Botolino Gelato

Last Sunday I was invited to Botolino which specializes in authentic gelato made from scratch.

I met with Carlo “Botolo” Gattini who is a third generation gelato maker with deep roots from Italy. He was trained by gelato masters in Italy and is very passionate about the gelato he produces.
Unlike many places that offer gelato, Botolino uses quality ingredients and does not cut any corners by using powder mixtures or artificial flavors.
Carlo says, “If it’s not quality, I won’t serve it.”

Botolino takes pride in displaying artisan methods such as using organic milk and cream bases that age for 12 hours to obtain maximum creaminess.

With quality gelato comes quality ingredients and Carlo desires to have the best of the best for his clientele.
He uses local coffee and honey, imports special nuts and spices, and fruits from other countries that are in season.

If you are in the Dallas area, Botolino is a must!
Botolino takes advantage of all the influences and culture of the clientele and community that it is located in.
Carlo has spent 30 years in Dallas and is a traditionalist at heart who compares Dallas life to Italy in the sense that in most neighborhoods, all the shops, restaurants, and everything one could desire is within walking distance.
Carlo takes pride in opening this one and only location here in Dallas and expressed that he never wants to leave.
He is very content that in the two short months of opening, there are locals who visit regularly and how embraced Botolino is in the community.
In due time, Carlo wishes to establish relationships with local farmers and communities and while he agrees that there is room for growth and always room for improvement, he never wants to take away from the traditional and authentic gelato that Botolino has to offer.
When asked what has been the most rewarding from Botolino’s opening, Carlo smiled and stated how he loved that gelato is not just a kids treat, it appeals to all ages, races, ethnicity’s and genders.

The staff was wonderful and extremely polite, the location was spotless, and above all, the gelato was delicious!

Carlo and Botolino are two of Dallas’ gems and I can’t wait for my next visit!

 

Xoxo,

–  R. Vargas

| Botolino provided me with this product. The opinions I have shared about the products are solely my own. | All photography credit is due to the services of Javier Garcia.

Shulammitegirl Snaps: June

During the month of June, I:

• Surprised my boyfriend with a date where we went to a batting cage & rode go karts.

• Had our family worship over purple triangle history and went to the Dallas Holocaust Museum Center.

• Climbed about 20 flights of stairs just for the view.

• Hosted an Italian themed movie night.

Xoxo,

-R. Vargas

Cinnaholic

I was recently invited to Cinnaholic to try some of their amazing gourmet cinnamon rolls and I was greeted by two lovely sisters Elisa and Brittany who own and operate this franchise location.
Their warmth and wonderful hospitality is one of the many reasons why people keep coming back for these cinnamon rolls.

This franchise was opened a little over three months ago and the concept began when Elisa and Brittany made a trip to California to check out a Cinnaholic location there which was recommended by their sister Jennifer and fell in love with the product and the company.

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Not only are these gourmet cinnamon rolls 100% vegan, they are made with quality ingredients, they are also dairy & lactose-free, egg-free and cholesterol-free.

Too good to be true right?

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Raspberry frosting, topped with blueberries and pie crumble.

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Chocolate frosting, topped with coconut, chocolate chips and chocolate sauce.

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Their bestseller, “Cookie Monster.” Cream cheese frosting, topped with cookie dough and chocolate sauce.

These may be vegan but I promise you will not taste any difference in them and as a matter of fact, they taste better than a regular cinnamon roll and you won’t have any guilt after indulging in one!

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Indulging in the, “Cookie Monster.

Cinnaholic’s frosting flavors include: Almond, Amaretto, Banana Cream, Butterscotch, Cake Batter, Caramel, Chai, Chocolate, Coffee, Cream Cheese, Hazelnut, Lemon, Macadamia Nut, Maple, Marshmallow, Orange, Peanut Butter, Raspberry, Strawberry and Vanilla.
Their toppings include: Almonds, Apples, Bananas, Blackberries, Blueberries, Brownie Bites, Caramel Sauce, Chocolate Chips, Chocolate Sauce, Coconut, Cookie Dough, Gingersnap Cookies, Graham Crackers, Marshmallows, ‘Oreo’ Cookies, Pecans, Pie Crumble, Pretzels, Raspberries, Strawberries, Strawberry Jam and Walnuts.

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Not only do they offer cinnamon rolls but they also have brownies, cookies, and cookie dough all made from scratch!

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This bakery had such a great atmosphere and is set in an area where partnering with local vendors, schools, and investing in the community is truly valuable to this family based business. Building relationships with the community is key.

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Partnering with local vendors like Addison Coffee Roasters and Sterling Tea from Rockwall.

I can’t thank them enough for hosting me!
If you’re ever near Richardson, Texas make sure you stop by to visit Cinnaholic where you’ll be greeted by the sweetest sisters ever!

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At one time there was about 10 franchise locations and now there are 50 with 20 more to yet to come! So look for a location near to you!

Xoxo,

-R. Vargas

Old Chicago | Pizza & Taproom

Recently I entered a giveaway on LittleMixico’s instagram and won a $50 gift certificate to Old Chicago

I was more than excited to go and try all their delicious food that I’ve heard so much about!

I planned my visit and upon my arrival, I was met by the GM Brian Bosby who showed me and my guest to our seats.

Our booth had a great view of the bar, several flat screens, and the patio area.

Brian welcomed us once we got seated and comfortable and introduced us to our wonderful waiter Nathan who was full of personality and had a great sense of humor.

While looking at our menu’s and not knowing where to start, Nathan took our drinks and recommended the, “Chi-Town Trio,” which included Italian Nacho’s, baked to order garlic bread, and Sicilian pepperoni rolls.

