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Husk VS. McCrady's (FIG's a done deal)

Great advice - thank you! Think we'll stick w/McCrady's and FIG's, with Husk (or Cru) for lunch. Can't wait.

Aug 15, 2013
berriehappie in Southeast

Husk VS. McCrady's (FIG's a done deal)

Thanks CD! So then I guess my question is: how formal is formal at McCrady's? The vibe, of course, not the attire ;) Husband's not a fan of being locked down for 8+ courses, but my personal feeling is 4 is manageable.

Second question, then, assuming we go McCrady's over Husk for dinner - too much to smash in Husk and FIG in one day? Food overload? We already are planning Hall's for Sunday brunch, unless you'd suggest Husk instead that day...

Thanks again for the help...

Aug 13, 2013
berriehappie in Southeast

Austin Trip Report: Uchiko Takes the Cake

Back from a wonderful weekend in Austin, and given the excellent advice from Chowhounds, though I'd report back on some of our restaurant selections.

Hit up a variety of places for breakfast tacos but will briefly mention that all parties enjoyed Juan in a Million, FWIW.

Was looking forward to El Naranjo for dinner before a night on Rainey Street. The food was excellent, if a tad overpriced; the service left much to be desired. (Used to work in the industry, so wracked my brain to see if our small party of three performed any of the obnoxious restaurant sins. Other than a fairly easy substitution early on, thought we were pretty well-behaved.) Nopales stood out, as did the to-die-for gazpacho (simple but packed full of flavor.) Shrimp came out undercooked, but the Cochinitas were excellent.

Second Bar + Kitchen was the vibe we were looking for after stuffing ourselves with Tex-Mex Friday morning. Was nervous about having to wait for a reservation, but they seated us quickly. Great lighter fare; cucumber gazpacho another standout. Ubiquitous pork belly was fine, if nothing special. Bitter + butter lettuce salad was a surprising favorite (doesn't sound like much on the menu, but tasty.) Heard the pappardelle was also good, though didn't try it myself.

Uchiko capped off our weekend, and boy, what a finale. I'm sure I sound like a total fangirl by raving, but we loved it. I'd debated between Uchi and Uchiko, but glad we went with 'Ko (and for a second, thought about the new Qui restaurant, but passed and glad we did.) Still dreaming about the hama chili, and ordered a second serving of brussels sprouts after the firt (of course.) Missed the presentation of the jar jar duck, which went over like a lead balloon at the table. Personally, I thought it tasted good, if not foodgasmly. Sushi all excellent, and we licked the bowl clean of congee. Tempura onion rings came out later, so we were stuffed, but dining companions wished they'd left room. Sampled a couple desserts - fried milk was most memorable.

All in all, an excellent weekend.

Still on the list for next time: Franklin's (was with too many vegetarians to make it worthwhile!) and East Side Kings/Qui... plus many more, I'm sure.

Thanks again for all the advice!

Aug 13, 2013
berriehappie in Austin

Husk VS. McCrady's (FIG's a done deal)

Hi hounds! Longtime Charleston lurker, first-time poster. Fulfilling a travel wish by heading to Charleston for our anniversary at the end of October. Lodging's set (Vendue), as are some spots to hit up for post-dinner drinks (Gin Joint, Stars, Closed for Business, etc.) Already set for Halls brunch Sunday, and will probably wander the farmers' market for something to eat Saturday.

So my question - we've got space for two dinners Friday and Saturday evenings. Definitely want to hit up FIG, that's a given. As for the other night: Husk or McCrady's? If it were my call, I'd head to McCrady's for sure- but hubby's not a huge fan of the molecular gastronomy/"fancypants" (as he calls it :)) dining experience. But I've seen mixed reviews lately for Husk. Thoughts? Is McCrady's overly "fancypants?"

The other sub-questions: we could swing lunch at Husk possibly Friday late afternoon or Saturday - but is that an absurd amount of food for one day? (Although... it IS vacation.)

Would appreciate any input! Thanks so much.

Aug 13, 2013
berriehappie in Southeast

Wedding Reception Beer

Alright, we've narrowed it down (we think?) Input please!

Yuengling
Dogfish 60-Minute
Sly Fox Pikeland Pils

Then we'll have a couple cases of PBR for the groomsmen, and some sixers of Punkin for my man and me.

What do you think? Will we miss the Bud Lite? (Future hubby thinks people will be upset with the lack of a light beer, but I feel like DFH 60 is eminently drinkable, and the Pikeland's not heavy either...)

Thoughts on the variety?

Sep 08, 2011
berriehappie in Beer

Wedding Reception Beer

Good points, all - Jim and JAB, definitely into the local idea, and CWD, thanks for the great suggestions. Love the image of the "Oktoberfest" theme, Rex, sounds like you and your guests will have a blast!

I agree that too many choices will be overwhelming - our caterer recommended against that for the exact reason Rex mentioned (you run out of Yuengling in an hour and then non-beer-heads get annoyed.) Will go over some of the options with future hubby and let you know how it goes... thanks again for all the help :)

Sep 07, 2011
berriehappie in Beer

Wedding Reception Beer

Hi there! Looking for some advice on 3-4 different beers to serve at an upcoming wedding reception.

