Key West Food!

February 19, 2014

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Boy oh boy did we eat well in Key West! I think I had mojitos for breakfast, lunch and dinner : ) And ice cream every night! Here were some of the meals we enjoyed with links to the restaurants if you are ever in the area. There were so many other places we didn’t get to try – we must go back!

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The above coconut was drilled fresh through – you can’t get more pure coconut water!

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It was perfect on our first day – a really hot one! We went to El Siboney, a Cuban restaurant, for lunch. It came highly recommended to us, and the food tasted like it was totally authentic. Mazen loved fresh avocados!

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And I had blacked grouper with rice, plantains and black beans! Matt and Karen had classic pork and beef dishes. Yum!

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Our first night we didn’t have groceries and needed to get Mazen to bed, so Matt and I walked down Duval Street and found a sushi place for take out: Origami.

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The sushi was delish!

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Lunch the next day involved more Cuban bread – these classic sandwiches Karen got from a nearby café. Served with salad and plantain chips.

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We sipped these great beers in the afternoons – Third Shift is a new fav.

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On the hunt for deals, we found a great Happy Hour special at point5 lounge, which was above a neat restaurant called nine one five that I wish I had gotten to enjoy!

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point5 had 2 for 1 drinks and $5 pizzas so we made it dinner.

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One morning Matt, Andrew, Mazen and I went out for breakfast at the famous Banana Café.

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I ordered one of the crepes with cheese, egg and bacon inside. I love how they folded it!

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In an effort to save a bit of money we cooked in a few times. Karen brought a recipe by Rachel Ray for Fish + Corn Chowder that was yum.

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And another night Larbs made us Mexican Shrimp Bowls with sweet potato, guac, cheese and more. Those were some awesome local shrimp!

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Breakfasts were pretty non-eventful, especially since I got up before sunrise with Mazen half the time. My dad got some wonderful Florida fruit – mangoes, oranges and avocados – that were really fun to have.

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We also bought some bread at a bakery – Cole’z Peace. Loved the whole wheat sourdough! It made killer toast.

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We were just down the street from Café Moka which had great sandwiches for lunch – Karen and I split the croissant turkey and pesto and Matt had an Italian on ciabatta.

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Two of my friends recommended Blue Heaven, and this was definitely my favorite restaurant of the week. It is tucked away in a grove of trees and shade and had live music and plenty of Jerk seafood to eat.

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Mazen loved his rice and beans, and Larbs and I shared this dish packed with more of the same plus juicy shrimp.

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We enjoyed dancing with Mazen afterwards!

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Matt and I slipped away for a lunch out during naptime and went to the Southernmost Café. They beach view was the highlight!

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We sipped beers and ate spicy shrimp nachos and a side salad for me.

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Larbs shared that Glazed Donuts was one of the highest rated restaurants, so Matt and I walked with Mazen one morning before the rest of the crew woke up.

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From top left clockwise: Key Lime Pie, Apple Fritter, Creamsicle, Pistachio Lemon, Bacon Bourbon and Vanilla Cake. YUM!

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Karen took us out to lunch while my parents babysat during a naptime to Conch Republic Seafood.

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We finally got some conch fritters!

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Larbs and I shared and loved this mango beer

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And a prickly pear mojito!

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I had a tropical salad with Macadamia fish on top!

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On our second to last night we stayed in and ate lots of guacamole

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And Larbs and Matt made a recipe for shrimp burgers, although they didn’t stay together very well. I had mine on the side of a big salad that I made.

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On our final night we young people went appetizer hopping. Our first stop was to Mangoes where the apps were delish –

Tuna Avocado Crab Stack | Conch Rolls | Ribs

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And we ended our night at Grand Café Key West in the perfect open-air setting with blackened fish, black beans, rice and mussels to share. No photo – it was gone fast!

We also hit up the bar Cork + Stogie, which had an awesome front porch for sipping wine.

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And finally, to balance out the mojitos and conch, I had a green juice from Panini Panini. There was lots of juice in Key West!

