v

vanillagrrl's Profile

Title Last Reply

Denver top eats

If you're going all the way up to Fort Collins to New Belgium Brewery, I'd say don't miss Funkwerks! Amazing beers.

Jun 24, 2014
vanillagrrl in Mountain States

Boulder Lunch and Dinner (non-fancy) Places?

Someone suggested Mountain Sun/Southern Sun but I think Under the Sun (under the Mountain Sun location) has great food and it is now open for brunch, too. It does not feel like a pub that happens to serve brunch -- it's a proper restaurant that happens to have great beers and some decent cocktails on tap. I am loving that place these days.
We've had good food and beers at West Flanders Brewing Company on the Pearl Street Mall.
We frequent The Mediterranean (aka "The Med") for excellent 3-6 weekday and all day Sunday happy hour tapas that are a great value.
For breakfast/brunch/lunch try The Buff (26th and Canyon -- but weekend brunch can involve long waits), and Lucile's, near Pearl Street Mall, is a great place for beignets and breakfast or lunch.
I second the Chez Thuy recco.
Oak at 14th (on Pearl) is excellent, higher-end, but not outrageous. I still think of their fried pickle app...

Jun 24, 2014
vanillagrrl in Mountain States

American/New American for group of 14 in Silverlake/Hollywood/Glendale

I'm planning a gathering and looking for a place with good food that is not too spendy. Our group is meeting on Sunday around 5 pm (so happy hour prices would be a plus), and we'd like a place that is not too loud and has options for pescetarians and meat-and-potatoes eaters alike. Ideas?

May 27, 2014
vanillagrrl in Los Angeles Area

Is coconut pie as good as it sounds?

I made a key lime pie with cream of coconut (not the sweetened coconut cream) in place of the sweetened, condensed milk and it was really good. I'll bet what you're describing would be good, too.

Mar 24, 2013
vanillagrrl in Home Cooking

"Butter Bells"

What ellabee said. We love ours & have used one for years, in all seasons. There's a week or two in summer when we put ours in the fridge, but most of the time it stays on the counter and keeps our butter soft and fresh.

Jun 14, 2012
vanillagrrl in Cookware

Thai Ingredients in Denver - where to buy?

Pacific Mercantile, in downtown Denver, has a modest selection of produce including
Lemongrass, and lots of dry goods as well.

May 17, 2012
vanillagrrl in Mountain States

Szechuan in the Boulder area?

Does Zoe Ma Ma, here in Boulder, have any Sichuan specialties? And does anyone know where to find a good Ma Po Tofu locally? I usually make it myself (and I toast the Szechuan peppercorns from Savory to serve with it -- yum!), but it would be fun to try other versions.

May 03, 2012
vanillagrrl in Mountain States

Dan Dan Noodles in Boulder/Denver?

Just saw a post on Yelp about Yurihana Sushi Bar and Pan-Asian Cuisine in Gunbarrel having Dan Dan Noodles. Haven't tried the place yet.

May 03, 2012
vanillagrrl in Mountain States

Boulder CO - Breakfast Sandwiches?

I read the above comment, "can a $2 breakfast burrito be that good?" recently, and first had to get past the sad fact that this attitude could come from a fellow hound. Yes, a $2 breakfast burrito can be that good. It even inspired Gustavo Arellano (of the "Ask a Mexican" column) to say this in his recent (April 3, 2012) Westword cover story, "Why Denver is Home to the Best Mexican Dish in the United States ": "It initially seemed like any other burrito: wrapped in foil, in a flour tortilla, and big. Big deal. But then I took a bite. The beans were wonderful, the rice fluffy, the chorizo magnificent, the eggs silken. Then the spice hit: not the salsas I've known for so long, but something better, something fragrant, fleshy and with a kick like Jason Elam. It was spectacular, and taught me more was out there." AND: "The breakfast burrito at Santiago's ... is everything I love about Denver — humble, not ostentatious, the perfect size, and resolutely Mexican at its heart, even as the whiteys that were the eggs and potato tried to supersede the green chile and chorizo for taste, with each bite provoking desires for more. In other words: muy bueno."
http://www.westword.com/2012-04-05/re...

Apr 13, 2012
vanillagrrl in Mountain States

Lunch en route from Denver to Santa Fe?

