Saturday, January 17, 2009

Fabulous Meal at Chez Panisse Cafe, Berkeley, CA

My family was in town for the holidays and we thought it would be fun to go to Chez Panisse. Although I called a month in advance (and they only take reservations one month in advance), by the time I called they were all booked on the days we could come for the restaurant, so we made a reservation in the cafe instead. The cafe was still delicious and everyone really enjoyed their meals. When all was said and done, including drinks, the bill was about 15 per person.

Blood Orange, Fennel and Olive Salad
This was simple and delicious. The sweetness of the oranges truly complemented the anise notes of the fennel and the bright, dill infused, dressing was an inspired addition.

Serrano Ham and Cheese Pizzeta
Not sure why this was labeled in the diminutive form, because it was quite large for an appetizer. Anyhow, it was very good. Chez Panisse has some of the best pizza outside of New York, complete with a crispy thin crust.

Stuffed Squid in Ink Sauce with Artichoke Salad and Beets
The squid were very tender and the sides were interesting and tasty.

Stinging Nettle and Ricotta Pizza
This was another tasty pizza, with a super crispy crust. For some reason, despite falling into a nettle patch as a child, I'm always drawn to eating nettles.

Chocolate Ganache Tart with Whipped Cream and Pistachio
This was super chocolately and very rich. It should have been served with more whipped cream.

Food: 2
Decor: 3
Service: 2

Chez Panisse
1517 Shattuck Avenue
Berkeley, California 94709

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Miso Udon with Beef

Thirty-nine cent packages of instant udon are a great thing to have around. For this quick meal, I simply made a quick miso soup, then added the instant udon and sliced of leftover grilled tri-tip. This week I seem to be reinventing leftovers all over the place.

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Friday, January 16, 2009

Upscale Mexican at Maya, San Francisco, CA

I'd been to Maya once before and hadn't been tempted to go back. But it's close to my work and I went with a coworker. It was a bit better than I remembered, but still quite expensive for Mexican food.

Guacamole $9
The guacamole was tasty, if a bit salty. It didn't stop us from eating it all, though.

Skirt Steak Torta $13
Once I took 1/2 the bread off, this was a tasty sandwich, although, it necessitated being eaten with a knife and fork. The fried potatoes were surprisingly tasty.

Food: 1
Decor: 1
Service: 1

303 2nd Street
San Francisco, CA 94107

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Pretty Good Thai at Osha, San Francisco, CA

After some football watching at the bar, we headed to Osha next door for a quick meal before going home.

Spring Rolls $9
These were just ok. The wrapper was a bit thick.

Spicy Catfish $16
This was a tad sweet, but overall, very tasty.

Shrimp Paste Fried Rice $12
This is better at the Tenderloin location. For some reason at this location they add frozen peas and carrots, which is just weird.

Food: 1
Decor: 2
Service: 1

Osha Thai
149 2nd St.
San Francisco, CA 94105

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Thursday, January 15, 2009

Pasta with Lamb Ragu and Cucumber-Tomato Salad

This was a quick meal that reinvented some leftover lamb stew. Alexis simply reheated the lamb stew and tossed it with some pasta. The salad was simply cucumbers and tomatoes, tossed with a homemade vinaigrette.

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Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Peach-Dijon Lamb Chops with Parmasan Green Beans

Use of the George Foreman makes this meal super-quick to get on the table.

Peach-Dijon Lamb Chops
-8 lamb chops (cut from a rack)
-2 tb dijon
-3 tb peach nectar
-salt and pepper to taste

Marinate the lamb chops in a mixture of the other ingredients. Then cook on the George Foreman for about 5 minutes.

Parmasan Green Beans
-1 lb green beans, trimmed
-salt and pepper to taste
-handful of grated parmasan

Sautee the beans in a bit of olive oil over medium high heat until tender. Season with salt and pepper. When tender, plate and sprinkle on the cheese.

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Bagels, and Whitefish, Too! at House of Bagels, San Francisco, CA

We were craving some bagels and we heard House of Bagels had whitefish salad, so we decided to give it a shot. It was very satisfying.

Toasted Everything Bagel with Sundried Tomato Cream Cheese $3
Chewy, warm and tasty. The cream cheese was a little thin, strangely.

Toasted Everything Bagel with Whitefish, Tomato and Onion $5
You really can't get whitefish salad very many places in San Francisco, and this was a pleasant surprise.

Food: 1
Decor: 0
Service: 1

House of Bagels
5030 Geary Blvd
San Francisco, CA 94118

Health Code Violations

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