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Review: Sage on the Coast - Newport Beach

My wife and I aren't big eaters. I have seen reviews of certain bloggers and how many courses they get served and wonder how they do it. I would say for a big eater this may not fill them up.

Oct 22, 2009
Tony in Los Angeles Area

Review: Sage on the Coast - Newport Beach

For $35 and $45 with wine pairings, it definitely is a nice price. Initially looking at the portions, we didn't think we would be full by the end of the meal. Poritions aren't very big. But, by the end of the meal we were both satisfied. I wouldn't say full but satisfied.

Oct 21, 2009
Tony in Los Angeles Area

Review: Sage on the Coast - Newport Beach

Here is a recent experience that we had at Sage on the Coast in Newport Beach.

For pictures of the meal we had, please take a look at our blog.

http://tnt-adventures.blogspot.com/

09.09.09 was our 2nd year anniversary and we wanted to celebrate it near the beach. Sage on the Coast is a fine local restaurant in the Crystal Cove Promenade plaza at the end of the strip. The atmosphere was friendly and not too pretentious as other Newport Beach restaurants. We made reservations for the Wednesday and was a bit embarrassed that we did because the place was pretty empty. There were only 2 tables occupied in the whole main dining area and a few more tables in the patio. But I shouldn't complaint because sitting in the patio was romantic and private, especially with the lighting, which made our anniversary night special.

The bread had these delightful bread crisps that were dusted with Parmesan cheese and dried rosemary and tasted so delicious.

We each ordered the tasting menu which includes the 3 courses and a dessert for $35. For an extra $10, the tasting menu is paired with 3 glasses of wine. Good deal!

For the first, we had Balsamic Grilled Peaches over arugula, onions, and walnuts. The dish was good, the arugula a bit soft and a little bit heavy on the dressing. There was nothing that particularly stood out. The peaches were served warm, reminding me of comfort food in the winter. Eating these types of "salad" requires eating all of the different components at the same time for a worthy taste.
Wine: Roederer Estate, Brut - Anderson Valley, NV

For the second course, I had the Blackened Sea Bass and Vegetable Enchiladas wth spinach, summer squash, mozzarella, grilled corn, tomatoes, parmesan, and guajillo sauce. The fish was moist and crisp on the outside. The roasted tomatoes on top of the enchilada added a nice juicy dimension to the it.
Wine: Merum, Monastrell - Jumilla, Spain 2006

The chef kindly accommodated my non-seafood eating husband with the enchilada and pork crepe instead of the sea bass. The crepe tasted more like a barbeque pulled pork taco. The braised/pulled pork was encased with a "crepe" wrapping. The barbeque flavor was unexpected but he nevertheless enjoyed the dish overall.

As for the third course, we had the Grilled Sirloin Bruschetta which had tomatoes, arugula, burrata, and extra virgin olive oil. The crostini was very difficult to cut through with the knife and clamored many times against the plate. Sage uses market driven ingredients and we could taste it in the tomatoes because it was very fresh and tasty. The burrata was very creamy, but the meat itself was a bit overcooked. I kind of felt the courses were out of order. This light tasting bruschetta should have been served before the more heavy flavors of the enchilada.
Wine: Allegrini, Palazzo della Torre - Veronese, Italy 2005

For dessert, we had a Raspberry White Chocolate Cheesecake which had raspberry coulis, sweet cream, and an almond florentine on top. This was a good version of a cheesecake - very smooth and creamy. I was happy for the raspberry coulis because it added more flavor to it, and the almond florentine had a nice crisp that added texture to the overall dessert.

Sage on the Coast is a nice getaway from the nearby crowded and noisy restaurants. It's secluded enough for people to enjoy a serene evening right next to the beach (though it could be a different story on the weekends). The food was good, and I like the fact that they use seasonal ingredients. We enjoyed our experience, especially with the $35 tasting menu and an additional $10 for wine pairings. Worth a stop for a reasonably priced dinner, although nothing really too exciting.

Oct 21, 2009
Tony in Los Angeles Area

Review: Canteen

Pei - I have heard a lot of great things about the brunch. Will definitely make it a priority on my next visit to SF and try the Chai and pancake or hash.

Oct 20, 2009
Tony in San Francisco Bay Area

Review: Canteen

Thanks for the compliment on the pictures. Sorry I didn't link to the restaurant.

Oct 19, 2009
Tony in San Francisco Bay Area

Review: Canteen

Went to up San Francisco a few weeks ago for an anniversary weekend. Been searching the boards these last few years for recs and have been to many that have been suggested here on Chowhound.

If you would like to see pictures and past restaurant visits, please feel free to take a look.

http://tnt-adventures.blogspot.com/

Thought I would post our review of Canteen.

