Sunday, September 20, 2009

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Flour + Water

At 7:30, we are told there is a two hour wait for a table. No, we are not allowed to leave our number, so that we may get a cocktail around the corner (they are beer and wine only). Ignoring this warning, we walk to the Homestead and have a gimlet and an glass of bitters. This is after quizzing the bartender mercilessly about his lack of maraschino liqueur (he has Aviation gin, specifically crafted for the purpose of making Aviations, but not maraschino liqueur).

Back at F + W at 8:30, our table has been given away. "No worries" I say, like a Californian, knowing we had taken a gamble. We have a glass of wine and wait. Miraculously, they have Lambrusco by the glass, very unusual. This reminds me of Parma, and they earn brownie points. We are seated at...9...something? Don't remember.

Our server has long blond hair that she has plaited into a double braid and wears a leather bow tie on a necklace. She is friendly and very enthusiastic about the new restaurant. A foursome to our right makes disparaging comments about interracial couples (specifically, Asian and White), in spite of, or perhaps because of the couple to their left. They are Asian.

Food arrives...Rare duck breast, sliced with figs and raisins and some strident microgreens. The duck is smoked and perfect, the greens better left on the plate. Then the bigoli (enormously thick handmade spaghetti), with a sauce of tomatoes, onions, shell beans, and pancetta. Fits right in the with strange end of summer weather we are having, and is a little spicy. Last comes our pollo al mattone (which they call chicken al mattone, strange, as all the paste and pizze are designated by uncommon Italian words). It is crisp and moist and all of the things that a chicken cooked under a brick should be. Unfortunately, we did not count on both the pasta and secondo being heavily spiced, and they are not a good match.

Although the dinner as a whole was excellent, I might venture to say that the chicken was over seasoned, and lost a little because of that. And the greens under it were very heavy on the acid. This may have something to do with the great quantity of wine that was drunk while waiting for our table. We'll have to try again with reservations, and see how things go minus the sour wine tongue.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Sunday, May 3, 2009

White plates make even a lazy dinner look good.

On Demand and frozen pasta are so appealing after a long weekend.

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Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Bad hair day

Some trees in front of city hall acting as a test for blogger mobile.
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Challenge: beer.

So, the secret ingredient for Saturday's cookoff was beer, chosen by the chooser of ridiculous ingredients, Nate. I'm sure you'll be surprised to see the winner:


Yes, that is ice cream. Bailey's ice cream, actually, with Jameson marshmallows and Guinness syrup. Quite good, although a bit of a sugar overload. Mr. Chef, Josh, thinks that the winner, Christian, is a pastry chef in disguise.

And something a little more expected, beer can chicken. This was my entry, along with some fizzy beer margaritas and although it barely got an honorable mention, I was super pleased. Not counting the trek to the Bayshore to get a new propane tank, it was very easy to make, the skin was perfectly crispy and the chicken itself was full of spice and not dry at all.

Adventures in easy Japanese food.

I would like to say that this chicken katsu recipe is from my favorite new cookbook, "Let's Cook Japanese Food," but all of my katsu skills are courtesy of the katsu master, Kiko's mom.


Omelet with chicken tomato rice. This was surprisingly good, although I have yet to make an omelet that isn't a bit overcooked. Unfortunately, we lost our appetites a few minutes into Slumdog Millionaire as the protagonist was zapped with a car battery.


Not actually Japanese food, but leftover Easter brunch made into mu shu. The pancakes were surprisingly easy, but Nate didn't really appreciate the collard greens in lieu of cabbage.