Sunday, November 29, 2015

homeskillet




(No official web-site.[?] There is still an http[s?]://www.-thing for www.homeskilletsf.com; however, when you try to access it, the message 
"Site temporarily unavailable (451 error)" appears.)


Place: homeskillet
Location: 1001 Market Street (on the corner of 6th Street)
Hours: open at 7:30am every day of the week (or so the sign in the front door states)
Meal: gypzy[1] hashish ~ fresh hashbrowns (I concur with their correct spelling of this as oneword) scrambled w/ black beans, bell peppers, onions, topped w/ jackcheddar [ sic ] (while I agree with their spelling of "hashbrowns" as oneword, I am not quite so sure I like this amalgamation of two popular cheeses) cheese, sourcream (again, they have this as one word, but I am oh kay with that), salsa, two farm fresh eggs, & toast! (they added the explanation point, not me); and a cuppa (mug w/ refill) drip Coffee, which is/are Equator Coffees & Teas

http://www.equatorcoffees.com/




(While this song has absolutely no EweToobular juxtaselection with today's breakfastary destination, Lady Ella never needs any excuses to be linked here.)


I figured that it was about time that I made a return visit to homeskillet (see previous 'blog-entry from May 11th, 2014) for breakfast (I have been there a few times now for lunch since my initial breakfastary visit, too).

I especially like a place that has so many good choices (for both stupid vegetarians and those that partake of the dead, decaying animal flesh alike) that it takes over five minutes working through the menu to decide upon a selection. If this place weren't located downtown, it would definitely be Starting Rotation-worthy. 

Exempli gratia[2]:

  • off the EGGS BENEDICT section of their menu: #15 shroom florentine (english muffin, mushroom & spinach, poached farm fresh eggs, hollandaise);
  • off the BUTTERY GRILLED SAMWICHES section (comes w/ hashbrowns, taters, or greens! [again, they added the explanation pointer]): #9 california love (apple smoked bacon, riped [ sic avocado, scrambled eggs, melted havarti, pepperjack, & cheddar);

or several other good choices in each of the other main sections of the menu:

  • HOUSEMADE HOTCAKES (I was eyeing the seasonal berry, which I would have had to order with a side of their excellent hashbrowns ~ you can never have enough carbohydrates on the Meso Diet);
  • SCRAMBLES (served w/ fresh hashbrowns or balsamic greens & choice of toast);
  • OMELETS (w/ hashbrowns or balsamic greens & choice of toast! [again, they saw fit to add an explanation point here; however, not in the SCRAMBLES description, for some reason]).




At first look, this didn't seem like it was going to be enough food; however, it was deceivingly filling and a lot of good food, after all. Any time that potatoes are the basis (or main focus) for a breakfast meal, I am always good with that. I had my two eggs prepared "over-medium" (and done nicely, they were; I hate when I order "over-medium" and they come out "over-under-done"). The only thing I might have done differently if I were making this dish (insert ironic laughter here) would have been to maybe add some fresh sliced jalapeños or serranos in place of the green bell peppers; I think that would really have kicked this puppy up a notch (and if you have a problem with kicking up puppies, talk to PETA or Emeril). As it was, it was really very good, anyway, and I liked it a lot (just not as much as the first dish that I had tried: #hashtag). I went with marble rye for the toast choice, 'cause sometimes you just wanna say "Gimme the marble rye, ya old bag!" when they ask what choice of toast you would like.

Another great reason to check out this place is that when you order a cuppa Coffee and go with the "mug w/ refill" option, you have three different Coffee roasts/blends from which to choose (well, four if you count any of that "de-caf" stuff) and can go back for seconds (or, in my case, thirds) to try each one. Today's choices of Equator Coffees & Teas were: 

(light roast) El Salvador Finca Himalaya Honey (this was my first choice and I started with a full-cuppa; it also was my favourite of the three);
(medium roast) Mocha Java (I went back for my first refilla with this one; I only had a half-cuppa; this was my third favourite); and 
(dark roast) Equator Blend (this was my last refilla; it was another half-cuppa; it was my second favourite of the morning).

For condimentary supplements, homeskillet offers a nice array of hot sauces: Tabasco® Brand Pepper Sauce (Original Red Sauce); Tapatío® Salsa Picante Hot Sauce; Louisiana's Pure Crystal® Hot Sauce; and Huy Fong Foods, Inc. Sriracha HOT Chili Sauce. Even knowing that they had a good selection of their own, I had come with some hot sauces from my collection, anyway, and I used a little Fat Cat Strawberry Serrano Hot Sauce (Thanks, Cindy & Greg!) on top of one of the eggs and some Hot Licks Serrano Hot Sauce (Thanks, Brian!) on top of the other egg.