Canteen, reminds me of a 60s diner in the South because of its retro decor, bar stools, vintage books, and its polished simplicity. It just has this unpretentious, homey and nostalgic feeling. And there are only 7 bar stools and 4 booths. Small, but quaint.

Two waitresses here run the show and they were so genuinely kind and down to earth. They served us the brioche rolls which were excellent! It tasted like a buttery croissant, without the flakiness.

For the amuse bouche, they brought out a small piece of smoked salmon with pepper over slices of honeydew. I was not very impressed by the presentation of it. It looked a bit sad. The smoked salmon had a nice flavor, but there was nothing here that excited my taste buds or amused my "bouche".

Lamb's Tongue Vinaigrette with butter beans and romesco (10.50
)The vinaigrette went well because it added another flavor dimension to it. I don't usually like beans, but it was well-cooked and smooth in texture. I loved the nutty, romesco sauce which consisted of red peppers, pistachio, parsley and "other stuff" say the waitress. The tongue itself had a rillette texture in a way and enjoyed the light and bright flavors of the lamb. It was a great way to start the meal.

Albacore with lobster sauce, eggplant puree, and peppers (23.50)
The seared albacore was cooked perfectly and was moist and tender. The dish was carefully prepared, and the buttery lobster sauce and puree tasted good on their own, but when I put it all together, the flavors just did not meld too well. It was sort of a "musky" taste. Plus, it was a bit overpowering for the delicately mild-flavored fish.

Pork Schnitzel with a poached egg (25)
We went with one of the waitress' favorite dish on this menu. Pork schnitzel is thinly pounded breaded pork cutlets and was topped with fresh arugula, poached eggs, arugula and paprika sauce. It was good dish with intense flavorings, but I expected more out of it.

We were served with the "Week 190" seasonal menu. But one of the timeless items that doesn't change is the "Vanilla Souffle since 2004" (8.50). They brought out the souffle and pierced it through with some kind of cream sauce. And since my husband had told them we were celebrating our anniversary when he made reservations, they brought out 2 complimentary glasses of champagne. What a special touch!

The great thing about seasonal menus is that you get to taste the chef's inventive creations using seasonal ingredients and artistic talent. So I will probably return one day. Plus, I also have read that they serve really good brunch, so I'll try that out too.

Oct 19, 2009
Tony in San Francisco Bay Area

Shik Do Rak or Cham Sut Gol in Orange County for family birthday dinner???

peppermonkey - I have heard that Shik Do Rak has better meats. Might have to think about ordering the combos. Thanks!!

Das - thank you for the recommendation for Shik Do Rak. A wider variety of meats is definitely appreciated. Do you know how much they charge per plate on average?

Oct 14, 2009
Tony in Los Angeles Area

Shik Do Rak or Cham Sut Gol in Orange County for family birthday dinner???

taiwanesesmalleats - thanks for the suggestions but I was looking more in the Orange County area. I apologize for not stating that in the original post. I'll correct that now. Thanks!!

Oct 14, 2009
Tony in Los Angeles Area

Shik Do Rak or Cham Sut Gol in Orange County for family birthday dinner???

Thinking of eating at either Shik Do Rak or Cham Sut Gol in Garden Grove for my birthday with the family of 10 or so.

I have been to Cham Sut Gol and did enjoy my experience there with the $16 all you can eat. Haven't eat at Shik Do Rak yet but heard they have AYCE for $16 or order off the menu.

My family members aren't big eaters, so was wondering if it would be worth to to eat at Cham Sut Gol and do the AYCE or Shik Do Rak and order meat plates. Trying to keep the cost down, since I will be getting treated for this meal.

Which do you think has better food? and should we do the AYCE at Cham, AYCE at Shik or order off the menu at Shik? in order to keep costs down.

Thank you for any help or suggestions.

Oct 14, 2009
Tony in Los Angeles Area

DineLA Restaurant Week being extended to October 18-23

DineLA week is being extended to October 18-23. A list of extending restaurants will be available by October 17.

This is all according to the DineLA website.

Just thought the fellow chowhounds might want to know.

I apologize if this is old news.

Oct 14, 2009
Tony in Los Angeles Area

DineLA- running reviews of places so far

DineLA week is being extended to October 18-23. A list of participating restaurants will be available by October 17.

This is all according to the DineLA website.

Just thought the fellow chowhounds might want to know.

Oct 14, 2009
Tony in Los Angeles Area

Newport/Laguna Area recommendations?

Take a look at this article written by the S. Irene Virbila the Frank Bruni of LA times.
She gave a very favorable review of the Studio at Montage.

http://www.latimes.com/features/food/...

