02
May
10

Urban Manna is live! You really have to try it!

I am so excited!  Urban Manna is now up and running and delivering fantastic gourmet meals all over downtown Los Angeles.  First stop – my loft!  I placed my order last weekend and delivery started this past Monday.  I even got a free meal my first week just for placing the order.  Quite the deal, I must say.  So we signed up for 8 weeks of service, delivery twice per week.  We also asked the chef to decide our meals for us, which keeps the surprise factor high – gotta love that!

Monday morning, we opened the front door to find our cheerful little Urban Manna bag waiting for us.  We popped it in the fridge and headed off to work.  Upon our return home, I fired up a stock pot of water, changed into my comfy clothes, fed and played with the kitties.  Once the water was boiling, I dropped in the vacuum sealed bags and 15 minutes later we had a gorgeous meal ready for us to enjoy.  Monday it was Chicken Cassoulet, a French slow cooked casserole made with whole pieces of free range chicken with a slightly spicy chicken sausage in a sauce of three beans, tomatoes and white wine, topped with browned panko and parsley topping.  On the side we had green beans in garlic butter with a salad and a cute little cookie for dessert.  The chicken was extremely moist and just fell off the bone.  The sausage was firm and had a nice little bite to it.  The sauce was rich and flavorful.  I didn’t put quite as much bread crumbs on the dish as I like mine a little on the saucy side.  Fantastic!  I devoured it all.

Wednesday night was Spaghetti All’amatriciana.  I learned from the little story included with the meal that Amatrice is a town in the province of Rieti, in northern Lazio (central Italy) – which is famous for this particular sauce.  The sauce includes pancetta, parsley, onion, red pepper and fresh chopped tomatoes.  The sauce was served over al dente fettucine and freshly aged pecorino romano cheese.  I’m a big carb lover, so this meal was right up my alley!  It started with a fresh salad as usual (which is good, cause I never buy salad for myself – so this is a great way to ensure that I am getting my greens every week).  Then I dove into my bowl of pasta.  The noodles were firm and just right.  The sauce was complex, fresh tomato flavor bursting through with a subtle smokiness from the pancetta and just a hint of heat from the red pepper.  I slurped up the entire bowl before I knew it!  And of course the little cookie at the end was a nice finish too.

Thursday night was our bonus free meal, which Executive Chef Dan made just for us (it’s not part of the regular rotation).  Dan knows my predisposition to spicy, so he made this meal just that – Shrimp Creole.  This version brought together onions, bell peppers and celery, sautéed and caramelized with “special seasonings” and then everything is slow cooked to perfection with tomato puree.  The shrimp are added at the last moment to ensure they remain tender and juicy.  This dish was served over a bed of white rice and there was a little container of fresh, chopped parsley – which added just the right note to the overall effect of the dish.  The salad tonight was a Caesar, with real homemade Caesar dressing.  And the side was sugar snap peas caramelized with sherry and garlic.  I pretty much inhaled this dish, only stopping once in a while for a long drink of water to keep myself hydrated.  It was just the kind of spicy I like, lots of heat and flavor and just a hint of brow sweat to boot.  I couldn’t stop eating it!  The sugar snap peas were a mild compliment, which helped break up some of the spicy bites.  But being the glutton for heat that I am, I kept diving right back into the shrimp.  So good!

Plus, with each meal came a description and instructions on how to prepare properly, along with a little photo insert to compare your end results with the true finished product.  I was amazed at how our plates looked a lot like those little photos!  Guess we’re doing something right!  In addition, Chef Dan told us that he really wanted our feedback, so we made sure to send him our thoughts after each meal.  They really do take customer feedback very seriously and strive to make everyone happy with each dinner.

Oh, and one more little bonus item I have to share.  Urban Manna partners with the posh pet store, Pussy and Pooch in downtown LA.  So along with our meals each night, we received a cute little ribbon wrapped box with freeze-dried chicken nibbles for our little kitty friends.  I put a piece in front of Ari and he didn’t know what it was or what to do with it at first.  While he sniffed at it, I put a piece in front of Einstein.  He barely even sniffed it before inhaling the whole piece and then coming at me for more!  Then Ari figured it out and gobbled up his bite as well.  It was pretty hilarious!  They each got about 4 little nibbles before exhausting the bag.  And then there was a new little baggie with each meal delivery.  So now my kitties know that when the Urban Manna bag shows up, there is something in there for them as well.  Spoiled little guys!

Week one was an amazing start and we are really looking forward to week two.  Now that Urban Manna is live to the public, I highly encourage you to get out there and try it yourself!  And you’ll get a free meal as part of your initial order.  That was a nice incentive, but I gotta say, I would have signed up without the free meal.  Now of course, I had the benefit of participating in the trial – so I knew what to expect.  You on the other hand might just have to take my word for it.  At least until you try it for yourself.  What have you got to lose?  Nothing but fantastic gourmet delivered meals await you.  Call them today!!

Urban Manna

http://www.urbanmanna.com/

info@UrbanManna.com

213-596-9993

04
Apr
10

Sharing a meal with friends – new and old

Eating out is such a social thing.  Which is why I don’t often find myself going out to eat alone.  I’ve done it, and it’s certainly fine.  But I find eating with at least one other person so much more satisfying.  I like being able to talk about the food, what’s good, what isn’t so good.  And if I’m lucky, I’ll be with someone who is willing to share a little of their meal – so I get to try more than just what I ordered!  Lately, I’ve been fortunate to have had the opportunity to share some great meals with friends.  Here are just a few of them:

Angeli Caffe

Todd and I volunteer twice a year at the KCRW pledge drives.  We answer the phones and take pledges for the radio station – often picking up a great premium for ourselves in the process, i.e. concert tickets, restaurant gift certificates, etc.  I highly recommend it!  The station takes care of their volunteers by bringing in great food from local restaurants, giving away free CD’s and other freebies, and by holding a volunteer party at the end of each drive.  We’ve also met some great people as a result of volunteering there.  A most recent example of that included a free dinner that we received from Evan Kleiman of Good Food.

We volunteered during one of the airings of Good Food this past drive in February and anyone who pledged any amount during that part of the drive received an invite to have dinner at Evan’s restaurant, Angeli Caffe – about a month later.  Todd and I eagerly awaited the date and when the Monday evening arrived, headed over to the restaurant right after work.  It was already pretty packed when we arrived, but we managed to grab two seats at a family style table near the door.  We sat next to another couple, Michael and Faith, and struck up a conversation with them.  We had a plethora of food passing through, including some amazing dressed greens, little crostinis with a chorizo mousse, a beautifully roasted chicken, Angeli pizza (like a Margherita) and an absolutely fabulous pork tenderloin with rosemary – which was so incredibly tender it melted in your mouth the second it hit your tongue!  I also got a picture with Evan Kleiman while we were there.

