Archive for June, 2008

Weekend’s Eatings

June 30, 2008

My desire to visit southeast Asia has grown so significantly in the past few years that a trip may actually happen… some day. In the meantime I’ll just keep eating the best culinary imports countries like Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore and Vietnam have to offer.
Vietnamese Soy Cafe is a great little cash-only spot on the east side. We went at 2pm on a beautiful summer Saturday and sat outside.
The spring rolls were light and fresh. The sauce was average. Vegetable salad doused with hot sauce.Rice noodles with vegetables.Chicken Bahn-Mi which was as good as anything I’ve had in the San Gabriel Valley.
Topped it off with a Vietnamese iced tea and C-shot (cayenne, lemon and sugar cane).


Summer Defined

June 23, 2008

Baby Blues Bar-B-Q has been open for a few years but it saw recent hype thanks to some well-placed media attention
I finally got a chance to try it over the weekend and it easily is one of the best on the westside.
The music was good, the atmosphere was fun and the food was the definition of summer.
Service to patron ratio is almost 1:1, meaning lemonades stay refilled, extra sauce is quickly delivered and recommendations are easy to get.
We started with delicious BBQ shrimp on cornbread.Because they’re cooked on the same grill as the ribs and burgers they have a shrimpy, meaty, smokey flavor. It was decided that they’ll be making an appearance at Thanksgiving as a reminder or summers-gone-by.
The Memphis Queen is a half slab of baby backs and a half slab of Memphis ribs with two sides (mac-n-cheese and cole slaw). We added a side of corn on the cob and sauteed okra as well.The baby backs were fall-off-the-bone perfect. Tender, succulent, not too smokey- quite different from Mr Cecil’s pedestrian counterparts. The mac and cheese was brilliant, with soft mac, not-too-runny cheese and not-too-crisp edges.The okra was fantastic as well, probably due to the heavy garlic. The corn on the cob wasn’t anything special- it was salty as opposed to sweet which I’m not a fan of. The coleslaw was dry.
We didn’t have room for dessert but it’s a long summer and there’s gonna be plenty more trips coming up.

My Eyes Will Go Hungry

June 13, 2008

Tastespotting was one of the best sites on the internet. It’s a major loss to the food porn world…

Underwhelming Weekend’s Eatings

June 9, 2008

It wasn’t a food marathon… barely a food 5k but Saturday I had a very mediocre day of eating:
First, a place I’ve never been despite growing up in Los Angeles- John O’Groats. Their menu is fantastic, with so many good options that it was hard to decide what to order. We’d heard about their biscuits
but they weren’t anything special. The lemonade was good, not too sweet or tart. The Huevos O’Groats come on a delicious buttermilk tortilla. Ultimately though, the whole dish was a bit bland. The mango Macadamia pancakes and Aidell’s smoked chicken apple sausage were good too, but not out of this world. Their potatoes were flavorful, but the goat cheese, spinach scramble was nothing special.In the end I will go back to try some of the other items but O’Groats definitely didn’t wow us the way we hoped it would. Immediately after we walked a few doors down to a hamburger stand called Marty’s. There was a line which was a good indication of quality.
The guys in line looked like this so you know what type of food you’re in for.Marty’s is known for their combo; a burger with a hot dog on top. You can get it with cheese and chili on top, but I opted solely for cheese. It was good, but the foot-long hot dog isn’t cut into four small pieces- they’re still kind of connected. This made eating the combo annoying because the hot dogs kept pulling out of the bun with each bite. The burger itself was actually the least flavorful element- the rest was good.
We ended the mediocrity with the least impressive stop of the three, Il Cono in Beverly Hills. It’s usually crowded so we thought they might actually have good gelato. It turns out they’re just crowded because of the tourist-centric decor and location. The chocolate covered banana gelato could easily have been Dryers ice cream. The pomegranate was refreshing but can’t touch Scoops.So it was a spontaneous day of eating and I’m glad to have tried three new places. That’s about it.

Weekend’s Eatings

June 2, 2008

The original Loteria Grill’s tacos (tinga, pipian and papas) with rice and beans:…followed by a delicious ring of flavor from Bay Cities courtesy of the grease from a Godmother:…complimented by Artisan Cheese Gallery’s duck confit sandwich:
which was amazing and requires many more visits…
…and topped off with a massive cheese plate:
I appreciate how they give the right portion of accoutrement with their cheese, unlike Joans’ dainty serving:
It’s all just practice for the forthcoming sandwich food marathon.