Malcolm Ruthven's Profile

Title Last Reply

Polk St. Indian Restaurants SF

Is this the at India Curry House 1040 Columbus?

Mustards Grill: My Theory [Napa]

It's been some years since I've been there, but on earlier visits I remember how I thought the food was great (we usually had a few small plates) and the service was great (very friendly and accommodating), and after a couple of later visits remember thinking that it seemed like just another tourist-trap place, both food (mediocre) and service (hurried and impersonal). Sorry I can't be more specific.

Mustards Grill: My Theory [Napa]

I just now happened on to this thread, and have to say (1) I've been there only a few times over a lot of years and (2) the first time or two it was great, both food and service, and the latter times not great at all in both respects. I don't even think about stopping there now. I certainly wish it would get back to its "good old days".

Chinese chicken salad recipe ho chow - Fremont t

Thanks. Time for a new can of it.

Chinese chicken salad recipe ho chow - Fremont t

Thanks, I have Coleman's. Does it get weak with time (container closed of course)?

Chinese chicken salad recipe ho chow - Fremont t

>hot powdered mustard<

Is this available in most Asian markets? Recommended brands?

> Chinese five-spice salt (separate recipe)<

Recipe example? Or is it also available in Asian markets?

From Miami to San Rafael

Not sure about stylish, but great food for breakfast and lunch in a casual setting at M.H. Bread & Butter in San Anselmo.



Critique my Sonoma wine itinerary please

I afgee about the tour, but I've actively disliked their wines for a long time.

Zuni Cafe, 2014 [San Francisco]

Zuni has been my choice of what a San Francisco restaurant should be since I started going there some time in the early 1980s, maybe even late 70s. I still have an impression of my first visit there so long ago, and it's of that great narrow bar surrounded by windows with a very eclectic mix of people of all ages and all walks of life and dressed from jeans to suits. Then we went upstairs overlooking the bar and ate the great food. It's still a place I make sure I take visitors to. I haven't been there in about a year and it's great to know it's still at the top of its game.

All-Star Donuts [San Francisco, Marina DIstrict location]

I've been stopping in there infrequently for a very long time. They were one of the few doughnut places that knew how to make a good French cruller.

Taste Kitchen & Table open in Fairfax

I went back today for lunch about 1pm and found a quite busy place less than a week after opening, and the service was just fine. They were out of many of the bakery goods; Fairfax seems to have embraced this place quickly. I had the Smoked Salmon Toastie ($8.99) - smoked salmon, soft goat cheese, green tomato, pickled red onion on a seasoned bruchetta. It was as good as it looks in the photo. I'm no connoisseur of green tomatoes, but they're very different from regular tomatoes, quite a bit less soft and with a different flavor which I won't even try to describe. The balsamic dressing drizzled over the tomatoes and lettuce worked well. All in all, a worthy addition to the area along with H.M. Bread & Butter in San Anselmo.

A few photos: http://ruthvenphotos2.com/taste-fairfax

Anyone been to The BBQ Spot in Santa Rosa?

I'd call it tender, and juicy enough for me.

Anyone been to The BBQ Spot in Santa Rosa?

Hard to tell all chopped up like that.

Anyone been to The BBQ Spot in Santa Rosa?

I had their brisket sandwich with baked beans today. I asked for the sauce on the side and received no admonition; the friendly staff person took it in stride. The pretty-large sandwich arrived with chopped meat instead of slices, just as Melnanie found, a big negative to me. I didn't find it as tasteless as she did; there was some noticeable smoke flavor (but no seasoning) and some charred ends with more flavor. But the flavor wasn't at the Memphis Minnie's level at all. The beans were close to the type I like, a sweet-ish type (probably from molasses) but there was all this thick "sauce", seemingly more of that than beans; good tasting, but the ratio was off to me. I wouldn't go back for the brisket, but maybe to try the pulled pork. They'll be moving closer to downtown in October.

Apple Crumb Pie @ Criminal Baking Co.[now Undercover Baking Agency] in Santa Rosa

This morning I had their Chile Relleno, one of the best I've had anywhere. It was large, tender, and filled with white cheddar from Petaluma Creamery. It came with good-tasting slices of tomatoes and a green salad, all drizzled with a balsamic dressing. A very good value at $6.50. This place continues to impress me.

Photo: http://ruthvenphotos2.com/undercover-...