And we truly enjoyed our dining partners, Michael and Faith.  We learned that Faith grows many of her own herbs and vegetables in her backyard garden – AND keeps chickens!  I loved that!  If I had a backyard, I’d like to have chickens as well.  I think that is great!  So it was a very successful evening – a great meal and great company.  We hope to have dinner with Michael and Faith again sometime.  Maybe downtown…  Angeli Caffe is located at 7274 Melrose Ave in Los Angeles.

The Corner Place

Last weekend, our friends Mike and Mariellen suggested that we head out for Korean BBQ before our planned Alice In Wonderland viewing.  Since Korean BBQ hasn’t been part of our regular rotation lately, it was a great suggestion.  We headed over to one of their favorite places, just east of downtown, called The Corner Place.  The restaurant was pretty full when we arrived, even though it was on the early side – about 6pm.  We didn’t wait more than 10 minutes though and were seated at a table for 4, with the expected BBQ grill in the middle.  Our waitress turned the grill on while we perused the menu.

It was hard to decide, but we finally settled on the bulgogi and beef short ribs – hoping that would be enough for the four of us.  Boy, was it! We were served at least a dozen small plates of Korean delicacies, i.e. kimchi, pickled & spiced cucumbers, pickled jalapeno, pickled bean sprouts – and well, you get the idea.  We also each received a bowl of sticky white rice and a soup (which I’m not exactly sure what was in that).  Mike and Mariellen said we HAD to order the cold noodle soup.  This did not sound that appetizing to me, but they assured that we would love it.  I became more intrigued when they said the broth was infused with jalapeno.  So, we ordered two small bowls to split among the four of us.  Small is not the word I would use to describe these bowls – they were huge!  I think we could have ordered just one for the four of us – as the ladeled out individual portions into smaller bowls for each of us.  But, we all managed to slurp quite a bit of it after all.  And the more I ate, the more I liked it.  It definitely had the jalapeno, along with cucumber infused in the broth.  It was pretty delightful and it balanced nicely with many of the other spicy things we were eating.  The noodles were cooked perfectly as well. I would certainly order it again.  Our meat arrived and we started to grill.  What was amazing was that it seemed we had the never-ending piles of meat.  While we were certainly eating it, and putting more on the grill to cook, there was still so much left on the plates.  After an hour, we had consumed the majority of if all and left the restaurant stuffed to the gills.  Quite nice!  The Corner Place is located at 2819 James M Wood Blvd in Los Angeles.

We then proceeded to LA Live for the movie.  We had a little time to kill before the show, so we headed over to Trader Vic’s for a drink first.  Mariellen and I enjoyed our Chi Chi’s, which are perfect coconut-ty concoctions, that do pack a little punch.  Todd and Mike on the other hand, decided to order and split one of the punch bowl drinks.  I had a sip and it wasn’t my favorite, a bit too sour for me.  But they seemed to slurp it down happily (as you can see).  Alice In Wonderland was whimsical and fun – at least I enjoyed it.  Not the ending so much, but most of the rest of it at least.

Chin Ma Ya

Todd and I went to lunch with our coworker Amber last week.  We had been hoping to try a new noodle restaurant that opened recently not far from the office, called Chin Ma Ya.  This is a chain from Japan that is now opening places in the US – at least in Southern California.  We decided to get there on the early side, 11:30am, to beat the rush.  It was a perfect plan, as we were the third or fourth table to be seated.  We placed our drink orders and then looked over the menu.

Their specialties are the Chin-Ma Han (tofu, ground beef and pork, simmered in their secret spice mix and served with steamed, white rice) and Tan-Tan Men (ramen noodles in their original spicy broth, topped with the ground beef and pork mixture, plus spinach leaves).  You get to select your spice level, 1, 2 or 3 – 3 being the spiciest.  I went with 2, wanting to test out the middle of the road.  I ordered one of the Tan-Tan Men lunch combos, which came with my choice of shrimp or pork gyoza.  I went with shrimp, and they were pleasant enough – slightly crisp on the outside, but mostly moist and tender.  They were fine, but didn’t bowl me over.  The soup arrived and I dug in. At first I thought that ordering the 2 was the way to go, as the spice hit me right away.  But instead of a cumulative effect as I continued to eat, the spice actually kind of dissipated.  The noodles were fine and the broth overall was pleasant – with a peanut-ty undertone.  What I liked most was the beef and pork mixture, as well as the spinach.  I thought those added the perfect note to the soup.  Todd ordered the Tan-Tan Men as a 2 as well, but did not get anything with it.  And to be honest, I would have been fine with the soup alone.  It was good enough on its own and the portion was generous.  Amber ordered the Tan-Tan Men as a 1, and got a rice bowl with the beef/pork mixture on top with green onions on top.  She said it was pleasant enough as well, but agreed that she didn’t need it with the portion size of the soup.

Overall it was a good experience.  We liked the decor of the place, which was painted a bright red with orange accents and Japanese posters on the walls.  The wait staff was friendly and attentive as well.  We also saw a LOT of other people from the office while we were there, so it is obviously becoming popular.  I can understand, as I probably will be back in the near future also.   Chin Ma Ya is located at 18537 Western Blvd in Gardena (although it is really right next to Torrance).  They also have a location in Little Tokyo downtown LA as well.  So all this time, they’ve been in my backyard and I didn’t even know it!

That is all for now!  We are spending our Easter Sunday morning relaxing, but will soon be heading out to La Verne to share Easter Dinner with the Blickenstaff’s.  I can always look forward to a great meal there, so I am eagerly anticipating!  Happy Easter!

21
Mar
10

Noodles and Chili – not necessarily together

It’s always a welcome sign when a new restaurant opens in Downtown LA.  Perhaps a little less encouraging when it is replacing one that has closed, but at least the space has turned over and offers a new food option to us downtown dwellers.  Such a thing has happened in the old Warung Cafe space at 4th and Main.  While I enjoyed going to Warung, it appears they were not successful overall.  Let’s hope their successors do better – that being Urban Noodle.