We stopped in Walsenburg at Johnny's Place, right on the main drag, and they had amaaaaazing cinnamon rolls that the owners make themselves. They were so good that we ate some there, and took some home for the next day. We are still talking about them. They close after lunch, I think.

Apr 13, 2012
vanillagrrl in Mountain States

Denver Foodie Trip!

The only ones on your list I've ever been to are Domo and Casa Bonita. Of course, no one goes to CB for the food (except maybe the sopaipillas), but Domo is a marvelous and unique experience, and this would be a great season to go there. (Just don't expect a chair with a back.)

Apr 11, 2012
vanillagrrl in Mountain States

Boulder, CO

My tween kid likes the West End. She loves the chicken and waffles entree (and so do I). I like their wedge salad, the chicken and waffles, and several other dishes; I've always been underwhelmed by their deviled eggs, tho. The West End has good adult beverages, and it's a nice place to sit on the deck if it's not too hot (I know, it used to be nicer but it's still decent). It does get crowded and have long waits at peak times, tho. On second thought, that is true just about anywhere really good in town. We also love the Mountain Sun and have had good luck with food at the Lazy Dog (another good place to sit up on the deck -- and they have misters when it's hot out), the Walnut Brewery (I like their Santa Fe salad -- it's a classic southwestern chopped salad, but they top it with deep fried slices of jalapeno), and The Med is super-fun for happy hour -- order a ton of tapas and they have palate-pleasing beverages for all tastes and ages. The Corner Bar at the Hotel Boulderado often has really yummy happy hour food choices. All of these places are casual (flip-flops and shorts shouldn't draw any odd glances or snooty attitudes).

Apr 11, 2012
vanillagrrl in Mountain States

Hey locals! If you can get there tonight, go to Frasca!

Hey, Boulder hounds, I talked with Bobby Stuckey today and he said they lost 30 percent of their bookings yesterday because of the weather. I drove in it; it was hard to see by 6pm last night and this storm dropped about 13 inches of snow on Boulder. So if you have one of those amazing cars that gets you from there to anywhere and have been looking for a night to go to Frasca this holiday season, you actually do have a snowball's chance in heck at a table tonight!

Dec 22, 2011
vanillagrrl in Mountain States

Twisted Pine: a bunch of flavor hounds having a good time

We have started to go there with some regularity. They always have an amazing array of flavorful and delicious beers. And Billy's Chiles is my new favorite beer. We have also enjoyed their food; even with a limited menu (that will soon expand, now that city rules and regs have changed to acknowledge that it is smarter to let people eat and drink rather than just drink. I look forward to their imminent kitchen expansion!

For comparison's sake, I was not nearly as impressed by Upslope's tap room or beers, but like the neighborhood feel. A bit of pent-up demand is being met here, especially with the food trucks serving ale-friendly fares like deep-fried tacos and sausages, and a dartboard. Now I want to check out the organic brewery out in Gunbarrel.

Dec 22, 2011
vanillagrrl in Mountain States

ISO child friendly restaurants in Boulder that can also work with allergies...

My take is that the lack of a TJs also has to do with the regional competition. Boulder has become ground zero for natural foods marketing -- our Whole Foods is amazing, Natural Grocers (aka Vitamin Cottage) is great, and there are all sorts of upstarts like Sunflower and Sprouts competing for local food dollars. Safeway's 28th & Iris store is a flagship store for the chain. I know TJ's would be popular here, as they are elsewhere, but I don't know that their margins woutd be sustainable here with the array of shopping options we have now.

Also, I agree about not taking chances with allergies at Chez Thuy, as much as I love the place. We tried going there when my daughter and I were trying out a gluten-free diet, and they tried to tell us that hoisin sauce is GF. Bzzzt. Wrong.

-----
Chez Thuy
2655 28th St, Boulder, CO 80301

Nov 23, 2011
vanillagrrl in Mountain States

Snooze in Boulder

Went back today, this time with a big group, and had a great time. The place is seriously fun and cool. The barista customizes their tshirts, and many of the servers seem like they are into their jobs. Again, we had people with special dietary needs in our group and they did everything short of tap dance to accommodate. The toughest hurdle was dairy-free, but that person ended up with the smoked salmon omelette with arugula and was ecstatic. I liked my Benedict variant but wished I'd ordered the one with the jalapeño spoonbread. A couple of people had the breakfast pot pie, which looked and smelled great. Someone else had the corned beef hash and I immediately vowed to bring my DH next time. They're the real thing. Great coffee, great drinks (especially the house-made cucumbers, which they brought a plate of and a little pitcher of the pickle juice. I can see why it's hard to get a table without a long wait. One person said she had an hour-and-fifteen minute wait so they just planned to do some shopping downtown before breakfast. My family tried to go on Sunday at 9 but the crowd was daunting, so we walked to Lucile's and got a table immediately.

