Palates

Two Ten Jack : Japanese-inspired Izayaka

iz·a·ka·ya

/ēˈzäkəyə,ēzəˈkīə/

noun: izakaya; plural noun: izakayas

  1. a type of Japanese bar in which a variety of small, typically inexpensive, dishes and snacks are served to accompany the alcoholic drinks.

After dozens of Yelp searches, menu perusal, and deliberation. I finally decided on a restaurant for my 17th birthday dinner: Two Ten Jack Nashville. If you know me, then you know I adore Japanese food and so I couldn’t pass up this place.

We had a pretty good sized party and my grandparents came too, so I was hopeful that they could accommodate and comfortably seat everyone, especially the elderly among us. I made a reservation for 7:30 and we arrived on time. They couldn’t seat us until the rest of our party arrived (which we knew before hand) so we waited in the foyer until they arrived. Two Ten Jack had a gorgeous outside eating area that I’d love to come back and explore when it isn’t 20 degrees.

Our party was completed by 7:40 but the party who had the table lingered. We waited quite a long time. The staff apologized over and over which was great, and it truly wasn’t their fault. Finally the previous party left and we were seated.

They led us to a back room with two long tables. On the wall, an anime movie was showing. I recognized it as a Studio Ghibli film because I’d watched it at a friends house. The table setting was modern: light wood tables, charcoal gray menus, architectural boxes to hold chopsticks, and rolled towels.

As we poured over our menus, our server came to explain how everything worked. The food is meant to be enjoyed communally, with everyone at the table partaking of a maki roll, yakitori skewer, or bowl of ramen. We ordered a plethora of dishes between us: crispy brussels, Japanese fried chicken, potato fries, Gojira roll, east side fish roll, and tonkotsu ramen. Everything tasted spectacular, but I want to highlight a couple of dishes.

The Gojira roll was a perfect balance of heat and texture. The habanero sriracha was subdued by the cream cheese, and the panko shrimp added a beautiful crunch.

Speaking of crunch, the Japanese fried chicken was spectacularly crispy. This was a crowd favorite at our table, with the only complaint being that there wasn’t enough of it.

A Japanese inspired take on the fish sandwich completely intrigued us, so we were thrilled to try the Eastside fish roll. The choice of hot sauce rice, rather than just hot sauce, was genius and set off the acidity of the pickles well. I’ve never had fried catfish in a maki roll before, and I must say, it was delicious.

One thing that stood out to me about the ramen was the richness of the pork broth. The chashu (pork belly) was fatty and had an amazing mouth feel.

Finally, one of my favorite dishes of the night: the crispy brussels. I’m a huge fan of brussel spouts and the addition of rice krispies, while unexpected, brought some beautiful texture. Furthermore, the miso vinaigrette provided some acidic saltiness and the brussels were cooked perfectly.

Eating at Two Ten Jack was a great experience. My grandfather used chopsticks for the first time, my family ate outside of their comfort zone, and we created a lot of beautiful memories.

Stay fly,

~Akilah

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Pleats

BirthSlay OOTD Part 2

Today as promised I have part 2 of my birthday celebration outfit. This is the outift I wore to go see Hidden Figures with my family the day after my birthday. Btw Hidden Figures is bomb and I will have some kind of review up soon.

Anyway, I had a class that morning so I wanted something comfy but still cute so I opted for leggings and a tunic I bought from Macy’s after Christmas, it was on sale for only $9.50. For jewelry I went with a rose gold necklace I received for Christmas and a black and rose gold watch I received for my birthday. Then I added my Chuck Taylor low-tops with the apples on them for some subtle print mixing.


Tunic: Macy’s | Leggings: Hand-me-down | Watch: Gift | Necklace: Gift | Shoes: Gift via Converse Outlet
Stay fly

~Akilah

Pleats

#BirthSlay OOTD Part 1

Today I’m sharing my first ever ootd on this blog. And I’m showcasing the outfit I wore to my first birthday celebration (there will be another birthday celebration ensemble to come).