We first learned about Urban Noodle from a make-shift sign posted in the closed Warung Cafe window.  It was kind of a mysterious sign, basically just telling us that something called Urban Noodle would be coming soon.  The website for Urban Noodle is still under construction, so doesn’t offer much help.  But we were able to discern the hours of operation from some of the write-up on blogdowntown.com and laeater.com.  Plus the Urban Noodle Facebook page offered some early reviews from those who attended the soft opening.  So, we were eager and ready to try.

We headed over there on a Saturday night with our friend Bill.  There were a few tables occupied, but since we were there on the early side of the evening, we didn’t expect it to be full.  We were greeted warmly andseated by one of the owners/managers, one of a set of twins – both incredibly gorgeous Asian girls.  Our waitress was also cute, bubbly and funny.  She helped us order from the menu, starting with a couple of beers – one with lemongrass that was quite lovely – another with “white” in the title that was absolutely creamy and delicious.  Our friend Doug who lives in the same building as Urban Noodle came down to join us for a drink, and that is what he ordered – I stole a sip.

Bill ordered the chicken noodle soup, which is an Asian version of mom’s chicken soup, with tons of veggies and thick, udon style noodles.  Todd ordered the wonton noodle soup, which had big, fat wontons floating in the broth with some extra noodles for support.  I ordered the BBQ pork noodle soup, which had thin, ramen-style noodles, with slices of flavorful and tender pork.  I loved it!  But it was lighter overall than I had hoped for, so I was still a bit hungry upon finishing.  Next time I plan to try the heartier spicy beef noodle soup or the curry seafood rice noodles.  We also ordered the cream cheese wontons, which were little deep-fried pockets of heaven – and the onion flatbread, which was a like an Asianpancake and was really delicious.  We ended up getting two of them, and dipped it in dumpling sauce (at the suggestion of our waitress – yum!).

All in all, it was a successful visit and we’ll definitely be back very soon.  In fact, just writing about it makes me want to make a stop in tonight. :)

Urban Noodle

118 West 4th Street (between Main and Spring)
Los Angeles, CA 90013

213-626-0662

A few nights later, Todd and I had tickets to check out The Watson Twins at the Largo @ The Coronet Theater near the Beverly Center.  If you haven’t been to this venue yet, it’s a great place to catch a show.  It’s only about 200 seats total and therefore it is intimate and there isn’t a bad seat in the whole house – even the back row.  They do a lot of comedy acts, and smaller musical groups.  There were maybe 100 people total at this show, which made it incredibly intimate and allowed for some dialogue between the band and the audience.  The Watson Twins are two very good-looking identical twins, who both have some amazing vocal and musical talent between them.  Kind of a folksy, indie rock vibe – it was a great show!

Just before things got started, Todd and I wanted to grab a quick meal.  We don’t spend much time in this area, so we weren’t sure what we could do that would be fast, but good.  On our way up the street from the theater, we came across Chili Addiction.  Apparently this is a chain, but we’d never heard about it before. So we ducked in to check out the menu.  We found that they have various types of chili daily, that you can order alone, or pair with macaroni noodles, corn bread, etc.  You can also order hot dogs or homemade chicken sausage.  Todd ordered the fiery filet mignon chili and I got the spicy serrano and sirloin.  Both were rich and flavorful, with mine having a bit more kick.  There is a condiment “bar”, where you can get onions, cilantro and jalapenos, as well as various hot sauces.  We had ordered our chili with cheese and added a few extras from the bar.

The chili stood on it’s own and we both scarfed it down.  We ordered a fizzy orange soda to go with, and the sweetness helped balance the spice of the meal.  We were finished in 20 minutes, so it ended up being the perfect pre-theater dinner – just what we were looking for!  We’re looking forward to being in that area again in the near future so we can head back to Chili Addiction and try some of the other combinations.  Check out their website and menu here.

Chili Addiction

408 N La Cienega Blvd

(323) 203-1793

14
Mar
10

Weekends, glorious weekends

February turned out to be chock full of weekend activity.  Todd and I went on two weekend trips in February: one to Paso Robles with Mike and Mariellen and one to Ojai with Dan and Eileen.  And what did we do on these trips?  Well, lots of things.  But eating was definitely one of them!  I wish I could say all of our meals were memorable or fantastic – sadly that was not the case.  However there were some highlight moments that I’d like to share with you:

Paso Robles – Feb. 13-15

Todd, Mike, Mariellen and I rolled out of bed early Saturday morning and hit the road.  It’s about a four hour drive up to Paso from LA, and we wanted to get an early start.  So we packed our road snacks and climbed into the car.  It was good that we got a head start, as we made a few stops along the way.  But we still made decent time and got into Paso around noon.

Todd and I like to hit a good number of wineries in a day, since there are so many great places and so little time.  So day one, we managed to stop by a few favorites, including Eberle, and a few new places, like Nadeau (a new favorite now!).  We had a relaxing lunch on the outdoor patio area at Eos, we toured caves and tasted red and white wine alike.  Day one turned out to be great, and we were famished as dinner time approached.  But the challenge was – it was the day before Valentine’s Day and we had not made reservations anywhere.  So we ended up walking from our hotel (The Adalaide Inn – very comfy) to Big Bad Bubba’s BBQ.  I won’t elaborate on the food, as it wasn’t anything to get excited about.  But the evening was interesting nonetheless.  From the HUGE (and I mean HUGE) margaritas to all the kids riding the bull over and over again – we had plenty of entertainment.  Oh, and let me not forget to mention that all of the cow-pattern clad waitresses would spontaineously break into choreographed dance moves when certain songs came over the loudspeaker, i.e. Cotton Eye Joe.  Too funny!

The next day, we had a solid breakfast at Margie’s Diner, also within walking distance of our hotel.  Then headed out into wine country again – this time making stops at Whalebone, Tablas Creek and Opolo, to name a few – and another new favorite, Denner.  As we turned into Whalebone, we saw a sign stating “Free BBQ”.  Turns out they had thinly sliced tri tip on brioche with a balsamic reduction.  Um, yum?!?  Too bad we had just filled ourselves at breakfast.  I could have spent my early afternoon just on their BBQ alone.  Plus it was heavenly with their wine, which are mostly meaty cab savs and syrahs.  For dinner, we again kept it low key, heading to Paso Pizza Kitchen (nicknamed PPK, as some kind of play on CPK I guess).  Decent pie, but again, nothing to get too excited about.  Great value for the four of us though – which meant we could save our dollars for wine purchases!

