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What's your Blue Bell flavor?

Peppermint stick. Love love love that stuff. Cool and minty, red, white, and pinkish, with crunchy chunks of peppermint.

Unfortunately, it's seasonal.

And that wouldn't be so bad, except that my idea of the perfect season for peppermint stick ice cream is summertime - reminiscent of the hot July picnics of my youth, when it was always the kids' job to sit on top of the ice cream maker while a grownup turned the crank. And as a reward, you got to lick the dasher when it was pulled up out of that frosty silver canister. Peppermint stick ice cream was such a huge favorite that it was ubiquitous. You simply could not have a summertime picnic without homemade peppermint ice cream.

Inexplicably to me, Blue Bell's idea of the perfect season for peppermint stick ice cream is Christmastime. Don't they know that all peppermint sticks are NOT peppermint Christmas candy canes?

Now, I wouldn't argue with them about the Christmastime thing if they wouldn't argue with me about the summertime picnic thing.

Seriously, Blue Bell...is twice a year really too often?

about 1 hour ago
Jaymes in Texas

Sunday Brunch, downtown Austin, please!

I'll bet that's exactly why there are millions and millions of restaurants around the world offering a variety of choices. Some of us just absolutely love a luxurious high-end upscale Sunday Brunch presented with attentive service in an elegant setting.

And I happily happen to be one.

But far be it from me to criticize your personal choice.

Jul 18, 2014
Jaymes in Austin

What Is the National Dish of New Mexico?

Well, Farmington is pretty far north. Having lived there, I can tell you that there can be some considerable Colorado influence up there.

Jul 18, 2014
Jaymes in Southwest

What Is the National Dish of New Mexico?

Do you remember where it was that you had the one that looked like the one in the photo?

It definitely looks fatter than many of the chiles rellenos served at assorted New Mexico restaurants. Like, oh say, Chope's, for starters.

Jul 18, 2014
Jaymes in Southwest

Sunday Brunch, downtown Austin, please!

Trio is fairly costly at $54 per person, but that does include champagne and mimosas, and I think the quality is excellent. It's not an "every Sunday thing" for us, but it's where we go for special occasions.

And, the OP didn't say anything about the reason for going, or price.

So I definitely thought it was worth a mention.

Jul 18, 2014
Jaymes in Austin
1

Sunday Brunch, downtown Austin, please!

Not right downtown but my personal favorite Sunday Brunch is at Fonda San Miguel: http://www.fondasanmiguel.com/menu/su...

Also very fond of Trio at the Four Seasons: http://www.triorestaurantaustin.com/m...

And Austin 360 has a pretty comprehensive list: http://www.austin360.com/news/enterta...

Jul 17, 2014
Jaymes in Austin

Seeking Ingredient: Gochujang

And while you're in Koreatown, you should try a meal at Bon Ga. Sure would like to do a meetup with all y'all fine folks.

Jul 17, 2014
Jaymes in Houston

Sprouts Markets, Lenexa, KS

I'd say a cross between Trader Joe's and Whole Foods pretty much nails it. And don't think it has anything much in common with Aldi. As I said, I don't think they're targeting the same market at all. For example, I very much like Sprouts and go there frequently, but am not much of a fan of Aldi and avoid it when I can. This isn't meant as a criticism - it's just that Aldi's "style" doesn't appeal to me personally.

A note about Sprouts - they have one item that my dad absolutely loves - Aussie Bites. They're a very small whole-oats kind of muffin-like thing. He's in a retirement home and is on a restricted diet, so there are lots of things he can't (or at least shouldn't) eat. There isn't a Sprouts in the town where he lives so I send him a couple of packages of those Aussie Bites every month.

If that sounds like something you'd like, then when your Sprouts opens, I'd suggest you give them a try. They're in the prepackaged baked goods section - at least they are in my local store.

Jul 17, 2014
Jaymes in Great Plains
1

Seeking Ingredient: Gochujang

Ah, 99 Ranch. The gateway to Korea Town. :)

http://www.khou.com/great-day/gdh_1-3...

Jul 17, 2014
Jaymes in Houston

Seeking Ingredient: Gochujang

Feel a little foolish pointing out the obvious, but have you tried H-Mart, the Korean store in "Korea town"?

Jul 17, 2014
Jaymes in Houston
1

Sprouts Markets, Lenexa, KS

In my experience they cater to completely different market shares. Sprouts offers fresh produce and what used to be described as "gourmet" specialty items. Aldi, it seems to me, is far more price-oriented, with much less emphasis on quality.

Jul 16, 2014
Jaymes in Great Plains

What Is the National Dish of New Mexico?

Weighing in on the original question - I'd have to say that, in my view anyway, whatever is the "State Dish of New Mexico," should have something to do with green chile sauce.