Oct 03, 2009
Tony in Los Angeles Area

Chow Trip Report: Venice, Florence, Rome, and Cinque Terre

I wasn't aware that they had a people training in the kitchen. Good to know thanks.

The restaurant was actually recommended by a friend who frequents Florence quite often.

We enjoyed our food at Cento Proveri. I ordered the prixe fixe 5 courses for 35 Euro and it was honestly enough food to feed 3 or 4 people. I was thinking it would be smaller portions but they were actually full size portions of food. My wife ordered a pasta dish with mixed seafood and enjoyed her's quite a bit too.

Overall we enjoyed our experience. Service was good but not excellent and the food was also good but not excellent as well.

Oct 02, 2009
Tony in Italy

Chow Trip Report: Venice, Florence, Rome, and Cinque Terre

Posted a while back about a trip that my wife and I took back in late June. Got some good recommendations and wanted to report back as a thank you.

There are quite a few places that we went to and I have almost all of them posted on our small blog. Haven't quite finished writing all of them up yet. Will be posting a gelato galore post of all the places we had while in Italy.

Here is a rundown of some of the places we ate in each city.

Venice - Trattoria Ca D'oro
Florence - Il Pizzaiuolo, Osteria dei Cento Proveri, Trattoria Mario
Rome - Pizzeria Da Baffetto, Trattoria Da Gino, Trattoria Luzzi
Cinque Terre - Marina Piccola, Gianni Franzi, Il Pirata

Thanks again for everything. You guys are the best.

http://tnt-adventures.blogspot.com/

Oct 02, 2009
Tony in Italy

Newport/Laguna Area recommendations?

Ditto on everything that josephnl said.

Oct 02, 2009
Tony in Los Angeles Area

Ultimate Asian restaurants in OC

Thai - Thai Nakorn in Garden Grove or Stanton

Vietnamese - Brodard -This is a tough one. I think the strange thing about Vietnamese restaurants is that each restaurant is strong at a couple dishes with the rest being OK. There could be a whole post just subdividing Vietnamese dishes and what restaurants make the best.

Oct 02, 2009
Tony in Los Angeles Area

Paris Chow Report

Hello everyone,

I posted a while back about some recommendations for Paris. I received some great recommendations and just wanted to share them with you as a thanks.

A few places we ate was L'As Du Fallafel, Le Bistro De Breteuil, Le Table De Joel Robuchon, Berthillon, and a wonderful picnic at Versailles.

Instead of copy and pasting all the links and our thoughts, please refer to our small food blog to see pics and thoughts.

http://tnt-adventures.blogspot.com/se...

Thanks again for everything.

Sep 18, 2009
Tony in France

Best Banh Beo?

Have to agree with everyone else that Quan Hy has some of the freshest and best banh beo. Quan Vy Da is also a good option as well.

Here are some pictures from our last visit.

http://tnt-adventures.blogspot.com/20...

Sep 15, 2009
Tony in Los Angeles Area

Animal tonight!

Another recommendation for the foie gras with biscuit. This was my favorite dish of the year. Although, I noticed the second time I went there the foie has gotten a lot smaller.

You can see some pics from our night there a while back.

http://tnt-adventures.blogspot.com/20...

Sep 15, 2009
Tony in Los Angeles Area

25 Degrees Huntington Beach

Went to 25 Degrees in Hollywood back in November of 2008 and enjoyed everything we had.

Good point about not knowing who worked there or was eating there. A very casual laid back restaurant.

Enjoyed the burgers, fries, and our heirloom tomato salad.

Here is a review of the restaurant from my blog:

http://tnt-adventures.blogspot.com/20...

Sep 14, 2009
Tony in Los Angeles Area

HELP! I Need Suggestions for an Unconventional Bachelor Party Dinner!!!

This post off of Chowhound might give you some ideas.

Title of post is Fun Weird Restaurants in LA.

http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/456084

Aug 25, 2009
Tony in Los Angeles Area

OC: Marche Moderne: $20 lunch special: have you tried?

JAB- The Spontanee Lunch is sometimes $20 and sometimes $25.I was just there this past Sunday and it was $20. I guess it all depends on what's on the menu for that day. I think the majority of the time it is $20 though. Good idea to call ahead if you don't want to spend that extra $5.

This past Sunday we had a salad with boston lettuce, endive, peaches, avocado, pine nuts with an agridulce vinaigrette. For mains we had a choice of skirt steak, with braised young swiss chard, truffled pomme puree, carmelized onions with a peppercorn jus or a pan sauteed Alaskan Halibut or Sol with asparagus, heirloom tomatoes, pistou, and an arugula salad. For desert had a dark chocolate mousse with a banana caramel financier. Everyone enjoyed everything!!

Aug 06, 2009
Tony in Los Angeles Area

OC: Marche Moderne: $20 lunch special: have you tried?

