Chipotle, I had to.

During the month of June, I was in New Mexico taking part in a fantastic singing program (still working out the post in my head), but upon my arrival in Albuquerque, I decided to eat at a Chipotle.  This is a Mexican food chain essentially owned by McDonald’s, but it has some heart.  I know what you must be thinking…this girl is surrounded by Mexican/New Mexican food in New Mexico, why would she choose to go to a fast food chain? My favorite New Mexican restaurant is in Santa Fe and it was already in the books for the next day and I was in a hurry.  If I had a buddy, I would have gone to a proper restaurant, but when you are by yourself, if you’re not in the mood to dine alone, fast food becomes more appealing.

Check out this link and see why I have some love for this chain:
click me!

Hears a taste:


The website advises to ask for the server to change their gloves and follow you along the line to avoid contamination (as much as you can).  I’m making this sound so risky, but I have been to various Chipotle’s and (knock on wood) not had any problems.

I always order the Burrito Bowl;  it’s huge and can be shared or eaten solo, leftovers are good too.  Andrew and I were visiting his Mom in Albany and we split 2 between the three of us and still had leftovers for his sister.  All the meats are delicious and they are all gf.  My favorite is pork.  You pick your rice, your meat, and your toppings.  Always get the guacamole, it’s tasty.

Carnitas Burrito Bowl with cilantro rice, corn and guacamole, with a blackberry IZZE.

Does this look like fast food to you?  I think even if I could eat everything on the menu at any fast food joint, Chipotle would be my fast food of choice.  I am a sucker for Mexican cuisine, but this place is tasty.  Of course, the nearest location to Montreal is Burlington, Vermont, but I highly recommend keeping this place in mind if you’re in the US or Toronto, especially over a McDonald’s.

click me!

Addendum - this little story might not help sell my gf experience at Chipotle, but I have to tell it:  When I stepped up to the counter, I asked the server to change her gloves because I have an allergy to gluten.  With a flour tortilla in her hand, she says: “I haven’t touched gluten in these gloves”,  giving her the benefit of the doubt, I reply: “oh, is that a corn tortilla in your hand?”.  She says: “No, it’s just a tortilla”  Devon’s eyebrows furrow: “so that is a wheat flour tortilla, there is gluten in wheat”.  “No,” says my new ‘about to get educated’ friend, “it’s a tortilla tortilla”.  Oy, needless to say, I asked for the next girl over to help me.

Duben Wilde

Dear friend,

It has been too long since we have spoken and now it is too late.  A day later and already I miss your smile.  You were the best person, the kindest person, a great man.  I’m sorry I never got to see how amazing a husband and father you’ve been, I imagine that you were great at both.  Time passes and we let it go by without words, but you have always been in my thoughts and in my heart.  You were my friend and you will be missed.

I remember our trip to the circus, despite my fear you made me stand next to a clown!  We laughed our way through the picture, I have the proof framed forever with my photographs, I will cherish those memories.

I often think of our trips to McDonald’s, we would order 20 chicken nuggets with all the sauces and spend the afternoon eating and mixing sauces and catching up.  I think one of your favorite mixes was honey and bbq sauce, I was more partial to the honey mixed with mustard, but it was never really about the nuggets, it was about the company.

I still have the letters you wrote while you were on your mission.  I was so proud of you for going, for learning a whole new language and devouring the culture you were surrounded by.  You asked me to only ever speak French to you so you could practice and never forget all that you had learned.

You turned every negative into a positive and drew out all the good you could from every experience.  I hope that rubbed off on me, it was a great quality.

I’m glad that in your final days you were surrounded by people who love you and will think of you often.   You will be remembered, you will always be loved.

Goodbye sweet friend,


Yoghurt is a funny thing.  I never thought I would be so picky, but Europe has changed me.  I still remember the first time I tried a little glass cup of plain yoghurt with sugar on top in France; that little crunch from the sugar granules mixed with the creamy, slightly bitter taste of the yoghurt has stayed with me.  The dairy products are sweeter here, I’m sure of it.  Proof: At home, I usually put syrup in my coffee, but here I’ve been drinking Milchkaffee with one sugar!  (Anyone who knows me can attest to my sweet tooth, one sugar is nothing.)  The milk here is good, but the yoghurt is sooo delicious, I want to eat it all day, I want to talk about it all the time, hence the post.  I might even consider myself to be a yoghurt snob.  You would understand this if you were here in Germany with me.

Andrew walked off the plane and I handed him a cherry Mövenpick Finejoghurt.  I had, of course, already eaten my mango & vanilla yoghurt on the U-Bahn.  I’m pretty sure we had a yoghurt a day while he was here and when Andrew left, I packed 2 yoghurts in my bag and we made our way back to the Flughafen.  In my opinion, this is the only way to arrive and depart Germany!  I felt that I was acting as an ambassador to European dairy and it was my duty to make Andrew appreciate it as much as I do.

At home I would have to say I am very yoghurt naughty.  I love Liberté‘s  Méditerrannée Yoghurts, full fat of course (10%).  Ever since I became a yoghurt snob, the gelatin and aspartame in non-fat and low-fat yoghurt don’t quite sit right with my sensitive belly. ;)  I crave my wild blackberry Liberté yoghurt and I dream about the pineapple flavour and coconut too!  On a hot summer evening, there is nothing better and more refreshing than lemon yoghurt with berries.  This company gives European Yoghurt a run for it’s money, I’ve even seen it sold in the UK.  Thank goodness Liberté has created a 7% milk fat version of their delicious yoghurt! (3% less fat, that will help right?)

I understand that a lot of celiacs also have a lactose intolerance, but I am very happy to say my problem with dairy disappeared when I cut gluten out of my diet.  I don’t know what I would do if I couldn’t eat cheese and put milk in my morning tea.  My last trip to the grocery store, I found myself counting backwards from when I leave to make sure I had one yoghurt for each day left in Munich.  I do know my love for fatty yoghurt has become a problem, but I also think this might be a problem I can live with.


Spray bottle balsamic

There is a spray cap on the top of this bottle.

What do we think of this?  Is it useful?  Does one really need to limit their balsamic intake?  I’m staying in a lovely vacation apartment in Munich filled with the oddities of past travelers, one of them being spray bottle balsamic.  I did not know or ever imagine that balsamic needed to be sprayed, but then I realized the potential of a spray bottle of balsamic vinegar!  You can use it like salt and pepper!   At least that’s all I could come up with.  I’m not going to buy a new bottle for my stay even though it takes me 12 sprays (my hand cramped) to get the right amount of spritz on my tomato and mozzarella salad.

12 spray tomato and mozzarella salad

I guess it kind of looks pretty too.