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  1. Today
  2. Finally found a place in San Francisco that serves great coleslaw. It's harder than it sounds. Most places skimp on the acidity. Kate's Kitchen 471 Haight Street (Fillmore Street) Lower Haight
  3. That was followed up tonight (Sunday) with: chicken-tarragon pot pie and fennel salad with shallot vinaigrette.
  4. This weekend we had comfort food because of Friday's events. I'm sure you can figure out what I mean by that. Roast chicken with roasted vegetables. The inside of the chicken was seasoned with salt and black pepper, and was stuffed with parsley, sage, fresh bay leaves, thyme, crushed garlic cloves and half a Meyer lemon. We served that with some cauliflower that had been simmered in lightly salted water, then drained and dressed with extra-virgin olive oil, Meyer lemon juice, salt and black pepper.
  5. Just wanted to give a shout out to Southern Skies Coffee Roasters. Two employees, including Beto, who is a member of the community here. Ordered a couple of pounds of Costa Rica Tarrazu that I have French-pressed for a few days now and have really enjoyed it. City roast, not overly done. Seems to be the only coffee available right now.
  6. As I just spent a few days in the area, I thought I would give an update. Artisan Grill is closed, and I did not visit the Mimslyn Inn. Gathering Grounds was the most interesting in the area, and they are trying to casually upscale the offerings. They offer sandwiches and homemade baked goods. On Fridays and Saturdays, they are open until 8:00 PM, and offer 3-4 dinner entrees. This weekend was a grilled flank steak, stir fried shrimp with vegetables, and a sautéed chicken breast with gravy. My wife and I both ended up ordering a Turkey Cobb sandwich. The turkey breast was roasted and thickly sliced, and the bread was warm. The sandwiches did not have avocado, which for some reason I expected in a sandwich called "Cobb", but my wife and I both enjoyed ours. Besides a limited number of wines, they also offered Old Hill Cider on tap, which I had never had before. We each split a slice of chocolate chess pie and a German chocolate brownie, both of which were too rich for us to finish in one go. I would not call this a destination place to come to Luray for, but if you are there, it's a decent place to try that's a step or three above Uncle Buck's. I'd go back and try their coffee and breakfast. We had to leave before they opened on Sunday. We did eat at Uncle Buck's for a pre-hike breakfast, and I had the Chicken Fried Steak, which was passable, and had the advantage of being beef, which I did not have the night before. Which is the segue to avoid Hawksbill Diner outside of Stanley, which is just south of Luray. It was close to our rental on a Friday night where we were tired of driving. Tons of cars out front offered the promise of a good meal, but it was not to be. The most positive things about the diner was that it is cheap, and the staff and customers were all super friendly. The Chicken Fried Steak was a small round fried chicken patty you would put on a sandwich. My wife had the fried chicken, and the fried batter/breading was so salty, I could only have a couple of bites. Maybe breakfast is better, but we never went back. There will be a new restaurant opening soonish in Luray on Main Street, called Moonshadows. The website describes the cooking as, "a rustic blend of international cuisines using unique ingredients sourced locally when possible." It may be another restaurant worth trying eventually. So Luray remains an "OK" place, but nothing really outstanding or containing any restaurant I'd go out of my way for. Both Front Royal and Staunton are both about an hour away, so there's not a lot of alternatives if you are staying in the area.
  7. Maybe my memory is failing me, but I remember loving the eclectic menu when GPB first opened, with those lovely ox heart reubens and the different take on fried chicken along with things like rabbit cake and poutine. I went with a few friends the other night and the menu was timid by comparison, replacing those reubens with fried chicken biscuits, the rabbit cake with meatballs, and the overall theme of the menu shifting towards familiar American with several dishes moving to $30+ (I don't remember anything over $20-22 a few years ago, but again my memory might be failing me). I got the Bacon Cheeseburger after reading some of the praise on here and being informed that the special that night, a hearty sounding meatloaf, was sold out for the night at 7:15. As a quick aside, what's the deal with this? We went to the Riggsby when they were running their Sunday night duck special and were informed at 7:30 that they had run out and, if we wanted to partake, that we should get in before 6:30. I understand that restaurants don't want to over-order components of a dish that they'll have for only 1 night, but running out before 8pm? A bit frustrating. Anyway, my burger didn't hold a candle to what The Riggsby is currently putting out, as I learned when I was told that I was not getting any duck. It wasn't bad, but I found it to be really greasy and cooked a couple minutes past the requested medium rare, which gave it an overly charred flavor that was a bit offputting.
  8. I'm sitting in the newly opened King St location and enjoying my dinner. I'll have to try the goat curry next time. Not sure if the above ever happened, but is anyone interested in dining here as a group?