On the way home the next day, we swung by the beautiful Morro Bay for breakfast at Dorn’s Original Breakers.  Fantastic brunch!  My Eggs Sardou (a twist on benedict, with poached eggs, artichoke bottoms and spinach morney, were sufficiently drowned in hollandaise sauce, and I scarfed them down along with the accompanying Mimosa.  All while staring out the window at the ocean and the huge volcanic-formed Morro Rock rising out of it.  What a wonderful way to start our morning…

After a satisfying meal, we piled back into the car for the drive back to LA – already planning for our stop at Neptune’s Net for a late lunch.  And despite some harrowing traffic, we did in fact make it to Neptune’s where we feasted on fried goodies, but also made room for steamed peel and eat shrimp.  Ah, yum!  Gotta love this shack of a restaurant that attracks bikers and beach bums alike.  I hadn’t been in many years, and forgot just how gritty this place is.  But that’s part of the charm I guess – you take in the grit along with the amazing selection of seafood and fried accompaniments.   And wash it all down with a cold, frosty beer.  It was worth a stop, as I don’t know when I’ll be back again.  Which is probably for the best, since as good as those steamed shrimp were, you know I’d be ordering the fried seafood platter as well!

Ojai – Feb. 26-28

Just two weeks later, Todd and I were back in the car headed northwest to Ojai.  Dan and Eileen were meeting us up there late Friday night, so we had the day to ourselves.  Todd really wanted to get an early start, but I was hoping to avoid rush hour traffic on the way.  So we ended up leaving sometime after 10am and sure enough, traffic was easing up by then.  We rolled into Ojai around 11:30am, and stopped by our hotel just to make sure we knew where it was.  With check-in time at 3pm, we knew we were far too early.  But it gave us a lay of the land and time to stretch our legs.  We then stopped into Bart’s Books, which is hard to describe.  Think of a little house turned book store, but then add rings of book shelves around the outside of the house and cover with shedding.  Odd, I know!  But what a place!  They are open rain or shine and we managed to stop in twice during our stay – once during shine and the second time during rain.  Both times were fruitful with someone finding a book or two to take home.  I highly recommend!

Todd and I decided to get some lunch and ended up going to Antonio’s, a Mexican staple in Ojai.  We had heard some mixed reviews, so went in with no expectations.  But our margaritas were very tasty!  We also split the shrimp fajitas (haven’t ordered fajitas in I don’t remember how long!) and they were fantastic.  I love it when they include mushrooms with the peppers and onions.  After a lovely lunch and some browsing of the downtown area, we ended up back at our hotel, The Emerald Iguana, were we proceeded to lounge, read and eventually nap.  What a luxury!  First, the place is just beautiful – cute little cottage like structures surrounding a middle pool area – and oh, so quiet.  We had a really nice afternoon doing nothing but relaxing and reading.  It was a great way to decompress.

For dinner, we were still on our own, and I thought it would be nice to get some seafood, since we were so close to the ocean.  We picked Sea Fresh Seafood, as it reminded us of a cute little spot we go to in the Carmel/Monterey Bay area (Sea Harvest).  Well, appearances can be deceiving I’m afraid.  Although it was set up similarly, with a seafood case that you can buy fresh seafood to go, along with seating for lunch or dinner, these are two VERY different experiences.  First, we were asked if we could wait 5 minutes for a table to be cleared (they were busy, so this was no problem).  However, as we waited, it became clear that no one was clearing or preparing a table for us.  As the minutes ticked by, the “hostess” found a seat at the sushi bar and stayed there, chatting away with someone else.  It wasn’t until I asked one of the waiters if we could be seated, that someone even acknowledged us again.  He grabbed a couple of menus and took us to a table, which I pointed out was still dirty and asked to be moved to another.  Once we were seated and looking at the menu, I became determined to shake off the first impressions and let the food speak for itself.  We ordered their famous fried zucchini, Todd got the cajun catfish (which had been my first choice) and I ordered the prawns, which according to the menu were butterflied and broiled.

The zucchini was excellent – crisp breading, not too greasy.  The ranch dip with it was fine, could have been more exciting, but it’s ranch, right?  Our dinners were not so excellent.  First, my prawns arrived and they were not butterflied or broiled.  They were just grilled shrimp.  When I pointed this out to the waitress, she said, “Hmmm…they usually do butterfly them.  I’m not sure why they didn’t this time.”  She asked if I wanted to keep them, and I agreed only because I was hungry.  But most of them were overcooked and I didn’t really enjoy my dinner at all.  I was watching Todd inhale his fish, so thought that must be good.  So I asked for a bite, and when I tried his cajun catfish, discovered it was totally bland.  Argh!  As we had eaten all of this mediocre food, we paid our bill and got out of there – and we will not be back.  My Yelp review of that place will not be pleasant either!

Dan and Eileen rolled into Ojai about 11:30pm, and we all stayed up late talking and drinking wine.  We then slept late the next morning (but not too late, as we didn’t want to miss breakfast), picked up our breakfast by the pool and took it back to our little front porch area of the our cottage.  We proceeded to have a leisurely breakfast of pastries, hard boiled eggs, fruit and coffee.  It was a perfect way to start the day!  We then took our time getting ready and headed out into Ojai.  First was a stop at Bart’s Books, then we headed into town.  It was lightly raining, but still a beautiful and peaceful day.  We started walking around downtown and then decided to get something for lunch.  We headed over to Suzanne’s just as it started to downpour.  Luckily, Suzanne’s has a covered back patio area with heatlamps, where we proceeded to have a sumptuous and drawn out lunch.  I think we were there for about two hours total!  We had amazing sandwiches and salads, as well as a wonderful bottle of wine from Flowers (thanks Dan!).  It was just wonderful to be sitting outside, but shielded from the rain – having a nice meal and sharing great conversation with friends.  We started with the duck liver pate and cocktails.  I then ordered the Roast Beef Sandwich With Shaved Onions, Gruyere Cheese, Lettuce, Tomato And Wasabi Mustard On French Baguette, which was quite good.  I had been eyeing Uncle Angelo’s Favorite Meatball Sandwich on the menu, made with Homemade Meatballs, Asiago Cheese And Marinara Sauce  and served on a French Baguette. But Dan got to that one first – and of course it too was delicious!

After that fantastic lunch, we proceeded to hit downtown Ojai and shopped till we dropped!  Eileen and I found some great jewelry and also closed a cute little clothing boutique.  We also found this great shop that stocked products made from organic and recycled materials.  Dan and Eileen found these great felt baskets and I got a cute Hello Kitty Sigg water bottle.  Dan and Eileen also surprised me with a cute gift – a stuffed frog designed from the drawings of children.  His name is now Kirby and he lives on our kitchen shelf.

