Wordless Wednesday: Hitchcock Restaurant on Bainbridge Island

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Down and Dirty: Hole in the Wall Restaurants in the Greater Los Angeles Area

When I visit friends around the country and the world, I fear I sometimes frighten them with my lists of places to try. Often I've scoured the internet (and the brains of fellow foodies) for the so-called 'hidden gems'. I say so called, because they're never hidden from the people who love them, those to whom this is the food of their homeland. Partamian's Armenian Bakery--also, it seems, known as F & J, is just such an example from my recent trip to LA. We hit a number of great holes in the wall, and the first one embodied so much of why I love to eat at these places. Partamian's … [Read more...]

Recreating the Perfect Meal: Seafood Boil

The Meal The perfect meal. I ate it the other day, at a gas station in a town called Kenner, Louisianna. I stopped in at the Check in Check out Deli, five minutes up the street from the New Orleans airport because I'd heard online it had decent po-boys and I could kill two birds with one stone by filling up the rental car before hopping my flight home and grabbing one last sandwich for the flight. Lucky me, the wait for brunch at Stanley was too long, so I just took off early to the airport, leaving me plenty of time to enjoy a¬†leisurely¬†afternoon. As I drove up, there hung a plain lettered … [Read more...]

Feasting like a Princess in Queens

"But where in New York can one find a woman with grace, elegance, taste and culture? A woman suitable for a king?" "Queens!" If anyone else grew up in a household with two brothers and only basic cable, you too have probably seen Coming to America over a thousand times and when the New York City borough of Queens is mentioned, this line is all that you can think of. No? Just me? Again? Alright, this is enough already. Seriously though, we did a food excavation of Queens on our most recent trip to New York. We had overlooked the boroughs on our last … [Read more...]

Aura at Nita Lake Lodge in Whistler

Whistler is like a second home for me, I grew up flying down its slopes and was raised on the what little great food was available there in 1989. Not to sound too much like an old-timer, but when people ask me for a restaurant recommendation in Whistler, both the places I suggest have been open since the mid-80s, Sushi Village and the Rimrock. Now I have a third suggestion. Though I've been there a tiny fraction (okay, the once) of the times I've been to the others, I'm inspired and hopeful about the ambitious, innovative and yet totally fitting menu that Aura, at the new and already under new … [Read more...]

Eating in Washington D.C.: Ben’s and Amys’

Somehow, in my entire life, I had somehow neglected to ever get to our nation's capitol. This little situation was rectified recently when I landed for the wedding of friends of mine. Tracey, another college friend of mine, was excited to take this moment to show me the food of the area. So, I have to admit, I walked by the White House on the way to a sandwich shop. I did see the Washington Monument from the deck of a bar serving me drinks. My trip was not entirely void of culture, history and that thing, housed in the city, oh, yeah, our government? That said, time was limited and the food … [Read more...]

Locanda Verde and Staple and Fancy: On Restaurant Design

The other day, as I sat in Staple and Fancy Mercantile and tried to pin point exactly what was so pleasant about where I was, it suddenly hit me: Like Locanda Verde in Manhattan, it seemed to be perfectly designed as a restaurant. Staple and Fancy is the latest addition to Ethan Stowell's restaurant empire in Seattle, while Locanda Verde is my favorite stop from an epic eating adventure I recently had in New York From the moment I stepped into Locanda Verde, I felt like it was the best designed restaurant into which I had ever stepped. Each design element (like, say, the random silver … [Read more...]

My own Mexican Renaissance: El Mestizo and Taqueria Latinos

I had Mexican food twice this week, without having to drive. Within the last few months, it would appear that there is a new food group moving into the neighborhood, and I for one am here to support it. We had actually been to El Mestizo once when it first opened. It's a brick and mortar store in what had been a pizza restaurant for many years, then briefly an Italian place. The taco truck, Taqueria Latinos II, I had not noticed until the minute we ate their food. El Mestizo has been open for a few months. When we went before we thought it had potential, but nothing terrific. After reading … [Read more...]

Ben Thanh: Vietnamese Beyond the Menu

A blue neon sign astutely states "Lau De" in the window of Ben Thanh, tucked in the armpit of the MLK/Rainier intersection. Literally, this area, with beautiful, imposing and classic Franklin High School to one side and the, bright, modern light rail to the other, looks like a forlorn place. But if you know that 'Lau De' of which the sign speaks, you look a little closer. Traditional Vietnamese goat hot pot, to a person like me, anyway, holds much intrigue. I first came to Ben Thanh in search of a quick meal, low expectations, on a time limit, it was there. While I was vaguely aware that … [Read more...]

Eating my way through San Francisco

Despite the many delicious and thought provoking meals I had in San Francisco, I feel like there are many more to be had. Despite that nagging feeling that I've missed something good, I can ease my mind by remembering that nary a wasted bite crossed my lips. Armed with a pile of suggestions from various San Fran natives, visitors and my wonderful hosts--who happen to be lovers of the dining world as well--I set out to the south for a few good meals. Straight off the plane we were swooped up and deposited at the front door of the Alembic, where the hostess touted to us the new menu. Service … [Read more...]