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February 1-8, 2007
February 8, 2007
Magnolia Thai Cuisine is located in a strip mall in San Rafael between a Subway and a Sign o Rama, maybe they should get together and make sandwich boards..
My Kang Thong ($7.95):
... looks like a one eyed, flying
spaghetti monster hovering over a bowl of coconut milk enriched with red curry paste
and Thai basil. The big chunks of squash needed to be cut up so as
not to create that pumpkin-mouth-feel (a sort of astringent tongue
dryness combined with the urge to turn orange.) The strips of white
meat chicken did not suffer from dryness and the whole dish was okay,
but not something I would go out of my way to reorder.
... was a better choice. The succulent
slices of duck are for those not afraid of a little fat. Peppers, Bamboo
shoots, green beans, Thai basil and onions accented this good, fowl
Magnolia Thai Cuisine
February 7, 2007
It’s not easy to choose among the 4th Street restaurants. There’s the pristine chow at O’Chame, the comfort food of Bette’s or you could just bypass the whole nutrition thing and going straight to dessert at Sketch. We decided on lunch at Eccolo.
My chopped salad ($11.50):
...looked like it had too many dried currants, but it wasn’t overly sweet (as I incorrectly predicted.) The celery, radicchio, romaine and pine nuts were a nice crunchy counterpoint to the creamy avocado and rich Stilton. Next time I’ll order this with the grilled chicken breast ($15.00) to make it a more substantial meal.
Chubby got the Marco’s Burger ($13.00):
...which had a smaller Niman patty diameter than its bun. The guacamole was described as “spicy” on the menu, but it was on the milder side. The soft bun was a little too delicate to stand up to its beefy task and got a little juice logged but the tasty grilled onions glossed over my dampened feelings.The melted Cheddar helped to bind all the elements together in this meaty sandwich.
We came in at the tail end of lunch and although it was slow, I had the feeling that our minimum table service could be chalked up to fatigue. When our drinks were delivered, they were plunked down by the runner mid-stride. It was like they were being thrown from a moving car. I’ve gotta hand it to him, he didn’t spill a drop. Our glasses then sat empty for the second half of our lunch (but we had some water so it wasn’t the end of the world- just strange.)
Even though people may not have been on their “A” game, they were perfectly friendly once they slowed down enough to engage in eye contact and discussion.
February 6, 2007
We got to Rosamunde at 12:15 and were early enough to beat the Tuesday-only burger rush:
Our meaty reward:
...arrived 20 minutes later while we wet whistles with a beer next door at the Toronado (hey, it was after 12:00…)
I have eaten my share of these satisfying munde patties which are made all the more rosey by their once a week appearance on the menu. Familiarity may breed contempt, but burger-rarity breeds content.
To balance out my food groups, dessert was a chocolate
the street at Burger Joint.
Rosamunde Sausage Grill
From today’s bunrab email, Anne writes about yesterday’s Mall lunch:
I really miss the old food court at the Village. None of it was great, but the Mexican place (La Salsa?) and Sorobal were always reliable. Now we're stuck with the Cheesecake Factory (yuck), Boudin (never liked it), and the hot dog place (haven't tried it). All part of the upscalization (a word?) of the Village and Southern Marin!
All may not be lost. That hot dog place has tamales from Primavera. I am going to grab one next time I’m doing my Dawn of the Dead imitation by zombie walking to the mall and I’ll report back.
February 5, 2007
A San Francisco tourist lunch in Marin
There is something about those hollowed-out bread bowls filled with soup that stands my fur on end. It’s unfair of me, but they are the polyester leisure suit of the food world. Now, I know there must be some stylin’ polyester leisure suits, especially ones that are worn with a sense of irony, but they strike me as gimmick over flavor (which I am not always averse to, there’s just something about those freaking bread bowls that goes against my grain.)
I watched the parade of pain de not-for mie vessels circulate around the dining room as we waited for our order.
My Tilapia al forno ($8.99):
...had a pleasingly moist flesh, but the lemony herb coating was unappealingly wet and pasty. A haystack of green beans had a tired texture that the dice of roasted peppers didn’t perk up. The sourdough roll was fresh, standard issue, tourist grade bread. Acme doesn’t need to do any field research here.
