t

teleme's Profile

Title Last Reply

The North America What's In Season Thread

This month, we are harvesting from our Napa Valley garden:

artichokes, asparagus, kale, "italian dandelion" (chicory), and winter-grown (or over-wintered) cabbages, cauliflowers, carrots and celeric, broccoli raab, lettuces, spinach, spring onions, the last of the tangerines. And, always, parsley, thyme, mint, and eggs.

Mar 18, 2014
teleme in General Topics

Any mainstream grocery stores selling ethnic asian herbs?

Speaking of rau ram -- just got back from a couple of weeks in northern Viet Nam. Never found rau ram as topping for various soups or rolls, but a great variety of others, including cilantro, perilla, various mints, basil, lettuce and convolvulus. (And never just basil, as I find here in northern Calif. pho'.)

On the other hand, got some rau ram from 99 Ranch Market more than a year ago (for authentic curry laksa), and found it easy to root, and the plants have overwintered fine despite our Napa frosts.

Nov 24, 2013
teleme in San Francisco Bay Area

Voting for the September Home Cooking Dish of the Month

Oops, sorry. Will get on board earlier next time.

Aug 28, 2012
teleme in Home Cooking

Voting for the September Home Cooking Dish of the Month

meatballs? meh. whatever. you can make them anytime. When I think of September, I think:

EGGPLANT

or

FIGS

Aug 28, 2012
teleme in Home Cooking

San Francisco/Yountville - 4 day itinerary for review/questions

Sunday the 19th is the Tour of Napa bicycle ride, which starts and ends in Yountville. Shouldn't affect your chances at getting into a restaurant much (the tour provides food), but be prepared for some bicycle traffic.

For food: Rutherford Grill has never impressed me. Better to try Mustard's Grill on 29 just north of Yountville, or the sister restaurant Cindy's Backstreet in St Helena. You might get in a lunch without reservations, but much easier with reservations.

Morimoto is pricy, but you can get a really nice meal at a decent price if you order carefully. (Try the pork belly and clams spatzle if they offer it -- really!)

Jul 26, 2012
teleme in San Francisco Bay Area

I have finalized my Napa / San Fran Itinenary

Hmmm... Morimoto, French Laundry, Meadowood. "Any comments/last minute suggestions?"

Yes: "burp". I've been to all three, several times, but not so closely spaced. I hope you'll provide commentary after your food tour, with your take on the three. (I'll hold my opinions until after you've tried them, to avoid undue influence.)

Mike

May 29, 2012
teleme in San Francisco Bay Area

Maine Lobster at 99 Ranch

Yeah -- got one two and a half pounds last week. Counter man said it was the smallest he could find. I prefer a bit smaller, but it was still pretty tasty.

May 29, 2012
teleme in San Francisco Bay Area

NEED GREAT suggestion for lunch in Napa

A. What makes you think Oenotri isn't open for lunch?

2. Oops! We just call it the Mini Mango, or The Mango. Or Duderino. But the web site (which I consulted for the address) said Mini Mango Thai Bistro. I'll learn to ignore anything on the web.

-----
Thai Bistro
234 E St, Davis, CA 95616

Oenotri
1425 1st St, Napa, CA 94559

Nov 16, 2011
teleme in San Francisco Bay Area

NEED GREAT suggestion for lunch in Napa

Mini Mango Thai Bistro, at 1408 Clay Street, uses fresh, local ingredients, incorporated into Thai dishes. Much better than your average Thai restaurant.

Also downtown Napa is Oenotri, a very good (IMO) Italian restaurant that certainly uses seasonal ingredients. 1425 1st St, Napa.

-----
Thai Bistro
234 E St, Davis, CA 95616

Oenotri
1425 1st St, Napa, CA 94559

Nov 16, 2011
teleme in San Francisco Bay Area

looking for fresh corn tortillas, Napa

Any tips on where to buy fresh (preferable hand-made) corn tortillas in Napa?

Thx.

Aug 24, 2011
teleme in San Francisco Bay Area

Honeymoon in Napa/Sonoma need help planning!

Healdsburg is lovely, but suggesting a Healdsburg restaurant when they're asking about Napa is like suggesting a Chinese restaurant in Milpitas when the topic is the Sunset District. Really. And you can rent bikes just a few miles south of the Cottages of Napa, and bike in the areas east of Silverado Trail (Barryessa, Soda Canyon, Atlas Peak, the Avenues). There's also hiking (Skyline Park) and canoeing/kayaking the Napa River.

As for food: I'll add that Meadowood is just as good as French Laundry, in my opinion.

EMurphyN: the Napa Valley is gorgeous in October. Enjoy!

-----
The French Laundry
6640 Washington Street, Yountville, CA 94599

Jun 06, 2011
teleme in San Francisco Bay Area

Driving to Lake Tahoe

I really like Joe's Caribe Cafe, which is next to Ikeda's. An Auburn friend told me about this place. Apparently they recently moved from a more obscure location -- more obscure to highway drivers, anyway.

