Fresh Eats: The Walrus & The Carpenter

My boyfriend and I are busy little bees. I know - everyone is busy - but when we're both at work all day and he goes to mixed martial arts training while I work out/blog/attend events, it can be difficult to carve time for one another. It's quite the treat, then, for us to go out somewhere great for drinks or dinner. The day the DList Magazine Young Northwest issue was released, he took me out to celebrate. I always like to choose new, interesting places, and so The Walrus & The Carpenter in Seattle's Ballard neighborhood was our destination for celebrating.

Take one look at the press page for The Walrus & The Carpenter and you'll get an idea of how easy it is to fall in love with this place. Tucked away in the Shilshole side of the Kolstrand building on Ballard Ave is this sweet gem of an oyster bar. The brainchild of Boat St. Cafe's award-winning Chef Renee Erickson, with Jeremy Price & Chad Dale, The Walrus has caught the eye of (and "best restaurant" nods from) Bon Appetit, New York Times, Mr. Porter and GQ Magazine, not to mention all of the local publications.

While you should come here simply for the most extensive oyster menu around, the cocktails here are absolutely amazing. Definitely a new favorite for the mister and I!

Recap: DList Magazine Young Northwest Party

Here's a quick photo recap of DList Magazine's Young Northwest honoree party. I'm so grateful for all of my friends and loved ones who came across the bridge to Bellevue to support a lady! I couldn't have asked for a better group to hang with that night. Wish I'd gotten more pictures with the other great nominees like Dhruva Mikkelsen, Osiris Navarro, Casey Carter & Sasha Pasulka


Photo credit: Danielle Bortone-Holt
Photo credit: Danielle Bortone-Holt

Photo credit: Danielle Bortone-Holt


Meet the DList Magazine Young Northwest 2011 Honorees!

You know how I said I was finally inspired to pick up blogging again in July? Well, that's because my dear friend Jen Joyce nominated me for Seattle lifestyle magazine 
DList's Young Northwest 2011 issue for Blogger!

For the first time, DList took to Twitter to see who might be a good candidate for the various categories in its Young Northwest honors. Although tweet votes were just one criteria in choosing each honoree, it helped the magazine find talent they might not have otherwise considered.

I have Jen and lots of dear friends to thank for putting me in the running. I write this blog to share information and personal insights with you, and I am incredibly humbled to have this year's Young Northwest honor. 


This sweet photo was taken in Olympic Sculpture Park by the talented Brian Oh, also the official photographer for Moe Bar Mondays :)  
Dimepiece Designs dress / Vintage bracelet / Ring from Nasty Gal / Hair & makeup by Dior Calloway

If you're in the Seattle area, I'd love to see you at the Young Northwest Party this Friday at Munchbar in Bellevue! You can meet all of this year's Young Northwest honorees. I'll be live tweeting using #DListYNW & blogging at the party, and I hear Report Shoes will be in the house! 

Entrepreneur – Dhruva Mikkelsen, Shocking Goat 
Jack of all Trades – Andy Karuza, Brand Buddee
Trail Blazers – Josh Berman & Ramel Williams, 4Evergreen Group
Blogger – Jess Estrada, Fresh Jess & Banyan Branch
Writer – Sasha Pasulka, Red Magnet Media Agency
Chef – Jason Stratton, Artusi
Mixologist – Ricardo Hoffman, Zig Zag
Photographer – Alvin Nguyen, Alvin Nguyen Photography
Socialite – Casey Carter, MissCaseyCarter.com
Artist – Adam Jackson, Adam Jackson Art
Filmographer – Zia Mohajerjasbi, Love & Shoestrings
Stylist – Osiris Navarro, Osiris the Great & Treats Club
Philanthropist – Michael Henrichsen, Play My Birthday Billy Idol

Congrats to all of the honorees, and thank you DList Magazine!

Read the issue online below!


Nicki Minaj in Glamour Oct '11 Issue


"I appreciate someone who knows what she wants, who sets realistic goals and achieves them."

Louis Vuitton coat / Galaxxxy leggings
Mark Fast dress / Brian Atwood booties

 See the full article at Glamour.com


Into the Deep

Jotting down my thoughts! Instagram pic by Anisa

In July, I was FINALLY able to get back on a regular blogging schedule. After over a year of being extremely busy with work and life changes, with a borderline loss of interest in even continuing with the blog, I am so happy to be blogging on the regular again.

