has your experience been like?
So I’ve done Korean BBQ food trucks and I’ve done the Japanese steakhouse thing where they cook delicious teriyaki items in front of you. I love both so the fusion of Korean BBQ and cooking it right before my eyes was a good fit in the end. I’d heard plenty buzz around Honey Pig (located in Annandale, Virginia) before, but had not made it out there. Bryan, being the king of deal-a-days that he is, had a voucher thus presenting me with a reason to try it out.
The ambiance is pretty unique. Nothing fancy- cement floor, ceiling with tile paneling, and music playing at a decently high volume ranging from Lady Gaga to what I would guess were Korean pop hits. We also found out that the place is open 24 hours! Pretty crazy. Immediately you know you’ll have a good time though. As soon as we were seated, a bunch of items were put on our table such as a fresh salad, kimchi, and a cucumber slices marinated in a variety of sauces. Our waitress (we’d come to find that the wait staff actually seems to float around as opposed to a specific set of tables) took our drink order and started up the table top grill.
We knew Bulgogi (a seasoned tender cut of beef) was happening, but spent some time on the selection of the second entree. Spicy Intestine Chul Pan and Soybean Paste Stew were easy options for us to eliminate. Admittedly, I could not find what Spicy Intestine Chul Pan is exactly, but I was turned off enough by the intestine part of the name. Similarly, Soybean Paste was not an item we’d crave. We ultimately decided on Spicy Pork Belly thinking it similar to fatty bacon. It turned out to be along those lines so good choice! Here are some pics of our meal cooking:
All in all, perception met reality as the experience was great. Friendly and attentive wait staff delivered tasty meats, sauces, and sides. We did not finish the Spicy Pork Belly as it was one of those dishes where you get to the point that you have had your fill of it. No regrets on ordering/trying it though. I’d like to go back and maybe even at a random hour like 2 am to take advantage of their 24 hour operations. It could totally be the new late diner experience. Who else has been to Honey Pig before. What do you think?
I would guess that many of you know that most alcoholic beverages are not waistline friendly. If you didn’t, know that a lot of those fruity drinks with spears of fruit or umbrellas stuck into them come in around 400-1,000 calories a pop. Is there no hope you might ask?! There’s always a way to lighten things up my friends- fear not. I have gathered a number of ready-to-serve cocktails for you to consider as you think about your next trip to grab some adult beverages. Enjoy!
Here are some suggestions whether you are a rum, tequila, vodka, wine, or sangria sorta summer drinker…
IF YOU LIKE PINA COLADAS…and lower calories in your drink! (the remix obv):
- Skinnygirl ready-to-serve cocktails like the Pina Colada which combines rum, coconut, vanilla, and pineapple comes in around 90 calories for 4 oz.
- Like your rum, but prefer more of minty flavor? Perhaps a Bacardi Light Mojito is for you then. Again, around 90 calories for 4 oz. It has the great minty-ness but is made with pure cane sugar. No fake sugary taste here!
- Skinnygirl offers a lovely White Cranberry Cosmo cocktail – again under 100 cal for 4 oz.
- A fav of mine though comes from Skinnytaste. The watermelon martini mmmm. A bit more work than some of these ready-to-make ones, but worth it. 6 oz AND 1/4 cup watermelon per serving is just 90 calories! Do yourself a favor and make this for a day by the pool my friends.
- Like your mojitos with vodka instead? VNC Cocktails offers that same mint and lime juice flavor just against a vodka not rum base. There are no preservatives either. A little over the 100 calorie mark, 3.4 oz of this drink is about 110 calories. Check out their other ready-to-serve cocktails as they have quite the spread to please any palette!
VINO y SANGRIA:
- Eppa SupraFruta Red Sangria is fantastic with flavors like pomegranate, blueberry, blood orange, and acai juices! This kind packs serious antioxidants too- 2x that of a glass of red wine in fact. 120 calories for 5 oz.
- Skinnygirl offers a few wines (California Red, Rose, and White) as well as a ready-t0-serve sangria cocktail worth checking out too.
- Your best bets for lower calorie wines in general as they so kindly don’t give you the nutrition facts: White Zinfandel, Chablis, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonnays. They tend to come in at about 100 calories per 5 oz serving.
Hope you’ll enjoy some of these lighter libations Tell me about your favorite light cocktails!