We then headed back to our cottage, as it was a bit too early for dinner and none of us were really hungry anyway after our long, amazing lunch.  So we proceeded to open some wine and get comfortable back at Emerald Iguana.  Eventually we did get a bit snacky, and luckily Dan had brought a little something he whipped up back at home – a Buffalo Chicken Dip, with Fritos and celery.  It was cheesy, creamy, spicy and delicious!  We polished it off pretty quickly, and then settled into a long evening of jacuzzi, cards and Balderdash.  It was another late evening and was a lot of fun!

The next day, we again enjoyed breakfast on the front porch before checking out of our cottage.  We went for a mid-day hike to get a little bit of fresh air and exercise in there somewhere (with Dan and I grumbling pretty much the whole way!).  And finally we stopped for lunch at The Ranch House on the way out.  This place is beautiful, as it is also indoor/outdoor and the eating areas are surrounded by bamboo and gardens everywhere!  As well as a cute little Koi pond.  We arrived in time to take advantage of the brunch specials. Dan and I ordered the snow crab cakes, with snow crab meat, minced vegetables & mushrooms traditionally accented with chili & lemon, lightly breaded and baked, served with lime zest cream.  Yum!  Todd ordered the eggs dijonnaise, with two eggs baked in a ring of fresh spinach, sauce made with white wine, dijon mustard and fresh tarragon.  I was jealous!  Eileen got the sour cream pancakes, made with sour cream, white & whole wheat flour, old fashioned rolled oats and sunflower seeds.  I had a bite and they were so moist and delicious!  While I don’t normally order pancakes, I would order these on a return visit.  All of the brunch entrees were served with a choice of champagne cocktail, as well as an amazing ambrosia fruit salad to start.  We again took our time and enjoyed the meal and the atmosphere – taking a tour of the garden areas before heading out.  Then it was time to say goodbye to Ojai and had back home.

I do love weekend trips – especially with good friends.  Thanks to Mike and Mariellen for their company in Paso Robles, and to Dan and Eileen for theirs in Ojai.  Looking forward to our next trip!  Not sure where that is just yet, but don’t worry – Todd is always thinking ahead!

Coming soon: reviews of Urban Noodle (which recently took over the Warung Cafe space in Downtown LA) and Chili Addiction in Mid-City West.

07
Feb
10

Urban Manna – the answer to my prayers!

I know, I know – I said last time that I would write about Gold Class Cinemas.  We’ll get to that in the very near future – I promise.  But for now, I do want to tell you about a recent experience I had with Urban Manna – a gourmet dinner delivery service for busy professionals.

Now full disclosure, I know the people who are starting on this fabulous food adventure – they are neighbors and friends.  That being said, I also know good food when I eat it and I’m excited to say I’ve had a lot of good food in the last few weeks thanks to Urban Manna.  Todd and I were lucky enough to be invited to take part in their trial run, which meant 6 free meals spread out over two weeks.  The only thing they asked for was our feedback.  Not a bad tradeoff, huh?

So the way it works is that you give Urban Manna some basic information about yourself and your food preferences (allergies, likes, dislikes, etc.) and they keep that in mind when preparing your dinner.  The meals are prepared the night before and delivered in a cute little Urban Manna bag that arrives at your door between 10pm and 6am.  It was such a treat to open the door each morning and find that little bag waiting patiently for us to grab it and pop it in the fridge.  The first week of the trial we received whatever was cooking for that night, so it was a bit of a surprise.  The second week, we were provided with options to select from ahead of time – so that gave us a little more control.  Either way, we ate VERY well those two weeks.  Let me fill you in on what we received:

Day 1 – Coq Au Vin – Juicy and moist chicken in a savory broth with pearl onions and mushrooms, served with spinach with garlic and rice on the side.  Accompanied by a starter salad and french roll.

Day 2 – Beer Brisket, served with potatoes and green beans, topped with onion and bacon.  Accompanied by a starter salad and roll.

Day 3 – Shrimp Scampi, served on a bed of angel hair pasta with a side of broccoli in garlic butter.  Accompanied by Italian Wedding soup and a roll.

Day 4 – Grape Leaf wrapped Mediterranean Red Snapper, with rice pilaf and sherry/garlic snap peas.  Accompanied by homemade black bean soup (and all the garnishes) and a roll.

Day 5 – Chicken breast stuffed with Blue Cheese and wrapped in Bacon, served with Dan’s secret recipe mashed potatoes and brussel sprouts.  Accompanied by a Winter Apple Harvest salad and a roll.

Day 6 – Chicken Piccata, served with wilted spinach with garlic and olive oil.  Accompanied by Caeser Salad and a french baguette.

Sounds pretty darn fantastic, right?  Now, some meals were higher on my list than others (I’ll get to those in a minute), but bottom line, every one of them was solid.  I was happy to be eating all of them – and more importantly, pretty much every part of each meal – which is saying a lot!

Here were my favorites:

The Shrimp Scampi was to die for.  Now maybe I’m a bit biased since I love garlic and this had plenty of that.  It was buttery and rich and delicious and I didn’t want to stop eating it.  Also, I’m not a huge broccoli fan and I ate every bite of my broccoli.  It was soft without being mushy, just the tiniest bit of firmness – and in the garlic butter sauce – heaven!  Also, the Italian Wedding soup was SO good.  I could have eaten that as my meal alone, had there been more of it.  It was chock full of pasta, carrot, spinach and meatballs and the spices were just right.  I’m hoping it makes it into the regular rotation.

Another favorite was the Chicken breast stuffed with Blue Cheese and wrapped in Bacon.  Yum, yum and more yum!  Juicy delicious white meat chicken, a pungent, tasty blue cheese and crisp bacon.  Dan’s mashed potatoes melted in my mouth (he says he won’t give anyone the secret to this recipe, but I’m going to work on that!).  And – the surprising thing – I LOVED the brussel sprouts.  They removed the tough outer leaves, bathed, blanched and then tossed them with clarified  butter with minced onions, garlic and spices (I know this because it said so on the nice little description that came with our meal).  All I have to say is delicious – and I haven’t touched a brussel sprout since I was a kid.  I’m a fan now!  At least of their way of preparing brussel sprouts.

