B-Town (Bloomington that is)

February 22, 2013

I have recently returned from the frozen tundra of Indiana…well it seemed that cold to me.  The possibility of moving there grows near so Ryan and I went to visit.  He checked out his possible PHD program and I was in charge of checkin’ out the town.

Being the travel nerd I am, upon arrival I whipped out my laptop and quickly began the search for dinner options.  After a 9 hour drive from Athens and limited food options en route, we were in need of some serious grub.  Our go to meal is almost always pizza so that was my mission.  Luckily I found a good lookin’ local pizza place only a mile from our hotel.  We strapped on our boots (I finally got to bust out my sweet Sorels) and down coats and headed out on a chilly stroll to Mother Bear’s Pizza.

Mother Bear's Pizza

image courtesy www.idsnews.com

A cozy hole in the wall pizza joint with an enticing aroma of delicious dough, homemade marinara, and pepperoni…exactly what we needed after the long haul.  We ordered a couple Bells Best Brown Ales and hunkered down in a booth. They had so many options, but with a little help from our patient server we decided on The Cosmo.    Homemade vodka sauce, smoked bacon, house-made Italian sausage, and portabello mushrooms,  and asiago cheese- hard to go wrong.

mother bears pizza Needless to say the pizza was epic.

While Ryan met with faculty and other phd students, I surveyed our possible new home. Each day I laced up my sorels and threw on my down coat and roamed the freezing streets in search of fashion, food, and antiques.  Mission accomplished.  Here are some highlights from my Bloomington wanderings.

Blu Boy Chocolate

blu boy choclate

image courtesy blu boy chocolate

Located in downtown Bloomington, Blu Boy Chocolate Cafe and Cakery is just what it sounds like….delicious.  I ordered an americano and at the suggestion of the barista the salted caramel ganache brownie.  Um yea.  It was incredible.  So rich, I ate on it for days.

blu boy chocolate They also had a beautiful assortment of handmade chocolates with flavors like dulce de leche, ancho chili and cinnamon, and blood orange, how could a girl resist!

blu boy chocolate

blue boy choclate

image courtesy blu boy chocolate

Loved their location- sharing the bottom floor of the historic theater downtown.

Historic Theater A.Z Vintage: Antique store specializing in the mid-century modern era.

a.z. vintage

image courtesy a.z. vintage

a.z. vintage

image via a.z. vintage

Yarn Bombs

Yes this is a thing.  Knitting to Heal is a fundraiser in Bloomington that started in October of 2012 by Middle Way House a residence and service center for victims of domestic abuse.  In Knitting to Heal, several local businesses sponsor one of the trees around the downtown Square. The tree trunks are wrapped in squares made of knitted or crocheted fabric sewn together as “sweaters.” Volunteers, including women who use Middle Way House services, have supplied all of the uniquely patterned squares.  With 23 trees decorated, this fundraiser has raised over $10,000.

yarn bombs yarn bomb

Upland Brewing Company

upland brewery

image via indianapublicmedia.org

Their beer is the star obviously but the restaurant has a good selection of bar/pub food and most of it locally sourced.  The brewery is known for the Upland Wheat beer but with the temp in the teens, I wasn’t in the mood for that.  My fav was the Bad Elmer’s Porter- dark, slighty sweet and oh so velvety.

bad elmers porter

image via www.dailybeerreview.com

Although our trip was short, we got a great taste of Bloomington!

 

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