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Take your brunch to the next level without overspending!

Like most people I love finding a good deal that does not require me to compromise the quality and/or taste. Armed with this mindset, I have learned to appreciate the gem known as ALDI. While there are SEVERAL "unknown" branded items that I refuse to purchase, there are SEVERAL that I swear by, including todays feature item. (We will revisit this, but follow me as I take you on a journey to better understand my appreciation for these kinds of finds.)

This past Saturday I woke up early as I always do, determined to get out of the house and enjoy a little alone time. As my coffee brewed, I took a hot shower, threw on my finest sweats (not my normal faded and torn set) and prepared to head out on an adventure.

I really enjoy exploring markets, and I prefer to do so early in the morning when I can move around freely without a crowd. This also applies when I travel to new places. As long as I am traveling by car, I intentionally make a stop at a local farmers market or small stores to check out the local favorites or to seek out a cool find. To date, my most exciting market experience was in Baton Rouge, LA. While there to visit my great aunt (who up until that visit I have never met in my life) I visited the Southside Produce Market and from the moment we stepped out of the car, I was overwhelmed with sensory overload. There is something so therapeutic about smelling fresh fruit, vegetables, flowers and seeing all of the beautiful colors. Walking through the open air market was like being in a time machine and I had been thrust back to the early 90s in Omaha, Nebraska, at the "Garden" with my Great Grandmother Betty Davis. We would go there in the middle of the summer to get fresh greens and vegetables. I would always get a tomato and a cucumber just for me. I guess it is safe to say that my appreciation for this kind of shopping and love for fresh produce stems from there.

While exploring the Southside Produce Market I was so engulfed in all of the local Louisiana products such as Popcorn Rice and Crawfish Pie, that I did not care that it was 90+ degrees outside. Navigating through this market felt like I was exploring a museum. Everywhere I turned, there was something intriguing and beautiful. At one point I forgot that I still had to drive all the way back home to AL, but it was worth it.

A few weeks ago when I was preparing to make fried green tomatoes, I took the opportunity to visit a local favorite in my community, Star Market. To get to this local favorite, I literally pass 5 grocery stores, however, I was certain the exact green tomatoes that I needed could only be found in this particular market. As you enter the small building, your immediately smacked right in the face with the smell of pizza, fried chicken, fresh produce and a hint of cigarette smoke. (Remember back in the day when smoking was allowed ANYWHERE, I'm certain that the smell is stuck in the walls) In most situations the stench would completely turn me off, but the feeling I got when I entered this market was similar to my Baton Rouge experience; NOSTALGIA. Once again I began to think about my Great Grandmother Betty. See Betty Davis was a "smoker smoker" she would light up her cigarette anywhere, including grocery stores and restaurants. Never in church, but right after (LOL) God rest her soul. If its not obvious, I spend a lot of time with her and learned a lot from her, so these sweet reminders of her are so appreciated. Just as I predicted, Star Market had 3 perfectly plump, green tomatoes!

Now back to the reason your here (LOL)

As I pulled up to Aldi, I was welcomed with an immediate blessing...someone left a cart unlocked for me!!! (Read more about this genius concept here) I was really being rebellious that morning as I broke one of my cardinal rules by entering a store without a list, but today was not a strategic shopping trip so I was prepared to purchase random stuff.

Entering the store I was greeting by an empty, clean and fully stocked facility, I knew something special was about to happen. As I pushed my cart down the immaculate isles, grabbing fresh fruit, a new pillow for my dog, a couple of packages of dried peppers, I stumbled upon the wine section. (Insert dramatic music)

Everything was well organized and labeled, so I was able to quickly move from reds to whites, to sparking, then out the corner of my eye, I noticed this beautiful bottle that looked like a pineapple. I made my way over to the champagne section to get a better look at this bottle, when I noticed that it said Pineapple Mimosa!!!!( If you don't indulge in adult beverages, I must warn you that the rest of this post is all bout this Mimosa.)

I carefully placed a bottle in my cart with my mind racing as I had so many creative ideas that all centered around this potentially mind blowing Aldi find. I was so excited to try this new beverage that I made a mad dash to the check out line. I first placed all 10 of my various reusable bags on the belt, (I have bags from every store you can think of and I have no shame in using my Kroger, or Marshalls reusable bag in Aldi) then I began placing my items, when the clerk stopped scanning. I looked up and she was admiring my Pineapple Mimosa bottle. She then asked " have you tried this before" after replying "no" she was so eager to share with me that it is absolutely delicious and reminders her of the punch that is served at most baby showers. You know, creamy, fruity punch that has sherbet ice-cream in it. While I appreciated her testimony about my new find, I had other plans in mind for this brunch must have.

Once back home I place it in the refrigerator to get ice cold, as I was preparing to enjoy this treat later that evening in a beautiful crystal champagne flute, not my normal plastic red cup. After dinner and cleaning, I turned on my favorite movie sound track "Waiting To Exhale" lit a candle and pour a glass of the citrus goodness. Immediately I was pleased with the balance of pineapple juice and the champagne. It was obvious that this was a drink that contained alcohol, but it was very delicate and the pineapple flavor was not too sweet and not too tart.

My husband and I enjoyed the entire bottle.

Did I mention that it is only $8.99!!!!!!!

#letseat Pineapple Mimosa

What you need:

1 bottle Aldi Pineapple Mimosa (Cold)

1 carton Strawberries (diced and smashed into a puree)

1 can Ginger BEER (not ginger Ale)

**Vodka or tequila** (Optional)

Champagne flute

  1. Fill flute 3/4 full with Pineapple Mimosa

  2. Fill with ginger beer (Leave a little room at the top) The ginger and pineapple pair very well together

  3. Spoon in a 1/2 tsp. strawberry puree

  4. ENJOY!

**If adding vodka or tequila, do so when you add the ginger beer**

Make sure you snap a pic and tag #letseatintentionally #letseat

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