Establishment: Castle Hill Inn
Address: 590 Ocean Drive, Newport 02840 RI
Mr. P and I were very excited of the Newport Restaurant Week 2012. We actually wanted to try all the restaurants participating however, Mr. P is a hardworking man hence we only tried one and we picked the “preppiest” place.
When Mr. P proposed I moved to USA from United Arab Emirates. I was working as a Guest Relations Supervisor in a luxury hotel. I am obsessed with “preppies” and wanted to be one. Or at least dress like one. But, I cant. My idea of a preppy is a skinny girl with a stepford wife attitude. And, as I moved here I gained a lot of weight. I love eating. That’s why.
It was a rainy Saturday and I hate the rain. No offense to farmers. But I really do. When I was a kid in a small town in the Philippines, everytime it rains there is also a leak in our roof. It just makes me sad. Sometimes mad. But whatever the case may be, I just got a bit cranky on that specific Saturday.
Here’s a confession. As I googled their website I thought to myself, I think I would like to work there. As we pulled to the parking area (while it was drizzling) Mr. P wanted to strike a conversation. I snapped and asked him if he wants to have a talk in the rain. So I went ahead and he followed.
The Doorman/Bellman greeted us with a smile. I asked for the restaurant and he immediately escorted us to the Hostess’ desk. The Hostess (or whatever her position may be) was wearing a black suit/skirt and a red 3 inch heels, asked us if we have a reservation to which I replied NO and she told us of a 45 minute wait (perhaps because we do not exude the old money or perhaps because I am Asian) and as I see it, there were not a lot of people when we arrived. In all fairness, she suggested we dine at the Lounge instead of the 45 minute wait. Which was also convenient. Perhaps, I should have dressed in a cocktail and wore a hat like the one the Duchess of Cambridge wear.
Anyway, Mr. P and I calmly went to the Lounge and the Bartender got a little confused as we were discussing if we can sit on the bar and further opted for a small table. The bartender was very helpful and appears to be professional. He took our orders and came back to ask if the food is fine.
There was a Manager who approached us as we are enjoying our appetizers and asked if we needed anything. He further offered a toast with Hawaiian butter.
(Smoked seaweed, garlic, red chiles, parsley, Vinho Verde broth)
Mr. P and I decided to order the same appetizer and we loved it. It was tasty and not as filling as a the clam chowder. Whenever I order a chowder I seem to be full and cant finish my main course. So the littleneck was a smart choice for me.
For our Main course:
Mr. P had the Reuben
(House brined & cooked Hereford brisket, sauerkraut, Jarlsberg cheese, marble rye)
I had the Scottish Salmon
(English pea risotto, pancetta, winter greens, bouillabaisse sauce)
We both love what we ordered. I specifically like the salmon which was cooked perfectly. Mr. P finished the plate which should be a kudos to the chef.
We both had German Chocolate Cake
(Pecan-coconut caramel, vanilla ice cream, toffee crunch)
Now this dessert is phenomenal. I love it. I love the explosion of coconut in my mouth. It was almost delirious!
After much thought of how far I need to walk, bike or drive from our crib to this establishment, I decided not to pursue working in here. Not that I am already hired but I think there is a long list of the inconvenience it will bring plus the fact that the next hotel/resort called the Oceancliff looks way bigger.
To sum it up, its a great place and the food was amazing. The service provided by the staff is above average (minus the red shoes which was really distracting) and I guess if I have my “hoity toity” friend from Canada visits I can recommend this place.
I am a bit obsessed of net-a-porter website which my sister (Sugar) introduced me to a few days ago. And because of that obsession plus the fact that its SPRING (or almost!) I decided to share some of my “finds” waiting patiently on my closet to finally be worn for SPRING and summer.
To those who know me well, I am not a big fan of flats. I’d rather strut wearing stilettos. I feel sexier that way. But I still have to own a few, just in case a “look” calls for a flat. And according to net-a-porter flats are essential this SPRING/SUMMER.
This Steve Madden flat was abused last year. I wore it almost everyday. I love it. I forgot how much this cost but this will stay in my wardrobe this year.
This Fergie flat was worn once last year. I bought it because 1st I love Fergie and 2nd because I just want to. I also forgot how much it costs. And yes, it will also stay this year.
