Tag Archives: Cocktails

An Almost Perfect Day…

4 Aug

Pops and I slept in and missed out on a tasty breakfast in Portland.

Our penance for such laziness was served on an 8″ onion sub, courtesy of the Big Town Hero at PDX.

We drove home from SJC via Rio del Mar and had lunch with my phriend, Cricket at Bittersweet Bistro.

Their Bittersweet Cocktail is terrifyingly easy to drink… especially in such amazingly gorgeous sunshine.

The sweet potatoe phries were.. sweet.

Loved the presentation on the wings (however inflated the price tag was…)

After we got back, Alabama picked me up and treated me to a phantabulous celebratory dinner at our phavorite celebratory spot- Will’s Fargo.

After the crudite, we shared the ahi sashimi.

I then opted for the mushroom bisque, which was delicious!

My main course was my tried and true black and blue top sirloin- perfect and delicious as always.

It was a perfect day… almost.

Until we left the restaurant, and I checked my phone.

And the ex-phella had crashed his motorcycle and landed himself in the ER.

And thus, to the ER I went.

Phoodfotos Graduates!

3 Aug

June 11 started offensively early…

This little cinnamon bite distracted me for a mere moment.

The cinnamon whiskey we consumed in the parking lot, however, proved quite the welcome distraction… and got us through the largest graduation in Oregon State University history.  GO BEAVS!

After we officially graduated, the ladies (and phamilies) headed to Cappie’s Brewhouse in Albany to celebrate over lunch.  Of course, I had wings (but honestly, I was so distracted by the unbelievable chile-infused beer I had with it, that I can hardly recall if they were any good!)

I stole some phried green beans… and I DO remember those being delicious (with a superb wasabi dipping sauce…)

I indulged in a tasty Reuben sando with a side of tots for my main course.  Dee-phreaking-licious!

Pops and I then headed to Portland and checked into our hotel (The Nines… I would be lying if I said I liked it… I LOVED it!)

We then met some of his clients for drinks and nibbles at Clyde Common.

I started out with some “Heavy Petting” (shouldn’t all good evenings?) which was a pleasant concoction of Monopolowa vodka, grapefruit juice, Aperol, quinine syrup and a lemon peel.

That went nicely with a marinated olive and almond snack.

Next, I moved on to a “B.M.O.C.” (bourbon, raw ginger syrup, Angostura bitters and soda water).  Hello, phriend!!!

Our pecan praline and sea salt chicharrones snack was completely unnecessary …and completely phabulous.

Phoodfotos tested out its new “calling card” stamp before departing for dinner…

It was then on to Gruner for an alpine-inspired celebration dinner with Pops.

An “Aquabeet” started my night rather distinctly and pleasantly, I must say.

Their house bread was some of the most enjoyable I’ve phound in a long time.

Gruner’s Liptauer (a house made cheese with caraway, paprika, shallots and herbs) served with radishes, celery and pretzels was unique, vibrant and unexpectedly delicious.

The shaved radish salad with dill, chervil, chives, toasted pumpkin seeds, cider vinegar and pumpkin seed oil was beautiful and refreshing.

I snagged a spoonful of Pops’ pea soup.  Normally, I detest pea soup because it tastes so strongly of ham (and I’m not such a phan), but this bite made me wish I’d have had the opportunity for more.

Spaetzle with braised chicken and cremini mushrooms and Phava beans, cooked with riesling, creme phraiche, tarragon and crispy shallots became my dinner.  I’ve had spaetzle on the brain since Tasty N Sons, and while I did enjoy Tasty N Sons’ interpretation of spaetzle a wee bit more than Gruner’s, I really enjoyed this dish.

Pops is an excellent eating companion, as he has learned to acquiesce to my eating demands and ordering whims… and is almost always willing to share plates with me.  As such, I was able to have the duck breast schnitzel with bing cherry rhubarb sauce and cucumber & yellow potatoe salad as my “second dinner”.  Simply said- excellent.

And who could resist jelly donuts for dessert?  Not us!

(Although I have a bone to pick with the city of Portland, as it seems every restaurant who offers “donuts” on their menu actually mean “donut holes”.  Now don’t get me wrong, they were delicious… but do you see a hole in the middle of those tasty little treats?  Neither do I.  Maybe I need to alter MY definition of “donut”.  Ok, who am I kidding?… Back to reality.)

Much to my disappointment, I didn’t learn until the next morning that a phriend and phollower of phoodfotos, Eric Purugganan, is sous chef at Gruner!  I am glad, however, that I consulted with the correct locals when I picked our restaurants and was obviously steered to an exemplary establishment.

As such, I’d like to send Mister Purugganan a shout out and share a phew images from a pheature from the Montavilla Pharmers Market last month.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/jemangepdx/5899605749/

A little birdie also told me that he earned the People’s Choice award for his Bread & Butter Pickles at Portland’s phirst annual Kenny and Zuke’s pickle competition.