While I am still focused heavily on two big parts of my life (style and events), I want to dive more into other aspects as well. More of the restaurants I eat at, books I read, people who inspire me to be more. More of the non-profit work that stirs my heart alive and keeps handsome Meatball's memory fueling me.

Most of all, I want to be able to share thoughts and observations I'm having in this crazy life. I don't think any single post on FreshJess has resonated with people quite like when I write about my beloved Meatball. Posts like that are so easy for me to write because they come purely, truly and honestly from the heart.

While I have my focus on expanding the kinds of posts I do, I'd love to ask you, my lovely and amazing readers:

What do you want to see on Fresh Jess?

Is there a specific question or topic I should cover? More of something you've already seen? Please leave me a comment and let me know!

I can't say enough how much I appreciate you taking the time to read my blog. Thank you!


Seattle Style: Sayra Morán

Believe it or not, there are a lot of style mavens roaming the streets of the Emerald City. Seattle Style is a new weekly feature on FreshJess, giving you a look at some of the city's most stylish - who they are, what they do, and some of the very best out of their closet!

This week, meet the stunning Sayra Morán:
H&M dress / Forever 21 sandals

What do you do?
I do marketing and client services for a legal support company, model for Seattle Models Guild, and direct a non-profit organization that sponsors orphaned students.

How would you describe your style?
I would describe it as comfortable, class and colorful. I wear high heels almost every day and I love pops of color!

Shirt from Nordstrom Rack / Express jeans / Steve Madden pumps

What are your favorite shops?
H&M, Express, and Nordstrom.

What's your favorite thing about Seattle?
I love how diverse and busy it is. There is always something going on and every neighborhood/area is different from the next.

Thanks Sayra!

Find her on Twitter.


Recap: Fashion's Night Out in Downtown Seattle

Fashion's Night Out in Downtown Seattle and Capitol Hill were such a blast. The night was filled with special, limited edition offerings exclusively for FNO, music, cupcakes, champagne, photobooths & fun. It was the first year for the two neighborhoods, and they can only grow from here. I'm looking forward to a cohesive, concerted effort from Downtown retailers next year!

Here's my picture roundup for all of you. First up, the outfit. I kept it casual and cool, with lots of accessories to spice things up:

Hurley oversized sweater / Crochet tiered knit shorts from Strut in Austin / Julian Louie for Aldo wedges / Gold sequined vintage envelope clutch / One earring from Melrose Trading Post / Shell cuff from Philippines / Vintage bracelets
Put my hair in a bun later in the night. Vintage black sequined headband from Sustalux

Julian Louie for Aldo wedges


Thanks for supporting Team Meatball!

Just wanted to say thank you so much to everyone who supported Team Meatball at PAWSwalk! We raised $705 & counting - and our goal was just $500! Woohoo!

This is my first post using Blogger's official iPhone app. Excited to have it!

Happy Saturday,

Fresh Style: Vintage Polynesian Swimsuit

Because sometimes the vintage gods love you and put a perfectly-fitting Polynesian swimsuit from the 1950s - complete with bloomers - in your life. It makes for the sweetest little romper for another beautiful day in the Emerald City:

Worn with customized TOMS, In God We Trust necklace & shell cuff from the Philippines. 

Discovered by AlixRose at Golden Elephant Vintage after our trip to the SPUN Sample Sale

Mexican Coke in the back because that's what I drink when it's sunny/rainy/cloudy...


Your Guide to Fashion's Night Out 2011

Need to figure out where to go for Fashion's Night Out in the Seattle area this Thursday? Check out my Guides to FNO for:

And for a great roundup of FNO NYC, check out the Independent Fashion Bloggers' post.


A Guide to Fashion's Night Out part 4: SPUN

If you're on Capitol Hill or surrounding areas, fret not - there's a Fashion's Night Out event for you too! Come celebrate FNO at SPUN Sustainable Collective with Joanna Morgan Designs.

Preview the new Fall collection by Joanna Morgan Designs who recently launched her new website: www.JoannaMorganDesigns.com.

