Hi friends, I hope you are having a lovely Tuesday!
🍂 It is officially autumn, although sadly I still feel like I’m melting away in the Florida heat. But I still try my hardest to make it feel cozy and get in the spirit of the season. Number one way… make up your own cozy and find the best places around your hometown that make it feel like fall. Number 2… bring ALL the books with you, get comfy, and read.
If you happen to follow me on Instagram, you may have seen me wandering around Winter Park with my friend Isha! She runs an Instagram, @willflyforchai that is all about the food scene in Central Florida and her travels! A little more about her:
I’m originally from India, but have lived in Orlando, FL for the past 17 years. My husband and I are vegetarians who absolutely love to travel and eat.
“Will fly for Chai” came about from a need for a unique and diverse perspective on the food culture. This blog focuses on all things food, travel (for food), and cooking food- all with an emphasis on vegetarianism. – Isha
She was kind enough to show me a few places that would be great for grabbing a drink and sitting down to read. I also paired a few of my favorite fall reads to get in the mood. First stop…
I’ve been here a few times before, rushed and running with a to-go cup. Today, though, we arrived a little after 11:00 a.m. Walking in, I noticed there were only one other couple and the girls working behind the counter. Plenty of comfortable seating, and nice folky music playing in the background. I kept it classic and order a cappuccino and brought out one of the first books I think of when I think of autumn, Eleanor & Park
by Rainbow Rowell. Sigh… the mention of cooler weather and sipping coffee instantly makes me feel cozier. ☕
After sipping my coffee, and Isha and I feeling slightly full and but extremely content, we headed off to her next recommendation. Domu is nested in the East End Market in Audobon Park and the whole place feels very homey and has a lot of outdoor seating which I’m sure will be lovely when the cooler mornings and evenings make an appearance. There are many other shops and local food stores as well, but for those that want to get cozy with a book and drink a stronger libation, Domu was perfection. They have a menu of fall drinks (yes! my people
) and I order the Black Lagoon
which I paired with A Madness So Discreet
by Mindy McGinnis because they are both deep and dark. If you are wanting something scary but that is a little closer to home, A Madness So Discreet will give you the chills when you realize what it is truly about. No ghosts, no witches, no ghouls…
We stayed at Domu the longest because honestly, the drinks were good and the atmosphere helped us get in the autumnal mood. The next drink we tried was The Fig Easy and I paired it with The Accident Season by Moïra Fowley-Doyle, which has an equally autumnal setting. If scary reads aren’t your thing, but you still want something moody for the season, The Accident Season provides a bit of magical realism to your every day. You won’t know what is real and what is not once you read about the lives of the Cara and her friends. I read this during the hurricane last year, and I have to admit, I was a bit spooked.
The last stop of the day was The Heavy, the reformed Lombardi’s Seafood warehouse that is now a plant paradise. They also have a pop-up coffee shop by the flower bar (adorable). We perused the plants for a bit and walked around with some Hometown Blend which immediately woke me up from the afternoon stupor. I decided to pair my coffee with Pride and Prejudice
by Jane Austen and Pride
by Ibi Zoboi. I’m super excited to read Pride soon because I am a bit obsessed with re-tellings. I love that re-tellings give readers a chance to see classics in a new light. This book pair matches up pretty well with the setting we found ourselves in, amongst the flora and fauna of The Heavy that used to be filled with fish!
After The Heavy I was feeling a bit heavy (haha) and so Isha and I ended our day there (plus I had to go grocery shopping because responsibilities). I had such a great time and Isha helped me pick out some of the best drinks and now I have an arsenal of places I can go to and relax with a book and a drink.
You can go follow my friend Isha on Instagram @willflyforchai or on Facebook