Really good fish and prawn tacos, lots of other caribbean-style dishes including fantastic sides and a burrito with sweet potato puree (!), and some outstanding ginger ales. And very friendly service.

What's not to like?

Mar 06, 2011
teleme in California

Padrón me.

Yes, the shiny ones are (much) hotter. I've got a couple dozen padron plants, and the shiny (hottest) ones seem to grow in the most shade -- almost always at the base of the plant, not in the (brighter) sun. They also get hotter as they get bigger.

Happy to give away baskets of these guys to anyone in Napa...

Aug 31, 2010
teleme in San Francisco Bay Area

Two nights in Napa: Please just pick me somewhere to eat dinner Wed!

Neela's Indian restaurant in Napa. Neela showcases vegetables Wednesday nights, with emphasis on those not usually found in the US (or Oklahoma). Much better than average food, and a good counterpoint to FL and Bottega.

-----
Bottega
6525 Washington Street Suite A9, Yountville, CA 94599

Apr 21, 2010
teleme in San Francisco Bay Area

Etiquette for traditional Ethiopian dinner?

Well first: congratulations -- what a great opportunity.

Traditional eating technique -- even at classy meals -- is with just the right hand, sans utensils. Tear a small piece of the injera with the one hand (I'm sure your hosts will forgive you if you need both hands) then pick up a mouthful of the meat/vegetables within a fold of the bread, then into the mouth. (Wash hands before and after dining, of course.)

If you're offered raw meat, accept it as an honor.

I've seen beer, whiskey and a mead-like (strong) drink called tej drunk at dinners in Ethiopia. A gift of a nice microbrew would probably be well received. (I'm assuming your hosts are Coptic and not Muslim.)

In the smaller dinner parties I've been to in Addis Abbaba, the diners signal that they've had enough by stuffing hands full of food into their fellow diners' mouths. I don't know whether this is a general Ethiopean tradition, or Amharic, or just something done by my particular Ethiopean friends. If you're brave, try this. It's a fun way to finish a meal.

Have fun.

Dec 10, 2009
teleme in General Topics

Long Weekend in Napa

Cyrus is lovely, but Healdsburg is as far from the Carneros District as is San Francisco. There are some great places to eat in San Francisco...

Really not sure what "different" means to the OP, but there have been lots of good suggestions of local Napa/Sonoma places from others. But since you'll be here in December, it would probably be fun to visit Yountville if only for the christmas lighting.

Oct 25, 2009
teleme in San Francisco Bay Area

Cyrus or Meadowood?

Cyrus is very good, but for many reasons, Meadowood is a better choice for you.

First, as others have pointed out, it's a very long drive from Calistoga to Healdsburg.

But even if they were equidistant, I would choose Meadowood. Was there last spring with wife and in-laws, and we ordered the tasting menu, and two of us the wine pairings. The food was dazzling, with no stumbles and many very brilliant courses. (We all rated the dinner as equal to French Laundry and 11 Madison in Manhattan.) Wine pairings were terrific.

That said, wife and I liked Cyrus a lot and would be happy to return. And our dinner there was several years ago, so the Meadowood buzz is closer. I think you would be very happy with either.

Oct 05, 2009
teleme in San Francisco Bay Area

Garden-setting (like Filoli) for bday lunch

Perhaps the Gamble Garden Center in Palo Alto?

Mar 09, 2009
teleme in San Francisco Bay Area

Going to Napa

I have never understood what's the fascination with ZuZu. I admit that my wife and I have been there only twice, but the dishes seemed to be, generally, overly garlicky and over cooked and not very interesting. I've been through Spain three times, and love Catalan and Basque cooking, and this doesn't come near that (though I've had bland, garlicky tapas in Spain, too).

Much, much better is Elements Enoteca on 2nd St. I'm told that a former ZuZu chef runs it, and the small dishes are much more interesting, varied, and fresh tasting. (I plan to submit a full review of Elements after we'd been there a few times...)

And sit at the counter, to get a little view of the kitchen. (Oh -- they have a very large wine selection, many by the glass.)

Other than that, other posters have offered good ideas (Ubuntu, Brix, CIA).
Oh -- and the Hog Island Oyster Company at the Oxbow Market has a killer clam chowder.

Have fun on your visit.

Feb 06, 2009
teleme in San Francisco Bay Area

eating on the later side in Napa?

I really like Elements Enoteca on 2nd Street, and I think they're open till midnight weekends.

www.elementsnapa.com

Feb 03, 2009
teleme in San Francisco Bay Area

Where [in SF proper] should a Chowhound live?

Ok, but your main focus is also a bit fuzzy. What do you consider "walking distance?" I like strolling, and would think nothing of a two mile walk to a nice restaurant. But your mileage may vary.

Mike

Apr 22, 2008
teleme in San Francisco Bay Area

Napa - Oxbow Public Market is ready and it is stunning

Ah, I see. I thought you meant the particular street (not that's it's particularly wonderful).