I know there are plenty of meal delivery services out there these days – some delivered fresh and others frozen, but all heated up in the microwave.  So here is the distinguishing factor about Urban Manna.  You don’t use your microwave – unless you want to heat up your bread/roll.  Urban Manna cooks all of your meals perfectly and then vacuum seals each part in its own perfect little bag.  So how do you heat it up?  You bring a pot of water to boil and then drop each vacuum sealed bag in, boil for 6 or 12 minutes depending on the instructions provided and viola!  Perfect meal!

Ok, have I lost any of you yet?  I hope not, because I can relate to what some of you might be thinking right now.  Why would I want to boil my dinner to reheat when I have a perfectly good microwave that is designed to do just that.  Well, the reality is (as much as we may not want to admit it), the microwave just doesn’t heat evenly or consistently.  Leaving little pockets of food cool or cold, with others scalding hot.  What the founders of Urban Manna soon figured out in all of their testing is that the only way to ensure a consistently heated meal, while also preserving all of the flavor and nutrients, was to use the vacuum seal/boil method.  I was skeptical when they told me.  Are people really going to want to get out their big stock pots, wait for the water to come to a boil and then plop these bags in for the 6 to 12 minutes?  Well, I decided the only way to know for sure was to try it for myself.

And you know what I found out?  It’s not a big deal at all.  For each trial night, I would come home, fill my pot up with water, put it on the stove to boil, go change into my comfy clothes and check my email.  I would review the instructions to determine how long each component may need to boil, then once the water was at full boil, I dropped each bag in at the appropriate time.  I used tongs to pull each bag out of the water, snipped open the ends of the bags with scissors and then slid each item out onto the plates.  I was more than a little surprised when I realized – hey!  These plates actually look REALLY good!  In fact, they match the little pictures provided with my instructions.  I must be doing something right!  What was even more surprising is that things that should be crispy (like the bacon wrapped around the chicken breasts) actually stayed crispy, despite being stored for the day and reheated.  I think this must be due to the vacuum seal – it really does keep everything fresh.

But the real test came when I took the first bite of each meal and discovered – um, these are delicious!  The flavors just came bursting forth.  This was way better than other meal delivery services I’ve tried.  Now, that may be because those other services were focused on diet and weight loss.  Urban Manna isn’t about that.  It’s about getting a balanced, gourmet meal that you can have waiting for you when you get home from work and takes about 15-20 minutes to prepare and plate.  For someone who works 9 hours a day, this is the answer to my prayers!  I don’t have to pick anything up from the store or grab take-out from a restaurant, or place an order and wait for it to be delivered.  It is there waiting for me and after just 15 minutes or so, it is sitting on my plate, steaming and delicious.  All I can say is, how can I get more of this – NOW!

The Urban Manna folks also invited all of their trial run customers to a focus group at the end of the trial period.  They were conspicuously absent during this evening, while a facilitator walked us through a couple of brainstorming and idea provoking questions, while also plying us with delicious appetizers and an open bar.  Not a bad way to say thanks for our participation and feedback!

As I mentioned, all of the meals during the trial were really great and I would order any one of them again.  In fact, I’m hoping to do that very soon – but unfortunately I will have to wait (as will all of you) until the official launch of Urban Manna near the beginning of April.  I suggest you check them out and get on the waiting list too!  Check out their Facebook page here.

17
Jan
10

Trader Vic’s and Colori Kitchen – solid faves in my book

We have been busy, busy, busy lately!  So many events, so much food, so little time.  Somehow we manage to fit it all in…

Todd and his dad had tickets to see a Kings game at Staples on a Sunday afternoon, so his mom came out as well and she and I had plans to catch a flick at the Regal Cinema at LA Live while the boys were at hockey.  We stopped into Trader Vic’s for a drink and snack just prior.  Trader Vic’s has become a favorite watering hole – we love the huge variety of drinks!  I went to the original Trader Vic’s in Beverly Hills probably about 5 or 6 years ago – not long after I first moved to LA.  The new Trader Vic’s at LA Live is not quite as kitschy as the original, but it strives to be – in decor that is.  I think they’ve done a nice job and particularly like the bar area.  We haven’t been for a sit-down dinner yet – so there may be another review to come.

That afternoon, we ordered a round of drinks and some snacks.  I got the Singapore Symphony, which is a fruity concoction that comes in, basically, a bowl – it’s huge!  But it is meant for one person – it’s not one of those barrel drinks you order that are for 4 or 5 people.  I love that they put an edible flower in it as well, although I haven’t eaten one yet.  Our appetizers arrived and we all dug in.  We ordered the Crispy Tidbits sampler platter, which comes with spareribs, crab rangoon, crispy prawns and Char Siu pork.  It’s meant to serve two people, so we also got another order of the spareribs.  The ribs were delicious – tender and flavorful.  I’m not a huge rib person as I don’t particularly care of ripping my meat off of a bone (messy!), but I make an exception every one in a while.  The Char Siu pork was also tender.  The crispy prawns were truly amazing – crispy on the outside, juicy on the inside – and they didn’t feel heavy or greasy from the deep-frying.  And then of course, the crab rangoon.  I’ve loved crab rangoon every since I was a little girl and my mom would take us to the local Chinese restaurant in Appleton, Wisconsin.  I’ve found they can be a little more scarce here in California, so whenever I see them on a menu, I order them!  Trader Vic’s does them right and I was in love!

Todd and his dad left a little early to make sure they got to the game on time.  Joan and I had a little more time before our movie started (It’s Complicated – which is cute, by the way), so we ordered another round of the crispy prawns and the hummus and pita.  The hummus and pita is actually quite delicious – great seasoning in the hummus and fresh, soft pita slices – I highly recommend it.  We also ordered another round of drinks.  Joan ordered another Trader Vic’s Passion Cocktail and this time, I ordered the Chi Chi, which is quickly becoming a standard for me there.  It is frothy, coconut-ty and oh so good.  And they serve it in a coconut shaped cup – so kitschy cute!  I had another one a few days later when some coworkers and I stopped into Trader Vic’s on the way to the Clippers/Lakers game at Staples.  You should try it!  Head on down to Trader Vic’s for pre (or post) game or movie fun.

Trader Vic’s Los Angeles – at LA Live

http://www.tradervicsla.com/

Todd’s mom Joan had a birthday at the turn of the year (Happy Birthday again Joan!) and a good friend, Glenda, did as well.  So they decided to have a joint birthday party at the neighborhood favorite italian restaurant – Colori Kitchen.  Todd and I discovered Colori when we were shopping for new furniture/decorative items at the time that we bought our loft together.  We were at Loft Appeal (which used to be on 9th and Hill, but moved to the Arts District – by Barker Block) and one of the owners, Rich, was raving about how good and inexpensive Colori Kitchen is.  A few months later, we finally made it over there and had a fantastic meal.  We’ve been back many times since and have taken friends and family – all who have loved it as equally as we do.

