dlglidden's Profile

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food/research suggestions for baja/ensenada - por favor!!!!

And if you're into vomit, loud music, and sexual harassment, make sure you visit the aforementioned Hussong's Cantina. College kids and drunks have made it quite famous. Just make sure you don't slip on the daily barf on the sidewalk in front of the Cantina.

Jun 25, 2014
dlglidden in Mexico

Best shellfish in Berkeley?

Daimo in the Pacific East shopping mall in Richmond has lots of reliably fresh seafood all year. Its lobster sampan style is particularly good.

Jun 05, 2014
dlglidden in San Francisco Bay Area

Robalo recipes or how to cook snook

Interesting. I've been to Nayarit many times but have never seen róbalo, let alone róbalo zarandeado. In most of México pescado zarandeado is made using red snapper (or what is labeled "red snapper" which is actually Pacific rockfish, not red snapper from the Gulf of México).

Jan 15, 2014
dlglidden in Home Cooking

Robalo recipes or how to cook snook

In Veracruz a few years ago we had (at a VERY GOOD restaurant) baked snook: skinned on one side, skin on the other. the róbalo was baked on a bed of rock salt, skin side down. It was superb; my wife swears it was the best fish dish she has ever had. (Name of restaurant available upon request.)

Derald Glidden dlglidden@aol.com

Jan 14, 2014
dlglidden in Home Cooking

Dinner near Cerrito Movie Theater on a Monday

I agree with the suggestion of Nizza La Bella. The food at the Cerrito is plain "not good" and pales in comparison to the food at the old Parkway; we no longer eat food at the Cerrito. It does have a decent wine list by the glass or bottle, but it's ridiculously expensive. Another off-the-wall suggestion would be Romano's Macaroni Grill in El Cerrito Plaza. It's a national chain Italian restaurant, but the food (especially the pastas) is really pretty good and the wine and drinks are cheap. They also have a small cafe menu which is available after 3PM and is dirt cheap (though hardly "gourmet") if you buy a drink--and MUCH cheaper than similar food at the Cerrito.

Jun 15, 2012
dlglidden in San Francisco Bay Area

Mexican Wines?

It carries cars but nothing I know of in the way of cargo. And, of course, getting wine from the Valle de Guadalupe to La Paz is problematic because it needs to be refrigerated while in transit. That's why Baja wine costs 2-3 times as much in retail shops in Los Cabos as it does in, say, Ensenada. (And the ferry from La Paz to Mazatlan is EXPENSIVE.)

Feb 10, 2012
dlglidden in Mexico

Mexican Wines?

Peter, thanks for the link. But for me, the problem is not so much buying Baja wines in the US (I live in CA and can easily drive to Baja and buy/drink them there) as it is buying Baja wines IN MEXICO. I travel to the Mexican mainland regularly and, over the years, have found it increasingly difficult to find Baja wines in Mexico! To me, this is outrageous. But apparently cheap Chilean and Argentinean wines are flooding the market and, with the cost of transporting Baja wines to the rest of Mexico, Baja just can't compete. Que lastima!

Feb 10, 2012
dlglidden in Mexico

B in Oakland

Leely,

This is not just a problem at B's. It's becoming a Bay Area epidemic, and it's the result of the "Great Recession." Almost all restaurants that used to offer lunch either no longer do so or have decided to provide only a "bare bones" menu. and/or reduce the number of days they offer lunch. In the East Bay, Corso quit offering lunch, period; Nizza La Bella dropped its lunch service and then many months later, tried reviving it with an interesting menu and really good prices. That noble try didn't work and they cut back to weekend and, I think, Friday lunches. Venezia did essentially the same thing. Last week, on my birthday, my wife and I had lunch at Olivetto upstairs. The service was good, but the food was only OK, and the size of the menu (number of choices) was severely restricted and the few choices on the menu were boringly simple, used inexpensive (cheap) ingredients, and could have been prepared either in advance or quickly, and 3/4 of the tables were empty. Only the K2 Group seems to be making an all out effort to preserve lunch and increase their seatings by offering creative specials and advertising them and not dumbing down or significantly cheapening their food dishes.

Nojones, Why in the world would B lie about the effects of Occupy Oakland on their business?They obviously have real data; you have one anecdote. And don't forget that the plural of "anecdote" is not "data." My wife works 1.5 blocks from the "encampment" and she can provide lots of anecdotal data on the effects of Occupy Oakland on nearby businesses.

As WJC famously said, "It's the economy, stupid." And Occupy Oakland is just a small additional temporary zit on the pimpled face of Oakland's present economic situation.