I bought this BOHO/BEACH-y flat is a ZIGI SOHO. The original costs is http://ziginy.com/zigi-soho/flats.html but I bought it for I think half the price at Marshalls. Love Love Love.
I bought this RAMPAGE Grecian flat last month. I love how it can be classy and I think it costs like $25 from Marshalls.
The purpose of this blog to share some experiences, circumstances and tips where you can actually enjoy life without breaking the bank. On my previous entry about the Castle Hill Inn a friend asked me why do we need to dine at a “hoity toity” place if we are trying save. I apologize because I omitted the price of the lunch. It was Newport Restaurant Week and those high-end restaurants are offering a 3 course meal for $16 per person (drinks, tips and tax excluded) and I kid you not, it was a good deal and it was a lunch worth every penny.
Mr. P is a stingy man. For a reason. The main reason will be the economic crisis in this country. Why should we buy things we cant afford just to please people we dont really like?
I have a confession, I took the photos of my flats because I am organizing my shoes. I will have the photos developed at WALMART (cheap but good quality) and then paste it on the boxes for easy access. Now I dont need to check which flats are on the box because I just have to look at the photos and imagine which flat will suit my dress.
Establishment: Square Peg
Address: 51 Miller St., Warren, RI 02885
Mr. P and I love to dine out. We are actually amateur food critics. While I am more of the service critic I trust his palate completely. I am Asian, hence my palate is not easily pleased.
Last Friday was “Good Friday” and we spontaneously decided to roam around Warren. It was a good stroll as we pass by the Masonic Lodge to the Water St. It was still chilly for me though so I brought my Dior shawl to warm me up.
As we entered the premises of Square Peg I noticed people. Customers are always a good thing. It means people like the food and there must be a reason for them to come back.
We headed to the bar as Mr. P wanted to watch golf. The bartender (whom we think is also the Manager) was quick to assist us. Though the ray of light (beaming from the window) sort of blinded him, he stated “I can hear you guys, I just cant see you well.”
Mr. P ordered wine. And I am known not to ingest alcohol of any variants while enjoying a meal. So I asked for Dr. Pepper. Here’s the thing, I am also not a soda (of any brand) drinker but after tasting Dr. Pepper it sort of suit my picky taste buds. However, nobody and I mean NOBODY serves Dr. Pepper on any establishments. So the bartender offered other choices and I chose rootbeer to which after a minute he realized they dont have it as well. So he suggested iced tea and lemonade. Hmmm. That actually sounds a lot better. Then I had this:
I was not thrilled because I thought it will be the real deal. But it tasted okay. And okay is better than gross. So I am pleased.
After battling with what food to order the bartender suggested the specials. And I am glad he did. I ordered the Fish Sandwich.
Its fried haddock with tartar sauce topped with a pickled cucumber and chips.
Its surprisingly good and I finished it. I also snatched Mr. P’s cucumber pickle. The presentation is not elaborate but it was clean and the taste is just right. I love the fish and tartar sauce and the saltiness of the pickle altogether in my mouth is actually heaven.
Mr. P had the Falafel. I was actually so engrossed with my meal that I had no idea what Mr. P’s meal consists of. He was however pleased with his meal and finished it.
Overall, the establishment is clean and the communal bathroom is tidy. While Mr. P and I decided to sit by the window we stared at the nearby lounge called Stella Blues and one day probably we will go there.
Good Friday was spent well at Square Peg. I will recommend it and bring my friends and family over when they come up and visit me.
Have a good day to start the week. Keep smiling everyone! Life is so much better when we smile.
I am obsessed with the trends on net-a-porter:http://www.net-a-porter.com/am/boutiques/trends/list.nap?SelItem=16&custom_list=All_That_Jazz_
However, as we all know I am not as thrilled looking at the prices that goes with it. In this time of economic tsunami as Mr. P describes it, I firmly believe we still should restrain ourselves from spending money we dont have.
Here’s a vintage find I want to share with you. I bought it for like $15 and I will be spending another $10 for drycleaning.
My answer to “All That Jazz” by net-a-porter.
I call this the “Michael Jackson” jacket. When I found it people were staring at me because I cant stop myself to do a moonwalk and then started singing “Ben”, my sister was laughing uncontrollably.
So remind me again why I need to pay $2100 for this?
When I can easily have this for $25:
Here’s the thing, in this time of economic crisis we have to substitute the high end products with something low-budget without sacrificing the quality.