  9. Yesterday
  10. Did this dinner come to fruition? If so, awesome, if not, doesn't hurt to gather another!! See you soo, Ferhat! Corduroy family, kat
  11. "Das Boot" is perhaps the finest war film I have ever seen. It is certainly in my top three films about war. I recently watched the Director's Cut of this German film, released in 1997 (the original was first shown in German theaters in 1981 and then as a TV miniseries). "Das Boot" is an adaptation of Lothar-Günther Buchheim's 1973 German novel of the same name, and it tells the fictional story of a German U-96 crew during World War II. The director's cut is 3 hours and 29 minutes long, combining action sequences from the 2.5 hour original theatrical release (which garnered six Academy Award nominations) and character development from the miniseries. Improvements in the picture and sound were also made. Yes, 209 minutes is a substantial amount of time to devote to watching a film, but I can tell you, the Director's Cut is worth it. I have watched much shorter films that seem twice as long. I found this film riveting from the bawdy opening scene to the closing segment, one of the most poignant and moving moments I have witnessed on film. The tension in this film is palpable. The tedium and the fear of fighting a battle deep beneath the surface of the sea is made incredibly real for the viewer. I felt great empathy for the characters, and forgot they were Germans, fighting for the other side. They were men, some really boys, struggling to do their best under the most difficult conditions. This is one of the best films I have seen - an epic, classic, World War II tale - and I highly recommend it.
  12. Lots of moms and other assorted females, but lots of dudes too. As far as the "sharing and helping each other" goes, I was somewhere on the mall near 7th St and a group of people were chanting "WE NEED AN EPI PEN, WE NEED AN EPI PEN" an a minute or two later, a woman came running through the crowd to the rescue. Very cool.
  13. I've been planning to make Waldorf salad for months. I get the apples and then never make it. I have no idea why I keep flaking out on this, as I love Waldorf Salad and it's not exactly hard to make. Today for lunch I finally made made a variation on it (usually I'm a purist): Chicken Waldorf Salad with Toasted Almonds.
  14. Will drink to you and the reported to be several million around the globe. Haven't seen reports of violence and in response to that concern saw a comment to the effect that. " They were large groups of mom's, they shared and helped one another" . or something to that effect.
  15. Unfortunately, it sounds like the much-vaunted Pork Chop (a perpendicular cut near the spine, sometimes from the Loin) has been replaced by Pork Shank (the lower-leg portion, sometimes called Hock). The menu doesn't say the Shank comes from Berkshire Hogs, and it would seem logical to advertise that factoid if it did - so, I guess unless told otherwise, I'd assume "no Berkshire," but I am glad that Trio is still putting out a successful pork entree. (See my Feb 1, 2016 post for why I'm even pointing this out.)
  16. Dined here a week ago with my sister. I dont' remember exact prices, so whatever I have listed is my best guess memory. It's a handsome, comfortable restaurant and I thought the service was very good throughout the meal. I started with a cocktail called the "Just Right" of bourbon, egg, lemon, habanero shrub and served with one giant ice cube and garnished with blueberries pickled in a maraschino cherry brine. It was perfectly balanced with no one flavor coming to the forefront, but instead creating one entirely new-to-me flavor. That was a nice treat. I rarely find a new flavor at my age! My sister got a Moscow Mule and loved it, but it's a lot more heavy ginger bite to it than I like. We shared an order of the lemongrass pork potstickers, which were nice and light, a very sheer dumpling wrapper that wasn't browned much. It was such a delicate wrapper, though, it may not have been able to take much more heat and remain intact. The stuffing was tasty and only pressed enough to hold together. Served with a sweet chili oil based sauce and soy sauce on the side on top of a watercress salad with a little lemony mayo drizzle. I think $11 for 5 dumplings, so I think a fair price for a good appetizer. Mains, she got the cider braised pork shank (around $35) and I got the short rib with baked beans, root veggies and crispy polenta (about $30). I got a taste of hers and the pork shank definitely was the winner between the two meats. Luscious, juicy, delicious. The short rib I got was a good rendition and was cooked well, but it simply couldn't match the yum of the pork shank. The crispy polenta reminded me of the spooonbread my mom used to make when I was a child -- silky, buttery, corny -- that was cut into a rectangle and fried into a crunchy shell. Overall, I thought it was a good meal if you want to stuff yourself on homey comfort food, which I did that night.
  17. Really enjoyed "The Crown" and can't wait for more episodes. Just started "The Man in the High Castle." Not sold yet but will continue on given all the good reviews from professionals and friends.
  18. Went there Friday for lunch - fantastic beer selection, and the food was very good, if not exceptional.
  19. I watched the entire first season of Medici: Masters of Florence. Robb Stark comes back as Cosimo. The villains: Allbitchies and Patsies are caricatures but that seems to be the case in all shows.
