Plat du Jour Tuesday July 30, 2013: Restaurant Websites

It’s usually the first part of the dining out experience. Well, most likely the review from a newspaper or magazine critic, or perhaps the recommendation from a trusted friend might be the absolute first step (please, please don’t say browsing Yelp). When it’s crunch time though to start planning where to dine tomorrow night, whereContinue reading “Plat du Jour Tuesday July 30, 2013: Restaurant Websites”

Restaurants: Blackbird, Chicago

Aged meat and dishes merging surf and turf are two of the most challenging concepts for a kitchen to pull off without a hitch. Something almost always seems to go off the deep end for both. That precious half year aged chateaubriand might taste more of provocative black garlic than sensuous, relentless meat. Raise yourContinue reading “Restaurants: Blackbird, Chicago”

Tasting Notes from Ballast Point Brewing Co., San Diego

Having visited Stone Brewing’s out of the way location at an industrial park north of San Diego in Escondido, Green Flash and nearby Alesmith’s obscure industrial park locations in Mira Mesa, well south of Escondido and just north of the Miramar Naval Air Station, it was only fitting to visit the other major nationally knownContinue reading “Tasting Notes from Ballast Point Brewing Co., San Diego”

Cocktail of the Week: The “Saladito,” The Varnish, Los Angeles

The Varnish doesn’t have a signature cocktail. You don’t need to when you’re arguably the most important cocktail bar of the decade or so old speakeasy- craft cocktail movement. It seems as if this hidden, but very well known Downtown Los Angeles and its chief mixologist Eric Alperin are to cocktail “best of” lists andContinue reading “Cocktail of the Week: The “Saladito,” The Varnish, Los Angeles”

Wine of the Week: 2011 Dragonette Cellars Sauvignon Blanc, Vogelzang Vineyard, Happy Canyon of Santa Barbara, CA

The Santa Barbara area is known best for its pinot noir (thanks “Sideways”) and Dragonette Cellars is no exception. The formerly Lompoc based winery with one of the more handsome Los Olivos tasting rooms you’ll find frequently hits the headlines for its pinot noir. Dragonette’s 2011 Santa Rita Hills Pinot Noir was indeed a stellarContinue reading “Wine of the Week: 2011 Dragonette Cellars Sauvignon Blanc, Vogelzang Vineyard, Happy Canyon of Santa Barbara, CA”

Tuesday’s Project: Beef Brisket? Which Way?

About a year ago I made the pilgrimage to Lockhart, Texas for some barbeque grazing in the heart of the brisket belt. The trip really was themed around baseball in Dallas and Houston, with sightseeing and dining in Austin and San Antonio to break up the sausages and beer at ballparks (well, so I ateContinue reading “Tuesday’s Project: Beef Brisket? Which Way?”