I go to vintage shops and thrift stores for nice quality and high-end pieces but I still go to Marshalls, TJ Maxx and Burlington for shoes, accessories and simple pieces.
Have a nice Tuesday y’all!
Its been a month since Mr. P and I decided to move from Fall River, Massachusetts to Warren, Rhode Island. I found out that moving is a pain. Literally. I have been here for a month and I still have a lot of things to unpack.
I like Warren. Its accessible to almost anything. The Bike Path. Restaurants. Fastfood. Post office. Groceries. Antique shops. Bus stops. Golf range for Mr. P.
I feel that I am living in my hometown in the Philippines. Its so homey. I like it. I may like it a lot more because the taxes apparently is low. Ding! Ding! Ding!
Here’s another link for what’s trending this Spring/Summer: http://www.net-a-porter.com/am/boutiques/trends/list.nap?SelItem=22&custom_list=In_Black_and_White
I bought this at a vintage store for $20. And yes, It’s Isaac Mizrahi. I will bring it for Drycleaning at $10.
So why would I pay $1700 for this:
When I can have this for $30:
I would suggest you guys scour the vintage stores. If you have a good eye then you will find good pieces. If you dont fancy recycling clothes then I suggest Marshalls. Which reminds me, I have to look for underwear. My mother once said that everyone should have nice underwear, you never know when your time is up. By then you will be in autopsy bed and someone will find out you have “gross” undies. Be a girl scout. Be prepared.
Any suggestions where I can buy reasonably priced undies? Cotton? And yes, NEW!
On the morrow, Mr. P and I will be driving to New York to visit family and friends. While my family resides in New Jersey, we need to have a stop in New York and stay in Marriott. This will be a chance for us to tackle service from this establishment who refused to give us a late check-out. I informed Mr. P while he was making the reservation that it is useless to argue with the Reservation Agent about late check-out, we will deal with the receptionists and inquire about their occupancy rate for Sunday. Who checks-in on Sunday anyway? Most of the tourists will be heading home and checking-out by Sunday. This is not Dubai or Turks & Caicos people.
Okay, I mentioned Dubai because I worked there for almost 4 years in the hospitality industry. And Turks & Caicos? Because I felt we will be going there. Soon!
Anyway, I will continue my drive to look for pieces as an alternative to the high-end products and prices for SPRING 2012. After all, I am Mrs. Pennypinchers.
Please click this link so you will have an idea what is trending this spring: http://www.net-a-porter.com/am/boutiques/trends/list.nap?SelItem=21&custom_list=Texture_Expert_
This Nina Ricci jacquard jacket costs $2890:
And here is my alternative vintage find which costs $15 and $5 was paid for drycleaning.
I think this will fit perfectly with jeans and a skyscraper stilettos.
A lot of people often say that their heart aches for the people in Africa or Asia who do not have food. This rich people can actually afford a Nina Ricci jacket for $2890. Buy a cheaper jacket. I bet there are $890 jackets. Buy it if you dont like vintage clothing. Then save your money and when you have enough money to spare, go to Africa. Go to Asia. Help the world.
Dont look at me, I can only afford a $20 jacket. But, if I win the lottery. I will.
Today, Mr. P and I will be driving to New York. I am so excited! I actually forgot the last time we went there. I think it was last Christmas.
Mr. P is from New York. A true blooded Yankee fan. One of the things he loves is a good old New York pizza. Which reminds me, Gray’s Papaya in NY. Apparently, Anthony Bourdain loves it. This we need to try.
Anyway, my quest for SPRING 2012 penny-pinching continues. http://www.net-a-porter.com/am/boutiques/trends/list.nap?SelItem=1&custom_list=Uptown_Gypsy
I love accessorizing. I feel that accessories add more character to your outfit. Here’s an Oscar de la Renta earrings which costs $355.
And here’s a $5 earrings:
Okay, I must admit that this looks cheap compared to the Oscar de la Renta but to compare the price you get to save a lot lot more. Plus the fact that its a Gypsy theme. Can you get any more gypsier than these?
Roberto Cavalli, $2220
And here’s a shirt I bought brand new at Marshalls for $25 on the clearance rack.
Brand: Buffalo by David Bitton
In the end, while you are walking down the streets do you think people will stop and ask you the brand or price of what you are wearing? Women will be so proud to ask but if there will be eyebrow raising then you have to realize that you did a good job. “Envy is a like a worm, it always has an eye for the fairest apple.”