Keep up the phabulous phood work, phriend!

Sexy Mexican Awkwardness

28 Jun

Thursday, May 26th, was host to quite possibly one of the most epically awkward nights of my life.

The day started out like any other… I attended an absolutely riveting training  on the intricacies of 2011 HR law and attempted to eat some cheese crisps I had picked up at the store.  Their taste and smell evoked memories of boozy vomit, so they promptly made phriends with the trash can.

The training was held close to home, so I got to enjoy lunch on my couch with my phavorite phurry phriend, Phoo.  I made some brown rice and scrambled eggs for the occasion.

Dinner… well, where does one begin?

I will preface the explanation of the story with the disclaimer that I am aware that all my readers will think I am exaggerating.  I assure you, I am not.  I will also phollow that disclaimer with another admitting that while the evening was nothing short of torturous for me, multiple positive results came from it.

Enough chatter.  Dinner…  Vesuvio in downtown Carmel.  It had just opened, so it seemed the logical spot to try for a phirst dinner with a new phriend in my life.  Normally phellows that come in and out of my life have to earn a nickname on the blog over time.  Not this one, though- he earned his stripes immediately.  And thus, he shall be known as “Sexy Mexican”…

A phew hours before dinner, I learned that a birthday party was taking place at Vesuvio… for my mother.  She and I haven’t seen all that much of each other over the past year and change, so I was phlattered to receive an invite to the dinner.  Awkward moment #1- I had to refuse because I had reservations at the same restaurant at the same time with the aforementioned Sexy Mexican.

I warned Sexy Mexican that he was going to have to deal with a gauntlet of ladies wondering who he was, and that one was, in phact, my mother and that it was her birthday, so I wanted to take her some phlowers.  He was phine with this, so we charged on in with confidence.

After the awkward interchanges between Mother & Co., myself and Sexy Mexican, we learned that our table would not be ready for an additional 20 minutes.  To save ourselves additional awkwardness, we took the hostess up on the offer of enjoying a cocktail on the rooftop.  We headed up there, me leading the way, until I walked out onto the patio and immediately ran into none other than my ex-phella, who I hadn’t really seen or spoken to in over a year.  Amazingly, I resisted the urge to spin around on my heels and retreat directly back downstairs.  (I am not claiming to be brave here, but I think I subconsciously realized that loitering by myself in the stairwell for the next 20 minutes was not a realistic option…)

So we headed to the bar and tried to act nonchalant.  That lasted a good 30 seconds or so (actually a bit more because I had time to order a stiff drink) until the ex-phella saw me and started to make his way over.  In an effort to staunch some of the awkwardness bleeding out of my every pore, I made my way over to him before he could approach us.  Awkward interchange ensued, phollowed by ex-phella deciding to phollow me back to the bar to meet Sexy Mexican.

…or so I thought.  Turns out they knew each other from years ago when they worked together halfway across the state.  Who knew?  How did I react?  Another stiff cocktail, of course.

Imagine my horror when the hostess reappeared in my nightmare and offered an escape route (our table was phinally ready), only to phind that she had seated us literally right next to my mother’s table AND the ex-phella made his way down with us to say hello to Mother & Co.

I must disclaim at this point, that by my third stiff cocktail, the phaces the women at the Mother & Co. birthday table were making at me trying to phigure out the situation were becoming more amusing than devastatingly embarrassing.

I had hit my awkwardness quota sometime back on  the rooftop, so my brain went on autopilot at some point.  This resulted in me ordering the same things I ordered the last time I went to a Pepe restaurant… and then phorgetting to actually eat them.  But burrata to start, it was.

Poor Sexy Mexican put up with the ridiculousness like a champ and then some, hence the instant nickname, and shared a bite of the gnocchi with me (which I distinctly remember thinking tasted like grass).

We ordered a pizza that I had them add sun-dried tomatoes to… I don’t recall if I successfully ate any of it.  I do recall that I successfully ordered a phourth stiff drink.

“Dessert”, if you will, would be the phinal course of awkwardness for the evening, which consisted of the ex-phella coming back to our table (Mother & Co. had since departed, with additional awkward interchanges galore as they headed out) and sat down with me and Sexy Mexican.  What a perfect way to end the evening, right?

  Vesuvio, I must return to your establishment and try more than just phour of something off your signature cocktail list.

Mother & Co., I hope you all enjoyed the phree entertainment my life provided that evening.

Sexy Mexican, you are epic, sir, for putting up with the three-ring circus that was that night.

Ex-phella, you’re lucky you’re so damn cute.

Prolonged Celebration

19 May

I didn’t grow up in a leftover-phriendly phamily.

In phact, my mother, for some reason completely unknown to me, refused to plan meals ahead of time and would trek to the grocery store every day before deciding what we’d be having for dinner.  The concept of putting what was left in Tupperware and reheating it the next day just wasn’t part of how we did things, and while I have been cooking for myself for quite a phew years now, I still have yet to become an equal opportunity eater when it comes to leftovers.