Would like some choices which appeal to a broad swath of people (from the older uncles to younger cousins.) Some of our guests are *very* into beer - we have several microbrewers in the family - and others would drink Miller lite all day.

Trying to strike a balance between avoiding the Miller/Bud/Coors world, and not delving too deeply into the esoteric craft planet either.

We're huge Dogfish Head fans, and used to live across the street from the Rehoboth pub, so would love to do exclusively DFH...but not sure if that would appeal to people? 60-minute is a definite, though. We were also thinking Punkin, since it's a fall wedding, but again...not sure if that's too "pigeonhole-y."

Other than that - considering Yuengling since we'll be in PA, and we know lots of people like it. Maybe one more? Would love suggestions! Food pairings are ribs, salmon, pasta, so we're kind of all over the map.

Sep 06, 2011
berriehappie in Beer

French Laundry OR Cyrus?

Thanks Shouzen - I did *not* know that. C'est la vie - still will be fun to try a Keller place, I think.

French Laundry OR Cyrus?

Thanks, all - helpful stuff.

I agree that it might be insanity to fly in, drive 90 minutes, and then try for a 5-star meal.

FL's only open for lunch Fri-Sun, unfortunately, and we can't go Wednesday for dinner (or would rather *not* go Wednesday) since we're staying in Healdsburg and don't want to drive back from Yountville after a meal like that.

I'm thinking *maybe* lunch on Friday could work; we'd have to be at the airport early Saturday morning, but we could wake up early. The only tradeoff is that if we do FL lunch Friday, we're definitely *not* doing Cyrus dinner that week (we don't mind splurging, but that's just outta this world.)

I'm thinking I may stick with the original plan of doing Cyrus and skipping FL, at least on this trip. Hopefully we'll be back - after all, isn't that what anniversaries are for?? :)

***ETA***: Just realized Cyrus is closed on Wednesday - we'll go Thursday.

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Cyrus Restaurant
29 North St, Healdsburg, CA 95448

French Laundry OR Cyrus?

I'm making reservations this week (two months in advance!) for dinners during our honeymoon to the Yountville/Sonoma area.

Our itinerary has us flying in from the east coast Monday morning, driving to Yountville, staying there Monday, and then driving to Healdsburg/staying there the rest of the week.

Our original dinner plan (yes, I love to eat ;)) has us going to Ad Hoc Monday night for the fried chicken, doing something low-key in Healdsburg Tuesday, Cyrus on Wednesday (once we're relaxed and not jet-lagged) and then playing it by ear the rest of the week.

However...now I'm starting to wonder if I will regret not eating at French Laundry on our trip west.

My question:

IF I can get reservations tomorrow (which I realize is a BIG IF) - should we do French Laundry that Monday over Cyrus that Wednesday?

I just worry that trying to cram in a multi-course, multi-hour meal the same day we arrive on the west coast might detract from the experience. (We are willing to splurge, so the difference in cost isn't so much a factor. Just want to make sure we get full enjoyment.)

Thoughts?

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The French Laundry
6640 Washington Street, Yountville, CA 94599

Ad Hoc
6476 Washington St., Yountville, CA 94599

Parents Meeting Parents: Help w/ Casual Dinner in Charlestown, North End, West End

Sooo...

I'm in desperate need of restaurant suggestions this coming weekend. My mother, her best friend and myself are heading to Boston for a special trip. While there, we're meeting my fiance's sister's family (they live in Boston), and my fiance's parents. This is the first time the parents are meeting :)

So, my question: we need a low-key, casual dinner spot that satisfies two very different groups of people. Parameters:

-Parents are staying in Charlestown, so we're hoping to stay in that general area (though wouldn't be opposed to other neighborhoods)
-Nothing particularly exotic - spicy foods don't sit well with one parent.
-Another cannot eat garlic - so there goes Italian.
-Trying to avoid anything too expensive/"intimidating"
-Family-friendly - we'll have two little nieces with us (ages 8 mos. and 3)
-Not a must-have, but easy parking would be a plus

I thought casual seafood might be a great choice as far as pleasing everybody, but I'm having trouble finding a spot.

Any help would be MUCH appreciated! I'm much more used to picking dinner locations for the food-adventurous 20-somethings we pal around with, so trying to incorporate parents/kids/picky palates is a challenge :)

Thanks so much!

Chowhound Help: A taste of Maryland in Center City?

Hi all! Brand new to the chow boards here, but hoping you can help. I'm looking for a place with great blue claw crabs, Old Bay style, in the downtown Philly area. Someplace good for groups, where you can lay out a bunch of crabs on a table covered in brown paper (very Chesapeake Bay-ish.)

Any thoughts? I've only seen DiNardo's, and I'm wondering if anyone has any opinions on that one, too...

Oct 16, 2010
berriehappie in Philadelphia