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{ 78 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Linda Schaap February 19, 2014 at 8:17 am

Wow, looks like you are having a awesomely delicious time!

Making me kind of jealous, can’t wait to go on holidays again to get my hand on a truly fresh coconut again!!

Have a lovely time!
Linda

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2 Madison February 19, 2014 at 8:23 am

All of that food looks FABULOUS! Fresh seafood galore! Cannot wait for spring and summer to get fresh seafood again. :)

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3 Maureen February 19, 2014 at 8:32 am

All that fresh seafood…delicious!! Looks like you all ate very well and enjoyed the company! :)

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4 Kaitlyn @ Wanderlust Kait February 19, 2014 at 8:33 am

All that food looks amazing. If you are on vacation in Key West and aren’t drinking mojitos several times a day, then you are doing it wrong. I love that pink and white dress in the last picture. So cute!

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5 KathEats February 19, 2014 at 8:37 am

Haha

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6 Katie @ Peace Love & Oats February 19, 2014 at 8:37 am

Ah yum, I love Cuban food but I haven’t had any for years! I’ve never been to Key West, the closest was Key Largo. I’ll have to check it out one day!

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7 Kaila @healthyhelperblog! February 19, 2014 at 8:45 am

NOTHING beats fresh coconut water out the coconut! I had some when I was in the Philippines last year and it was INCREDIBLE! Plus spooning the fresh coconut rind off the top was like heaven!

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8 Karen February 19, 2014 at 8:51 am

Didn’t you love the conch fritters? We’re up in south Florida so we get to the Keys a few times a year, and is never miss the conch fritters!!! Or conch salad for that matter. Key West is so much fun, looks like you guys had a great time!!! Mazen is so adorable. I hadn’t been to that Glazed Donuts place yet, glad to hear it was good I’ll check it out next time.

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9 Jackie February 19, 2014 at 8:57 am

Love your dress!!!!!!!!

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10 Kristen @ Change of Pace February 19, 2014 at 9:03 am

Oh my god you and that dress! You look amazing Kath. I can’t even decide what looks the best because it all looks just so good. What a fun trip :)

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11 Jill February 19, 2014 at 9:28 am

Love, Love, Love Key West and I love your pink and white dress too!

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12 Ashley L. February 19, 2014 at 9:32 am

I loved the outdoor area at Blue Heaven! I also remember El Siboney being yummy as well… Did you try the frozen Key Lime Pie on a stick? I think thing about that….

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13 KathEats February 19, 2014 at 10:50 am

Yes I had a bite of one…yum!

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14 Mom February 20, 2014 at 7:51 am

That’s my favorite!

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15 Karen February 19, 2014 at 9:33 am

Kath, I’m recently having a problem where I have to clean my cache every day to get your new blog post (otherwise, it takes me to a previous day’s post). This only became a problem over the last few days – previously, I never had any issues. Any idea if this is on your end or mine or how to solve this? Thanks!

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16 KathEats February 19, 2014 at 12:25 pm

I recently switched servers and got a new cache plugin that my manager put in. We’ve been working on fixing it. He just tweaked it again yesterday – did you have the problem again this morning? So sorry.

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17 Karen February 19, 2014 at 1:28 pm

It did happen this morning, but maybe it’ll re-set tomorrow? Interestingly, the same thing happened with HTP and Caitlin’s advice was to just clear my cache…which was a permanent solution for her (as in, I cleared it once and haven’t had the problem since) but didn’t seem to “stick” for KERF. She also recently underwent a blog update and I wondered if it was related to that. But then I thought maybe it was me since it happened for KERF, also. In any case, I’ll see if it figures itself out tomorrow but thanks for the explanation about why it might have happened!

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18 KathEats February 19, 2014 at 1:36 pm

Oh good, I’m glad it didn’t happen today. Please let me know if it does. (I have had the problem Caitlin had before too – usually it works forever)

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19 Ali @ Peaches and Football February 19, 2014 at 9:52 am

Where to start!?

The amazingly fresh looking fruit?
The delicious, delicious looking food?
or
The fact that the sun is shining and you are wearing a SLEEVELESS sundress!!

