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svL's Profile

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Did Chada get their liquor license?

Did Chada get their liquor license or is it still BYOB? A month ago it seemed it was "any day now" but I see from some recent comments that it still not. Anybody know?

Nov 15, 2012
svL in Las Vegas

Tax Season: a very good three-course prix fixe at P'tit Laurent for $20.12

Since there were six of us, we ordered all the different choices in the app, main, and dessert categories and then sampled each other's choices. My personal choices were marinated salmon (similar to gravlax), rack of lamb and pan perdu (sort of a French toast). All very good.

Apr 05, 2012
svL in San Francisco Bay Area

Tax Season: a very good three-course prix fixe at P'tit Laurent for $20.12

Le P'tit Laurent, the casual French restaurant in the Glen Park neighborhood in San Francisco, has a very good three-course prix fixe special for $20.12 going until April 15th (weekends excluded). I went there last night and it was totally packed. I made reservations (for six) just the day before. The food was fairly simple but quite good.

Take a look at their menu at

http://www.leptitlaurent.net/cms.php?...

Apr 05, 2012
svL in San Francisco Bay Area

Napa Winery Question: Barnett Winery (vs) Quintessa

Barnett, way up on the mountain, has stunning views, way better than Q. Barnett wines, reflecting mountain grapes, are more austere and will take more aging to open up. Once the reds open up, five to ten years later, they will be silky and proud.

Try to visit both wineries, but if it is just one, I'd choose Barnett. It's more work to get there (it is WAY up on the mountain) but once there it is a different world. Looking down at the valley from up there really makes you appreciate a unique place of wine paradise.

May 03, 2011
svL in San Francisco Bay Area

Taqueria with handmade tortillas in San Francisco

Yes, I had tacos with handmade tortillas several times at the sit-down location. They also sell the handmade tortillas by the bag.

Jan 19, 2010
svL in San Francisco Bay Area

Dinner at Boulette's Larder?

I went to a birthday dinner at Boulette's about 10 months ago and I agree with the other poster's high opinion. The quality of food/service/presentation/ambience was superb.

I have no idea how much it cost, but it felt like it would be excellent value.

Oct 17, 2009
svL in San Francisco Bay Area

Taqueria with handmade tortillas in San Francisco

Los Gemelos in Redwood City makes fantastic tacos with handmade corn tortillas.

2855 Middlefield Rd, Redwood City, CA 94063-3326

Aug 24, 2009
svL in San Francisco Bay Area

Gallup recommendations?

Not so. There are some very good New Mexican restaurants. I particularly like Jerry's Cafe.

Take a look at this link:

http://local.yahoo.com/NM/Gallup/Food...

Aug 12, 2009
svL in Southwest

What restaurants in Vegas got Michelin stars?

I read in the paper that 12 restaurants got Michelin stars, Robichon got 3, Picasso 2. What others?

Dec 02, 2007
svL in Southwest

Lunch Between LA and Monterey?

I've eaten several times at Pete's and like it a lot, but keep in mind that their patio is outdoors and the weather doesn't always cooperate in late November. They do have a couple of small tables inside, in front of their fish display case, but it's really cramped
and not good for lunch in there.

Nov 16, 2007
svL in California

Acquerello or Ame?

I need help. An out-of-town foodie friend is coming into town and wants to go to either Acquerello or Ame. He is asking me which, but I have been to neither and therefore am seeking advice.

This guy is a food fanatic, with lots of opinions (which he probably deserves to have -- he's pretty knowledgeable). I don't know why he narrowed it down to just these two restaurants; perhaps because he's already been to most other top-end places in SF on previous visits.

Nov 15, 2007
svL in San Francisco Bay Area

Sonoma Zinfandel Tasting

Lots of good suggestions on the Zin, but how could they not mention Meeker in Geyserville?

Nov 15, 2007
svL in San Francisco Bay Area

Lunch Between LA and Monterey?

If you leave around 10 am, you should be by Santa Barbara around 12:30pm. A great place for lunch is the S.B. Shellfish Company. Great, super-fresh seafood and chowders. It's right on the pier (free parking). Very low-key ambiance (basically several stoves with giant pots surrounded by counters where you sit). If the weather is nice, you can eat outside.

http://www.sbfishhouse.com/shellfishco.htm

Another choice: If you leave LA and can make it for fours hours without eating you'll be near Pismo Beach where once again you can have excellent clam or oyster chowders at the Splash Cafe, right by the pier in Pismo. (They also have burgers, calamari, etc., but clam chowder is what they are rightfully known for.) It's inexpensive and very popular, with long lines but they move fast. They also have a branch in San Luis Obispo but the one in Pismo is better.

http://www.splashcafe.com/

-----
Santa Barbara Shellfish Company
230 Stearns Wharf, Santa Barbara, CA 93101

Nov 15, 2007
svL in California

Red Bluff and Lassen Nat'l Park

On the way back down from Lake Almanor, I went through Chico last week and visited the SN brewery. Impressive and interesting facility. Definitely worth a stop. If you time it right you can go on one of their tours which are pretty informative. Check their website for tour details.