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My favorite on this plate was the Sicilian pepperoni rolls!
Cheesy, pepperoni, marinara sauce in each bite!

Our waiter Nathan made our drinks and even though I am legal to drink, he sure did make Shirley Temple’s look good. I however stuck to my classic beer, Blue Moon.

Old Chicago offers vodka, tequila, rum, bourbon, gin, whiskey/scotch, shots, draft or bottled beer, flights, hard cider, you name it, they have it. They even offer nice virgin drinks.

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While finishing up our first appetizer, Brian stopped by to recommend some different pizzas and other dishes. He also asked us if we were ready to try their hand-tossed chicken wings.
We looked at the menu and with 7 different sauces and 3 dry-rubs, we all decided on Original Buffalo.

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By the time we finally decided on our main course, we were already feeling full.

At first we were all going to share a pizza but upon looking at the menu, I saw that Old Chicago has more to offer than just pizza.

They have craft burgers and sandwiches, specialty calzones, pastas, fresh salads, and of course all kinds of pizzas.

Whether you want to build your own pizza or have a specialty pizza, they have it. They even offer their signature Chicago Thick crust or their New Ale crust pizza dough made from scratch. To my surprise they even offer Gluten Free pizza!

My guests chose to build their own pizza and I chose the Cajun Spice dish.

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The Cajun Spice dish was delightful!
The dish contained corkscrew macaroni, Anaheim peppers, roasted red  peppers and andouille sausage blended with Cajun spices and Old Chicago’s signature white cheddar cheese sauce topped with aged white cheddar, buttered bread crumbs, and green onions.
This dish had just the right amount of kick and spice in it and I’m so pleased I didn’t have to share.

I did manage to steal a slice of pizza and it did not disappoint!

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We didn’t even finish our meal and Nathan and Brian stopped by to recommend the Warm Cinnamon Crunch Rolls for dessert.

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Fresh warm cinnamon rolls topped with a caramel sauce, cream cheese frosting and cinnamon crunch topping. Cinnamon rolls never looked so good and this dessert was AMAZING!

With locations across the states, if you ever find yourself near an Old Chicago Pizza & Taproom, do yourself a favor and stop by.

And if you live in the DFW area in Texas like I do, Old Chicago at Dallas Mockingbird Station is a must!

We had such an amazing time and I can’t thank the staff enough for making our visit so special with their warm hospitality.

My appetite and I will be back for more soon!

Xoxo,

-R. Vargas

 

French Riviera Fête

Last Thursday, the Dallas Museum of Art was hosting an event that celebrates the Roaring 20’s; French Riviera Fête.
The museum encouraged guest to dress up in 1920’s attire and enjoy jazz music, dancing, cocktails, and of course art. Musical talent of the night were the Texas Gypies who are an award-winning band and composed of a few Grammy winners and musicians.

A few of my friends joined me for the event and I’m happy to say we all dressed up in support of the museum and the theme.

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Xoxo,

-R. Vargas

Asian Adventures

In between having a Vietnamese best friend and Vietnamese boss, I’ve discovered a few wonderful places that I’d like to share and recommend with you all.

First off is CrushCraft Thai Street Eats, an amazing Thai food restaurant with color and creativity served in each dish.

Inside CrushCraft

The ceilings in CrushCraft.

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Phat Ke Mao | Drunken Noodles | Egg rolls | Coconut Soup | Thai Tea

Next up is H-Mart which is an Asian Supermarket.

Inside this supermarket, there are several little boutiques, bakeries, cafes, and other small shops.

Tous Les Jours being one of the bakeries, and not just any bakery but a French-Asian Bakery.

Tous les Jours Bakery

Tous les Jours Bakery

Before I left H-Mart, I had to pick up some Kawaii stationery.

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In the same shopping center as H-Mart, there is another bakery that has the prettiest and sweetest treats.

Mozart Bakery & Cafe 

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Macaron’s

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Omi Korean Grill & Bar was really a new experience for me. You are seated and given a menu where you order your preference of meat and they bring you out several little side dishes that have the freshest ingredients, and finally bring your meat out raw so that you are able to grill it up on your own. Sounds a little odd, but definitely worth a try.

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june 036And last but not least, my final Asian Adventure has ended at the well known Bistro BAuthentic Asian Cuisine with more dishes than you could ever imagine. The menu will literally take you over an hour to read thoroughly. Wherever I go, I tend to be open minded and try something new each time. Whether I like it or not, will all be part of the experience.

Fried Dumplings

Fried Dumplings

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Phở Gà Xé hoặc Chặt

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Maikim

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Yours truly about to try Pho for the first time. (Initially I was craving Hu Tieu.)

Special thank you to my boss lady Kathy Lee and best friend Maikim for introducing me to these amazing places.

Hope you’ve enjoyed my shares and reviews.
If you’re ever in the Dallas, Garland, or Carrollton area, be sure to show some of these restaurants and bakeries some love and support!

Xoxo,

-R. Vargas

MiniLuxe

Recently a MiniLuxe has opened up here in Dallas, Texas.
What is MiniLuxe? MiniLuxe is all about self-care.
The stations are clean, the tools are sterilized and the staff is very considerate to the customers need.
According to a PR representative, MiniLuxe nail polish contains no formaldehyde, dibutyl phthalates, toluene, camphor or formaldehyde resin.
This place isn’t just about nail and beauty care, it’s about the customers self-care.
Taking care of your needs!

Here’s the link to their website:
http://www.miniluxe.com/

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Also the manager Vanessa Blanco is a Dallas based makeup artist who has become widely known in the DFW area.
Check out her Makeup Instagram Account: @vanessablancoartistry
For bookings email: vanessablancoartistry@gmail.com

Let me know how your visit goes!

Xoxo,

-R. Vargas