AHHHHH I’m dying here. Soo envious. Enjoy the trip and pick up an extra ray or three of sunlight and warmth for me. Wisconsin is pretty dreary and cold this time of year. :)

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20 laura February 19, 2014 at 10:01 am

I LOVE that pink dress as well? Details?? :))

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21 KathEats February 19, 2014 at 10:51 am

It’s by Mahi Gold

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22 Elinor February 19, 2014 at 10:05 am

All that food looks great, Kath! One quick thing- I think you might have meant “counter-clockwise” for describing those delicious donuts!

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23 KathEats February 19, 2014 at 12:21 pm

Ha – so I went back to review. I did go clockwise but then I jumped to the second row. Let me go change the order.

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24 Kat February 19, 2014 at 10:09 am

Yum….just went to Florida as well and you are making me miss the sunshine and fresh seafood for sure. Love that dress you are wearing in the last picture with the green juice. Where is it from?

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25 Fancy February 19, 2014 at 10:12 am

I recently discovered that I enjoy sushi! I’m still VERY new to all of the terms/dishes, etc. Can you recommend some healthy things for me to try that you enjoy??? Xo

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26 KathEats February 19, 2014 at 12:25 pm

I’m not sure how healthy they are, but my favorites are spicy tuna, tempura shrimp, philly rolls and anything with soft shell crab (Spider roll, I think). I also love the seaweed salads and edamame.

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27 Amanda M. February 19, 2014 at 3:27 pm

Fancy, if you’re going for healthy sushi options, a good rule of thumb is to stick with sashimi (which is fish without the rice) or nigiri (fish on rice). Good roll options are those that include fish, a vegetable like avocado or cucumber, and not much else. The ones Kath lists (sorry, Kath!!) are delicious but they’re poor options if you’re consciously trying to make healthy choices. Spicy tuna is made with mayo, tempura shrimp is breaded and fried, and Philly rolls have cream cheese. You should also be cautious of crab rolls as well, as many sushi restaurants use imitation crab meat which is lacking in Omega 3’s and lower in protein. That’s not to say that you should avoid those kinds of sushi altogether, because they are DELICIOUS — my favorite roll has spicy tuna with avocado, and crumbly bits of tempura on top! — but they should probably be eaten sparingly alongside healthier options like edamame, sashimi and nigiri.

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28 KathEats February 19, 2014 at 3:52 pm

Thanks for the recommendations Amanda! Sushi is one of those things that if I’m going to have it I’m going to have my favs : ) If I had it everyday I’d focus more on the healthier choices.

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29 Fancy February 20, 2014 at 10:20 am

Thank you so much, I so appreciate the advice!

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30 Jaclyn February 19, 2014 at 10:20 am

Kath! As delicious as your food looks, the picture that caught my eye is of you in the pink dress (final photo). You look beautiful!!!

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31 Alex @ Kenzie Life February 19, 2014 at 10:21 am

Wow all of that food looks so amazing!! I really want to try fresh coconut water like that! When I studied in Athens, they had these carts around the city with slices of fresh coconut that were underneath this little “water fountain” to keep them moist. It was weird but the closest thing I’ve had to fresh coconut! Also, that mango beer looks like something I’d love (since I’m not a big fan of beer but I like cider–it sounds similar, right?) I’m drooling over those sandwiches, the green juice, and the guacamole! It makes me want summer to be here yesterday :)

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32 Kori February 19, 2014 at 10:42 am

It looks like so much fun there! I looked at the Banana Café, and they have some great sounding food! Lovely pictures and food throughout your trip!

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33 Lee February 19, 2014 at 10:59 am

All looks delicious but no key lime pie?!

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34 KathEats February 19, 2014 at 12:20 pm

I had a few bites of some but I’m more into ice cream : )

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35 Marisa @ Uproot from Oregon February 19, 2014 at 11:03 am

Thanks for planning my next vacation ;) I am really excited by all these food choices, and I would definitely be able to put away a couple of tropical drinks/coconut waters and that bowl of guacamole you all shared. I am so happy you guys enjoyed yourselves and got a break from the cold!