Now I will say that service can be spotty at times.  If you have a good waiter/waitress, you’re set.  But if not, expect to be ignored for the better part of the night – which means that you will need to get up and flag someone down to get you that glass of water, or open your bottle of wine.  Also, apparently they only take reservations by email now and the manager (Alisa, I think?) is not that responsive via email – so you may not get your reservation because she didn’t respond to your email.  Joan had to go through quite the process to get the reservation secured for this birthday party – and she started weeks in advance!  And finally, while they take walk-ins, expect a decent wait as the place is typically packed on a Thursday, Friday or Saturday night.  Oh, and let me mention that they are not open Sunday at all, and not open for dinner Monday and Tuesday either. (Full hours are: Lunch – Monday through Friday, 11am-3pm; Dinner – Wednesday and Thursday, 6pm-9pm; Friday and Saturday, 6pm-10pm)

So you may ask, why go at all?  Seems like it could be a little bit of a hassle, right?  Well, the food is so darn good that we (so far) have been willing to overlook the other little inconveniences.  I don’t know if that will last forever, and we do go less often than we used to (thanks in part to the above items, plus the appearance of Bottega Louie on the scene – which is right around the block).  But for now, we still fit Colori Kitchen into our regular rotation.  And Joan just loves the place, and loves to bring family and friends there to enjoy the wonderful food.  Oh, and I once left my wallet there accidentally and they called me to let me know and made sure it was kept safe until I could return the next day to pick it up – that helped endear them in my mind forever!!

So this particular evening, we joined the birthday dinner party along with: Joan, Jon (Todd’s dad), Glenda, Jeff (Glenda’s husband), Anita, Laura and Rob.  Joan, Glenda and Anita have been close friends for many years and get together for dinner once a week.  Laura and Rob (in case you haven’t read my previous posts) are Todd’s sister and brother-in-law, who were able to join us (yea!).  Todd, me, Laura and Rob arrived together, with two bottles of wine and some flowers for the birthday girls.  There were already four other bottles of wine on the table (and the limit is five bottles – restaurant policy), so we had to pick and choose which bottle was not going to make it open that night.  Don’t worry – it all worked out.  Before I forget, Colori does not charge a corkage fee – which is just another reason why we all love it so much – being wine people and all.

So with bottles opened and wine flowing, we settled into the menu to decide what to order.  We started with a couple of salads – grilled calamari over field greens and the burrata mozzarella with fresh tomato and basil.  After devouring those and more wine, we finally got around to ordering our meals.  There were three orders of Cioppino (which I ordered as well – it is absolutely the best Cioppino I’ve had anywhere!), a couple of the fish specials, a fettuccine bolognese, the pasta special with a white cream sauce and leeks, and the lamb.  (I may have missed a dish in there, so if anyone who attended reads this and notices, please comment!)  Todd ordered the lamb, so I got a bite and it was scrumptious – perfectly cooked and melt in your mouth delicious. I’ve had the fettuccine bolognese before and loved it.  In fact, they once had a special on the menu – lasagna bolognese.  I don’t normally order lasagna at italian restaurants – I just find there are so many other options and lasagna doesn’t seem that special to me.  Well, at Colori Kitchen it is – and especially if it is lasagna bolognese.  I was hooked upon the first bite, it was so creamy.  But alas, they have not had it on the menu again since, so I have not been able to repeat the experience.

Let me elaborate a little on the Cioppino.  It is chock full of whitefish, mussels, clams, shrimp and scallops.  The broth is slightly spicy and rich in tomatoey goodness.  It comes with a huge, split grilled prawn crowning the top, as well as two healthy pieces of grilled, crusty bread for dipping.  I always have a hard time finishing the bowl, but I have a fantastic time trying!  It’s become my go-to dish at Colori, as I find it difficult to order anything else – it’s just that good.  I do want to mention a dish that Todd orders often that I find delicious as well.  It is a fettuccine with salmon and zucchini in a curry sauce.  I would never have expected curry at Colori, but they do it very well.  I highly recommend it!

Upon finally finishing our dinners, we moved on to coffee and dessert, which consisted of one tiramisu, one order of cannoli and a chocolate cake (I think flourless?).  A couple bites of each was all most of us could handle, but that was enough to cap off our experience.  We had a great waiter (his name escapes me today alas) – he anticipated when we were ready to open our next bottle of wine, checked back to see if we were ready to order (but without adding any pressure) and never made us feel hurried – despite the fact that they were packed for the evening and we were taking up prime real estate.  It was a great night – one that added to the library of great experiences at Colori.  I guarantee you, we will all be back – and most likely soon.

Colori Kitchen

http://colorikitchen.wordpress.com/

01
Jan
10

Holiday Gorging Aplenty!

Happy Holidays!  I hope everyone has been having a wonderful holiday season.  It’s hard to believe it is the end of 2009.  Does it feel like another decade has gone by?  Wasn’t it just a few years ago that Y2K chaos was around us?  Man, does time fly by!

I’ve been making the most of this year’s holiday season by doing what else?  That’s right – eating!  I have had some fantastic food over the past couple of weeks – with friends, family and at some exciting new places.  Let me elaborate:

Our lovely neighbors Dan and Eileen hosted a little holiday event at their home, where we shared food, drink and watched two holiday classics – White Christmas and It’s A Wonderful Life.  Dan shared a holiday tradition of his with us – homemade perogies.  For those of you who have only experienced Mrs. T’s perogies from the freezer section of the grocery store – boy are you missing out!  Dan’s homemade version were little doughy pillows of goodness and joy, with a smooth and creamy filling.  Yum, yum and more yum!  And to add to the treat, our neighbors Mike and Mariellen brought the accompaniment – sauerkraut with sausage and onion.  Oh – heaven!  Growing up in the midwest (with German heritage somewhere in there as well), I have always been a sauerkraut lover.  I never thought to pair it with perogies.  I must say it was delightful and it makes me look forward to next year (hint, hint Dan)!

Next was Christmas eve dinner at Todd’s parent’s house.  Jon and Joan opened up their B&B (that is, their new house) to us for the evening and Joan whipped up a batch of her lasagna rolls for dinner.  She swears they are easy to make, and if so, I need to get the recipe – they were delicious!  Saucy without being overly so, a great balance of cheese and noodle.  And the perfect portion – one lasagna roll with a little salad and I was happy as a clam!  Of course the bottle of Pessagno Four Boys Pinot Noir accompanying the meal didn’t hurt one bit either.

