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lizelle's Profile

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Cici

I just saw new store front - still under construction - in downtown Mill Valley for a gelato place called Cici - has anyone heard of this this place? Gelato sounds good to me.

However, I kept thinking it sounded a bit like Ici...

Oct 24, 2006
lizelle in San Francisco Bay Area

La Boulange in Mill Valley opening this week

Finally had a chance to stop by. The sweets and savories are just as good as those at the Pine & Fillmore location. However, we do love that they have indoor and outdoor seating... something lacking at the SF location due to small space.

Sitting outside Boulange is nice as they've blocked off cars from parking directly in front, giving the area an open and fresh feel. Early Sunday mornings are not very crowded and are the perfect time to relax.

Oct 16, 2006
lizelle in San Francisco Bay Area

VU Restaurant

The Chef's Vu is actually a 6 course tasting menu - we were just gluttons :) And, yes, you can choose to have wines paired with each course. A 6 course tasting will run you $80 and with wine pairings is $120. I think very reasonable for the quality of food.

Regular menu runs $12.-15. for starters and $30.-35. for a main entree. Vegetarian menu is also available.

Oct 05, 2006
lizelle in Southwest

VU Restaurant

Fast forward, a year later in case anyone is still interested. Vu has undergone lots of changes - a new swank decor (chocoates, oranges, mahagony) and new chef (just 3 months old), Brian Lewis (Bix-SF, Four Seasons-NY). This was probably the last place I'd think of when recommending a tasting menu, but this was truly divine in taste and presentation.

On our recent visit, our 6-party table decided on the Chef's Vu - which, by the way, is a blind tasting so to speak. If you want a real flavor of Brian's style, I'd highly recommend this route.

Stand-outs from our 12-course splurge:

Chiogga Beets with Osetra caviar brioche (!!!), sorrel, and Mandarin yogurt

Kurabuta Pork Belly with quince, pickled chantrelles, and agave nectar

Madeira glazed black cod, porcini confit, five spiced celery, oak aged soy (everyone seems to have black cod these days - just another wonderful execution of the fish)

Jamison Farms Lamb with apricot and white beans (simple but one of my favorites)

Niman Ranch Beef Short Ribs with a finely minced layer of Shropshire blue, walnut and coffee (another favorite)

Chocolate donut holes with a side chocolate creme brulee topped with a layer of peanut butter creme and toffee bits (I think I had 2 dishes)

Vu is definitely worth a trip to the Hyatt in Scottsdale.

Oct 05, 2006
lizelle in Southwest

ICI, at last ... ICI, at last ... Sunday, ICI, at last

Thanks for your post. Mary was kind enough to phone and let us know she opened on Sunday. I'm planning to head over today after 11am. Thanks for the recs.

Sep 05, 2006
lizelle in San Francisco Bay Area

Why Are Shopping Carts So Hard to Steer?

I find the mini-carts, at Whole Foods, super easy to navigate, and they do not cause aisle jam. Two tiers gives me enough room for most of my shopping. Different wheels? Not sure.

Do other markets have them?

Aug 27, 2006
lizelle in Features

Welcome to CHOW

I second that - so happy to see CHOW again - welcome back!

Aug 27, 2006
lizelle in Features

Killer Apps

I love that there are images when I roll-over the recipes.

Aug 27, 2006
lizelle in Features

Drinks in Rockridge Area

Thanks for all the recommendations. Depending on how on-time we are plus across the Richmond bridge, we're aiming for A Cote or the bar at Oliveto. Will let you know how it goes.

Aug 25, 2006
lizelle in San Francisco Bay Area

Drinks in Rockridge Area

We have 7pm reservations so an earlier cocktail hour. Thanks for the menu. Surprised swordfish is on the menu. Would love to hear about your dinner, especially any "highly recommends".

Aug 25, 2006
lizelle in San Francisco Bay Area

Drinks in Rockridge Area

We're having dinner at Oliveto Saturday night and want to meet some friends for drinks beforehand. Any recommendations?

Aug 24, 2006
lizelle in San Francisco Bay Area

San Francisco dinning with children

Just a few other places for your child-friendly dining list:

Bar Tartine
Cafe at Chez Panisse
Chez Nous
Citizen Cake
Zuni

Aug 04, 2006
lizelle in San Francisco Bay Area

Tasteful kid-like birthday cakes?

Good old Shuberts fits the bill.

Aug 03, 2006
lizelle in San Francisco Bay Area

Die Hard New York Chowhounders Coming to San Fran...Where do we eat?

Would love to hear what you thought of Manka's. I really hope you like (love) it is as much as I do. My husband and I have been there about a dozen or so times and have never had a bad meal.