I have had Marche Moderne's Spontanee $20 lunch on multiple occasions. Have had great meals every single time. In my opinion a good deal considering the food, service, and ambiance. Just went this this past weekend as a matter of fact.

Here is a link to my blog. Click on the Marche Moderne link on the right to take a look at what we ate on one particular visit. Will be posting another one in a week or so.

http://tnt-adventures.blogspot.com/

You should definitely give it a try!!

Aug 06, 2009
Tony in Los Angeles Area

Bachelorette night eats - Hollywood or Downtown L.A.

If you are going to end up at the Roosevelt and interested in some good burgers, I would go to 25 Degrees in the Roosevelt Hotel. Good burgers and not a bad wine/beer selection.

Aug 04, 2009
Tony in Los Angeles Area

NoodleWorld

My two favorite things to order are the Pad See Ew with Beef and the Spicy Spaghetti with either chicken or seafood. Love this place!!

Jul 29, 2009
Tony in Los Angeles Area

Venice, Florence, Rome, & Cinque Terre Restaurant Recommendations Needed

dmp9454 - Thanks for the tips on Rome and Florence. I will definitely be eating a lot of Gelato, so we'll try out Festival Del Gelato. Thanks for the tip on Trattoria as well.

Jun 10, 2009
Tony in Italy

Venice, Italy - TOPS

Christine - I will be going to Venice in about a week from now. Thanks for the information on Venice and the cuisine. Thanks for the tip on Ca d'Oro as well. It was on my potential list of places to eat.

Jun 10, 2009
Tony in Italy

Venice, Florence, Rome, & Cinque Terre Restaurant Recommendations Needed

PBSF - Thank you for your continued responses to my restaurant requests. Very thankful to you. The reason that I look for restaurants that are a consensus is because it gives me reassurance that these restaurants being recommended are indeed good. My thinking being that if they are enjoyed by a lot of people then better chance of me enjoying it as well. You seem to be very knowledgeable and I appreciate your advice and the way you addressed each of the restaurants. Thank you!!!

CJT - I take it you enjoyed Teatro Del Sale and I looking forward to it. Thank you for the other rec's on restaurants in Florence. I wish I could stay here for a month to try all of these places out.

Jun 07, 2009
Tony in Italy

Venice, Florence, Rome, & Cinque Terre Restaurant Recommendations Needed

Hello fellow chowhounders,

My wife and I will be in Italy in about a week and I was looking to finalize some of the restaurants that we were considering. We are looking for cheap eats and also mid priced places and snacks that are a must as well.

We are looking for restaurants with delicious, authentic, and honest food. We would prefer restaurants in the 30 to 40E range or about 80E for the two of us but if it is cheaper even better. I am not much of an alcohol drinker or a seafood eater. My wife loves both.

I know there are posts like this all time. I have done some research of Chowhound and the internet and came up with a few places. It seems as though there isn't much of a consensus on the restaurants that must be eaten while in these cities, making deciding all the more difficult. We would appreciate any suggestions or comments.

Venice - We will be staying in Venice for unfortunately only night. We just had to come see Venice, even if only for one day. We will be staying about 5 mins from St. Marks Square.

Il Refolo - for pizza
Il Ridotto
Da Fiore
La Zucca
Bancogiro
Vino Vino
Cantina Do Mori

Florence - We will be in Florence for 3 days and will be staying near Ponte Vecchio.

Teatro Del Sale
Osteria De Benci
Buca Lapi
Acqua Al 2
Vivoli or Bodiani or Grom- gelato

Rome - We will be in Rome for 3 days staying near the Villa Borghese

Al Ceppo
Antico Arco
Matricinella
Antico Forno Roscioli
Da I 2 Ciccioni
Hostaria Romana
Felice A Testaccio
Osteria Qui Se Magna
Il Gelato Di San Crispino or Giolitti or - gelato

Cinque Terre - Will be staying two days at Vernazza but would be down to eat in other areas.

Not quite sure where to eat yet

Right now these restaurants are just names and don't really mean much to me as for quality of food and prices. Would love some insight if any of these are worth going to or others that are.

Thank you for any comments or suggestions.

Jun 06, 2009
Tony in Italy

Venice, Italy - TOPS

jen kalb - Thank you for the recommendations on the guidebooks and the restaurant recs as well. We are unfortunately only going to be in Venice for one night, so have to keep things very simple.

PBSF - Greats list of restaurants provided and thanks for the tip on ordering food.

I was thinking about doing a separate post but wasn't sure how many hits I would get. I did some chowhound research and came up with a few places. I'll give the separate post a shot. Please feel free to add more comments. Very much appreciated.

Jun 06, 2009
Tony in Italy