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Nizza La Bella
827 San Pablo Ave, Albany, CA 94706

Nov 11, 2011
dlglidden in San Francisco Bay Area

Ensenada Restaurants (past and present)

My wife and I visit Ensenada a couple of times a year, usually in the Spring. This December a high school friend of my wife will be in the San Diego area for a couple of weeks and we're going to fly down and take her to Ensenada for a couple of days for dining and drinking wine. I have a few questions.

Is Laja still closed during the month of December? Is Manzanilla still open Wed-Sat? Is El Taco de Huitzilopochtli still open on weekends and still serving their lamb barbacoa? What days and hours is Capricho's open (website has no info)?

General questions: Why in the world do most Mexican restaurant websites not include the months/seasons, days, and hours they are open?! Any new restaurants to recommend in Ensenada, or old ones that have improved or taken a hit in quality/reputation? (And, please, no more discussions/fights about Laja, I'm sick and tired of that contentious topic.)

Thanks,

Derald Glidden

Nov 06, 2011
dlglidden in Mexico

Where to buy Boxed Wine in SF or online?

I'd also vote for Big House Red in a box (1.5 Liters). That is, if I had to vote for a boxed wine. It's been available for some time at Lucky stores and Trader Joe's (at least it has been in the East Bay). But, seriously, Big House Red in the bottle is better than BHR in the box and the price per ounce difference is not that much and the Stelvin closures on the bottles are MUCH easier and convenient to open than extracting that spigot from the box (and the spigot is unreliable and tends to leak).

Oct 23, 2011
dlglidden in San Francisco Bay Area

Guadalajara Dining

There's always the old standby Santo Coyote in the old US Consular's house. Great atmosphere/decor and rather good food, though not particularly creative or unusual.

Sep 12, 2011
dlglidden in Mexico

Looking for braised shortribs in East Bay or SF

I had lunch there today and asked if the short ribs were always on the dinner menu or if the menu rotated every now and then. The answer is that the short ribs are ALWAYS on the menu, though on a given day they may run out at some point because they're very popular. They also have beef short rib hash on their breakfast menu ($12.75).The short ribs come with haricot verts and a potato-parmesan pave.

The restaurant is in the site of the old Walker's Pie Shop. Nothing fancy or outstanding, but pretty good food at reasonable prices.

Aug 21, 2011
dlglidden in San Francisco Bay Area

michael bauer's negative review of fonda (albany)

$3 margaritas at Bar Cesar all day long over the 3-day 4th of July weekend. At least K2 is advertising their restaurants and offering special deals regularly. Says nothing about the food, but says quite a bit about their determination to make a go of their restaurants in these hard times.

Jul 02, 2011
dlglidden in San Francisco Bay Area

Point Richmond: Hidden City Cafe revisited - as American as pot roast, shortcake and salsa

Me too. The food looks like typical greasy, haphazardly thrown together breakfast crap. And I don't think it even sounds good, let alone great. And likening this place to the food at Chez Panisse seems a spectacular "spew your coffee" moment. Out of curiosity, are there any entrees other than pot roast, what are prices like, does it accept credit cards, etc, etc?

Point Richmond, to me, has always been a problematic place to eat. Decades ago Hotel Mac was a very good place to have dinner, drinks, etc. Since then many restaurants have popped up and gone downhill or were not worth going to in the first place, and failed. It would be truly great if a good restaurant would open and manage to survive there. I keep hoping and trying new or recently recommended ones, but I'm close to giving up.

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Chez Panisse
1517 Shattuck Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94709

Hotel Mac
50 Washington Ave, Richmond, CA 94801

Jun 28, 2011
dlglidden in San Francisco Bay Area

ship wine to mexico - specifically cabo?

Shipping wine to Baja is a bad idea for a variety of reasons. Shipping cheap wine to Baja is insane: There is no shortage of cheap Chilean and Mexican wines there. And shipping good wine to Baja is very risky because it costs a lot, takes forever, and is a paperwork nightmare, and wine does not travel well in México unless it is shipped in refrigerated containers and treated with respect and that ain't going to happen. That's why it's becoming increasingly difficult to find Baja wines in mainland México: It's cheaper for restaurants and wine-selling stores to purchase Chilean wines than it is to purchase and stock Baja wines. Sad, but true.

In large cities wine in México is about the same price as in the U.S. Not as much variety, though. In small cities and villages the pickin's are VERY slim and you might be forced to stick with tequila.There are two or three EXCELLENT wine/spirit shops in the Los Cabos area, featuring the best of Baja wines. And Costco and major supermarket chains feature a large selection of cheap-medium priced Chilean/Mexican wines. Imported liquor is expensive (priced single malt scotch in the U.S. recently?) and tequila is almost exactly the same price as in CA. Good California wine is available in Cabo but is more than twice the price of buying it in Ensenada (transportation and refrigeration costs) which is about 1.5 times the price of buying it in, say, San Diego.