I've had lots of "green enchiladas," and "green chilaquiles" and other Mexican dishes with green sauces. But they invariably are green because of tomatillos.

If it's a Southwestern chile sauce of some sort, and it's green, and no tomatillos, it's most likely New Mexican in origin.

Jul 16, 2014
Jaymes in Southwest

What Is the National Dish of New Mexico?

Which, of course, is just fine. Especially since you point out that, although you consider bratwurst to be a "Milwaukee thing," you wouldn't decide to argue with a German about where it was invented.

Jul 15, 2014
Jaymes in Southwest

What Is the National Dish of New Mexico?

And I'll bet that settles it. Don't you reckon? :)

Jul 15, 2014
Jaymes in Southwest
1

What Is the National Dish of New Mexico?

I'm sorry, but no. I remember very well eating Frito Pies IN the small bags in Texas back in the 50's. I was a kid of about twelve and remember how fun that was.

Look, I lived in New Mexico for years. Have friends, family, relatives literally in every corner of the state. Love it and love the food. Love New Mex/Mex far more than TexMex. It's my very favorite, as I've said often on Chowhound. There is so much for New Mexico to be proud of.

And, although something so obvious as ladling chili over Fritos in that handy small bag, was undoubtedly "invented" many times over, I just don't see how anyone can imagine that, when Fritos were first sold in the early 1930's in the smack-dab middle of Texas, nobody there thought of doing that for thirty years. Like I said, that simply defies logic. It doesn't make sense.

New Mexico has more than enough stuff to be proud of - stacked green chile enchiladas come immediately to my mind.

But Frito Pies ain't one of them.

Jul 15, 2014
Jaymes in Southwest

What Is the National Dish of New Mexico?

Hard for me to believe that anybody still believes that Frito Pie was invented at the Woolworth's in Santa Fe in the 1960's.

Seriously?

You do know that it is an UNDISPUTED FACT that Fritos were first sold in San Antonio in the 1930's. In SAN ANTONIO. A city already world-famous for chili - as in "The San Antonio Chili Queens." How could anyone believe that nobody in San Antonio thought about ladling a spoonful of said chili over some Fritos for THIRTY YEARS??!! That absolutely defies logic.

I certainly could never believe such a ridiculously improbable thing, even if I had not been eating Frito Pies, topped with cheese and onions, at the drive-in across from my junior high school in San Angelo, Texas in 1950 - which I was - TEN YEARS before Miss Santa Fe Woolworth supposedly "invented" it.

Seriously, some people will believe anything.

But believing this stretches credulity.

Jul 15, 2014
Jaymes in Southwest

Suggestions for Thursday, July 3rd w/79 yr. old mother

I did not know that the Pelican Club has gone public. Guess so many of the Old Guard BOI's have died that those remaining are forced to dine with the riffraff.

Horrors.

(Just as a side note - I had a cousin that lived for many years in Galveston. When she was asked, as one always is upon an initial meeting with a long-time Galvestonian, "Are you BOI?" my cousin answered, "No, I'm TOI - Trapped on the Island.")

Jul 09, 2014
Jaymes in Houston

Suggestions for Thursday, July 3rd w/79 yr. old mother

Yes, yes, I agree. Thanks so much for getting back with us. In fact, based on your report, I'm going to plan a trip there again sometime soon. Our family has a long history with Gaido's. Former husband is from Galveston, I remember many wonderful meals both at Gaido's and at the Pelican Club, and all three of my children waited tables at Gaido's at one time or another, primarily over the summers when they were on break from university. That was back when they were supposed to remember all the orders and write nothing down. Do they still do that?

Jul 09, 2014
Jaymes in Houston

Twelve hours in Springfield, MO- tees, gifts, and delicious eats!

Soo's Korean Restaurant: https://plus.google.com/1065198794979...

Everything here is great, but I particularly love the bulgogi. Know it's not terribly adventuresome, but can't help myself. Even when I order something else, have to get at least a side of bulgogi. Like most Westerners, love the stuff.

And I like The Tamale King. This is no full-service Americanized "Mexican" restaurant chain with frozen margaritas, etc. It's a small, family-run taqueria that caters primarily to Mexican workers in Springfield. I travel a lot throughout Mexico, and the food here is similar to what you get standing at a taco cart on a plaza somewhere south of the border. http://www.tripadvisor.com/ShowUserRe...

Jul 04, 2014
Jaymes in Great Plains

Blue Bell Cranks Back Time

I wish they had peppermint stick available year 'round. Course, on the other hand, if they did, I'd likely gain 20 pounds just from that alone.

So it's probably just as well...

Jul 02, 2014
Jaymes in Texas

Suggestions for Thursday, July 3rd w/79 yr. old mother

That is great info. As I said, I used to really hate that mob scene at the entrance.

