Monday, December 31, 2018

Our Year in Food: 2018

We've barely posted here this year, but we have a really, really good reason. I know we say that a lot, like every time we come back from vacation or when we were moving or at other busy times, but this time, we've been pretty consumed by quite a large thing - a new addition to our family! As a result, this year has been radically different from previous years when you think about differences in diet and travel, and even just everyday eating and grocery shopping, due to pregnancy and newborn life, and it's also meant that many of our waking hours have been dedicated to something (or someone, rather) other than this blog.

We don't want to stop posting though, and at least for me, writing posts about our memories and experiences uses a part of my brain that doesn't get much use otherwise these days. We have tons to catch up on in the new year, lots of Trader Joe's products we've tried, new cuisines and dishes we've explored, and so much we don't want to forget. But for now, our year in review, a year that really just flew by, and then hopefully we'll be able to pick our top 10 food memories from this year!

The first restaurant meal we ate in 2018: Lunch at Chaan Teng in Hell's Kitchen after a matinee showing of The Last Jedi, dumplings and noodles for me and an interesting-sounding (but not as tasty) General Tso fried chicken and waffle for A. Later in the year, Chaan Teng was no more and instead became the relocated spot for Qi Thai, so that was our last time there.

The first home-cooked meal we ate in 2018: I ended 2017 fairly sick, so we started off the new year with something that would hopefully be restorative -- the garlic and potato soup from 2016's Czech challenge, one of our favorite simple soups.

The last restaurant meal we ate in 2018: Late lunch at Mancini's Wood-Fired Pizza with garlic knots and pizza after signing the documents for our new car. (So many changes this year!) It was one of only a handful of times we've brought baby B out to a restaurant since he's still so small and it's sick season, and it was nice to have a family meal out at the end of the year.

The last home-cooked meal we ate in 2018: Some tortellini from Costco with meatballs from BJ's and sauce from Costco. There just wasn't any time to plan for or make the year-end cooking project that A usually undertakes, but hopefully we can get back to that next year. If you want the last home-cooked meal we made from scratch, that would be the Korean braised tofu that has made appearances on this blog before.

# of different restaurants we tried in 2018 (together and separate): 165. Far lower than past years, but that's to be expected, because, newborn.

Places explored (outside the NYC metro area): Madison, Wisconsin; Bermuda.

This codfish and potatoes breakfast from Bermuda is definitely one of our favorite food memories of the year

Most visited restaurant of 2018 (together): The Gold Lounge at the Fairmont Hamilton in Bermuda, although it feels like this shouldn't really count because we went there multiple times a day -- for breakfast, afternoon tea, early evening hors d'oeuvres, and dessert -- because it was part of our room rate. The two restaurants after that that we visited most frequently were for large family dinners, so I guess we didn't go anywhere that repeatedly during our abridged restaurant exploration year.

Progress on WorldEats challenge: We haven't added any more WorldEats posts this year, so posting is still at 58/196, but we've been to more and explore when we have the opportunity.

Favorite overall meal of 2018: Lunch at Morgan's BBQ. We had a pediatrician appointment in Prospect Heights on our first weekend home with B, and it was a gorgeous, warm day for October. Morgan's had a patio outside, which was perfect for going out for lunch with B since we were avoiding tight, enclosed spaces for a while. It was our first family meal out of the house (and all three of us ate while there!), and it was just such an unexpected treat since we hadn't expected to have our first family meal out for a number of months.

2018 was a year of so many changes, and we're so grateful for everything that we were blessed with this year, especially B. 2019 is sure to be different from this year, but also different from the previous years we blogged about here because we'll be exploring food with a baby. Can't wait to see what the year brings!