The next morning, we drove over to Todd’s sister’s home, where Laura and Rob treated us all to Christmas brunch.  It was quite the feast, with a zesty sausage and cheese egg bake, little smokies sausages (Todd’s favorite since he was a kid), an orange and kiwi fruit salad, and two kinds each of danish and muffins.  And then of course there were the mimosas to top off
the whole lot. Quite a way to start the day!  We then proceeded to the tree to open gifts, which turned into an all out frenzy of wrapping paper, bows and cards.  I think Santa was pretty good to everyone this year – especially the kids!  We ended Christmas day with yet another sumptuous meal.  This one consisting of honey glazed ham, smoked turkey, cheesy potato casserole, and Laura’s special salad with homemade dressing.  Oh and of course dessert – which I had to pass on due to the lack of room in my full belly, but which included such things as peppermint ice cream, boston cream pie, cheesecake and bourbon calls (just to name a few – there were quite a few other options).  It was a wonderful holiday and I enjoyed sharing it with all of the Blickenstaffs and Russells.

Todd and I then settled into our staycation, as we’re off until January 4th.  We decided to stay close to home this year and just relax, which really has been fun.  On Sunday, we got up at a reasonable hour and headed to the club for some workout time.  We then rode our bikes over to LA Live for lunch and a movie.  Our neighbor Stuart joined us at Rosa Mexicano for a bite before we headed over to see Sherlock Holmes.  We started with the tableside guacamole service, which is what it sounds like.  They come to your table with a cart full of all of the ingredients and mix up a batch of guacamole right there – to your specifications, i.e. mild, medium or hot (spice level).  We opted for hot, and watched as the young man put avocado, onion, jalapeno, garlic, tomato and a few other things I’m sure, into one of those lava bowls, mixed it all around and then plopped it onto our table along with chips, soft tortillas and two kinds of salsa.  Todd and I immediately dove in and certainly enjoyed ourselves.  We would have liked more than the three soft tortillas provided, as they were delicious with the fresh guac.  At $12 per order, I’m not sure it’s quite worth repeating often as the portion size is somewhat small.  But it definitely was a tasty introduction to the restaurant.  We then split a Mexican Club Torta, which has ham, bacon and grilled chicken, along with spicy black bean spread, avocado, Chihuahua cheese and jalapeno.  It was good, but I think if we return I’ll order tacos instead.  Stuart ordered the steak tacos and they looked (and smelled) absolutely delicious!  Nice cuts of steak, along with tortillas, a creamy corn salad, black beans, rice and salsa.  I want that next time!  We quickly finished our lunches and headed over to Regal Cinemas which recently opened at LA Live for Sherlock Holmes.  The movie was good – Robert Downey Jr. was great – story might have benefited from a little more work and a few other characters probably needed more development.  But the visuals were stunning, and the action sequences showed off some impressive special effects.  Worth seeing – if you’re looking for an opinion that is.

http://www.rosamexicano.com/

Yesterday our friend Joseph emailed us about a piece he saw on Daily Candy (great newsletter if you’re not yet a subscriber, click here to read the piece) describing a new place that had recently opened in Little Tokyo – Lazy Ox Canteen.  We decided to meet for happy hour and invited our friend Doug to join us.  Doug, Todd and I set off for Little Tokyo on our bikes and met Joseph there.  The place is located in a first floor space of Sakura Crossing, a new apartment complex on 2nd and San Pedro.  It has a small, gated outdoor seating area with heat lamps.  We briefly contemplated sitting outside as we locked up our bikes (or Harleys as the manager called them, who came out to say hello to us as he opened the door – we arrived right at 5pm when happy hour starts).  But the cold convinced us to sit inside, and I’m glad that we did as it gave us more of sense of the place as well.  It’s a small, intimate space with about 15 regular tables and then two taller, family style tables, as well as the bar area – which is next to the open kitchen.  About halfway down the height of the bar is what looks at first glance to be a green stripe – paint maybe? Not so – it is actually a little groove built into the bar and they have planted a type of mossy grass!  You can actually put your hand down there and touch it!  I hope not too many people do that though – so it lasts.  They also have these really cool industrial-looking light bulbs, which really added to the atmosphere.  Todd and Doug ordered two Red Stripes ($3 happy hour special), while Joseph and I opted for the La Chouffe – a creamy, delicious German beer that I totally want again – it was so good.  We then started selecting appetizer dishes from the $5 happy hour menu.  We had a beef satay that was so tender and delicious, we immediately ordered two more of them.  Of course that may have had something to do with the fact that each plate only came with three little skewers – enough for about two bites each.  But those two bites were pretty darn good, so there needed to be more of them.  We also ordered potato croquettes – which no one seemed all that fond of except me.  I’ll admit they weren’t my favorite item there, but the crunchy deep fried outside of the creamy, potatoey inside, served with the garlic chive butter spread won me over.  We ordered the pork chicharrones, which were little fatty deep fried pieces that Doug and I were pretty enamored with.  We also ordered something called potatoes bravata, which was diced potato in a very spicy tomato sauce – hard to describe, I wish I knew what else was in it – it was the perfect level of spice for me – which is to say it was HOT!  But in a good way; I loved it.  Todd and Doug ordered the spicy and sweet orange glazed chicken wings and thought they were pretty tasty as well, being the wing connoisseurs they are.  Finally, we tried the charred octopus, which was citrusy and ended up being a fantastic final dish.  When the Red Stripe ran dry, we switched to the other happy hour special, which was another German beer called Scrimshaw.  Our waitress likened it to Budweiser, but I thought it was much tastier than that.  Sure it was lighter, but it had a nice kick to the finish.  I really dug it, which is why I had two more of them.  Good thing we rode the bikes!  We had a great time at Lazy Ox Canteen and will definitely be back very soon.

http://www.lazyoxcanteen.com/

In a future post I will tell you about our experience at Gold Class Cinemas in Pasadena, which is a high end movie theater that serves drinks and food before and during the show.  We’ve been twice thus far and I am looking forward to our next visit.  It’s definitely an experience, which I’ll fill you in on later.




October 2014
M T W T F S S
« May    
 12345
6789101112
13141516171819
20212223242526
2728293031  

Blog Stats

  • 2,105 hits

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.