Guillaume and I have really started to explore our new city. We really got lucky with the apartment we found so close to the beach and an amazing little area called Belmont Shore, which is very reminiscent of the new areas around 1st & 2nd streets in downtown Austin. There are tons of coffee shops, hole-in-the-wall and gourmet eateries of every genre and clothing & shoe boutiques galore! With a side-order of sand and ocean. It's really wonderful. We've decided to take advantage of our coveted location and explore a little bit each day after work. I got home early from work on Tuesday, so as soon as Guillaume made it home, we decided to do some exploring. I had noticed a bar a couple of blocks away called "Brit Bar," so we thought we start with a drink. The place was pretty dark inside, and the bar was expectedly empty at 6:00, with the exception of a few regulars. We sat at the bar and ordered a couple of beers, telling the bartender that we'd just moved to the area and were checking out some local places. He welcomed us and served our very cheap happy-hour drinks. It took me a few minutes, and I didn't really make the connection in my brain until Guillaume whispered in my ear, "this is a gay bar." Looking up at the neon signs with rainbows, the rainbow colored backsplash of the bar and the two guys sitting cozily beside us, I finally made the connection. Ah ha! But it was cool, and so was the bartender. We just sat there, had our drink and told him we'd be back...at least I would be! ;) I keep forgetting that Long Beach has a very large gay & lesbian demographic, but I guess it's not something I regularly think about.
So, after our drink, we decided to check out the beach at sunset. It really is a lovely city. Too bad Guillaume's camera is broken, otherwise the pictures might have been much nicer. That is on my wish list, though! ;) It was really very cold this evening...maybe somewhere around 50 or 60 with the wind blowing, but it was nice nonetheless. After our little trip to the beach, we headed to 2nd street, which boasts all the fun little eateries and shops in Belmont Shore. I've made a list of all the good places to eat that I've read about on Yelp, and La Creperie was pretty high on the list. This is for good reason, since both Gui and I really enjoyed our crepes (I had the chicken curry crepe, he had the carbonara crepe and we split the nutella & banana crepe for dessert). We both decided that the dishes were very very good, but the crepe was more of an addition than a main focus of the dish (am I sounding a bit like an Iron Chef judge?...because that's what I'm going for). We were both surprised to see kir on the menu, too, but it turned out to be our only disappointment of the meal when it came out as a huge wine glass with chardonnay and a splash of cassis. But, it was still an overall 5-star experience. Can't you see the content in Guillaume's eyes?
Today was my day off, so Gui and I met up for lunch. Trying to appease my craving for tex-mex, we decided give good ol' mexican food another try after my very dissatisfied experience with chicken tacos at El Torito. I'm glad I did. Although the food wasn't EXACTLY what I'd hoped to get at this hole-in-the-wall mexican joint in Cerritos, the beans were yum and the cheese in the enchiladas masked any unfamiliar ingredients. It definitely ain't mom's home-cooked goodness, but it'll have to do for now. I really need to get those family recipes down, by the way!! So, now I'm at my favorite little coffee joint around the corner, enjoying my hazelnut coffee, waiting for Guillaume to get home from work. I think we might try sushi tonight, but a guy just walked in with a Hooter's shirt on and we've both been pretty excited about checking that out! (Hey, the wings are good and the girls are funny!) We'll see...I know my little honey is tired, so maybe after a little nap. I must say that we have also been enjoying meals at home...like frozen CPK pizza, tomato salad and creamy brie with toast (that's all what we had last night). We'll have to balance out our dining out with dining in more, but it's just so hard with so many wonderful places to try only footsteps away!