Their brewpub restaurant was quite elegant and the food appeared to be good. They have a wood (almond wood, I asked) fired pizza oven and the pizzas -- thin crust -- smelled and looked great. They seemed to have all their beers on tap. It was around 1:30 pm on Friday and the place was packed with a shortish waiting line.

We did not eat there because we were stuffed on Mexican food: just before going to SN we had stopped at a taco truck near Chico State which had excellent tacos and burritos. This taco truck was called Puerto Vallarta and it was parked in a small parking lot off the main Chico street, Esplanade, west of the college area. If you miss it, Chico has many taco trucks sprinkled around town.

Aug 23, 2007
svL in California

Monterey Eating, Part I: Tico’s in Marina, and a Passionfish Update

Nice report. The huevos sound great; I'll have to go there next time in the Monterey area.

BTW, weren't you going to do a report on Chester/Lake Almanor? I'm going there next week for a few days and it would be quite useful.

Thanks.

Aug 06, 2007
svL in California

New Breakfast spots in Monterey? Huevos Rancheros?

Couple of weeks ago, while in Salinas for the rodeo, I had excellent huevos rancheros at First Awakenings in downtown Salinas. I'm no expert in huevos, but these were the best I've ever had.

FA is a popular breakfast restaurant with branches in Salinas and Monterey. I was somewhat surprised by how good the huevos were, because, to me, FA is a somewhat gringo kind of place, but I guess their kitchen (at least in Salinas) is manned by Mexicans who know what they are doing.

Aug 02, 2007
svL in California

Mirepoix in Windsor - pure disappointment

This is disappointing. I've been to Mirepoix several times and it's always been consistenly good to excellent. Also, they've been pretty liberal on corkage (around $8/bottle) and (I think) they waive it if you also buy one of their bottles.

Maybe it's a summertime thing with the principals on vacation?

Jul 26, 2007
svL in San Francisco Bay Area

best roti prata?

I had lunch at Lime Tree couple of days ago. The roti and murtabak were very good.

Jul 01, 2007
svL in San Francisco Bay Area

Tongue, Anyone?

If Richard is willing to branch out a bit, what about duck tongue? There is a Chinese take-out joint on the corner of 6th and Clement that has a delicious duck tongue dish. Their duck tongues are somewhat similar to cow tongues in texture and flavor.

Jun 15, 2007
svL in San Francisco Bay Area

Healdsburg - Mirepoix, Santi, Willi's or Barndiva?

Check out a related thread on Mirepoix from a couple of days ago:

http://www.chowhound.com/topics/39321...

Apr 20, 2007
svL in San Francisco Bay Area

Recos for Three Nights in Windsor, Wine / Food?

Chef change? I've been going to Mirepoix once or twice a year for about 4-5 years and haven't noticed any chef changes. What they did do about two years ago is to make the menu more casual. You can get the more elaborate and seasonally matched dishes just like before, but you can also get "comfort food" like sweetbreads, steak au poivre or roasted chicken. I've never had a bad dish there; always properly prepared and always interesting.

I was there last about a month and one half ago, during the Barrel Tasting weekend. It was as good as ever. The small (about 12 two-tops, I think) dining room was almost full. There was a loud party of 6 or 8 (judging by the number of bottles on their table I think they were wine people) but once they left it was quite comfortable and relaxing. The two or three servers were almost invisible, meaning very good.

Something new to me: it seems that there were more singles eating at the small bar than before, but maybe it was because of the Barrel Tasting event. Also, the wine list now seems to have a lot more choices from around the world, whereas before the list was mostly Sonoma-centric. If you bring your own wine the corkage is $7 and gets waived if you buy some of their wine. Nice Riedel glasses. Mirepoix seems to be popular with people in the wine business (I see and hear them every time I'm there), maybe because the owners encourage them.

Oh, yes. There *has* been a change: the owners (he chef, she manager/maitre d') got married about a year ago.

Apr 19, 2007
svL in San Francisco Bay Area

Recos for Three Nights in Windsor, Wine / Food?