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36 Jesse February 19, 2014 at 11:26 am

drooling on the screen. conch fritters, savory crepes, mojitos and creamsicle donuts!?!?

http://semiweeklyeats.blogspot.com/2014/02/worrywart.html

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37 Annie February 19, 2014 at 11:47 am

I think you meant counter-clockwise ;)

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38 KathEats February 19, 2014 at 12:23 pm

I meant clockwise, but then I jumped to the second row! I have them right now

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39 Dana @ Conscious Kitchen Blog February 19, 2014 at 11:48 am

This has me craving some fresh seafood! Everything sounds so delicious.

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40 Jules February 19, 2014 at 11:59 am

What a fun trip! Love the pink dress. I went to the website, the dress actually looks way better on you than the model! Whatever you’re doing is working. ????

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41 KathEats February 19, 2014 at 12:19 pm

Haha thanks!

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42 Julie Rosene February 19, 2014 at 12:26 pm

Everything looks so good! Especially the shrimp dishes!

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43 Kelly Farquharson February 19, 2014 at 12:38 pm

yay! Thanks for the post to the Cork website!! So glad you liked it there… sounds like you got a great KW experience!!! I’m wondering who your scuba tour instructor was? Dave? Did you happen to go to LaDeDa for breakfast any of the days? I just love KW!!! Can’t wait to go back – thanks again for posting about the Cork & Stogie!!

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44 KathEats February 19, 2014 at 1:37 pm

We went with Fury on a snorkeling tour, but I don’t recall the captain’s name

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45 Stephanie @cookinfanatic February 19, 2014 at 12:55 pm

Love Key West! I remember being so surprised at how much good food we had when we visited last winter. Plus such a good time! Definitely drinks were flowing too haha, when in Rome, right? :) I remember these sashimi tuna nachos from Schooner Bar that were made with fried wontons, the freshest raw tuna, seaweed salad and a soy glaze that I still crave to.this.day.!

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46 Amelia @i_heart_kale February 19, 2014 at 1:07 pm

What a fabulous trip! We have been thinking of planning a trip there in April, since we will be in Fl visiting family. We’ll see.
All of the eats look divine and the drinks refreshing. You look incredible in the last photo. I just love that dress on you!

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47 Andrea Muzzatti February 19, 2014 at 1:16 pm

YUM! I’m hungry now!

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48 Cathy February 19, 2014 at 2:53 pm

Mazen is so cute. He is a big boy eating pizza. Fun memories your family is making. Karen looks lovely.

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49 Shannon February 19, 2014 at 3:07 pm

I have never heard of whole wheat sourdough!! Sourdough is by far my favorite bread ever, I can’t believe I didn’t know about that!
That pink dress looks amazing on you!

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50 Livi February 19, 2014 at 3:23 pm

I can’t believe how old Mazen looks, it’s crazy!!

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51 Shel@PeachyPalate February 19, 2014 at 3:29 pm

LOVE the dress in the closing pic!!! The perfect fit! From the mango beer to Larb’s shrimp bowl’s to those donuts…wowsers!!! Love how confident and cool Mazen looks with the slice of pizza! Not a bother to him! Which was your favourite donut??

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52 KathEats February 19, 2014 at 3:38 pm

The Vanilla Cake actually!

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53 Shel@PeachyPalate February 19, 2014 at 3:44 pm

It looks the most inviting with the pistachios on top! I’m a pistachio “nut”. :)

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54 Lauren @ Focused To Be Fit February 19, 2014 at 3:47 pm

Holy food porn! Not only does all this food make me hungry, but man, it makes me want to be on vacation!!!

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55 Paula February 19, 2014 at 4:42 pm

Love Blue Heaven (best KL pie we found!) & El Siboney – yum!

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56 Jeanie February 19, 2014 at 6:28 pm

Everything looks so good, and Mazen looks like he’s five years old in the picture with the pizza. Love your pink dress.

