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Around Austin: Ramen Tatsu-Ya

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Screen Shot 2014-01-03 at 6.55.23 PM

For my last Around Austin, I felt it only right to save my FAVORITE restaurant in Austin for last -- Ramen Tatsu-Ya. A small, intimate, warm ramen shop in North Austin, where I'm on friendly terms with most of the staff (& they recognize me and talk about more than what I'm ordering because I've been there so much), have a Usual Order, and always leave with a full stomach and a smile on my face.

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Screen Shot 2014-01-03 at 6.56.06 PM

The menu is limited, but literally everything I've ever had is absolutely delicious. And more than worth the wait to get in. Did you see the line in the above photograph?! I think the longest I've ever waited for a bowl of ramen was an hour and even the friends I was with, who had never been before, agreed that it was worth how long we had to stand in line. Tatsu-Ya is open for lunch and dinner service, they offer gluten free options, and have a vegetarian/vegan friendly bowl on Sunday nights during dinner service. You can customize your bowl pretty much however you want, omitting different ingredients and adding others.

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Screen Shot 2014-01-03 at 6.55.37 PM

Tatsu-Ya also features a good sized drink menu, and each drink is shown on this staircase display with the price, name, and description on a white card, and there are various types of Japanese candies available closer to the cashier. I usually stick to the Oolong Tea when I go, but I have tried the UCC coffee with milk and the Calpico on the end.

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Screen Shot 2014-01-03 at 6.55.45 PM

This is my usual: the Tonkatsu Sho-Yu (number two on the board) without scallions and an extra ajitama egg. Now, I can't stand eggs. Somewhere a couple years ago I went from really enjoying them (scrambled, sunnyside up, hard-boiled, etc) to not being able to stand the taste or the texture. But these eggs? I can't get enough of them. And they taste extra delicious with everything else all in one bite.

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Screen Shot 2014-01-03 at 6.55.55 PM

Nezumi, one of my best friends and who I went with for my last bowl before I leave Austin for four months, and I have a tradition of Instagramming every time we go together. To show you all how much I've been, (and honestly I feel like this isn't even all of the times because there are instances when I forget to get my phone out and snap a photo) I thought I would share all of the photographs we've posted from Tatsu-Ya:

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Screen Shot 2014-01-03 at 2.18.47 AM
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Screen Shot 2014-01-03 at 8.02.54 PM
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Screen Shot 2014-01-03 at 8.03.56 PM
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Screen Shot 2014-01-03 at 8.03.47 PM
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Screen Shot 2014-01-03 at 8.03.38 PM
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Screen Shot 2014-01-03 at 8.03.24 PM
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Screen Shot 2014-01-03 at 8.03.12 PM
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Screen Shot 2014-01-03 at 8.03.03 PM
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The Week in Photographs : 1/3/14

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One of the new weekly features I'm starting on here on Spikes and Stardust in the new year is the week in photographs, where I recap the adventures and events of the week prior. One of my main motivations in starting this is to be able to let my friends and family know what I'm up to while I'm studying abroad in France! I've been doing a LOT of blog planning lately, sending a million and a half emails, and breaking in new pens. Some days you just have to do your planning in bed, you know?

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On New Year's Eve my parents, aunt and I picked out a few bottles of wine and got a bottle of champagne and enjoyed glasses while eating dinner, playing board games, and talking while waiting for midnight to come.

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For dinner my dad made fondue, which was DELICIOUS! It had been far too long since we'd had some. We had salami, chorizo, various kinds of cheeses, sliced bread, and an array of vegetables to dip into the cheese.

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Yesterday my friend Nezumi and I went to our favorite restaurant in Austin, Ramen Tatsu-Ya (& look for a post about it on Monday!). It was our last time going until I get back from France, so it was a bittersweet meal. But mostly? It was as delicious as it is every time we go. Which is enough that most of the staff knows who we are...

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Screen Shot 2014-01-03 at 2.01.43 AM
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Screen Shot 2014-01-03 at 2.01.17 AM

Last but not least, my photos this week from Instagram: knitting a pair of mittens for my months abroad and the last bowl of ramen I'll have until June.

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Need A Reindeer Mug With That Drink?

holiday drinks
holiday drinks
  1. Peppermint White Russian
  2. Cranberry Mojito
  3. Caramel Apple Cider Cocktail
  4. Classic Mulled Wine
  5. Eggnog
  6. Apple Cider Margaritas
  7. Pomegranate and Ginger Spritzer

And of course, there wouldn't be any awkward holiday parties without drinks! These are the seven that I was most drawn to while perusing the internet the past couple of weeks, although I'll probably only try one or so this holiday season if I do. But for those of you who are looking for a plethora of beverages, here is the Indigo-approved list! Also the holiday drinks in mason jars idea? I am totally into that. Well, any drink in a mason jar to be honest.

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Chocolate and Fruit, Oh My!

holiday baking
holiday baking
  1. Mini Caramel Apple Pies
  2. Christmas Cane Chocolate Tart
  3. Honey and Whiskey Apple Tarts
  4. Chocolate-Pomegranate-Ginger Bark

As much as I L O V E baking, I'm trying to work on eating less sweets for a myriad of reasons (but mostly because I feel like my body performs better when it's not running on stress and sugar 24/7)! Therefore, my list of things I would bake this holiday season is very small. It's... tiny. But these are all things I would make in a heartbeat, and take a less-efficiently running body for. Also this year fruit and chocolate seems to be a bigger trend than I remember in holiday baking? But I could just be totally off, as I don't usually pay attention to baking trends.

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