Miami For The Weekend: Part 1

Ball and Chain, Blogger, Little Havana, Miami, Travel

Known for its diverse culture, beautiful beaches, beachfront resorts, Cuban flair, cultured nightlife, and amazing seafood, Miami is the little piece of paradise that everyone should experience.

I only had about three days in Miami (which I learned is not enough), so I wanted to squeeze in as much as I could. Although Miami is known for the food, nightlife, and beach, there is so much more to see!

Day 1: Little Havana + Calle Ocho

Little Havana is Miami’s Famed Cuban neighborhood with some of  the best Cuban food, coffee, and bars. My favorite thing about this neighborhood was the culture. The people were friendly and inviting, there was a lot of history there, and I loved seeing the little markets that sold fresh fruit and juices. I have never been to Cuba, but I felt as if it would look and feel similar to Little Havana.

Ice cream at Azucar Ice Cream Company

Azucar, which means sugar in Spanish, is very well known in Little Havana. They are an all natural ice cream company that uses local fruits and vegetables from local farmer’s markets to make their ice creams. Azucar was inspired by their abuela (grandmother) who traveled throughout South and Central America determined to make ice cream out of every tropical fruit she found along the way. A huge portrait of Celia Cruz was displayed inside. Celia was a Cuban singer of Latin music who has a popular song called “Azucar“. I was impressed with this place – even more after I found out that they had dairy free options!! The watermelon mint sorbet in a waffle cone was delish!

Domino Park

More mature Cubans can be found here sipping coffee, smoking a cigar, and playing dominoes. Domino Park is a thirty-five year tradition and Little Havana landmark. It’s a cute little gem!

Little Havana Cigar Factory

I am not a cigar smoker, but when in Miami you must or at least you must visit a cigar shop. I like the initial smell of cigars, but after so long they start to get a little strong for me. I didn’t buy one to smoke, but it was nice to pop in and see all of the different varieties. The building had some nice graffiti on the side too, which you all know I love.

Dinner at Perricone’s Marketplace & Cafe

Deemed as South Florida’s best Italian restaurant for two decades, Perricone’s definitely did not disappoint. The aura alone was enough to impress me. It was absolutely gorgeous and featured low lighting with a tropical rustic feel and lots of greenery. Thursday is the only day that you cannot make reservations, because they offer Pasta Thursdays where select dishes are $10. I ordered the Capellini with Shrimp and it was delish! I was a little nervous, because I have been trying to consume less meat, but this place was worth it! A must while in Miami. Parking is $6 for valet and you can valet with your waiter.  *This restaurant is in the Brickell area (not Little Havana) *

Ball + Chain

After dinner, we went back to Little Havana, because I could not miss going to Ball + Chain. I think I got there around 10 ish and they were still doing the salsa lessons. The place was already packed. The bar is smack in the center of the room and on the sides there are tables that are “reservation” only. There is a small stage for live bands as well as the famous pineapple shaped stage in the back for bigger performances. Couples danced beautifully alongside the bar which was very fun to watch. I could watch them all day! I ordered a whiskey shot for me $12 and a tequila shot for my mom $10. The night ended with a guy asking me to dance and teaching me how to salsa, along with a La Pachanga performance.

Being Old Fashion at Whisler’s

Blogger, Travel

Let me just say, I have been wanting to try this place out for about a year. Why it took so long…? Not really sure! But, yesterday I finally made it happen.

I am a huge whiskey lover, and I read on multiple occasions that this place had THE BEST old fashioned in Austin. 

Skkkrrr…before I get into my actual visit, here is a little history on Whisler’s. Whisler’s is located in Austin, Texas on East Sixth Street. The bar itself is fairly small, but patio is pretty spacious. The interior is gorgeous and features a rustic chic decor. The furniture is very vintage, but the interesting thing about this place is the dead animals that they use as decor. It sounds disturbing, but it was quite stunning. The exterior was covered in art and graffiti and really gave off the “Austin” vibe. I loved everything about it.