And the Men? They will look at you with admiration and a designer dress will not be a subject you have to tackle. After all, you are only dressing for yourself (to feel good) and the only thing to attract men is to wear CONFIDENCE.
While I am stuck in a room in Marriott, Mr. P went golfing. I know what you’re thinking. We’re spending and not penny-pinching. Well, its his vacation. He deserves it. One thing you should know about us, The Pennypinchers are not stingy. We want to live our lives and enjoy each moment. We love traveling. I love long drives, seating in the passenger seat while Mr. P drive. We love visiting our friends and family. And it doesn’t mean that just because we love to do things we are already over-spending.
We advocate LIFE and we celebrate it. You should too. We do not need to overspend on things for enjoyment. We can spend but still make sure its of utmost quality.
Fashion for instance. While others may think its not necessary, my personal opinion is that every girl be fashionable and every married woman be well-dressed. Just because you are married and with kids doesn’t mean that you can be sloppy with your fashion. You still need to entice the husband.
To those who do not agree and decide to rant about me and my opinion let me suggest something. Stop reading my blog. I am sure there are a lot of things for you to do. Life is good. You should get one!
And to those who decided to read on, here’s something for you: http://www.net-a-porter.com/am/boutiques/trends/list.nap?SelItem=15&custom_list=Skirt_The_Issue
I must admit, if I am a gazillionaire I will buy some of these high end pieces. But not to the extent of overspending. If you have the money, go splurge. I’m sure you worked hard just to get whatever you want. You deserve it.
Now here’s a beaded skirt I found from MARSHALLS for $20.
Elizabeth and James, $325
And here’s a skirt I had ages ago and needs to resurrect from the storage box:
I apologize for being cranky today. I’m a girl. Its very common for girls to be cranky or obnoxious. And yes! The monthly visitor is approaching.
“If you are in doubt, ACCESSORIZE!” http://www.net-a-porter.com/am/boutiques/trends/list.nap?SelItem=13&custom_list=The_Statement_Earring
One thing I love about fashion is that its infinite. Who would have known that the 80’s Madonna/Cyndi Lauper era will come back to haunt us? And the 90’s plaid which reminds me of Alicia Silverstone era. And the gypsies and hippies.
And how I wish I stored all the accessories my Mother gave me when I was a teenager. So now that I am obsessed with Spring/Summer 2012 fashion and everything about it, I decided to scour my jewelry/accessory boxes for anything significant.
Roberto Cavalli, $570
Here’s an original vintage Yves Saint Laurent which Mr. P gave me:
Oscar de la Renta, $345
And here’s a GIVENCHY that my sister, Sugar gave me:
I love gifts. I hate surprises but I love gifts. So, if you will try to surprise me, surprise me with a gift.
Or two. Or three.
Note: Mr. & Mrs. Pennypinchers adventure in New York and New Jersey will be posted after our mini-vacay.
For the meantime, let us continue with my frugal adventures rummaging my closet for anything applicable to this: http://www.net-a-porter.com/am/boutiques/trends/list.nap?SelItem=11&custom_list=True_Blue
I am pretty sure if you look at your closet you will find at least two pieces which can be used for Spring/Summer 2012 as suggested by the fashion mavens of net-a-porter.
While I was surfing this article I chanced upon this Miu Miu dress which reminded me of a dress I bought when I was still in Dubai.
Miu Miu dress, $1790
Here’s the dress I bought approximately a year and half ago. Who would have known this color is trending this year?
I even think that this Warehouse (UK brand) is prettier than the Miu Miu.
Here’s another dress which is overly priced in this economic crisis. Paging YSL, even the house & lot prices plummeted already.
Yves Saint Laurent dress, $5490
I must admit, this YSL dress is a darling. I’m sure this will suit me and conceal my muffin top. That is, if I can afford it. So, this is my alternative:
This is a brand new Cynthia Rowley dress I bought when I was not literally the Mrs. Pennypinchers. I thought I will wear this during my City Hall Wedding in Massachusetts but at the last minute I decided I only live once so I want to make the most of my wedding. I wore a white gown. And this dress was never worn for a year and 4 months.
Don’t worry Cynthia Rowley, I promise to wear you this year. I promise. I promise.