Yes, Napa's a difficult place, I think, for high quality food. It does support a couple of decent groceries -- Browns Valley and Vallergas -- but the nice, big new Whole Foods isn't exactly bustling.

And the better restaurants cater mostly to tourists, which means wine-friendly and not too adventuresome. With the exception of some Mexican restaurants, nothing very good as far as "ethnic" or inexpensive restaurants.

But there are a lot of people in the Napa area who do have money and taste, and with the dearth of good duck confit, well it kind of makes sense. ;)

Apr 21, 2008
teleme in San Francisco Bay Area

Fresh Cayenne Pepper growing season

I'm always interested in trying new peppers. I'm in Napa, and warm-weather veggies do very well here. But I can't make sense of your email address in your profile -- seems to be the unintended offspring of web and email addresses.

Apr 21, 2008
teleme in San Francisco Bay Area

Napa - Oxbow Public Market is ready and it is stunning

Bizarre location? In what sense? Where would you have them?

Apr 21, 2008
teleme in San Francisco Bay Area

Napa - Oxbow Public Market is ready and it is stunning

Junie D highlights the strengths -- and the weaknesses -- of Napa shopping, especially for those of us on the east side. Since the Silverado Vallergas closed down, there's nothing close to one-stop shopping.

Groceries? Browns Valley Market is nice, but it's way out in the west side, so: Nob Hill, Whole Foods, 99 Ranch (in Richmond!).

Seafood? Osprey is ok, but it's mainly "white people" fish. Whole foods seafood selection is limited, but everything I've tried is very good quality.

Bread besides Model? I'm an Artisan fan too -- Nob Hill sometimes carries these.

Cheese? Until Whole Foods, uh... Berkeley?

Coffee? Certainly not Napa Valley Coffee Roasting Co. Went in to buy French Roast years ago, and they gave me some kind of poofy blend. I went back in to exchange it for French Roast, and they said they didn't really make french roast, because the locals don't like it, and when I asked why they called their poofy blend "french roast" they gave me the little cocked-head doggie look and blinked a couple of times...

Produce? My garden.

So what Oxbow brings is the hope of high quality food closer to home. Good cheeses. Five Dot is nice, but it's very limited. Nice that Fatted Calf is offering various uncooked meats in addition to their terrific confits, porchettas, etc. Maybe the seafood place will be ok. Model Bakery: good. But I doubt that Oxbow will ever become a one-stop food source: no full-service butcher; no dairy; no full-time greengrocer.

Apr 21, 2008
teleme in San Francisco Bay Area

NY'er Cousins First Visit to SF - need best Japanese rec's

Eiji on Sanchez. Easy access from the subway.

Things my wife and I have tried that are especially good: oboro tofu; ankimo; yamakake. Planning on taking the Manhattan in-laws to Eiji on their next visit -- and I like them (they're not Yanqui fans).

Mar 18, 2008
teleme in San Francisco Bay Area

What's the best pizza in Napa?

Huh. I've only eaten there once, but I found the pizza at Parry's to be pretty dreadful. The sauce had a metallic taste, with garlic being the only other note. The crust -- too soft and chewy to my liking -- wasn't at all blistered. Hard to blister a crust swimming under so much sauce.

Pizza Azzurro is much better, but suffers in the other direction. Very thin crust.

Uva Trattoria usually has a couple of nice pizzas on their daily menu.

Oct 17, 2007
teleme in San Francisco Bay Area

Yellow Ginger . . . Singaporean in Mountain View?

Oh yes, you are quite right. I misread Pinkster's description as the chicken being served, unintentionally, at room temperature.

As to Melanie's remark that Singaporean food is "'fusion' to start with". Well, this is quite true, but that's pretty much true of most cuisines -- just not usually so obviously. The problem is that there's such a dearth of genuine Singaporean food in the US, singa-fusion dishes just seem like near misses.

Sep 05, 2007
teleme in San Francisco Bay Area

Yellow Ginger . . . Singaporean in Mountain View?

"chicken rice was a disappointment ..."

The only rice dish I could find on the web site is Hainan chicken rice. If that's what you ordered, it should be served with rice cooked in chicken broth -- which means yellowish -- and room temperature. Intentionally. With sides of soy, garlic and pepper sauces. And if they're really traditional, a soup of chicken broth and savoy (Napa) cabbage.

Mike

Sep 04, 2007
teleme in San Francisco Bay Area

Thai food in (city of) Napa?

Huh. What did you find that was worth trying? My wife and I tried it soon after the original posting, and we were very disappointed. She ordered the Hainese chicken rice, and the chicken was a bit dry, and the skin too fatty -- and no soup. I tried the beef rendang, and the rempah was obviously some quick-cook shortcut, and tasted sharp -- maybe MSG? -- and not rich. And while the beef rendang was a "lunch special", all they served with it was rice and slices of beef. No veggies. Bleh.

Jul 16, 2007
teleme in San Francisco Bay Area