  20. Grover and I NEVER go to any restaurant on two consecutive nights... well, up until now. We went to Nasime on Friday night early. At 5:30 we were the only people in the restaurant. At 6:30 every seat was filled. The food both nights was amazing, light, fresh, subtly flavorful, (did I say fresh?) and different from day to day. The progression was somewhat the same, soup with eggplant and a fish of some sort in a souper (sic, I know) flavorful broth, followed by Sashimi and some of the best Uni I have ever eaten. As an aside, even the Soy sauce was remarkable. no, not Kikkoman, but direct from Japan Soy sauce. I don't know if you can describe soy sauce like wine but this one definitely had depth, a smooth on the tongue, mouth feel and was just light enough to add complexity to the excellent sashimi. The meat course was a New Zealand lamb chop. Not exactly Japanese food, but (insert favorite superlative here) had touches of Japan in the spices and preparation. The fourth dish was Steelhead Trout in a stew like preparation with rice (as described on the menu "Japanese risotto"). Even though we were both complaining (happily) about being full, there wasn't a grain of rice in the bowl when we finished. Dessert was Soy ice cream with banana and soy jelly. The perfect end to a great dinner. Overall, the pacing can be a bit off when the place is busy (and it will be after 6:30pm) and there is really only one server (the sous-chef fills in as needed) but the food is worth the marginal wait.
  21. Considering how many films I've seen during my lifetime - albeit skipping over an entire decade - it is amazing that "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" is the only one of Ang Lee's films that I have watched (I don't *think* I saw "Sense and Sensibility," but I'm certain I haven't seen "Eat Drink Man Woman," "Brokeback Mountain," and "Life of Pi," and all four of these are films that I want to watch. I hadn't seen "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" since it was released in 2000, and I remember being absolutely dazzled by it at the time; however, I watched most of it yesterday, and realized that all I'd remembered were the amazing special effects. I was very distracted yesterday, and spent nearly two hours blankly staring at the screen, so I'm rewatching the entire film today, making sure to pay thorough attention. Chinese-language films are as difficult for me to watch as opera, perhaps even more difficult, because not only is my head constantly bobbing up-and-down, but I find committing the characters' names to memory dreadfully difficult, as there are so many subtle similarities ("Li," "Yu," etc.), so I find myself cheating and making up cheesy English-language homophones (e.g., "Yu Shu Lien" is "You shoo, lien!" but they aren't always this easy to do). I love the subtle facial gestures in this movie - for example, when Yu Shu Lien first means Jen Yu, and Jen Yu walks away, you can sense a very faint, but also very definite, look of skepticism on Yu Shu Lien's face - this is but one example of many. Now 1:10 into the movie, I have to say that I really don't love it. I know it's the highest-grossing foreign film in history, and that it's nearly universally acclaimed, but I wonder how much of that is due to the cool fight scenes. This plot is positively meandering, and it's just going nowhere - what is this movie even about? Yes, there are a couple of love stories going on, with their worlds colliding, etc., but outside of the jumpy fights, I'm finding the film almost tedious. I really thought I wouldn't be saying this, as I positively loved Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon when I saw it in 2000 - I appreciate the fact that they aren't overdoing the fight scenes, but those are really quite beautiful, and most likely why this film is so popular. The extended love scene in the cave did grow on me, however, and strengthened the substance of the plot, although I'm not sure how it will fit in with the rest of the film. At 1:13 into the movie, it seems like it's been quite awhile since I've seen Li Mu Bai, who is really the pivotal character - his desire to turn his back on the life of being a warrior usurped by his desire for vengeance, once he found out that Jade Fox was in the area. There are two parallel stories (three, if you include Li Mu Bai's and Yu Shu Lien's unrequited love for one another), but they're operating independently, or so it seems - there's still over 45 minutes left, so maybe things will bond together in the home stretch. Ha! Dark Cloud riding into the wedding party ... this could have been substituted with, "Elaine! Elaine!! Elaine!!!" In a way, it's fitting that I'm watching "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" on the day when there are so many women's marches around the country, because it's something of a "chick flick" in that it's loaded with powerful women (hence, the title - powerful things are everywhere around you, where you least expect them). Jen Yu's dismantling of Iron Arm Mi with one hand, sideways, while sitting at a table, as well as her beating the holy hell out of every guy in the bar, is thoroughly representative of the bad-ass women in this movie (that was a fun sequence, and scenes like this are the movie's biggest strength (high-wired flying notwithstanding)). In the end, everything *did* tie together, and I liked the film much more than I thought I would. I was multi-layered, complex, heartbreaking, rich with symbolism, and much better than I was thinking when I was partially through the movie - it was also about the *longest* two-hour film I've ever seen. But how can you at least not *like* a film that has scenes such as this?
  22. Frank Zappa plays the bicycle on "The Steve Allen Show" on Mar 4, 1963:
  23. I'm resting my aching feet and raising a glass or 6 to all those others on the Mall today. What a turnout! What a scene!
  24. Last week
  25. New York Times Travel feature for Luca: "A Pennsylvania Restaurant That's Hot in More Ways than One" by Kathryn O'Shea-Evans on A sister restaurant to Ma(i)son. Luca, unlike its sister, serves liquor. Its nothing short of amazing. Central PA eats, kat
  26. Perhaps so - here's a dissenting viewponit: "Rockets-Warriors Rivalry Will Never Be Unless Houston Gets Defensive" by Maurice Bobb on Still, at 18:1, just betting $25 would almost get you dinner for two at Pineapple and Pearls' bar.
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