Glen Bacon Scale Rating: gypzy hashish ~ 7.1; Equator Coffees ~ 6.7 - 7.0

___________________

1. Stupid, useless cunning linguist/pseudo-historical pointer of the day, number one:

The word "Gypsy" (or alternate spelling "Gipsy") originates from the Middle English "gypcian", short for "Egipcien". It is ultimately derived, via Middle French and Latin, from the Greek "Αιγύπτιοι" ("Aigyptioi"), i.e. "Egyptians"; cf. Greek "γύφτοι" ("gýftoi"), a corruption of the same word. It was once believed that the Romanis, or some other Gypsy groups (such as the Balkan Egyptians), originated in Egypt.

This exonym is sometimes written with a capital letter, to show that it designates an ethnic group. The Spanish term "gitano", the French term "gitan"*, and the Basque term "ijito" have the same origin.

*(And I always thought that "Gitanes" was French for "Camel".)

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

Of course, everyone knows that this is just Latin for "it won't cost ya nuthin'...".

Saturday, November 28, 2015

japonica


Richmond (District) Coffeehouses ~ #15



http://japonica.vpweb.com/


Place: japonica
Location: 5501 California Street (on the corner of 17th Avenue)
Hours: open at 7:00am Monday through Saturday, at 8:00am Sunday
Meal: Veggie Breakfast Burrito ~ eggs (scrambled), cheese (probably some kinda Cheddar or Jack), potatoes, black beans, and corn; a blueberry-cream cheese Danish thing; and a 12oz cuppa Weaver's® Coffee & Tea House Blend

http://www.weaverscoffee.com/




(I have used a different [live] version of this same song before, but it still applies here as a decent EweToobular juxtaselection. So deal with it.)


Continuing along with the Richmond (District) Coffeehouses series (and also lending support to the anti-Black Friday, Small Business Saturday), I headed back to California Street to check out japonica. There is a distance of nine blocks between this shop and the last one I went to along California Street. While this is within suitable walking distance of my apartment (if a round-trip of about thirty-four blocks or so suits you), it was still a little chilly this morning and I actually drove over there. japonica has been open on California Street now as a coffeehouse for only about six years (they had opened initially in 2002 solely as a plant/gift shop), but this was my first time ever checking them out. I do not think that it will be my last visit.

The coffeehouse area is located in the front half of one of the display rooms (there are two rooms) of the gift shop. There are just three tables at which to sit: one large bench area that could seat eight; one smaller long table for four; and a small half-circle table for two. I didn't really take notes of what exactly else they have to offer in the way of food/breakfastary items, but I did see that they had other breakfast/egg sandwiches and bagels on the menu.




This was easily "My Favourite" Breakfast Burrito of 2015 so far (I think I have only had one other this year, anyway) and is to be duly noted when I make up my "My Favourites of 2015" 'blog-list later next month. What really made this burrito remarkably memorable (or memorably remarkable; take your pick) was that it was homemade (well, coffeehouse-made) and not some packaged deal from a commercial supplier. Plus, the little details make for additional kudos: the potatoes are nicely spiced and roasted before tossing them in with all the other good junk like black beans and (a huge mess o') corn.

japonica exclusively serves Weaver's® Coffee & Tea. I think this may be the first time that I have had any Coffee from this specific (and local) roastery. This was a decent enough cuppa, too.

It was a nice surprise to see that japonica had a small plastic cup of Papalote Mexican Grill House Salsa (Black Label) to offer as a condimentary supplementation with their breakfast burrito. I had no problem using up the entire thing on my burrito. They also sell jars of these (as well as jars of the Green and Red Label versions) at the front counter. I have eaten at both of the local Papalote Mexican Grill restaurants (the original location in the Mission on 24th Street at Valencia Street and the newer location on Fulton Street near Masonic Street) a few times now and already knew their salsas to be both top-notch and flavourful.

http://www.papalotesalsa.com/

This is a very smart idea, having a coffeehouse in with a gift shop. There are probably many susceptible idiots that will find it necessary to browse around and purchase at least one item while there. I would just like to point out that I have much more willpower than the common rabble. However, when I was all done with my breakfast and ready to go I was extremely surprised at how much the entire bill had come to... $135.00 for a breakfast burrito, a pastry, and a cuppa Coffee?! Sheesh! That's the last time I am ever going there 
(... this week), but I highly recommend that everyone check out this cool little coffeeshop/gift shop.


Glen Bacon Scale Rating
Veggie Breakfast Burrito ~ 6.6; 
Weaver's® Coffee & Tea House Blend ~ 6.8; 
Papalote Mexican Grill House Salsa (Black Label) ~ 7.0; 
many, many cool ideas for (Christmasy) gifts ~ 8.5

Friday, November 27, 2015

Sandy's Café


A breakfastary roadtrip:
Gilroy, CA



(No official web-site.)