IMHO, one of the best wine country restaurants is right there in Windsor: Mirepoix. Bistro-style, French-California cuisine. Small, warm and attentive service. Interesting wine list and a liberal corkage policy.

http://www.restaurantmirepoix.com/

Apr 19, 2007
svL in San Francisco Bay Area

Russian River Wine Road - Barrel Tasting Event

Sorry, that Family Wineries place (Family Wineries Tasting Room is their full name) has Amphora, not Armida.

Mar 09, 2007
svL in San Francisco Bay Area

Russian River Wine Road - Barrel Tasting Event

I went last Friday and Saturday (March 2 and 3). Friday's attendance was about the same as in previous years. Saturday was not a mad house like I expected. It was crowded but not crazy. Parking was never an issue at any winery, whereas in years past cars would be spilling out on the roads and blocking traffic. The most crowded place I was in was the Family Wineries place in Dry Creek where they have something like 8 different wineries (Armida, Papapietro, etc.) sharing the same facilities and parking lot. But even that was quite manageable. I expected big crowds at Siduri, but when I got there around 2 pm Saturday -- prime time -- it was fairly active but nothing like "three-deep" as in years past.

I don't know what to attribute this to. The weather was absolutely perfect. One thing I noticed this year was a lot more people using limos than in years past. This is probably a good trend -- fewer drunk drivers, but maybe people who come by limo don't buy as much. Maybe they just want to get a buzz with their limo friends and move onto the next winery?

It'll be interesting to find out how this weekend will have fared. If you find out, please post next week.

Mar 09, 2007
svL in San Francisco Bay Area

Russian River Wine Road - Barrel Tasting Event

They say "No Tickets Required!" in their promotional literature and website but in the very next sentence they say

"To taste, everyone must purchase our tasting glass and event wristband for $10.00 at the first winery they visit, each weekend. "

which is kind of strange phrasing.

This event has been "The Last of the Mohicans" for many years in the sense that it was the last <i>free</i> event in the wine country. You had to bring your own wine glass but that was it. Then a couple of years ago it was still free but I noticed they started to put on the pressure to make you buy their logo glasses for $5. This year, for the first time, they are forcing you to pay $10.

This event, usually held on the worst-weather-of-the-year weekend, used to attract a true-aficionados crowd and the wineries loved it. In the last few years, however, it's become much more popular and now it's a real zoo. Similar to what happened to another extremely popular weekend event, held in April, The Dry Creek Pasport. That event too, started many years ago charging a modest fee and now it's $110 for the weekend!

I get a feeling that the wineries resisted charging for the Barrel Tasting event but the costs of running it probably got too high. Hence the strange wording of "no ticket, but must buy wristband."

I

Mar 01, 2007
svL in San Francisco Bay Area

Carmel/Monterey

Pacific's Edge in Carmel Highlands would be my top choice, if price is not an issue.

Jan 31, 2007
svL in California

Any good eats in Lodi Zinfandel country?

The best restaurant is probably Wine & Roses. Unfortunately it is highly overpriced.

Menu:
http://www.winerose.com/restaurant.html

Jan 19, 2007
svL in California

Ensenada Ceviche & Tijuana Taco [moved from Calif. Board]

I was in Ensenada a couple of weeks ago. The best fish tacos I've ever had were from Tacos al Fenix. Super fresh and super tasty. I put away four or five.

This place is about a 15-minute walk away from the touristy city center. It is a taco stand right on the corner, not a sit-down restaurant. It seems to be quite popular with the locals; there was a line the entire time I was there.

Tacos el Fenix, Av. Espinosa at Av. Juárez (Calle 5a). 8 a.m.-8 p.m. daily. Fish and prawn tacos, $1-$1.25 apiece.

Jan 08, 2007
svL in Mexico

Crater Lake to New Sammy's-crazy?

I said the wine list was expensive, not overpriced. The wines could be good value but still expensive.

For example, a bottle that retails for $200 and goes for $180 at a restaurant is good value but still expensive to me.

Vernon's list is full of excellent and hard-to-find wines that are well-priced but expensive to begin with.

Aug 02, 2006
svL in Pacific Northwest

Crater Lake to New Sammy's-crazy?

I agree with hungryhippo: Sammy's is good but not worth the 3-hour drive. It's got this legend about it because of the unusual way the owners came to start the restaurant in Talent (passionate foodies go overboard at their labor-of-love restaurant in Boonville, CA and generate lots of debt; flee without paying to Oregon and start another local-ingredients restaurant near Ashland), but it's not THAT special. They do use local ingredients as much as they can but not always with perfect results. The French-oriented wine list is amazing (but expensive). The small dining room is kind of cozy but rather plain (and quite dark the day we were there last summer).

Jul 28, 2006
svL in Pacific Northwest