Saturday, March 14, 2015


Pay It Forward Weekend… or bugger off! ~ Part V[1]

Place: Dunyā[2]
Location: 1609 Polk Street (between Clay and Sacramento Streets)
Hours: open Saturday and Sunday at 10:00am for "Brunch"
Meal: Mediterranean Ranchero ~ pita, Mozzarella, hummus, poached eggs, pommodoro[3] sauce, served with country potatoes; a glass of orange juice; and (before they had opened) a cuppa at Moka Coffee

(Today's EweToobular juxtaselection is just because this song was included in the soundtrack of the 2000 movie "Pay It Forward".)

I had passed by Dunyā before and made a mental note (or, in my case, more of a "psychotic epistle") to check them out for breakfast (which they unfortunately have labelled as "Brunch") one of these days. Today just happened to be "one of these days". They have a pretty cool space inside with wood paneling and old photos of San Francisco. It's not that large of a place, with seating of just five tables for two, one large table for eight to ten people, one table for four, one table for eight, and ten seats/stools at the bar-counter area.

I liked the choices that they had to offer on their "Brunch" menu. There were several other good ideas for stupid vegetarians: (the simply-enough named) Frittata (portabella mushrooms, red onion, tomato, roasted peppers, and Feta); Mediterranean Omelet (spinach, Feta cheese, eggplant, olives, and Tzatziki; this was going to be my "fall-back" choice); Cheese Omelet (Mozzarella, Feta, goat cheese, tomato, and green onion); or Vegetarian Omelet (seasonal veggies and Mozzarella cheese; while I was glad to see that they had the good sense to call the omelette "Vegetarian", I was disappointed that they still felt it necessary to use the aggravating term "veggies"). For those of you that like to partake of the dead, decaying porcine flesh, they also offer Prosciutto Omelet (sun-dried tomato, roasted peppers, Parmesan cheese; and I assume some prosciutto, too) or Polk Omelet (bacon, Mozzarella, avocado, parsley; "You poke-a my omeletta, I break-a you face!").

This turned out to be a great concept ~ kinda like a cross between a standard Huevos Rancheros and an Eggs Benedict dish. This was made with a toasted pita as the bottom layer (in place of the standard corn or flour tortilla), some hummus next (substituted for any frijoles refritos), poached eggs (instead of poached eggs) and (a really good amount of) Mozzarella cheese (as a substitution for Monterey Jack and/or Cheddar) for the next layer, and then all topped with a pretty decent red gravy (instead of a salsa ranchera).

I liked that there was some dried and ground sumac fruit (drupes, whatever) sprinkled on top of the country potatoes (which in this case was probably the country of Türkiye Cumhuriyeti). I was pretty sure that it was sumac, but I confirmed my guess with the waiter-server person guy. It's a Turkish/Arab thing.

Dunyā only has for condimentary supplementation some (homemade?) harissa[4].  I used a good amount of that on top of the salsa di pomodoro and some of my own The Wiltshire Chilli Farm Winter chilli sauce (Thanks, Cindy & Greg!) generously on the potatoes. I also "paid it forward" with this hot sauce and another The Wiltshire Chilli Farm Mango hot chilli sauce (Thanks, Greg & Cindy! ~ they happen to be no relation to the above two people) to some guys at the next table over. They really seemed to enjoy the Winter chilli sauce a lot, too.

It was at Moka Coffee where I did my "pay it forward" deed. I had about a half-hour to kill (strictly in self-defense, mind you) before Dunyā opened so I decided to get a cuppa at a local coffeeshop (which in this case happened to be right next door to the restaurant). Working behind the counter, there was a completely clueless barista (baristetta, whatever) that apparently can't count to five on one hand. To pay for the requisite $2.00 for the Coffee, I handed the lady behind the counter a $20.00 bill. I then explained that I wanted to "pay it forward" $5.00 to the next few people that were to order any Coffee or pastries; she really had no concept of which I was trying to do (and I suspect that her grasp of English was not entirely all there either), and I am sure that just confused her even more. She only had fives in the till (they had been open for over three hours by that time, and that there were no ones was a mystery to me and apparently to her, too) and ended up only giving me $12.00 back in change, of which there were two fivers, four quarters, and one Sacajawea dollar coin (which I later "paid it forward" to some homeless person guy at the bus stop near my apartment; I just hope he realizes that it is actually worth $1.00 and he doesn't mistake it for just another quarter). The Coffee was actually pretty decent, if not overly-pricey at the extended $3.00 cost. Of course, I didn't even notice being short-changed until I went to pay my bill after breakfast, which by that time was too late to go back and complain to the idiot next door (of course, I am also an idiot for not counting my change when receiving it, too). I am pretty sure they are the same owners as Dunyā as I saw the same waiter-server person guy behind the counter there that waited-served me later. So, I made sure to leave one dollar less tip for him than I normally would after the meal…

The next few Coffees are on you (via me), Scott (that is, IF the idiot behind the counter doesn't pocket the $5.00 along with the $1.00 in change that she owed me ~ hey, maybe she will put the $6.00 towards English lessons).

R.I.P., Mr. XV!

Glen Bacon Scale Rating: Mediterranean Ranchero ~ 6.9; Moka Coffee (whichever blend/roast it was) ~ 6.5

1. For an explanation on exactly what this all means, see previous 'blog-entries from the first weekends in March 2014, 2013, and 2012, or the initial 'blog-entry from March 5th, 2011.

While technically "Pay It Forward Weekend" should be observed on the first weekend in March (as I have decreed it for the past four years now), I seemed to have missed it last weekend and am "paying it forward" now to this weekend. I blame it all on that bastage Daylight Saving Time.

2. Stupid, useless cunning linguist pointer of the day, bir numara:

"Dünya" means "Earth" or "World" in Turkish. I asked the waiter-server person guy what the name of the restaurant meant. I don't know why they have it spelled as "Dunyā", though.

3. Stupid, useless cunning linguist pointer of the day, numero due:

They had this spelled as "pommodoro" on their menu; however, the correct spelling in Italian should be "pomodoro". "Pomodoro" simply means "tomato" in Italian; the word root comes from the words for "apple" ("pomo") and "I adore/I love" ("adoro"). 

Extra-added stupid, useless cunning linguist pointer of the day, iki numarali  ~ bölüm B:

The word for "tomato" in Turkish is "domates".*

Of course, prior to 1492, there would not have even been an actual word for "tomato" in Italy or Turkey.

*(I don't know what the words for "idiot barista/baristetta" are in Turkish, though.)

4. Stupid, useless cunning linguist pointer of the day, رقم ثلاثة:

As best as I can figure, "harissa" means "mash/mush" in Arabic. Which would make sense as it is basically a pounded mash of chillies, spices, and herbs.

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