Taste Kitchen & Table open in Fairfax

Taste Kitchen & Table opened today in Fairfax in the prior location of Fat Angel bakery. Shannon, owner of Fat Angel, will be baking many of the items offered. Rochelle, co-owner of Taste, will also be baking her own items. I stopped in today and had a Kouign amann, one of Rochelle's creations, and it was excellent. They also have a breakfast and lunch menu and just received their beer and wine license. Check out this new high-quality place.

Taste Kitchen & Table
71 Broadway
Fairfax, CA 94930

San Jose, Half Moon Bay and Sausalito

Le Garage is a quite good casual French bistro on the water in Sausalito. Lots of favorable mentions here.


Eating out in Healdsburg

When were you there? Three of us had a decidedly lesser experience about a year ago.

anyone been to baan thai cuisine in downtown san anselmo

Don't know.

anyone been to baan thai cuisine in downtown san anselmo

Another very good lunch there today with a business friend. Pumpkin Curry and Eggplant Curry lunch plates ($9), both with brown rice at no extra charge.

Photos: http://ruthvenphotos2.com/baanthai

New French Cafe in Sausalito

Today I have my first real meal here instead of just a pastry or (one time) a sandwich. I had the Duck Confit Galette ($14). It was on the Breakfast & Brunch menu but I'll bet you could order it any time. The lunch menu was also available as were all the things in the front cases. I'm no expert on French food, but I'll proclaim this to be wonderful. The duck confit was in a pile of many thin slices, just fatty enough to be interesting. Counterclockwise from the duck was the sweet potato whatever (scalloped sweet potatoes?), also wonderful; kale salad which I loved in spite of generally not liking kale; and ratatouille which was fine but a bit bland to my taste. With that one small picky negative, the whole plate was a winner in flavor and generous quantity. There were two servers working today with the owner in the kitchen cooking. There were several tables filled and everyone seemed to be quite happy. They are getting their act together. Note, though, that there is a sign at the front desk that says something like "Come into the kitchen to find me" so it's still that sort of place, which is fine with me.

Larger photo: http://ruthvenphotos2.com/bio-sausali...

Kitchener Collective, Corte Madera

Went there today and had the British Beef & Veg Pasty ($7.50). It was excellent, obviously made with high-quality ingredients, and the pastry part was outstanding. Also much larger than the empanadas (which cost less).

Photo of the pasty: http://ruthvenphotos2.com/kitchener_c...

Water Street Bistro. Downtown Petaluma

About a year later, back for another 1/2 sandwich & cup of soup, this time a muffaletta and crayfish chowder (and great bread). Both were excellent as usual and still $7.75.

New French Cafe in Sausalito

Met someone these this morning for a business meeting and had the Croque Monsieur. This interpretation was open faced on a brioche. Quite decadent and good.

Photo of Croque Monsieur: http://ruthvenphotos2.com/bio-sausali...

MY China in Graton Resort & Casino [Rohnert Park, Sonoma County]

I'm sorry, but I have no idea what you meant. Did you mean to recommend a Chinese restaurant in southern Sonoma county? If so, which one?

New French Cafe in Sausalito

Update on the Salmon Quiche. Had it mid-morning today and it's a bit smaller, $4 instead of $5, and self-contained instead of in a container. The owner made the change because she was wasting all of the containers the other way. Same delicious and unique quiche.

Photo of the quiche:

The best San Francisco sourdough?

Bordenave bakery is in San Rafael, close enough to me that I can stop in most any time. So I'll give it another try, this time with a sourdough roll. The loaf of sourdough I had a few years ago wasn't worth eating.

The best San Francisco sourdough?

With all the wonderful bakers in our area now, wouldn't you think at least one of them would want to and be able to make SF sourdough the way it used to be?

Shrimp Grits by Chef Skip Henderson at the Windsor Certified Farmers Market

Is this the Skip Henderson who had a restaurant in Corte Madera what seems like a lifetime ago?

anyone been to baan thai cuisine in downtown san anselmo

Had lunch there today, first time since the owner of its predecessor, Orchid Thai, died. I had Spicy Green Beans with Chicken, one of the many lunch plates ($9). It was excellent, both visually and flavor-wise. The side salad had not much to do with Thai cuisine, but was OK, The green beans and chicken and other vegis were very good, the brown rice (option) was fine. It was what I'd call medium hot. An excellent lunch. All the staff I encountered were friendly and helpful. I'll go back and try other things.

A few photos: http://ruthvenphotos2.com/baanthai