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Restaurant suggestions at Sonoma Valley


ETA - Sonoma Valley may need clarification - the County is pretty big - so are you planning to be around the town of Sonoma, or near Healdsburg, which are about an hour's drive apart?

If you're staying in the area, like at Gaige House, everything they serve at Glen Ellen Star is delicious, though my favorite counter seat location may not be the intimate romantic date you are seeking.... another great, very casual place in the area is El Molino Central. And the newish Aventine is in a really pretty location. I think Sonoma is generally more casual than the other side of the mountain in Napa.

We recently had lots of fun doing tastings at Scribe Winery and at HelloCello/Prohibition Spirits; reserve ahead for those two, too.

What do dirt-poor French people eat?

Here is an article about a local organization here in SF: http://www.cuesa.org/article/fighting...

Sep 12, 2014
foodeye in France

What do dirt-poor French people eat?

Like what is (was) known as Government Cheese in USA.

Sep 12, 2014
foodeye in France

Chocolate: What do you look for?

I have now tried the Scharffen Berger bar, and did not care for it: very dry and savory, not really sweet at all. Maybe it would be nice in a creative salad or something.

Sep 08, 2014
foodeye in General Topics

Chocolate: What do you look for?

Speaking of the price of chocolate, the most costly ones I have indulged in must be the Cocoa Absolute (my favorite are the brulee).

My go-to lately is Dandelion, which does not do inclusions, but does an always interesting range of bean-to-bar special single origin bars.

There are certain bars with inclusions that I would like to indulge in, from makers like Bernachon http://www.davidlebovitz.com/2009/09/... (especially the caramel Kalouga), but those are hard to find outside of Lyon (I found them at the NY chocolate show), or anything from Zotter (not that I like all of their crazy stuff, but I would try any of them at least once!), but they are hard to find these days, too, and I have not broken down and ordered them directly http://www.zotter.at/en/homepage.html.

I just saw a Scharffen Berger bar, 72%, with salted pistachios; I will try it next.

- @Sandylc, for the high-end version of a Snicker's bar, try here: http://doubledutchsweets.com/

Sep 05, 2014
foodeye in General Topics

Kainbigan Restaurant (Oakland)

Never heard of it before today, but besides this post I saw this deal:

There is also a big Filipino food festival tomorrow (8/30) in Justin Herman Plaza.

Where are your top pastries locations and pastries in Italy? Maybe Milan ?

David was recently in Sicily, too, for the 2nd time. I don't think you can go wrong there for baked goods!

If you are going to Catania, I was a big fan of this place for cappuccino and cookies; http://it-it.facebook.com/pages/Pasti...

And this was the best I tried in Taormina: http://www.paginebianche.it/pasticcer...

I will check out your new blog.

Buon viaggio!

Aug 15, 2014
foodeye in Italy

Seeking Recs for Business Lunches in French Quarter

I loved August, my one time there; though it is sort of white table clothed, the service was friendly/not too formal and all the food and drinks were great.

Aug 14, 2014
foodeye in New Orleans

Looking for the best Polish restaurant

Not quite as requested, but how about Lithuanian in Alameda?


Travel & Leisure names NO as one of the ten best destinations in the WORLD

browsing those lists, NO is also #5 on the list of the most friendly cities in the US, and think I agree it's at the very least #5.

Aug 12, 2014
foodeye in New Orleans

Where are your top pastries locations and pastries in Italy? Maybe Milan ?

Your post reminded me of this: http://www.davidlebovitz.com/2011/10/...

Aug 06, 2014
foodeye in Italy

Best Paella in San Francisco/Oakland?

Camino on Grand Ave. in Oakland is featuring Paella Mondays for August and September.

Looking for lunch delivery in the Financial District [San Francisco]

Cafe Terminus is great. http://terminussf.com/

And I think you should look for a new job you like better - with people you like and like to feed and make happy ;-).

Special occasion vegetarian friendly restaurant in the East Bay?


One more Dinner for Repeat Travelers

How about August?

Jul 29, 2014
foodeye in New Orleans

Favorite Ice Cream 2014

Yes, GLS' ice cream is good, and the menu usually includes something like a fruit crisp from the wood oven, which goes especially well with their ice cream.

Cremeux ex machina had a a chocolate salted peanut butter gelato a couple of weeks ago that was amazing.

Favorite Ice Cream 2014

My favs at La Michoacana are Mexican vanilla and cappucino (together in a cup). They have recently opened a shop in Novato.

I have also been indulging Jeni's (Savannah Buttermint, Roxbury Road, Brown Butter Almond Brittle....)

And this newish Ferry Builing vendor is great, too:

Saha -- Best Middle Eastern in SF?

Noting that this is an old revived thread, and the OP may not still be interested, but I am wondering if anyone has thoughts on Pera? Sağ olun! http://www.perasf.com/

Trader Joes... Please, just ring up my groceries.

