Civil Bear's Profile

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El Molcajete in Cloverdale, Sonoma County

Trying the dish just one time from the late El Delfin was enough to scare me off from ordering it again at other places. And I really enjoyed the other dishes from ED.

1 day ago
Civil Bear in San Francisco Bay Area

El Tomate on 24th St (SF)

Had a very nice lunch at El Tomate this afternoon. The special was Barbacoa des Res made with short ribs. Tender and and savory in a flavorful red sauce. Served with the usual rice and beans along with chopped onion and habanero. Fresh hand-made tortillas were also provided to sop up the sauce but were just a bit too thick for my preference.

1 day ago
Civil Bear in San Francisco Bay Area

Biscuits and Gravy: SFBA Dish of the Month July 2014

Okay, B&G month has passed, and the location isn't exactly Bay Area, but I came across a version that was so good I just had to post it anyway.

Nancy's Airport Cafe is a hidden gem just off of I-5 in Willows. The huge portion for $5 came with two large light and fluffy biscuits cut in half and smothered with a silky smooth country gravy. The gravy was so good I had to order the chicken fried steak on the way back to the Bay Area. The CFS was crispy and tender and has wrecked me for CFS at other locations.

1 day ago
Civil Bear in San Francisco Bay Area

Salumi and Charcuteri in San Francisco

The plate from Barbacco is great. I believe the make it next door at Perbacco.

Aug 18, 2014
Civil Bear in San Francisco Bay Area

Egg Custard Tarts from Alex Bakery on Clement (SF)

I'm not a particularly big egg custard tart fan, but after seeing them on display at Alex Bakery during my morning stops on the way in to work I thought I would give one a try.

I've never made it out to GG Bakery for a comparison, but this version was pretty darn good. Crust was light and super flaky (warning if trying to eat one in the car), and the large filling was warm and fresh tasting and not overly sweet or dense. I also didn't get that "tin" taste that I get with so many other version.

I would love to hear what some others may have to say about this version, and see where it stacks up with the best.

Aug 14, 2014
Civil Bear in San Francisco Bay Area

Help requested: Date night with the Wife (SF)

Thanks all. Frances appears to be the consensus. Unfortunately, as luck would have it something has come up postponing our scheduled date night. I guess I'll have to reschedule based on when I can get another reso to Frances!

Aug 14, 2014
Civil Bear in San Francisco Bay Area
1

Hatch Green Chiles 2014

I hear Molly Stones will be roasting at various locations in September...

<<BadumBump>>

Aug 13, 2014
Civil Bear in San Francisco Bay Area

Help requested: Date night with the Wife (SF)

Thanks. I see Cafe Claude has 1,000 points for the time slot I am looking at.

Aug 12, 2014
Civil Bear in San Francisco Bay Area

Help requested: Date night with the Wife (SF)

I could use some help selecting a restaurant for date night with my wife. We don't live in SF, so we don't get out to dinner in the City all that much. OpenTable has the following available reservations that have peaked my interest:

Marlow
Frances
Wayfare Tavern
Zero Zero
Cafe Claude
Lulu
Gitane

Atmosphere does not necessarily have to be romantic. Vibrant is okay too as long as it isn't a zoo. Comfortable, uncramped seating is a plus. Great non foo-foo food and friendly informal service is desirable. Extensive or creative wine & cocktail lists are not essential.

Aug 12, 2014
Civil Bear in San Francisco Bay Area

Great China (Berkeley) still great

Heh, I guessed you were just going to link the entire thread.

Aug 07, 2014
Civil Bear in San Francisco Bay Area

Chow Mein on Clement St [San Francisco]

Pretty good, but it just had chicken and mushroom inside. Am I thinking of something else?

Aug 06, 2014
Civil Bear in San Francisco Bay Area

Chow Mein on Clement St [San Francisco]

Just had the sticky rice from WL yesterday!

Aug 06, 2014
Civil Bear in San Francisco Bay Area

Chow Mein on Clement St [San Francisco]

Wing Lee at 6th should fit the bill.

Aug 05, 2014
Civil Bear in San Francisco Bay Area

El Palmar in Novato

I am really starting to like this taquaria more and more. Had the chiliquiles with the red spicy sauce and it was quite good. The special today was birria de borrego, so I had them mix is some of that in as well. Pure awesomeness.

El Palmar is right next door to Marvin's in Novato, so it is kind of fun walking past the long lines and getting to order my brunch right away!

Aug 03, 2014
Civil Bear in San Francisco Bay Area
1

What time is best to buy fish from the docks in HMB?

Don't know about HMB per se, but fishermen tend to go out in the morning and come back in the afternoon, so I would assume afternoon would be best.

Aug 03, 2014
Civil Bear in San Francisco Bay Area

The FiveThirtyEight Does Burritos

I've never quite understood the hype of El Farlito. My burrito experiences there have always been mediocre ingredients slopped together. I suppose it is a good value if on a budget.