Dress: Gift via Macy’s | Jacket: Gift via Dillard’s | Necklace: Charming Charlie | Tights: Target | Boots: Off Broadway Shoes

I planned this outfit around the plum dress which I got for Christmas some years ago. I paired it with black tights and ankle boots, then because it was a little chilly outside but not quite coat weather I added this leather jacket I received this past Christmas. For jewelry I wore a blingy statement necklace because the dress has a boat neckline and is perfect for accesorizing. I wore garnet earrings (not pictured) because it’s my birthstone for January. And I did a three color geometric pattern on my nails re-created from this Pinterest post.

I hope you like this outfit, feel free to comment below!

Stay fly,

~Akilah

Life

Happy Birthday to Me ~15 Random Facts

Hey friends,

Today is my birthday,  so in honor of this epic day in history (Btw I share a birthday with MLK ) I’m sharing 15 random facts about me for my January 15th birthday.

  1. I used to want to be an astronaut  ~Honestly, this is crazy because I don’t really like science and I’m too bougie to live in space, but in 3rd grade I really wanted to go to the moon.
  2. I like movies that make me cry ~Media should move people and the best movies have moved me to tears.
  3. I’ve never had a cavity ~And I hope I never get one, pray for me.
  4. Three different people have told me I should be a hand model ~One of my old ballet teachers, a cashier at Kiehl’s and a random woman in the grocery store have told me I should hand model. Yet, none of them know how I can get into it, so if you know a hand modeling agent let me know. There’s a picture of my hand for your pleasure.
  5. I love good music ~Strong bass lines, epic drums, electric guitars, soulful vocals, horns, fabulous lyrics, I’m there for it. But don’t give me any of that autotune, same three beats junk, I won’t have it.
  6. I don’t like Halloween ~We never celebrated it when I was younger but last year I went to a friend’s party… I don’t get the hype of this holiday.
  7. I love makeup… but I dislike wearing it ~I could watch GRWMs, MOTD, and Beauty hauls all day long and I lowkey  highkey want to be a makeup artist, but I didn’t like the way it felt on my face when I got it done for a ballet performance. I would be willing to try it again though.
  8. I don’t know if I’m an Introvert or an Extrovert ~The first time I took a personality test I got INFJ then about a year later I took it and got ENFJ. Another test said I was an ambivert so I’ll go with an ambivert NFJ.
  9. I love wearing lipstick ~I know I said I don’t like wearing makeup but I lied   love wearing lipstick, its so easy but instantly elevates a look.
  10. I’m super enthusiastic about #blackgirlmagic ~I can’t help it, I just love seeing black women slay at life, and I’ve been known to have sudden outbursts when I see black girls killin em. #sorrynotsorry
  11. I used to wear really boring outfits ~When I was 10-11 my wardrobe consisted of mostly colored jeans, Aeropostale graphic tees, and neon Chuck Taylors. Ok so, boring isn’t the right word with all that color but compared to my creativity in outfits before and after, that was a bright   dark fashion time in my life.
  12. I love the Cosby Show ~Probably my favorite TV show of all time, their family reminded me so much of my own, it was high-larious, and it promoted such positive images of real black life.
  13. Hamilton is my life ~I’ve never seen the actual show but the cast recording is bomb, I even got the book: Hamilton the Revolution for Christmas. The world will never be the same.
  14. I have really bad spacial reasoning skills ~No, I’m not clumsy, but I can’t open bags of things, break Hershey’s bars, or determine which container will fit my amount of food.
  15. There is almost no food I won’t eat ~I love exotic foods and I am the least picky person in my entire close-extended family, bring on the foods.

There ya go! Those were 15 random facts about me. Stay tuned because the next couple of blog posts will be about my birthday turn-ups.

Stay fly

~Akilah