A hungry girl's adventures in Cleveland and beyond.

A Birthday to Remember

I love my birthday. If you are going to get older, you might as well have fun doing it, right? That's why you'll normally find me celebrating for about a month.

Well this one was definitely one to remember. 

The festivities started on the Friday before Memorial Day at the Flats East Bank. The Taste of Summer was unseasonably cool but we walked around and spent some time on the patios at Alley Cat, Dante's Inferno and Margaritaville.

We started out with the amazing calamari and platter of pickled veggies at Alley Cat. Put this combo on your Must Do list immediately!
We went to Dante's Inferno next and loved every single bite. The Nonna's meatballs are smack yo mama good.
The rooftop at Margaritaville is one of my favorite spots. The views are great and the vibe is chill. And the wine is cheap - grab a bottle for a real deal.
By the end of the night it had gotten quite chilly so we wrapped up the evening indoors at Beerhead with one of their ginormous pretzels.
Saturday we were in Cleveland again but this time it was Downtown. Dinner at Pura Vida was delicious but the restaurant was oddly almost empty and all the lovely ceiling drapery was gone. I'm hoping it was just the construction keeping folks away because this place is a real gem.
Afterwards we headed to the chic Azure for some rooftop patio action (notice a theme here?) After two pricey rounds of drinks we headed to our own patio and enjoyed a bottle of our VML Chardonnay from one of our trips to California.
Sunday we were super productive around the house and met my Mom and Step Dad for dinner at London Pickle Works - our favorite right around the corner hangout.

Monday my Dad's side of the family gathered for a Memorial Day cookout and birthday party combo. Lots of fun and great food!
If patios were the theme of the first part of the celebrations, wine was the theme of the second.

We celebrated my Mother-in-Laws birthday on the 28th at Michael Angelo's Winery
Little did she know that we were checking it out prior to my actual birthday on Friday. It was our first time there and we thought that is was a bit chaotic and the service was pretty bad. The wine is surprisingly good and the food is delicious. 
Plus they have lots of their famous bakery available for purchase. The cupcake was ok but the cannoli were even better.

The following day, I met my Auntie and one of her best friends at Coopers Hawk Winery. This place is one of my favorites! 
Pro Tip: Happy Hour is throughout the whole restaurant, not just the bar. Definitely get the brussels sprouts.
I was so excited when I woke up on the 31st and the weather was GORGOUS. After the cold, wet spring we have had, my one wish was for dry sunny weather.  And I definitely got it...along with a few surprises. 

My day started with Buffy giving me a present that I definitely didn't want - she pooped in the kitchen and walked in it. So not only did we need to clean the kitchen we had to give her a bath. What a way to start the day!

Second surprise of the day --- license plate renewal fiasco. Every year I say I'm going to mail it in. Every year I forget. So as usual I was scrambling on my birthday to get that taken care of. Because of a speeding ticket that I recently received (my first in 20 years!!!) and an expired insurance card, I wasn't able to get them until they FAXED my valid insurance card to Columbus.

Some of my co-workers must have known I needed some birthday cheer because a couple of us went to Condado's Tacos at Pinecrest.
Lunch courtesy of Hannah - thanks lady!
Things were starting to look up when I received my third birthday surprise - a flat tire. By this time my perky birthday attitude was almost lost for good. But thankfully, I made it to the garage just in the nick of time and got that fixed. After that, the rest of the day (thankfully!!) was fabulous.

We went back to Michael Angelo's Winery. And it was PACKED. I mean, park on the grass because there's no parking packed. Wow. What a difference a few days make. Luckily you can make reservations for groups of 10 or more. While they didn't seat us on the patio at promised, we had a great time and lots of delicious food and wine. The best part - they just released their Sparkling Rosé! It was as amazing as it sounds and perfect for the occasion.
We were treated to a tour and FINALLY snagged some seats on the patio to wrap up the evening.
It was definitely a birthday to remember! Thank you to everyone who helped me celebrate and made it extra special.
Some of the awesome ladies who celebrated with me:
Nicole of Eat Local Ohio, Michelle of Cleveland Foodie Girl and Heena of Kush Food

Next year is a biggie so I'm going to make the most out of this whole year trying to get ready for that one.