Chubby got the Cobb salad ($6.99):
...which had a generous dice of chicken showered with bacon and blue cheese. I guess they were out of hard boiled eggs since they were on the menu, but not the plate. Chubby didn’t care for the peas that polka dotted the wilty iceberg since that flavor didn’t meld with his Cobby expectations.
Even though we weren’t wild about our lunch, some of the sandwiches looked like safer selections. They also dish up pizzas, soups, scrambles and baked goods.
The convenience factor of having an inexpensive, family friendly eatery at the Village Mall means that there are queues:
...out the door for this San Francisco themed chow.
February 4, 2007
We were both craving a ‘merican breakfast and headed over to Bubba’s for two Nick’s Picks ($9.95 each.)
I chose three scrambled eggs (which you get for the same price as two, if you specify your greedy nature at the time of ordering) extra crispy bacon, wheat toast and sliced tomato:
The reason why I love the extra crispy bacon here is because they throw it in the deep fryer (a.k.a. the alchemy bath.) This produces a greaseless, brittle, tangle of pork crunch to counter the soft scram which I dotted with their house made hot sauce to sate my need for indigenous chow.
Chubby got his with three over easy eggs, ham and a biscuit:
... which he assembled into a messy (but good) breakfast sandwich.
When we’re in San Anselmo, this is our go to place for simple diner chow served up with a smile.
R was a rock star:
... at his birthday party:
... at the Larkspur Café Theatre. Music, dancing, chow:
...and touching speeches. A good time was had by
all. Happy new 37th R!
February 3, 2007
We grabbed sandwiches:
... at Gare du Nord for the train trip back to Rotterdam. Paul is a bakery chain:
... that normally has decent chow so I was bummed out when I got a chicken sandwich that had less than a nugget’s worth of meat. Check out this wimpy strip of clucker:
I was starving, so I ate my mayonnaise sandwich, but I don’t think I would consider this option again (under non-plane-crash-with-a-soccer-team conditions.) Chubby’s ham and cheese had a reasonable distribution of ingredients so it could be that their chicken shooter was jammed today.
The Amsterdam airport has a clever arrangement with security at each gate so you can wander around with your gels and liquids until it’s time to board.
It has been a great trip:
...with some culinary highs:
... and lows:
... but it’s always good to get home.
February 2, 2007
A Mecca run for Macarons
Sadly, the foie gras macarons were discontinued on January 7th, but it was easy to get over this bitter disappointment once I sunk my teeth into the caramel fleur de sel number with it’s perfect balance of saline, and burnt sugar. I thought that was going to be the apex until I had the mind-blowing white truffle and hazelnut.
This is not to discount the pistachio, rose, passion fruit and milk chocolate, coconut and chocolate, or chestnut and green tea. All of these mini-hamburger impersonators were so delish that they somehow evaporated without a crumb left in the box.
To gild the lily (or in this case the rose) this mega filled macaron goes by the name of Ispahan and is filled with raspberries, litchis and rose crème:
Its subtle sweetness is balanced by the acid from the fruit and its creaminess is countered by the crisp shell of pink armor.
The Désiré looks like some sort of retro jello mold created by a Martian chef. This green concoction has a sable base supporting compote of banana and strawberry with thin slices of berry in the center and fraises des bois ornamenting the top. Another perfect combination of flavors and textures.
Not only does everything look gorgeous in their pastry masquerading as jewelry store:
...the people are friendly and the sweets are beyond amazing. I will
never again visit Paris without making a pilgrimage to this dessert
February 1, 2007
We began the day with a standard issue, tourist breakfast:
A flaky, buttery croissant, a piece of toasted baguette and some coffee energized us before our walk to Le Monde:
L from Le Monde 2 found Eyeball’s gallery and published several of the sleep series photos in last week’s issue:
Not only did they give him a big stack of magazines to take home, but he scored some bonus posters that plastered the newsagent stands throughout France. Then they proceeded to wine and dine us:
We began with thinly sliced saucisson sec before filling our bellies with veal, salad and chocolate tart. After coffee, M showed us how to make a “canard” by cradling a sugar cube in a spoon and dipping it in our armenac. It was the best vegetarian duck dessert ever (with the added attraction of combining two of my favorite vices.) I’m told that you can also do this with espresso, but that doesn’t sound nearly as decadent.
I’m glad we were on foot so we could walk off our ducks while checking out all of the windows:
...laden with cheese
-G and Eyeball
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