Nov 22, 2011
vanillagrrl in Mountain States

SF: Place for Dinner for 15 near Moscone Center?

Looking for a good resto for a business dinner for about 15, walking distance from Moscone Center. No sushi, not too exclusive but not super-casual either. Suggestions, anyone?

What's for Dinner # 113 [OLD]

We have a salmon recipe from one of Martha's mags, Everyday Food, that has been a hit ever since I first tried it. We have tweaked it for great effect and tonight we made sweet sticky brown rice, then I browned some shallots, added some wine and chicken stock, reduced it, and added dried cranberries. I chopped and stirred into the rice a pound of baby carrots, a cup of chopped mint (the snow must have insulated most of it, because despite below-freezing temps and an 11-inch snowfall last week, we still have lots of green mint out in the garden), and the shallot-wine-stock reduction. I greased a glass pan and spread the rice mixture (the original recipe calls for couscous but our dinner guests are gluten-free) in, and then nestled some salmon fillets into the rice. On top of the salmon I spooned a bit of mayo and mustard (a couple of tablespoons of each, blended together, was plenty for two pounds of fish). Baked for about 25 minutes at 375 F, covered in foil for the first 20 min. Very good.

I made a dessert that would work for tonight's dinner party and for my kid's class Halloween party tomorrow: Pumpkin pie bars. As always, it was impossible to find the crust I imagined, so I made one up: 1 cup each almond meal, Pamela's gluten-free baking mix (flour would work), and toasted quick oats, whirled in the food processor with 1 tsp. salt, 1 stick (1/2 cup) butter, 1 tsp. ground ginger, 1/3 cup white sugar, and 1/3 cup dark brown sugar. Pressed this onto a big jelly roll sheet and baked it for 10 minutes, then poured on pumpkin pie filling: 2-14 oz. cans pumpkin, 4 eggs, 1 6 oz. can evaporated milk, 1 cup whipped cream, 1/3 cup white sugar, 1/3 cup dark brown sugar, 2 tsp. ground cinnamon, 1 tsp. ground ginger, and 1/2 tsp. ground cloves. Baked at 350 F until set. Served with whipped cream. Delish and easy, and everyone liked the crust.

Oct 30, 2011
vanillagrrl in Home Cooking

What's for Dinner # 113 [OLD]

They were.

Oct 30, 2011
vanillagrrl in Home Cooking

What's for Dinner # 113 [OLD]

Felt like last meal of fall, especially because it is snowing now, first snow of the season in our parts. We had curried chicken salad sandwiches and roasted cauliflower. i ate all the butternut squash seeds-and-pulp I roasted at the same time as the cauliflower. I also roasted the squash to make into soup tomorrow, when it's supposed to be much colder.

As good as dinner was, it's dessert I'm excited about, though: pears poached in a syrup of white burgundy, sherry, maple syrup, star anise, lemon peel, sliced peach, and peppercorns, over vanilla ice cream, with toasted almonds. Mmmm....

Oct 25, 2011
vanillagrrl in Home Cooking

Bones in Denver

We left Boulder around 5:15 and were being seated by about 6:15 at Bones, where we didn't have a reservation but got a table with no problems. I ordered the lychee sidecar, a tart and pleasant tequila-based drink that I disappeared quickly. We had a "chef's special surprise" from the happy hour menu (we had to ask for the menu -- the waitress forgot to offer it, and happy hour ends at 6:30): broiled salmon on arugula with an asian pear-kimchi slaw. The salmon was delicious but there was no spice in the "kimchi" so we added some of the red sriracha sauce and it was perfect. Also ordered the steamed buns with suckling pig and hoisin. The hoisin was amazing, and its sweet, dark richness made for umami wondrousness with the roasted pork.

