Cupcakes are slowly trending throughout Europe just as they are in America. Though local bakeries are more likely to magdalenas (Spanish muffins), I had an unshakeable craving for good ole red velvet cupcakes. I looked up reviews for places in Madrid online but found that most of them proved to be disappointing. But a few weeks ago I finally discovered Happy Day Bakery near Plaza de Dos de Mayo!
Things have been flying lighting-speed these past few months that I haven’t had a chance to sit down and reflect for the longest time! And what better way to do so than through a “likes + gripes” post.
When Josiah visited me in Madrid, he had a lot of time to wander through the city while I was in class. One of his friends who was here to learn Spanish took him to dinner at a Thai restaurant one day, and Josiah was raving about it. Since I had been telling him about how much I missed our go-to Thai restaurant in Boston called Pho and I, he assured me that this restaurant he discovered on Calle Princesa was a close match. I was skeptical at first because I highly doubted that it would be authentic, much less that it could compete with our first love, Pho and I. But I was craving pad thai so much that I decided to check it out.
Our last morning in Porto, we woke up bright and early, packed our bags, and rushed uphill through narrow sidewalks to get to our last must-see destination in the city before heading straight to the airport. What many consider to be one of the most beautiful bookstores in the world is situated 5 minutes from Porto’s city center. With its cascading staircase, ornate wood carvings, and stained glass roof, Livraria Lello is considered a national treasure and an architectural masterpiece.
I especially enjoyed Porto because we didn’t have much of an agenda, which was a perfect way to get to know this city. It was especially fitting because it was a Sunday, and though Porto is the second-largest city in Portugal, the city had a very quiet, peaceful feel. We began the day with a very hearty breakfast (steak, fried eggs, and fries!), which fueled us to explore the city throughout the afternoon, stopping for wine and beers every few hours. We came across beautiful cathedrals, got lost in the super steep, narrow streets, and stumbled upon breathtaking views of the river.