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57 Chris February 19, 2014 at 6:59 pm

Third Shift is brewed by Coors….never thought I’d see you drinking that. I thought you were all for Craft Beer.

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58 KathEats February 19, 2014 at 8:37 pm

It was a good beach beer!

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59 Matt February 20, 2014 at 9:49 am

Don’t worry, I was having my first taste of Cigar City behind the scenes!

But I was impressed with the Third Shift – good example of the style, though I usually like something more exciting. Good beer should be celebrated and encouraged no matter who makes it. If AB-Inbev starts making the best DIPA I’ve ever had I’ll drink a billion of ‘em.

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60 S Finn-T March 26, 2014 at 10:05 pm

Matt, your position on mass-produced beer stated here is a 360 from what you’ve written in the past @BrewAndBake.

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61 Alison @ Daily Moves and Grooves February 19, 2014 at 7:19 pm

Holy moly that all looks so fantastic! Fresh seafood (with a view!) is the best. Now I want to go the Key West!

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62 emily February 19, 2014 at 7:26 pm

Oh yum! All around, but especially the donuts and shrimp dishes. And I’m glad you liked the mango VI beer; I moved away before they started brewing that one but it’s always nice to see a reminder of home in blogworld.

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63 Lisa February 19, 2014 at 8:00 pm

Where did you stay while in the Keys? We are planning a vacation there as well!

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64 KathEats February 19, 2014 at 8:36 pm

In a house near Duval Street. Check Vacation Homes of Key West

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65 Lauren @ Fun, Fit and Fabulous! February 19, 2014 at 8:29 pm

I had no idea Key West was such a foodie paradise! All the sea food looks amazing! But I love your cute pink dress the most!

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66 Silvia February 19, 2014 at 9:32 pm

Great post and great incentives to go back to KW! Love the pink dress too! And the pink shorts. Glad u guys had fun!! These posts are fun! Make me feel like I’ve been there hanging out too!

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67 Judi February 19, 2014 at 9:35 pm

I LOVE Key West; thank you for the postings of your trip, especially since this winter has been so long and cold! So glad you tried the key lime pie on a stick…I still miss them. Key West is so fun!

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68 Sandra February 20, 2014 at 1:10 am

Mazen still has those rosy red cheeks, more teeth coming?

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69 KathEats February 20, 2014 at 6:50 am

Just broke his lower molar yesterday!

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70 carol keefe February 20, 2014 at 8:53 am

Kath, thanks so very much for the key west vacation rental site….it is great and will be a big help to me!!!

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71 Jo February 20, 2014 at 9:26 am

All of the food & drinks look amazing!!! I’m coming back to look at the pictures again later today just to enjoy that again! And big boy Mazen holding his pizza and trying new foods to eat & enjoy! Haven’t gotten to Key West yet but it’s on my list. I am visiting a friend in Vero Beach, FL for a 4-day weekend next week and looking forward to some warmth & sun. This WV winter has done me in!

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72 Patty February 20, 2014 at 10:46 am

What a fun post, thanks for sharing! Also, I agree with everyone on the dress. Looks awesome on you!

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73 Alissa @ Eat Clean Beauty Queen February 20, 2014 at 1:44 pm

I used to live in South Florida and I LOVE conch fritters! So happy you were able to experience them in Key West!

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74 Coty and [email protected] February 20, 2014 at 6:46 pm

I got married in Key West, and loved reading about all the places you visited as they were all familiar to me. Loved reading your post!

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75 Kim February 21, 2014 at 6:15 pm

I think it’s SO nice how well your family gets along with Matt’s family. It’s awesome to really be one big, happy family.

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76 Valerie February 22, 2014 at 4:25 pm

Glad you stopped at Blue Heaven, my favorite spot in Key West! Looks like a great trip. If you go back, you must try a frozen Key lime pie on a stick.

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77 Christina W February 23, 2014 at 10:47 am

Now THAT is some good eating!!

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78 simple green moms February 24, 2014 at 11:45 am

Love the pics! =) looks like you guys had a blast! Also LOVE the pink dress. Too cute!!

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