Hello, hello, hello. It has been a HOT minute since I’ve done a Likes & Favorites. (I just checked. It was back in FEBRUARY). I guess I just got caught up in wrapping up my first year of grad school, Villanova winning (another ;)) National Championship & the start of summer aka the start of all things happy/fun. But I’ve got some stuff to share! So keeeeep on reading for what I’m liking & favoriting at the start of this summer.
I got a French press.
As IF I couldn’t become MORE of a coffee snob. SMH @ myself. Yes, I bought a French press. Sue me for thinking Keurig coffee is crap & wanting a NICE cup of coffee. The idea of getting a French press had been on the back of my mind (and this one had been sitting in my Amazon cart for a few weeks), but I finally pulled the trigger when I saw one on sale for $6 at a HomeGoods-like store down the shore. I had already gotten a coffee grinder (I KNOW I’M A COFFEE SNOB) so this was really just the next step into my full coffee addiction. (Ps. I like this coffee grinder. It’s affordable & the cup is removable so it’s easy to clean)
Listen. French presses are worth the hype. Yes, it takes a *bit* longer to brew a cup of coffee than a Keurig but wow, is it worth it. Plus, I sort of enjoy the process of making it start to finish. It’s a lovely way to slow down my morning.
Anyways, once I bought a french press, I researched all the tips & tricks to making the perfect cup of coffee. And after a few tries, here’s what I’ve learned:
- Your water should be just below boiling temp. I start with boiling water on the stove. They (read: coffee bloggers & experts) say that to brew the perfect cup, the water should be about 200°. So once your water begins to boil, cut the heat and let it sit for about 30-45 seconds.
- Warm up your French press. The carafe should be the same-ish temperature as the water (idk, helps the brewing process), so what I do is when my water boils, I pour a little into my French press, swirl it around and pour it out.
- Grind your own beans & make sure they’re coarse. Grinding your own coffee beans actually does make a difference. They should look like the size/texture of bread crumbs.
- Beans first, water second, then cap. Sounds intuitive but worth stating.
- Let sit for 5-6 minutes. The “experts” say let it brew for 4 minutes but I think 4 minutes is a little bit weak so I bump it up to 5-6 minutes. But it’s up to you! Try out different brewing times & see what you like.
Let me know if you have any questions about French presses. As a former barista, nothing makes me happier than chatting about coffee.
I’ve been doing RocksBox for a few months now & I have to say I sort of love it. I’m not the biggest jewelry/accessories fan, but there’s something really fun about “renting” jewelry for a month and then sending it back & getting new stuff (or you can buy the pieces you really like!) Check out RocksBox here & get your first month FREE with code ‘AMPERSANDBLOGXOXO’
& Some More Jewelry
On the topic of jewelry, I’ve also been loving Neon°Coral bracelets! They’re bright, colorful & perfect for summer. I love stacking & mix-and-matching them. You can shop their collections here and get 20% off your full order using code ‘AMPERSAND’
Butcher Bar (Philly, PA)
I’m going to have to do a full brunch review on Butcher Bar but it’s worth mentioning because it’s slowly becoming on of my favorite spots in Philly (shoutout to Aminah for introducing me to the best restaurants time and time again). I’ve been for brunch, happy hour & drinks/dinner. Seriously, basically everything on their menu is delicious & I love the atmosphere (give me some white subway tile aaaannny day). Check out their menus here and I’ll promise to do a full recap soon!
Florals for spring (groundbreaking)
I went to a wedding back in April & wore this adorable blue and white floral dress from H&M. I shared it on Instagram and got SO many compliments! Obviously floral is always trendy for spring/summer but this year I’ve really been drawn to more floral/leaf prints. Some of my favorites are linked below! (All under $50)
- White/blue Floral Sleeveless Jersey Dress (H&M, $12.99, super flattering cut)
- Fit & Flare Pink Palm Print Cami Dress (Old Navy, $24, I personally own this dress and looooveee it. It makes me want to twirl around)
- Fit & Flare Tiered Orange Blossom Print (Old Navy again, $24, I’m obsessed with this print and want three different articles of clothing in it)
- Keyhole Kimono Dress in Cream (American Eagle, $44, *adds to cart immediately*)
Ps. My shoes in the pic above are from Target (click here), and they are by far my most favorite heels ever.
Liking all things summer & Favoriting my French press (seriously best thing I bought this month) &.
In case ya missed it…