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Henry & Kristen of the (now defunct) Reyn Pho in Pasadena have found a new home in Monrovia!!

Just went here for lunch today. I'm vietnamese so I had high expectations, but I've got to say that it was pretty good. The aesthetics are modified for an american audience, but the food is good. I had the spring rolls and the pho dac biet -- the spring rolls were ok but the pho was a bit salty. Hope they fine tune this over the next few weeks. The vietnamese coffee (cafe sua da) was pretty good. Great looking restaurant and yay for the instrumental vietnamese music. Can't stand the traditional viet singers :(

Will be coming back more often to try everything else. The Bo Kho (beef stew) is next on my (long) list :)

Jan 09, 2011
tonicart in Los Angeles Area

New Andes Mint Is Cherry, Cherry Bad

Gotta say, I do love the gold-foiled toffee Andes "mints" :)

Dec 24, 2010
tonicart in Features

Prepping Butternut Squash = Dry Skin?

Heh, one year later... thanks for the link. I'll try baking the entire squash first next time.

Nov 15, 2010
tonicart in General Topics

Easy Homemade Amaretto

Great, something new to try with my next French Connection ;)

Nov 15, 2010
tonicart in Features

Dairy Pyrotechnics

I'll second Annie's mac & cheese ;) Although, it's hard to resist the original once in a while... a long while!

Jul 11, 2010
tonicart in Features

Vietnamese Iced Coffee

Nice job ;) I'm vietnamese and love the stuff, but I prefer to get mine at Lee's Sandwhiches here in Southern California. They mix a little chocolate in it and its pretty sweet. Great drink to sip on a lazy weekend afternoon!

Apr 10, 2010
tonicart in Home Cooking

Grow Your Own Cocktails

Looks like sprigs of Sage in a cup of potting soil with some stirring straws ;)

Apr 10, 2010
tonicart in Features

10 Mail-Order Chocolates for Valentine's Day

How depressing, no sugar? =( Get her some lingerie or massage oil, duh ;)

Feb 03, 2010
tonicart in Features

Five Guys - eh

I disagree, the bun from 5 guys was horrible. Start out good, but then they made it soggied and worsened it by wrapping it in foil. Cmon, really, foil? A hot steaming burger, wrapped in foil? It took about 30 seconds to bring it from the counter to our table and it was already soggy. Definitely skip the tomato and anything else with moisture if you get a 5 guys burger.

In & Out remains the king. But hey, at least the peanuts were good.

Jan 14, 2010
tonicart in Chains

Heading to Corpus Christi or Austin this weekend...

I've got the choice of either Corpus Christi (near the 359 and Airline) or Austin (near the 1 and Andersen) for work this weekend, first time in Texas, will only be available to explore/eat at night (after 6pm). Budget: ~$40/each. Renting a car.

Couldn't find many interesting posts for Corpus Christi/Aransas... What would y'all say is the typical food of the area? Is the local seafood safe? =) My only knowledge of the cuisine of Texas is steak... What do you suggest?

Seems like Austin Land & Company would be the place to eat steak in Austin... Any other suggestions?

On a side note, any nighttime landmarks or architectural wonders to see near these locations?

Thanks!

Dec 16, 2009
tonicart in Texas

Sweet Treats for Tea-Lovers

Speaking of cough drops as candy, I love Thayer's Slippery Elm drops! I don't quite remember when/where I first had them, but I recently found some at the local Henry's market. http://www.thayers.com/store/index.ph...

Dec 03, 2009
tonicart in Features

Prepping Butternut Squash = Dry Skin?

I couldn't find a definitive answer about this online, so I hoped you all could help. I was cutting up some butternut squash for a potluck tonight, and i noticed that after I had put everything in the oven, my left hand felt really rigid. This is the hand that held the squash while I peeled it with a ridged vegetable peeler. I've read that peeling it this way and holding it with your bare hand can cause dry skin, but this is beyond dry. It cracks and peels away the top layer of my palm and fingers. I'm not sure, but it seems like a chemical peel? Maybe too much vitamin A? Is this similar to those alpha-hydroxy products that women use on their face and hands? If so... maybe I discovered a cheap face peel? lol

Nov 21, 2009
tonicart in General Topics

Visiting Boston for a Weekend + 1 day to Maine

We are gonna try to hit Annarosa's for breakfast and on to Barnacle Bill's =)

Oct 17, 2009
tonicart in Greater Boston Area

Driving from M.I.T. to ~Portland, Maine

Well, we had dinner the first night at Four Burger, which had pretty decent simple burgers, good fries, and beer. Had shwarmas tonight. Heading up to Newburyport and Maine tomorrow. Gonna try to get to Blueberry Basket =)

Oct 17, 2009
tonicart in All New England Archive

Driving from M.I.T. to ~Portland, Maine

I'd like to get a little tour of Maine, but not spend the whole day driving. Visiting a friend at MIT in Boston, and planning to do a day trip to Maine on the 95 freeway. I'm a blueberry fanatic, so even though they're out of season, I'd still like to visit and maybe find a blueberry souvenir shop? Anything blueberry, I wanna see it =) Shellfish would also be on the CHOW-radar.

I found some possibilities on the board: Duck Fat, Blue Spoon, and Silly's. No blueberry or lobster specialties yet though...

I think Portland would be an hour and half drive from MIT, so anything closer than that would be preferred ;) Thanks in advance!

Oct 15, 2009
tonicart in All New England Archive

Visiting Boston for a Weekend + 1 day to Maine

Awesome, thank you everyone. Yes, I realized blueberry season is over =( I am hoping to find some good preserved products and perhaps some quirky souvenirs =) I am planning to take the 95 freeway/highway up to Maine.

