Saturday, March 5, 2011

Squat & Gobble Cafe & Crepery

"Today you, tamales me… "*

This morning, I went to the Squat & Gobble Cafe and Crepery (see last 'blog-entry from November 28th, 2010); this time I went to the one located right across the street from the West Portal MUNI tunnel. It's a little larger than their original location on Fillmore, and a little bit more "upscale" which is mainly because of the neighborhood it is in. There is nuthin' wrong with "downscale", mind you, and I like the Haight location a lot.

I happened to notice that the counter-server (this means the person that takes your order at the counter, not some subversive waitress person) had a bit of an accent, so, cunning linguist that I am, I had to ask from where she came. She told me that she was Armenian by way of Iran and then moved to Germany before coming to 'merica. Wow! Can you say ESL? (Or English as a fifth language even? That would be Հայերեն, فارسی, Deutsch, English, and 'merican, of course.) Sheesh, most 'mericans think they are bi-lingual if they can order a meal at Taco Bell® without faltering.

Squat & Gobble have lots of good crêpe choices. I would normally go with the Zorba the Greek or the Mama Mia, or their newest crêpe the Charred Tomatillo Crêpe (which was a great find back in November), but I wanted to try something different today so I had the Marina ~ Salmon (bad; skipped it, Howard), spinach (always good), onions, capers** (also good), artichokes (good, too), tomatoes, tarragon***, and Fontina cheese, topped with sun-dried tomato pesto (very good). "Served with choice of rosemary garlic potatoes or mixed baby green salad" (which is really never much of a "choice" for me: potatoes > stupid ol' salad any day for breakfast). I also had a large glass of fresh squeezed orange juice and a very good cuppa rich, strong coffee

This was another winner of a crêpe. All the ingredients were pretty interesting and good for a crêpe (again, except for the salmon, Rushdie): spinach, capers, artichoke hearts ("It mighta choked Artie, but it ain't gonna choke Stymie."), etc.; plus, it all was tied together nicely with the Fontina cheese. However, as interesting an addition as the fresh tarragon is (and it might pair well with salmon, but I will never know), I really thought it kinda superfluous with all the other flavours; it was completely eclipsed by the sun-dried tomato pesto.

Now this is an interesting and very simple thing: all of their water pitchers have both slices of lemons and lots of fresh mint leaves in them. Stuff like that is always a good tip. Plus, I know that my orange juice was freshly squeezed as I watched it being made in one of those Jetson orange juicer contraption thingys.

For condimentary**** supplements they just have Tabasco® (both the standard red and the Jalapeño green versions) and Tapatío®; so, once again, Palo Alto Fire Fighters Pepper Sauce to the rescue (Thanks again, Amy!) on the potatoes.

Again, great crêpe… but a silly name for a restaurant.

Glen Bacon Scale Rating: Marina Crêpe ~ 6.8

*(There really weren't any tamales for breakfast, you will need to read the referenced/linked New York Times article to appreciate this. However, I have had some "keeler" breakfast tamales before made with pineapple chunks and raisins in them.

Due to the above article and general good feelings it has created, I have deemed this weekend "Pay It Forward Weekend… or bugger off!" 
I usually like to inflict "random acts of kindness" on people, anyway; it serves two purposes: 

1) as I am normally a fargin' bastage in person 95% of the time, I figure it can't hurt karmicly to pretend to be nice the other 5% of the time; 

and most of all

2) it totally messes with people when you are nice to them for no reason whatsoever… well, I guess I may lose karma points for that, but it's still fun.

By the way,
большое спасибо to Gene Willard ~ himself a cunning linguist extraordinaire ~ for sharing the above news article with me on defacedbook. So blame Geno if some complete stranger ~ those partial strangers are okay ~ pays for your cup of coffee today.)
**(For those of you who have never had capers before ~ and why haven't you? ~ here is a brief introduction to this tasty little pickled bud: )

***(Here's a bit of information on the perennial herb tarragon:

In Russia they even make a tarragon-flavoured soda called "Тархун". It's actually pretty good, but you really have to like strange tasting stuff; luckily, I do. )

****(I made this up last week as a portmanteau word, Mr. Dodgson, and have now forced my Microsoft® Works Word Processor auto-spell check thingy to remember it. Bite me, Gates!)


  1. I am going to adopt your word, condimentary, also. I'll get back to you on how I use it.

  2. Jim:

    You won't believe this, but I did a Google-search for "condimentary" and I am not the only idiot using this made-up word. There are hundreds of other entries for it... go figurate.