Jul 01, 2014
Jaymes in Houston

Suggestions for Thursday, July 3rd w/79 yr. old mother

And let me add that, while Gaido's is a fun throwback and I'm sure you'd enjoy it, because they don't take reservations (or at least never have) it can be a looooooonnnng wait. I hate standing there and I've got my original hips. If you decide to go, be sure that you plan to visit during off-peak hours.

Jul 01, 2014
Jaymes in Houston

Stupid Question

I've found old-fashioned stuff like that at Cracker Barrel.

Jun 18, 2014
Jaymes in Austin

Brand New Restaurant in Katy - Chez Grill

So, in the same place where two Middle Eastern restaurants couldn't seem to make a go of it comes some new folks to open "Chez Grill - Mexican-Seafood-Steakhouse."

I was curious as to this "something for everyone" approach and so stopped in yesterday.

The family is from El Salvador, so they are, indeed, trying to offer something besides the familiar TexMex. The menu looked very interesting including, along with the familiar enchiladas, etc., several Italian-based pasta dishes, in addition to the promised seafood and steaks.

I had the fried shrimp. Before ordering, I queried the charming server, and she assured me that the shrimp is hand-breaded in the kitchen, and does not arrive heavily pre-breaded and frozen in a box from Sysco (which I hate).

I thought they were just outstanding, and I'm pretty excited about going back and ordering the exact same thing as soon as I can justify it with waistline and pocketbook.

Like I said, they're brand new, so no reviews as of yet. But here's their info: http://www.yellowpages.com/katy-tx/mi...

Jun 18, 2014
Jaymes in Houston
1

Can't Miss Restaurants in Katy Area

Just updating - Tacos & Tortas Adrian is now on my "at least once a week" schedule.

I am in love with their shrimp cocktails. In love. I stop in there on my way home and get one (or two or three) to go. Take them home, leave them in the fridge.

I think they're just marvelous.

Geeber, I am forever in your debt. Not sure I would have stopped in there without your excellent recommendation.

And now I can't live without them!

Jun 18, 2014
Jaymes in Houston

High tea in and around Austin?

NOW I read this. After having posted essentially the same thing.

Ah well, doesn't hurt to repeat it.

Jun 18, 2014
Jaymes in Austin

High tea in and around Austin?

Right. "Afternoon Tea." As a quick Google search will tell you, the formal tea that we "colonials" have mistakenly taken to calling "high tea" is what the Brits (and everybody else in the official tea world) call "Afternoon Tea." No big deal unless you're calling to make reservations someplace and you say, "High Tea blahblahblah..." and they say, "Do you mean 'Afternoon Tea?'" and you're confused so you say, "No, High Tea!" and the conversation continues to repeat itself. This conversation can be particularly galling if you're having it somewhere Veddy British, like, oh say, the Empress Hotel in Victoria, or anywhere else, for that matter, with folks that know the difference.

"High Tea" is, in fact, something completely different. A hearty working-class meal with meats, cheeses, breads, etc., served often on a (high) sideboard and eaten at the (high) dining or kitchen table, rather than served prettily to the dainty upper-class ladies on low coffee/tea tables in a fancy parlor or elegant garden of a leisurely afternoon.

http://britishfood.about.com/od/faq/f...

Jun 18, 2014
Jaymes in Austin
1

Where is the best Spicy Fried Chicken in Austin on par with Prince's in Nashville

Gosh, hate to hear that. I've been quite a few times and had nothing but great food. And, although at times, the service has been a bit spotty, it's always been more than worth it.

Jun 12, 2014
Jaymes in Austin

Where is the best Spicy Fried Chicken in Austin on par with Prince's in Nashville

My favorite fried chicken in town is easily Nubian Queen Lola's Cajun Soul Cafe.
http://www.nubianqueenlolas.com
Love love love that place.

Jun 12, 2014
Jaymes in Austin

Austin Food Memories

I used to go to that theater a lot before it was the Alamo. It showed the sorts of "independent art films" that I like. But that theater was so old and smelly (seemed like they were forever renovating it and had new or old carpeting rolled up in the lobby) that none of my friends ever wanted to go there with me.

So my favorite thing to do was see a double-header: get in two movies in one day.

And in-between showings, I'd walk across the parking lot to have a meal at the Shanghai River Buffet.

When I first started going there, the food was really good, and the place was always busy, often with large Asian families occupying the bigger tables. After Alamo took over the theater, offering food, Shanghai River seemed, to me anyway, to go rapidly downhill. And finally it closed.

But I spent many a pleasant Saturday with my own personal version of "dinner and some movies."

Jun 06, 2014
Jaymes in Austin