Oct 15, 2009
tonicart in Greater Boston Area

Visiting Boston for a Weekend + 1 day to Maine

Thanks for the recommendations, pubs or drinking spots are definitely welcome. Coffee shops too, to get us up in the morning =)

Oct 15, 2009
tonicart in Greater Boston Area

Visiting Boston for a Weekend + 1 day to Maine

Probably casual, just the guys =) I'm from Los Angeles, CA. Any ethnicity food would be fine, but I am really looking to try "Boston". Is there any culinary truth/goodness to "Boston Baked Beans" or is it just a candy? haha

Oct 15, 2009
tonicart in Greater Boston Area

Visiting Boston for a Weekend + 1 day to Maine

I'm visiting a friend at M.I.T. and planning to drive up to Maine since I'm a blueberry fanatic and lobster/crab ain't so bad either =)

Need some recommendations on the must try places in the Boston MIT area, we will be cycling for a day, driving up to Maine for a day. This is my first time visiting Boston.

I've bookmarked this place a long time ago, definitely on my list of places to visit: "The All Star Sandwhich Bar" as well as Faneuil Hall/Quincy Market. Any recommendations in Boston or on the way to Southern Maine would be great!

Oct 15, 2009
tonicart in Greater Boston Area

Looking for "Atmosphere!" within ~15miles of Anaheim

We ended up going to K'ya, which had great atmosphere, but we were served slowly, and on paper plates. Not even plates, they were those rectangular "bowls". Disappointing food and service, but nice looking place.

Oct 13, 2009
tonicart in Los Angeles Area

Any hip restaurants in Anaheim?

I'm thinking about going there tomorrow night... hopefully it won't be too loud on a weekday night?

Sep 15, 2009
tonicart in Los Angeles Area

Looking for "Atmosphere!" within ~15miles of Anaheim

As Sebastian Maniscalco would say, "Atmosphere!" =)

An old friend is coming to town, and she's staying in Anaheim. What's a good place to get get a drink, something to eat, and have a good conversation with a group of ~4? Budget: under $50ish each, please =) Any cuisine is fine, looking for options. Thanks!

Sep 15, 2009
tonicart in Los Angeles Area

Banh Mi Pronunciation

#5 (BBQ Pork, not the red BBQ one) at Lee's is my favorite. Don't forget the iced Vietnamese coffee. Old men just lounge around outside the shops on weekends sipping the coffee while the ice melts =) A good sandwhich and coffee for less than $5, who could ask for anything more?

IMO, Lee's bread is better, it's crunchy, buttery, soft on the inside. Banh Mi Cali's is just the average banh mi bread that I usually save for feeding my fish, haha

Aug 09, 2009
tonicart in Not About Food

Banh Mi Pronunciation

Um, I'm Vietnamese and that's not how we pronounce it. At least, in the dialect that I am familiar with. ReelMike84 got it right the first time.

Banh = bread
Bun = noodle

edit: The shop that PBS went to... was it a real vietnamese shop or an americanized one? I see that you're in So.Cal., check out the Lee's Sandwhiches or Banh Mi Cali chains ;)

Aug 09, 2009
tonicart in Not About Food

Classic BLT Sandwich

LOL @ Jim M's comment =)

For a fat free, low calorie sandwhich, just eat the lettuce and tomato portion =P

One of my favorites, the BLT at T-Burger in Monrovia serves them up with plenty of densely layered lettuce and mayo with crunchy bacon. It's my quick, guilty, comfort food.

Aug 09, 2009
tonicart in Recipes

10 Vegetable Seed Suppliers

During one of my summer architectural studio trips throughout the southwest, I came across this organization: http://www.nativeseeds.org/

I think they're worthy of being mentioned on this list :)

Mar 18, 2009
tonicart in Features

Fabulous dinner in San Diego???

I just dined at Cafe Chloe last night. Excellent food, great atmosphere, and good service even at max capacity. My date and I started with the Lychee Tea and Pomme Frites -- the 3 dipping sauces were interesting. The most interesting sauce was the green one, you'll never guess what flavor it is: watercress. Every taste feels like the first shocking taste -- It's not particularly a great flavor, but its continually surprising. We followed with the Steak & Frites (too much frites after the appetizer...) and Duck Confit. Finished with the creme brulee. Good food and moderate prices. I'm usually pretty picky about my tea, and Cafe Chloe's did not disappoint. Highly recommended for a date ;)

Mar 08, 2009
tonicart in San Diego

Xanh or Vien Dong for dinner Friday?

I just went to Xanh Bistro tonight, thanks for the recommendations and descriptions. Yes, it is a good place for a date. Very neat, clean, and friendly service. It wasn't too crowded, but we went around 6pm.

The "Vietnamese Horchata" was a disappointment. It's just soymilk with horchata spices... wish i had read about what was in it beforehand. My date had the bun with egg rolls/chicken which was pretty standard and impossible to screw up. The egg rolls included were not as great as the descriptions I've heard on here. Maybe the appetizer rolls are different? The 5-spice beef was good, but I was expecting something fried, haha :) The meat was very tender and the bitter greens it was served on went well with the dish. We had the chocolate souffle afterwards which was nice -- but I think the hibiscus "tea" was unnecessary and didn't add anything to the layout except filling in the 3rd spot in the 3-compartment plate.

All in all, its a great place to go on a date -- it gives you some conversation starters with the Horchata shenanigans and "high end" take on vietnamese food.

Feb 07, 2009
tonicart in Los Angeles Area

Does a Sharpening Steel Ever Go Dull?

Why do Shun knife sets include a honing steel if you shouldn't use one on them?

Feb 07, 2009
tonicart in Features

The Open Door Japanese Izakaya - Hidden Gem in the SGV

Sounds great, thanks for the review. I'll definitely have to try it out soon :)

Jan 30, 2009
tonicart in Los Angeles Area