I am finally on Christmas break and enjoying it with family in the tropics this year! The day after landing, we drove down to Key West for a night. I’ve been several times before, but this time, I did some research before to find a few good, local spots. And I was so happy I did! I never liked the Keys as a kid, but this trip completely turned me around.
Day One in the Keys
It took us a while to drive down and, by the time we arrived, it was almost sunset. We rushed to Mallory Square hoping to catch a glimpse, but it was crowded (per usual) and we did not get to enjoy much. However, we enjoyed perusing through the little market stalls with their little souvenirs and trinkets.
After a failed attempt at chasing the sun, we stopped for some Haagen-Daaz to cool down. I love vanilla and chocolatey flavors, but nothing is more refreshing on a hot evening than fruity sorbet!
Eventually, we walked down Duval. I’ve only ever spent time on the northern side, which is the touristy side near Mallory Square. It’s vibrant, but a little gaudy and congested. This time, we walked in the opposite direction and, to my surprise, discovered an entirely different part of downtown Key West! I have to say, my favorite part about walking around was all of the Christmas lights. I loved seeing the town dressed up in all its festive glory.
For dinner, we ate out on the porch of Nine One Five, a beautiful tapas and wine bar. We started with a burrata appetizer, paired with orange slices and drizzled with lavender-infused honey. Next up was asparagus sautéed with pancetta and grilled octopus over a chickpea ragout. Our third course consisted of chipotle pork tacos and fresh pappardelle in a Kobe beef bolognese.
Finally, we finished our meal with a toasted almond semifredo, topped with chocolate mousse. Everything was delicious and we really enjoyed our experience!