One of our fondest memories is sitting in the front room on a cold dark night and hearing a strong popping sound. We turned and saw the cook kneeling by the fireplace - it was duck fat crackling over the fire. May seem strange but it was so comforting, especially in that environment.

Several years ago, they used to have a nice wine tasting dinner program called "Lap it up with Louie" - who was Manka's larger-than-life yellow lab (looked about 200lbs. but very lovable). Unfortunately, Louie is no longer with us. Though I wonder if they'll reintroduce wine tastings in another form.

Jul 30, 2006
lizelle in San Francisco Bay Area

You know you're a Chowhound when....

...your 18-month old prefers queso de la serena and gorgonzola dolce over sliced cheddar.

...even after very little sleep from having a newborn & a young toddler in the house, you still have just enough energy to make pistachio financieres, just because you're craving them.

Jul 30, 2006
lizelle in Not About Food

Die Hard New York Chowhounders Coming to San Fran...Where do we eat?

If you don't mind a lovely scenic drive about an hour outside of SF, I'd highly recommend Manka's Lodge in Inverness (http://www.mankas.com). Otherwise, Zuni, Bar Tartine, Fifth Floor, or Cafe Fanny in Berkeley.

Jul 17, 2006
lizelle in San Francisco Bay Area

Pheasant

Excellent. Thanks Marge and carswell - everything sounds (and smells) delicious already - definitely an incentive to get started. Give me some time and I'll report back on how everything turns out... or not. ;)

Chowhounds: Please continue posting recipes!

Jun 28, 2006
lizelle in Home Cooking

Pheasant

Marge - thanks for the recipe! Two questions:
- Do I leave the skin on? I'm assuming yes.
- Are the pieces cut similar to that of chicken? I've had pheasant but never a whole one nor have I cooked it at home.

Jun 28, 2006
lizelle in Home Cooking

Pheasant

We have 4 wild pheasants in our freezer. Looking for some tasty chowhound recipes.

Jun 28, 2006
lizelle in Home Cooking

We All Scream

If in the neighborhood, please keep us posted. Ici was not only mentioned in SFGate but in Food Arts (a few months ago) and San Francisco mag - more recently. I'm sure they're getting lots of calls!

Jun 28, 2006
lizelle in San Francisco Bay Area

We All Scream

These look great - thanks for the post!

Jun 27, 2006
lizelle in San Francisco Bay Area

Alfajores at Citizen Cake

If you're in downtown SF and craving alfajores, they are also available at Gump's.

Jun 27, 2006
lizelle in San Francisco Bay Area

We All Scream

I've been calling Ici almost every day only to be greeted with a recorded message saying something about "putting the finishing touches" on the place - I think they were suppose to open a month or two ago. If anyone has more information, please let us all know. I'm dying to try one of their ice cream sandwiches!

Jun 27, 2006
lizelle in San Francisco Bay Area

We All Scream

Excuse my ignorance, but is Tucker's a place or product you can buy at the market?

Macapuno? I think I had this during a visit to the Philippines... ages and ages ago. Thanks for the recommendations.

Jun 27, 2006
lizelle in San Francisco Bay Area

We All Scream

The June issue of Food Arts features an interesting, if not mouth-watering, article on the next generation of ice cream. In addition to old favorites like vanilla and chocolate, the article mentions that chefs are using flavors like rosemary, parsnips, yuzu, shiso, and satsuma. I soon realized that my ice creame palate is pretty mundane.

I love ice cream but, will admit, I'm a huge fan of vanilla. Probaby the most unusual flavor I've had was ube - did I like it? not so much. While I wait patiently for Ici to open, I'd love to hear about your top choice local ice cream / gelato restaurants / shops / parlours and flavors!

Jun 27, 2006
lizelle in San Francisco Bay Area

Burning Hell's Kitchen

Caught about ten minutes (that's all I could stand) of "Hell's Kitchen" the other night. Am I the only one who thinks this show is dull, unoriginal, and undermines being a cook/chef? Why would underqualified people (sorry but a deli manager and cafeteria cook?) go on stage just to be publically lambasted by Gordon Ramsay? Perhaps I don't get the gist of the show. Anyway, "whatever, cook on tv."

Jun 23, 2006
lizelle in Food Media & News

Balsamic Vinegar

Lately, I've been using apple cider vinegar with olive oil, some reduced apple juice, and sea salt. It's a simple and refreshing dressing for the summer - especially good tossed with chunks of Grafton cheddar, grilled chicken, Braeburn apples, and some baby greens.

Jun 23, 2006
lizelle in General Topics

Cake

I agree with celeste - both are excellent choices. However, for more birthday cake options, I do prefer Miette. And, of course, you know, they can do a brilliant tray of birthday cupcakes!

Jun 23, 2006
lizelle in San Francisco Bay Area