Saturday, June 14, 2014

Ashkers Restaurant - Smoothie Saturday #7

By Vicky Nardone

For today's Smoothie Saturday, I decided to share with you one of the spots we love to go in Buffalo for smoothies - Ashkers.  We recently discovered this spot with the help of our friend Lauren.  It's a very artsy cafe on Elmwood Avenue in Buffalo.  They have lots of juices, smoothies, coffee drinks and delicious salads, sandwiches and breakfast dishes.  We went for lunch last Saturday with Lauren.  I love the atmosphere of the place.  They have a cool old piano - there's an entire music room in fact, a conference room that people can rent out and lots of fun artwork hanging on the walls.  In the summer they have a beautiful patio for people to sit on.

All three of us got smoothies when we went.  Here is Matt's - he'd already slurped half of his down by that point.  He got the tropical twist which has peach, strawberry, mango and pineapple.  I make a Strawberry Peach Pineapple Mango Smoothie as well but I tried a sip of his and it tasted a lot different from the one I make.  

I had their pina colada smoothie which has coconut, pineapple, peach and mango in it.  I had mixed feelings about the coconut being in there.  The flavor was good but it made the smoothie a little chewy.  I think I might have chosen to use coconut milk instead if I tried to replicate this smoothie at home.  I did like the fact that they added peach and mango to the pina colada smoothie though!

Here's a picture of Lauren and I at the cafe.  You can see one of the cool artwork pieces above my shoulder.  We had just finished eating at this point.  I got a delicious breakfast plate with eggs, bacon, toast and homefries.  Matt took this picture of us.  He was trying to teach me to use the settings on my camera for like the millionth time and you can really tell the difference between the quality of his pictures and mine.  I'll get it one day though.

Here's a picture that I took of Matt looking pensive.  Definitely not the same quality as the one he took of Lauren and I.  We were discussing lenses yesterday.  All I have right now is the basic lens that came with the camera when I bought it and a 50 lens.  Matt had to sit almost halfway across the room from us to get the picture of Lauren and I because the 50 zooms things in so much.  He's recommending I invest in a 28 lens as well to be able to get the portrait type photography a little better but it turns out those are pretty expensive.  I think we're talking in the $500 range.  My 50 lens was only $150.  So we'll have to see about that one.

One of my other favorite things lately is infused water.  I'm starting to see it pop up at a number of restaurants in the area.  Ashkers doesn't charge for theirs which is awesome.  There's another place that my mom and I like to go for lunch and they charge $1.50 for theirs.  I tried my hand at making some Nectarine and Mango Infusted Water last year and I think that it might be time to test out some other flavors.  Coming soon to a post near you!

On the way home we saw another cool thing.  Have you ever heard of Living Art?  It's where people recreate famous works of art in picture frames and they as the actual live people stand in the photo frames as the characters.  I first heard about it during an episode of Gilmore Girls.  Apparently Buffalo has an exhibition of Living Art annually called Art Alive!  Yesterday was the day they were doing it and unfortunately we missed it by half an hour but we saw them packing everything up when we drove by the art gallery on our way home.  I set a reminder in my phone for next year so Matt and I can hopefully check it out!