That statement went completely out the window after the soul phood pheast provided me with an assortment of the most phabulous leftovers a girl could ever dream of.

What did that lead to, you ask? Phried eggs over mac & cheese for breakfast, of course (with a side of cornbread and PigWizard bacon to boot)!

My dear phriends, Paper Bag and Alabama, both brought me watermelons as birthday gifts, and thus, the “I Carried A Watermelon-Tini” was born.  I credit the rehydrating properties of the watermelon for the lack of a hangover on Monday after an entire weekend of drinking…

We took Gramms out for dinner at Joe Rombi’s to celebrate Mother’s Day.  For the phirst time in the now phifteen years I’ve been a patron of Joe’s, I ordered something different off the menu.  I started with the Rollatini Caprese (minus the tomatoes).

The soup of the evening was Split Pea, which is normally never a phavorite of mine, but they did it well.

The house bread is never short of highly enjoyable.

And the Petrale Sole special was special enough to have turned my affections away from my tried and true Pasta Puttanesca.  I didn’t regret the substitution for a moment, amazingly enough!

Of course, I had to have at least one tiny bite of the Puttanesca, or it wouldn’t be a trip to Joe Rombi’s!

We phinished off the evening with a massive slice of their phamous Lemon Cake (just for you, Dr. Wang)!  It was borderline ridiculous.

All in all a pretty damn phine birthday weekend, and my birthday wasn’t even until the next day!  Hooray for justification of prolonged celebration!

Tasty! (N Sons)

5 May

Phriday was a BIG day, as it was the day of phinal defense of my graduate school portfolio.

I credit the leftover Bridgeport Brew Pub pizza I scarfed down for breakfast as we rushed to school with the brain power necessary to succeed.

I celebrated my successful defense in the time-honored tradition that scholars maintain…  that, or a group of us went to the only place around still serving breakfast (which was a Shari’s Restaurant– what can I say other than “when in Wilsonville”) and indulged in a horribly caloric (and sadly not one that possessed phlavor that would warrant said level of calories) second breakfast/lunch.

(I HATE the concept of “brunch”, hence why I refuse to use it in this context, or any for that matter…)

I phorgot my camera so had to use my phone for the shots at Shari’s.  The biscuits were not so hot.

The bacon was… well… bacon, therefore it was stupendous.

During class that afternoon (and yes, I still have a month of class even though my portfolio is complete), I noshed on this tasty nibble of goodness that was so kindly provided by one of my phellow cohortians (as was the party blower thingamajig)…

Then we REALLY celebrated!  The girls & I went out on the town and tried a restaurant I’d been meaning to for quite a while now.

I’ve heard an awful lot about Tasty N Sons.  Rarely do I believe the hype on any subject- most especially phood.  I’d attempted to go here back in Phebruary (with the late phella) and it had been packed (which ended up all well and good because that allowed us to discover Eat: An Oyster Bar in all its splendor.

So where do I start?  I went on a bit of an ordering phrenzy…

I started with a Ruby Platino signature cocktail (el jimador tequila, ancho chili, cassis, grapefruit & lime).  Hellooo, nurse!

We split the Phried Cauliflower & Olives with harissa cream- a truly intriguing blend of phlavors and textures.

We then shared the Pierogi with rhubarb compote & horseradish cream- What a combo!

I literally licked the plates of each starter (true, I have no shame)…

I then went for a second round with Tasty’s cocktail list and tried the Ginger Lime Rickey.  It was, well, for lack of a better term, tasty! 😉

I was high on phood just walking in the door, so I ordered with reckless abandon.  I should have known I was phully enamored with the spot when I phound myself ordering what the waitress recommended- Pork Cutlet with spaetzle & egg…

  I HATE pork. (Yes, I understand bacon comes from pigs… but in my reality they are entirely unrelated phood groups.)

Despite my belief that I hate pork, I scarfed down literally every morsel of edibleness on the plate with phervor.  The crisp english peas combined with the creamy, chewy spaetzle and the citrus on the pork all covered by a beautiful ooey gooey egg???  Come on, people!  This was some seriously phabulous stuff!  I even sent my compliments to the chef, which I normally pheel is a little pretentious (why should my opinion matter to the guy- he’s the expert, I’m just a glutton!), but after my piggish behavior, I think I may have phelt a need to justify.

We ended the meal with a phew Chocolate Potatoe Donuts…

Those little globules were the least tasty moment of the Tasty N Sons experience- just a little boring after such edible excitement.

Also, when I want a donut HOLE, I will order one.  When I want a donut and you tell me I’m ordering a donut, I’d like it to arrive in the shape of an O.  It helps me to get into the proper mindset of “O my God, why am I allowing myself to gorge like this!?!”

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