Friday, March 30, 2007

Overrated Pie

I'm not going to go on a long rant here, but having just spent the weekend at William Heise park, I stopped by Julian to have some pie. This was our third trip to Julian for such pie and our third different famous pie shop to try. For the third time we were disappointed - the pie was just not that good....

I am thinking of giving up- unless someone can persuade me a reason or a place to try this renowned pie again!

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Fave Breakfast Places

Having been in San Diego for I guess a year and a half now I find myself not exploring as much as I used to, and often going back to the same old places. This is certainly the case with breakfast- particularly after our unfavorable experience at Green Tomato last time we strayed outside our well worn spots.

So- my top five breakfast places:

1, The Beach House- just the heaven of drinking champagne on the beach in the morning sun is enough to make this place top my list. The food is perhaps not as good as at some other places but the whole experience together really is.

2, The Boat House- somehow over the past few months I have fallen in love with the Boathouse Mess breakfast option. The spicy chillies, with the delicious potatoes, creamy cheese and slightly crunchy peppers. The perfect dish after a slightly rough night- great service, never any wait to speak of, and a lovely view.

3, Big Kitchen- probably wins the best for ambiance (provided you don't get a view, and also for the wealth of vegetarian and healthy options. Big Kitchen really can often you whatever you looking for, plus hanging out waiting in South Park with a coffee in hand is always fun.

4, Terra- Prehaps a surprise inclusion- but has some of the best quality food I have had for breakfast in San Diego. Not much on the setting, but sometimes good food is just worth it.

5, Hash House- I'm not in love with this place as a lot of people are, but it still should make the top ten for its novelty value. The huge pancakes are I think unmatched in town- surprising in their thorough fluffiness. Large portions come at a heavy cost here, but well if you are hungry there is no better place to go.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Village Kabob Greek Restaurant

My wife's work often means that our weekends start on Saturday afternoons- if we are lucky that this... This weekend we were fortunate enough to have the whole of Saturday afternoon and Sunday to ourselves, and thought we would celebrate the start with a nice trip out to lunch. Picking her up at her office near Old Town we contemplated where to go- Mexican food did not sound too appealing and so we decided to head to Ocean Beach an area we haven't really tried out much in the culinary arena. Passing over the OB Bistro (good but very overpriced from past experience), we headed right to the Newport strip, figuring that we would surely find something among this plethora of restaurants. As we headed down the street however we began to despair- everything looked so greasy and mediocre.Menu after Menu we checked walking all the way down to the beach and then back up the other side with nothing seeming particularly appealing- and then we hit on the Village Kabob Greek Restaurant.
Greek Food always used to be our favorite cuisine, and for some reason in recent year we have neglected it a little- perhaps because it is something we have done a pretty good job with in our own home. Nonetheless the diners tucking into a fresh Greek salad were tremendously enticing- and the clean airy bright interior of the restaurant was a welcome antidote from the crowded dingy bars of Newport Avenue. Contrast can be everything at times and it certainly helped this little Greek restaurant win our hearts, manifesting itself again in the appearance of the friendliest Greek waitress, so helpful and charming that she made the gruff waiter down the street, asking aggressively for our IDs as we checked out a menu, slightly embarrassing.
of the many menu choices available to us I chose the chicken kabob plate and my wife agonizing at first between the Spankanopitta and the falafel was thrilled to see she could have a little piece of both. Perhaps it was just our delight in having finally found a place to eat but everything seemed fantastic- the lentil soup that started welled with flavor, the salad was fresh and the tzatziki light and creamy, even the falafels seemed the best we had had in San Diego.
I'm not sure the Village Kabob Greek Restaurant is exactly somewhere I would go back to- hard to recreate the euphoria of the day- however if I am ever stranded in Ocean Beach looking for a good meal that is not deep fried I will know where to find it.

Monday, March 12, 2007

Breakfast at Green Tomato

Wanting to try somewhere new for breakfast I was recommended to check out Green tomato- a lover of their happy hour I figured I would give it a shot- particularly after seeing the lines at Big Kitchen (it's good but not hour and a half wait good).
Green Tomato always give me a nice feeling of cleanliness, perhaps the white linens at the tables, it feels a very elegant place to be with the antique style furniture, and of course the British waiter. the restaurant was pretty empty, which was great so far as hunger levels are concerned, but too good an advertisement for the food. A poor advertisement which unfortunately turned out to be right as soon as we got our menus. The menu really was just horribly uninspired, which such insipid choices that it took us a long long while to figure out which dull entree to choose. On the plus side there were some delicious chocolate muffin type things to much on at this time.
The food was not bad at Green Tomato, just decidedly unspectacular, and the ambiance felt like the downstairs restaurant of some chain hotel, all clean and proper with no character at all. When I have been for happy hour before things have been quite different, the lights turned down low, the ornate bar with the amusing bar tender, the elegant martinis served for incredibly reasonable prices. Breakfast just isn't the time to visit this restaurant.

Saturday, March 03, 2007

Wasabi Tamari Almonds

As most of you doubtless know a new Trader Joes store opened last month at the NTC in Point Loma. For proximity's sake I will continue to use the Hillcrest Store, but am still excited that prehaps a new store will diffuse crowds a little. Anyway, to mark the occasion I thought I would tell you about a couple of my fave products currently at TJs.
Browsing through the fearless flier recently I came across an article which started along the lines of "do you like spicy, salty and sweet tastes all at once" this being my absolutely fave food I read on and discovered a new product- wasabi tamari almonds. I was a little disapointed- not being a big fan of tamari and positively disliking wasabi. Still the next time I was in the store I decided to get a packet. The first one nearly blew off the roof of my mouth, I was momentarily disgusted, but then the after taste kicked in- the sweetness of the almond. It was delicious, I tried another and another and was quickly addicted. The only disappointing thing about this product is I don't seem to be able to share it with anyone, no one seems quite able to get past the initial wasabi fire- but please do try, it is well well worth it.

My other favorite product now are the roasted tomatoes. Oh my goodness these things are to die for- way better than any sun dried stuff. Initially the package looks a little pricey at 3.50 ish for a small pack- but again well worth it. The package lasts for a fair few wonderful salads, a whole new taste that has been wonderful!