In honor of Fashion Night Out, Joanna has designed a limited release sterling silver bracelet. Receive this FREE gift with any Joanna Morgan Designs purchase (valued at $45, quantities limited) 

Wine and light appetizers will also be provided!

See you there! I'll be taking pics and live tweeting here and at the various Downtown Seattle FNO events. I encourage you to follow and use #FNOsea if you're in Seattle/Bellevue, out & about and tweeting during FNO!

Two years ago, American Vogue, the Council of Fashion Designers of America, NYC & Company and the City of New York came together to create Fashion's Night Out to celebrate fashion, restore consumer confidence, boost the industry's economy, and put the fun back in shopping. FNO quickly grew to a global initiative, and now in its third year, the Seattle area is in on the action.

Check out the FreshJess rundown of Fashion's Night Out, also in Bellevue, Downtown Seattle and University Village.

Thursday, September 8th
~ 6:00 - 11:00p.m.


Report Shoes Bellevue Square Anniversary (Recap)

Last weekend, Report Shoes celebrated the first anniversary of its Bellevue Square location. Though Report itself is known worldwide among fashion and shoe aficionadas, the 15-year old, Bellevue-based brand's only retail outlet is in BelSquare. So for once, we Seattle style fiends are lucky!

Per their website, Report Shoes are inspired by the art, architecture, music and dynamic urban culture of its home city, Seattle. Report Footwear boasts cutting-edge styles for a wide range of women who appreciate quality and stylish comfort. This rang true at the anniversary event, with an incredibly diverse crowd of women (and men) young and old with a broad palette of personal styles.

It was great hanging with AlixRose and seeing Becky of Tres Chic Bellevue, Darnell & Zong, two of the Power Ladies behind Girl Power Hour, and meeting the beautiful Dianne of Dianne's Delights and creator of these lovely (and tasty) Report Shoes-themed cake pops:

The Report brand includes two distinct lines: Report, which offers trend-oriented yet functional styles for the modern girl; and Report Signature, more sophisticated fashion-forward styles for the most confident, independent and stylish women. The two pairs I own are both from the Signature line, but I was a fan of pretty much every shoe in the house at the party!

Here's a look at their first styles for the fall collection, which should be arriving in the store and online this week if not already:

Thanks for having us!

Follow Report Shoes on Facebook & Twitter - and on their blog, Report Girl


Fresh Eats: Tuscan Tea Room

On a warm August Sunday, I had the pleasure of having afternoon high tea with Gilt City as a guest of Tina Kirkpatrick, the Gilt City Seattle "Mayor"(or curator.) It was so much fun catching up over tea, scones and a variety of sandwiches & treats! 

A vision of Aimee Pellegrini (whose family also owns Seattle staple La Rustica), The Tuscan Tea Room in West Seattle is a hidden gem that's everything a lady and her girlfriends need for an elegant soiree. The ornate decor and tea sets are collections Aimee, daughter Nina and team have picked up from many an estate sale. One kind gentleman even donated his late wife's entire collection of tea sets and plateware after her passing! 

Tuscan Tea Room serves brunch, dinner, happy hour as well as tea time. They also do catering and special events both in the Tea Room and outside/for pick-up. Their extensive tea menu is carefully selected by Aimee and team, and includes teas from around the world as well as special house blends. Tuscan Tea Room's dinner, brunch and wine menus are equally impressive, with specialty dishes that stay true to Tuscan and Venetian cooking styles. 

Check out pics from the Gilt-y Tea Party below. Thanks for having me!
Vintage hat, bag, necklace & sunnies from Sustalux / Heart-shaped sleeveless dress from La Rousse / Gilded feather earrings from Moksha

Oh hey Keren Brown!

4521 California Ave SW, Seattle 98116
Reservations: 206.906.9914
Like Tuscan Tea Room on Facebook

(Click on the meals for menu)

Tuesday – Sunday: 10:30 am – 4:00pm

Thursday – Saturday 3:00pm – 6:00p.m.
Bar & Patio menu w/snacks, $1.50 oysters

Thursday - Saturday 5:30pm -10:00pm

 Reservations are encouraged and are for full meals only. Available for parties of 1 - 49.
 Your reservation reserves your table for 2 hours.