All in all, don't even think about shipping wine to México, ask the locals where to shop, and for high-end wines ask a restaurant sommelier or server for the names of wine shops that carry
"the good stuff."

Jun 28, 2011
dlglidden in Mexico

michael bauer's negative review of fonda (albany)

I'm with you, Josh. Fonda was wonderful (and got wonderful reviews) for years after it opened. It's now, frankly, very tired and staid. It hasn't fiddled significantly with its menu or decor in years. Maybe the K2 group is overextended and unable to properly attend to all its several restaurants. Thinking back over the past few months, we've eaten quite often at Paisan, and frequently at Lalime's and even Jimmy Bean's, but not often at Sea Salt or T-Rex and not at all at Fonda.

Fonda used to be a fun, good value, unusual place to eat. Now, it no longer is.

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Sea Salt
2512 San Pablo Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94702

Lalime's
1329 Gilman, Berkeley, CA 94706

Jimmy Bean's
1290 6th St, Berkeley, CA 94710

Paisan
2514 San Pablo Ave, Berkeley, CA 94702

Jun 26, 2011
dlglidden in San Francisco Bay Area

The unbearable lightness of being a gringo and trying to order the chorizo Mexican breakfast burrito at El Ojo de Agua taco truck

In northern México, "Papas con Chorizo" is an extremely common breakfast dish. When I'm in México it's what I eat almost every morning. (On the other days I have chilorio with huevos revueltos.) A breakfast burrito with chorizo and papas and huevos, etc. is as Méxican—and as common—as one with as arroz y frijoles. I'm wondering where this cook in the food truck is from. New Jersey?

But I also think that guacamole on/in a breakfast burrito is a bad/weird idea.

Jun 18, 2011
dlglidden in San Francisco Bay Area

Eating in Veracruz

I can recommend (and have over the past few years) an excellent restaurant in Veracruz featuring, oddly enough, Italian food: http://www.ilveneziano.com.mx/inicio..... I learned about it on the TT from John Todd, Jr. And it was by far the best food we had in the Veracruz area. Their "specialty" is robalo, specifically: " fresco lomo de robalo horneado en su costra de sal marina."

I found the touted downtown and "on the water" restaurants featuring jaiba to be rather pathetic.

Jun 11, 2011
dlglidden in Mexico

New Diana Kennedy Oaxaca Cookbook

DD, It's a great coffee table book and I'm glad it won Cookbook of the Year, but, alas, I've not yet felt a need/worked up my courage to attempt one of the recipes.

Derald Glidden

May 08, 2011
dlglidden in Mexico

Sunday lunch--Berkeley, near campus

I'd recommend Bistro Liaison (northside, at Shattuck & Hearst). There's handicapped street parking right in front of the restaurant and they serve Sunday Brunch from 10 until 3. Google their menu:. http://www.liaisonbistro.com/index.htm

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Bistro Liaison
1849 Shattuck Ave., Berkeley, CA 94709

Mar 11, 2011
dlglidden in San Francisco Bay Area

B in Oakland

To me, the best thing about B is its Happy Hour: $1 oysters (usually two to choose from) and its individual-sized pizzas (usually two to choose from). Unfortunately, the prices of wines by the glass are not "happy."

It's a great place to stop in if you work in DT Oakland or a good destination if you don't; and the parking lot next door is free after 6PM.

Feb 14, 2011
dlglidden in San Francisco Bay Area

Ensenada...The good...the average...and the questions

Laja is closed for most of December and early January, annually. You should call to confirm when. (Last year they began their annual closure in late November.)

Dec 21, 2010
dlglidden in Mexico

Once again... restaurants in Mazatlan... with a 2.5 year old

I'll respond to a couple of things (but not all; I'm not a Travel Agent).

Staying away from El Centro is absurd; it's paranoia. Walking in the tourist areas after dark is probably safer than walking around in your home town at night. But exercise common sense and pay attention: bad stuff can happen. And the Plazuela Machado area is probably one of the SAFEST places to be.

Restaurants on your list that I know are still open (and I eat at) and worth visiting include Bahía Mariscos, Diego's, Te Amo Lucy, and El Túnel. But there a great many others that you didn't ask about. And, frankly, I don't think it's worth the trouble to go to Villa Union to eat at Chuchupetas, especially if you don't have a car; but if you are bored and restless and want to briefly "get out town," go ahead.

And you can find entirely too many restaurant recommendations and food fights by locals, expats, and tourists on WHATSUPMAZ.ORG and MAZINFO.COM (Yahoo! Group). And both sites are free and have decent Search functions.

Nov 21, 2010
dlglidden in Mexico

Locanda da Eva closing?!