There was a live band on the patio, Old Man Sam, performing live. They played blues and old R&B – loved it! 

The bar wasn’t packed, but there was a good amount of people there. Once we (my fiance and I) were at the bar, we stood there for a few minutes waiting to be waited on. Usually, bartenders will say “be with you in a sec” or say “hello”, but nope. 😦 Once we were waited on, the guy took our order and was very polite. However, another party was to the right of me. They ordered drinks, and the lady bartender (the same one that didn’t acknowledge us) was extremely rude for no reason. What do I mean by rude? Well, the lady ordered a Bloody Mary, but was told there was no more tomato juice, which by the way was a complete lie. My bartender had just opened a bottle of tomato juice. Then, she threw the lady’s change on the counter and walked away….and I do mean literally threw it on the counter. *gasp* And guess what?? The lady STILL tipped her a $1. *sigh* I aspire to be that kind one day!!!! 

Moving on to the MOST POPULAR Old Fashioned in ATX!!

First off, the presentation of the drink was absolutely gorgeous! I could not have asked for a better look. However, this was not the best Old Fashioned that I have ever had before. Maybe, just maybe it is the best in Austin, but I can’t vouch for that considering I have not had any other in Austin yet.

Okay, okay let’s look at the pros and cons of my visit to Whisler’s:

Pros:Decor + Presentation was a 10

Cons: Drink itself was overly thick – perhaps too much bitters? Bartenders could use a customer service lesson, or two.

Conclusion: Although I was not the biggest fan of the Old Fashioned, I did love the atmosphere at Whisler’s and plan to visit again soon. This time, I will stick to something less Old Fashioned. *wink*

whis1whis2

 

 

Jesser The Adventurer

Travel, Uncategorized

Hilo!

My name is Jessica, but I mostly go by Jess or Jesser. To make things easier, you can call me  JesserJess or just Jess…I will almost answer to anything. Okay…now that we have gotten that out of the way – MOVING ON!

I suppose some of you are wondering why I am creating a blog, or maybe someone of you know why and are wondering why I am creating a blog called “JESSER THE ADVENTURER”. For those of you who do not know me well enough, I used to really enjoy writing and used to blog a bit back in high school and junior college (I wasn’t in college long – that’s another story). With the demands of life, trying to find myself and mostly just being lazy, I stopped writing all together and sort of never pursued my dreams of being a writer. Anyway, here I am today picking up this habit again. This time around, I plan to blog about my life adventures, travels, or anything that sounds interesting. I am not sure how far this will go, but for right now my plan is to not really have a plan, but to be as organic as possible with this.

Back to the topic of discussion: Jesser The Adventure…first let me give you a brief summary about me. 

I am from Jackson, Mississippi. I moved to Houston, Texas in 2013 – I was twenty-four. I moved with my best friend at the time, and it was probably the most random thing I had ever done and one of the best things I had ever done. NO REGRETS AT ALL!! I lived there for about three and a half years, until I my most recent move to Austin with my partner, Norma. Again, another random act of Jess. What can I say? Sometimes you just have to do what you feel. Each move, to me, was and has been such an adventure for me. Mississippi was never just the most horrible place to live, but it definitely did not afford me the experiences I have gained while living in Houston and Austin. For that reason, I have explored different types of foods, bars, state parks, festivals, activities, people, and adventures. I used to HATE being outside, but now my desire to get outside and do something has heightened. How can you know that another world exist, when you never get to experience it? I truly believe that because I have done so many things that I never experienced in my hometown, I have developed this urgency to see more, do more, be more, adventure more, and travel more.

I really hope that you join me on this ride and explore life with me. I’m not saying that I’ll be doing something big every weekend. There are weeks where I may do absolutely nothing. This is just a little hobby for me right now 🙂

Motto: One girl trying to see every city, state, country, and continent possible.

Instagram: @jessertheadventurer #jessertheadventurer

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