Jul 31, 2014
Civil Bear in San Francisco Bay Area

to chez panisse or to not chez panisse, that is the question

Happy to report that claim is confirmed!

Jul 31, 2014
Civil Bear in San Francisco Bay Area

The FiveThirtyEight Does Burritos

You can get the spicy salsa verde sauce to go, or have them add it to the burrito when they make it.

Jul 29, 2014
Civil Bear in San Francisco Bay Area

How many SF 49ers football fans really want Vegan food?

Heh, yeah "sophisticated" can be swapped-out with many adjectives depending upon how one looks at it.

Jul 29, 2014
Civil Bear in San Francisco Bay Area

Biscuits and Gravy: SFBA Dish of the Month July 2014

Tried to go more "upscale" today at CDXX, but alas, they only serve their B&G for brunch on the weekends.

Jul 28, 2014
Civil Bear in San Francisco Bay Area

Perdition Smokehouse (downtown Berkeley)

I would guess that ribs tend to taste smokier than brisket in general just because we are biting off more surface area when we eat ribs.

Jul 26, 2014
Civil Bear in San Francisco Bay Area

NEW: Elmira Rosticceria - sandwich, coffee shop, breakfast/brunch in SF Tenderloin - any reports?

It was on the board along with the pancetta sandwich.

Jul 25, 2014
Civil Bear in San Francisco Bay Area

NEW: Elmira Rosticceria - sandwich, coffee shop, breakfast/brunch in SF Tenderloin - any reports?

Had a meeting in the the area yesterday so I dropped by Elmira Rosticceria for lunch. Noticed they offered a tuna melt which I have always been a fan of. At $11 a la carte I was pretty apprehensive about ordering it, but it advertised poached albacore with olive oil, capers and fontina so I gave it a go. Not the biggest, but easily the best tuna melt I have ever had.

Perfect ratio of tuna, dressing, cheese and toasted ciabatta. Salty and meaty and slightly gooey, with just a hint of sweetness and bitterness all against that crunchy and chewy bread. So glad I made the leap.

The side of thinly cut house-made kettle chips were also perfect. Crispy without a trace of greasiness. Sprinkled with black pepper & hot-sauce (my doing) they were the bomb.

The only blemish? No toothpicks on site!

Jul 25, 2014
Civil Bear in San Francisco Bay Area

Biscuits and Gravy: SFBA Dish of the Month July 2014

Made it out to St. Francis Fountain on 24th St. for B&G today ($3.50). I've never tried upscale B&G before and these were no exception. Two mediocre & smallish fresh baked biscuits - medium density for biscuits I'd say. Sausage gravy had pepper and small bits of sausage mixed in, and tasted more of sage than I am used to. Nothing special here.

Jul 25, 2014
Civil Bear in San Francisco Bay Area

The Presidential @4505 Burgers & BBQ - Divisadero [San Francisco]

I wonder if they are using the original pit to hold the meat as described in my post above.

Jul 24, 2014
Civil Bear in San Francisco Bay Area

Trip to Berkeley from DC

If you are taking 80 then I assume you will be coming through Reno rather than Tahoe (50). If so I can recommend an easy stop off the freeway in Colfax (about 45 min east of Sacramento) called Dine N Dash. It is much better than it sounds. Local flare with pretty good food, large portions, and very reasonable prices (Flat Iron Steak with fries, fresh sauteed veggies and a salad for $18).

If you find yourself in Sacramento at lunchtime during the week, then Jamie's Bar & Grill is quite good albeit packed. Smoked Prime Rib is their signature dish. It's a couple of miles out of the way on 99 however, but again easy freeway access, and IMO worth it.

Jul 22, 2014
Civil Bear in San Francisco Bay Area

Naeng Myun at Kunjip in Santa Clara --- where else?

Man, that Maeun Galbi Jim easily made my top 10 tastes for 2013. I had to make sure to go back for more again this year following the SVBBQ. Thanks for the memory!

Jul 22, 2014
Civil Bear in San Francisco Bay Area

Unique to SF or Cal - Must eats for out-of towners

>>"Why do I never see Pacific Lobster on any menu until I get to Mexico?"

Water is too cold along the California coast.

Jul 07, 2014
Civil Bear in San Francisco Bay Area

Unique to SF or Cal - Must eats for out-of towners

Joe's special is a spinach and ground beef egg scramble with mushrooms and garlic.

Hangtown Fry is an oyster and bacon scramble supposedly created as the most expensive breakfast successful prospectors could get during the gold rush.

Jul 05, 2014
Civil Bear in San Francisco Bay Area

Unique to SF or Cal - Must eats for out-of towners

Moving in another direction, but certainly unique are Cal-Vietnamese (Slanted Door) and Cal-Moroccan (Aziza).

Jul 04, 2014
Civil Bear in San Francisco Bay Area