The minute (last night) that I read of Locanda's closing I made a dinner reservation for tonight via Open Table. There were virtually unlimited times available for all three nights. So . . . you should all go not only to vote for the food with your feet but to thank and support Robert Lauriston.

And I totally disagree with the "cursed location" BS. Casa de Eva was a great success in that location for decades. And a couple of the successors did quite well.

Nov 19, 2010
dlglidden in San Francisco Bay Area

Once again... restaurants in Mazatlan... with a 2.5 year old

There are a half dozen or so restaurants within easy walking distance of Pueblo Bonito, some very good, some not so good. Last year Diego's was La Hoguerra (same chef and owner) and was excellent, and I've mostly heard very good things about the expansion, upgrade, and name change. We're planning on eating there the first night we arrive (Jan. 3). Across the street is the seafood restaurant La Costa Marinera which is extremely popular and extremely raucous and "fun." I don't think the food is very good at all and I don't usually like the noise and the party atmosphere, but I'm sure I'm in the minority. I would also recommend Los Zarapes (on the second floor of a tiny shopping center on the east side of the street a couple of blocks south of PB). Pretty good food and easy to get to.

I don't recommend the restaurants in PB except for the atmosphere. But the atmosphere is great—especially the beach/palapa restaurant Cilantro's. And PB's"breakfast only" restaurant, Las Palomas, which is allegedly good but I don't eat breakfast so I can't really say. And I can say that the breakfast at El Paraje (The Place), just down the street from PB, is cheap and popular. I can also say that the food served at lunch and dinner is, to me, vile, and the drunken karaoke at night is truly awful. If your kid or you would like rather good "American food" then Heather's Place, further south, is a good place to eat.

When we get to Maz we first go to Soriana (supermarket) to stock up on things to cook for breakfast and snacks during the day (as well as alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages for the room). The Mini Super across the street from PB is also convenient but more expensive..

Dee knows much more about El Centro restaurants, but we really like Topolo and Te Amo Lucy. And for seafood, La Puntilla (down by the docks ) and Bahía Maríscos (in old town). The seafood places we learned about from Dee. But Street Food in Maz can be great and do not miss the centro mercado.

Have a great trip!

Nov 16, 2010
dlglidden in Mexico

Nizza La Bella - Wow

We've been doing our best to keep the lunch/brunch going. It's a GREAT value and an interesting menu. I was surprised when they started offering it when many other restaurants quit offering lunch because of the great recession.

But Nizza La Bella needs support if they are going to continue with lunch. When we eat lunch there, there are invariably few customers. It's a damn shame. I'm afraid the restaurant can't keep this up forever unless lunch traffic starts growing. Come on everyone, support your local neighborhood restaurants!

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Nizza La Bella
827 San Pablo Ave, Albany, CA 94706

Nov 13, 2010
dlglidden in San Francisco Bay Area

Gourmet Ghetto Spice of Life festival (Sun 10/17) and Gourmet Ghetto walking tour?

Wow! Thanks so much Stephanie. I just called them (they're actually in Walnut Creek at Geary & Pleasant Hill Rd.) and they say they almost always have them but to call ahead to check and reserve the chops before driving all the way out there. And that's just what I'm going to do. And BTW, isn't that the location of the old Walnut Creek Geary Rd. Co-op grocery store (also dating myself now)?

Oct 20, 2010
dlglidden in San Francisco Bay Area

Gourmet Ghetto Spice of Life festival (Sun 10/17) and Gourmet Ghetto walking tour?

Lenny's! Ah for the good old days. Even though we were "starving students" back then we could enjoy/afford veal chops parmesan with attached kidney using the recipe from the Co-op Cookbook and get the chops with kidneys from Lenny's. I've been trying to purchase them for the last 10+ years without success.

From the reports of this year's street fair, it seems obvious that it's a pitiful shadow of its former self. Pity.

Oct 18, 2010
dlglidden in San Francisco Bay Area

Gourmet Ghetto Spice of Life festival (Sun 10/17) and Gourmet Ghetto walking tour?

I think it was just called the Shattuck Street Fair and it certainly predated the term "Gourmet Ghetto" now used to describe that part of Berkeley.

Oct 16, 2010
dlglidden in San Francisco Bay Area

Gourmet Ghetto Spice of Life festival (Sun 10/17) and Gourmet Ghetto walking tour?

That "festival" has been around for way more than a decade. It used to be on Shattuck from about Cedar to Rose. It was no FBD then and I'm sure it still is. Forget about shopping at Andronico or having lunch at Chez Panisse Cafe when it's going on.

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Chez Panisse
1517 Shattuck Avenue, Berkeley, CA 94709

Oct 13, 2010
dlglidden in San Francisco Bay Area