Noodles were calling. My DH ordered the pork and plum udon and I ordered the lobster ramen, fully intending to share. We swapped bowls several times. I exclaimed when I tasted the miso-lobster broth, "This isn't broth, this is gravy!" And it was indeed like the most rich, subtle, sweet, delicious gravy ever, and went great with the nicely chewy ramen noodles and chunks of sweet lobster. I had ordered it with the poached egg, which would add to a thinner broth but was superfluous here. I was underwhelmed by the edamame in the dish, too; I would think chopped bitter greens might be a better addition to contrast with that super-rich broth and be easier to pick up with 'sticks. I loved my DH's udon noodles and the broth was delicious, but I felt like I could figure that one out and make it myself so it was less compelling to me. The lobster ramen was the kind of thing that would take me years to reproduce. So worth it.

I noticed that Frank Bonanno has just opened a BBQ joint in LoDo to good reviews so far, so I'm sure he'll be getting lots of attention for that. But don't forget this little gem of a restaurant. Fabbo.

-----
Bones
701 Grant Street, Denver, CO 80203

Oct 25, 2011
vanillagrrl in Mountain States

Snooze in Boulder

I liked my three-pancake flight. I expected to be more wowed by each, but liked them fine (lemon blueberry, blue mesa corn, and sweet potato). I asked if I could have them gluten-free (not because I am celiac but because I feel healthier when I mix in flours other than wheat on occasion), and was told that one couldn't be made gluten-free but the waitress couldn't remember which one. She didn't blink twice when I said I wanted the two gluten free and one wheat pancakes. Nice. I found the amount of syrup/toppings to be almost perfect. My final verdict on the pancakes: I like the pancakes at Marie's better (but now I wish Marie's would get creative with their fillings/toppings -- that would be heavenly)!

I was compelled by all the pancake chatter about Snooze to try the flight, but next time I will try something savory, my usual choice for breakfast or brunch these days.

Oct 25, 2011
vanillagrrl in Mountain States

I've never eaten cauliflower before...

Had a delicious salad a couple of summers ago that I've made several times since: chopped raw cauliflower, chopped black olives, chopped cucumber, chopped red bell pepper, chopped celery, tossed with ranch dressing (or a creamy dressing with dill), and topped with roasted peanuts. You can swap in/out veggies you like but this is a surprisingly good combination.

Oct 23, 2011
vanillagrrl in Home Cooking

Canele in Boulder/Denver?

I had it at breakfast. Also noticed that The Tasterie Truck is offering them tomorrow (Thursday): http://www.facebook.com/TheTasterieTruck

May 25, 2011
vanillagrrl in Mountain States

Canele in Boulder/Denver?

The Kitchen in Boulder has them! Who knew? I had one and it was small and very tasty. At first I thought it was kind of bland and chewy, but then it grew on me -- that caramel flavor really comes through. Very nice.

May 23, 2011
vanillagrrl in Mountain States

Long Weekend in Denver & Boulder

But if you do want to tour the New Belgium brewery (which is pretty far out of your range, at 1-1/2 hours north of Denver, in Fort Collins), make your reservations well in advance -- they do fill up! I've heard it's a great tour, though, and hope to do it myself this summer.

Apr 04, 2011
vanillagrrl in Mountain States

Canele in Boulder/Denver?

If you do decide to make them for yourself, here are a couple of inspiring posts:

http://chocolateandzucchini.com/archi...

http://en.petitchef.com/recipes/canel...

Apr 04, 2011
vanillagrrl in Mountain States

Baking fail: Tunnel of Fudge Cake

I will have to do that -- I'll try it again sometime after I find a good bundt pan and bake it just exactly as the recipe specifies.

Apr 04, 2011
vanillagrrl in Home Cooking

Baking fail: Tunnel of Fudge Cake

This Cook's Country recipe didn't work for me at all! The cake came out underdone, even after baking it longer (and cutting the recipe down by 20 percent to make up for having a smaller pan) than the 45 minutes it called for. I won't be bringing it to a potluck tonight after all, boo-hoo! Any suggestions, other than baking it longer next time? Has anyone else had success with this? In retrospect, 45 minutes (at 350 F) seems like an absurdly low amount of time to bake a cake of this size.

Apr 02, 2011
vanillagrrl in Home Cooking

What's for Dinner? Part 81 (OLD)

We had spaghetti carbonara -- and we made fresh spaghetti for it. I used the Cook's Illustrated Best New Recipes version but added some frozen peas at the end, and served it with a light salad. Everyone was happy, and we have leftovers for lunch tomorrow.

Mar 29, 2011
vanillagrrl in Home Cooking