As long as this old thread is up, this was in the SF paper today - maybe it should become the stock response!

Public Eavesdropping:

"Did you find everything you needed?"
"I didn't find a million dollars or true love."

Conversation between female grocery checker and male customer, overheard at Trader Joe's on California Street.

Jul 16, 2014
foodeye in Chains

what type of tequila is best for mixing with non alcoholic margerita mix's

No such thing as the wrong kind of Tequila, as long as it is 100% agave. But don't use margarita mix! Just juice some fresh limes, and maybe an orange too, add a little simple syrup or agave or sweet orange liquour, and shake with lots of ice. See here: http://www.chow.com/recipes/10643-per...

Jul 09, 2014
foodeye in Spirits

critique my food choices in wine country

I don't know the other restaurants in Glen Ellen, but note there is a great grocery store for picnic supplies, Sonoma Market, there is a brand new restaurant, Aventine, in a pretty and historic setting, and there is a local's/tourist's bar with a pool table, the Jack London. The "downtown" wine tasting rooms are good, but do not stay open late. The Jack London Park is also worth a visit, if you need an activity besides dining and wine tasting. It's a very small town - one night/two days may be enough. It is nice to stay and enjoy the wines at Glen Ellen Star and a night cap at the local bar, and just walk to your lodging.

Glen Ellen is about 5-10 minutes away from El Molino Central, too, so it is very convenient to overnight and then have Mexican brunch the next day (El Molino has Blue Bottle Coffee, too).

Looking for some new spots in Mission/Noe Valley area [San Francisco]

La Nebbia is the new spin-off from La Ciccia.
Flour and Water (not too new) is similar to those places you've been, known for pasta.
St. Vincent, "wine-centric restaurant" is worth a try.
Between Mission and Potrero, if you don't mind noise/cozy upstairs dining room/crowded bar scene downstairs, try Trick Dog, for great cocktails and fun bar food. (May be a bit too loud and cozy for 6, but your tolerance may be high.)

critique my food choices in wine country

Since Jaiko mentioned Sebastopol, if you are interested in taking a scenic ride north of Petaluma and west of Sebastopol, Wildflour Bakery is a really great spot. http://www.wildflourbread.com/

In that same area, I have not tried this place, but I think the CH reviews have been positive: http://www.rockeroysterfellers.com/

There have also been recent positive review of this place, a bit north of Healdsburg: http://www.diavolapizzeria.com/

Jul 08, 2014
foodeye in San Francisco Bay Area

Peaches! 7 Things to Make with Summer's Perfect Fruit

Peaches are also a really good stand-in for tomatoes in a BLT (BLP)!

Jul 08, 2014
foodeye in Features

critique my food choices in wine country

I think your choices are all stellar. There's one favorite casual lunch stop you may like, just northeast of Healdsburg, Jimtown Store.

What are you baking these days? July 2014 Edition, Part 1! [old]

I made this cake this weekend http://www.elizabethminchilliinrome.c...
It came out great. But (and, really, I can't stand how many of these such comments get posted at places like Smitten) I will add that I used half whole wheat and half AP flour, and I didn't have any Marsala wine, so I used Luxardo Maraschino liqueur.

Jul 07, 2014
foodeye in Home Cooking

What are you baking these days? July 2014 Edition, Part 1! [old]

If you want a variation on that, or don't have eggs on hand for the usual CCC recipe, this is a good version:


And if you don't like the irregular size/shape, they can be cut into uniform bar sizes in the pan, when still a bit warm.

Jul 02, 2014
foodeye in Home Cooking

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

If Sausalito is not convenient, Waterbar on the SF Embarcadero may be more convenient, or one block down the way Hog Island or Slanted Door in the Ferry Building, or La Mar - all of which have very nice seafood and views.

What am I doing wrong with my brownie recipes?

I expect that is a cakey brownie, even though they call it "fudgy, chewy," due to the number of eggs and amount of flour. I do like that it calls for a huge amount of chocolate! (Though that does make it quite an investment.) I think if try it, I'd use a bit less flour and would double the salt.

Jun 24, 2014
foodeye in Home Cooking

What am I doing wrong with my brownie recipes?

Have you tried this old standby, which is almost flour-less: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/foo...

My current favorite is this one, which is more chewy: http://smittenkitchen.com/blog/2012/0...

You would need to double these recipes for a 9x13 pan, as they call for an 8" pan.

For a highlighting a chocolate taste that you prefer, use a ounce or two more chocolate than the recipe calls for and be sure to use a chocolate style that you like (my go to is Guittards unsweetened; Scharffen Berger is nice too, with a berry fruit profile), but if you want to keep it sweeter, maybe add extra of some semi- or bittersweet.

Jun 24, 2014
foodeye in Home Cooking