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Happy New Year! Hope you all had a fantastic Holiday!

I’m returning from my holiday break of doing absolutely nothing and loving it to post about my very special 30th Birthday dinner. What had given me so much anxiety and stress turned out to be one of the best birthdays I have ever had.

It started with me not really wanting to do anything. And I was okay with it until several people reached out to me asking me what I was planning. Then panic set in as several options fell through and I, inevitably, decided the original plan to do nothing was the way to go.

Fortunately for me, my amazing boyfriend and best friends weren’t going to let that happen. So they plotted and schemed behind my back and my only job was to show up. I had no idea where and up until days before, i had no idea when. 1467460_10152059734470421_1549426436_n

 

I wasn’t sure of the dress code but figured I should gussy up since its my 30th and all… My closest friend Danielle came over to ensure my hair and make up were flawless. I felt pampered. I felt so undeserving. 733851_10152059735155421_530933115_n

 

We hopped into a cab on the coldest night in November, wearing a dress in what felt like 10*. When they said our destination “Tao Downtown“, I sill had no idea what awaited us.

The interior was absolutely stunning. It was dark and romantic with its Asian motif.

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It was an intimate group of friends. And filled with lots of love. My first Friend from high school was in attendance with her husband. My bestest friend was there as were my two favorite coworkers and his wife.

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My BR was most definitely there and made much of the night possible.

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The menu was a bit intimidating. It felt better to share but with so many different palates, we ordered our own entrees and opted to share appetizers.

Brent ordered the chicken wing lolipops that were sticky and delicious. 1452005_10152059737535421_551187213_n

Danielle ordered the fried cauliflower, which didn’t smell as amazing as it tasted. It was a surprising win.

We also took delight in the lazy suzan built right into the table to make sharing amongst 8, easier. 1461469_10152059737585421_282530727_n

I ordered the fried buns. These were good but in all honesty, the fried buns I have had in Chinatown are way better (and cheaper).

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BR ordered the fried chicken chow mein which was really good. Most of the guests ordered the Pad Thai which came in giant bowls. Nearly everyone took food home- so much food. 1461766_10152059735390421_828338264_n

 

I ordered the black rice with seafood. I really enjoyed this after having spent so many weeks on Paleo, eating a bowl of rice for dinner was magnificent.

I was also drinking a Tao-tini, courtesy of our waiter. Its good to be the birthday girl. 1463069_10152059735515421_1987437748_n

 

And then after dinner, the most beautiful cake I have ever received came out. A surprise from BR and Danielle. A custom made cake – exclusively available at Tao Downtown. 1468699_10152059734195421_1575709343_n

 

I was really surprised! 1457645_10152059735330421_609130519_n

 

The chocolate cake with salted caramel filling and chocolate ganache was OUT OF THIS WORLD! Everyone raved about the cake! And for most of us, after a few bites had no more stomach room for the cake. Damn right we took leftover cake home!

It was perfectly sweet without being too rich. Danielle and I made a pact to duplicate this very cake… so stay tuned! 1466031_10152059737725421_594288235_n

We posed for pictures after dinner with very full tummies.

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The 30th birthday was filled with so many priceless memories. These beautiful flowers, given to me by my coworker, lasted for 2 whole weeks. 1005009_10152059922230421_1821928651_n

 

Danielle outdid herself, not only in planning the entire event and doing my make up but making this personalized wine bottle for me. Its still on my kitchen table as I want to keep it for as long as possible. 936017_10152059735440421_789672234_n

She also made boozy cake ball souvenirs for the guests.

A fantastic birthday for the books!