Place: Sandy's Café
Location: 6120 Monterey Street, Gilroy, CA; 
phonicular contact: (408) 848-1200
Hours: open at 6:00am every day of the week
Meal: (Me) Veggie Omelet ~ spinach, mushrooms, and asparagus, topped with your choice of cheese (omelets made with [4] eggs and served with hash browns or fruit and choice of toast or [1] pancake); (Dave) Pancake Sandwich ~ (2) bacon or sausage and (2) eggs on top of (2) fluffy buttermilk pancakes; (Zoey, Nellie, and Comet) Ham & Cheese Omelet (which had to be ordered as a "take-out"; it seems the local Gilroy restaurants frown upon canines dining with peoples); and to drink (Me) a large glassa orange juice, (Dave) a cuppa (with a few refillas) the house Coffee (the girls just got plain ol' tap-water with their second breakfast when we got back)


As has become a Thanksgiving tradition (well, a new one in the past five years or so; no one said it was an "old tradition"), on the morning after Thanksgiving (which for the past five years just happened to fall on a Friday; what are the odds of that?!), I will go out to breakfast with my holiday host to a local restaurant in the Gilroy area. Today, Dave and I went back to 
Sandy's Café (see last 'blog-entry from November 28th, 2014). Unfortunately, Zoey, Nellie, and Comet did not get to join us; they had to wait patiently for their extra holiday treat upon our return.

Sandy's Café has a very nice breakfastary offering. There are several good choices from the Pancackes, French Toast & Belgian Waffles section of the menu (from which Dave had ordered his meal). From the Sandy's Breakfast Specials section, Sandy's Skillet Special (prepared with country potatoes, onion, ham, Cheddar cheese, mushrooms, tomatoes, and green peppers, topped with [2] eggs any style) would have been another nice idea (which I would have ordered without the ham, of course). They have many Outrageous Omelets from which to choose, for example: Chef's Favorite Omelet (tomatoes, onion, bell pepper, mushrooms, sausage, and topped with Feta cheese; I really need to order this one next time); Ortega Omelet (chopped Ortega chilies, Jack cheese, black olives and sour cream, served with fresh salsa); and Aloha Omelet (pineapple, Canadian bacon, topped with both Swiss and American cheeses; this is definitely an "Outrageous" combination, I am not sure that even I would ever try that one, even without the Canadian bacon stuff). They also had a few daily/weekend specials on a chalkboard at the front door; I tried talking Dave into getting the Chorizo Scramble, but he said that he doesn't like chorizo (What a weirdo. Who doesn't like chorizo?!). 


(Ooops! Normally here is where I will have a photo of my meal and, sometimes, my guest's meal. However, I seemed to have screwed-up when taking the photo and had the setting on "Video" in error.)


Here is where it would have behooved me ("behoven me"?) to have reviewed my last visit to this restaurant. I ended up ordering the same omelette as I had last year. However, this year, I had the good sense (actually it was a great sense, if you ask me) to ask for Feta cheese on it. There were two large slabs o' Feta cheese on top of the omelette (here is where I wish I had taken a "photo" of the omelette with which to display it). Normally when you get Feta on/in an omelette at many places, they will go with the cheapo Feta crumblies routine. I chose the pancake option as my side choice (even I can make 
toast at home). Once again, this was an extra large omelette (as to be expected with it being made with four eggs) and a lot of food, because of which, I didn't need to have any lunch today. 

Sandy's Café has both Tabasco® Brand Pepper Sauce (Original Red Sauce) and Tapatío® Salsa Picante Hot Sauce for condimentary supplementation. I just went with some Tapatío® on my hashbrowns.


Glen Bacon Scale Rating: Veggie Omelet ~ 6.5 (this is adding 0.2 points for the abundance of Feta); I didn't bother to ask Dave for the GBS Rating for his breakfast (it was just eggs, pancakes, and dead, decaying porky links, anyway); Ham & Cheese Omelet ~ (gone in) 6.5 (seconds)

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Rocco's Ccafé




http://www.roccoscafe.com/


Place: Rocco's Ccafé 
Location: 1131 Folsom Street (between 7th and 8th Streets)
Hours: open Monday - Friday at 7:00am, Saturday & Sunday at 8:00am
Meal: 3 (well, actually I asked them for 2 only, because I figured [correctly] that three eggs would have been too much) Eggs "Spuds a la Rocco"[1] ~ topped w/ avocado, Marinara, & sharp Cheddar; and a cuppa (and 1-1/2 refillas) of whatever the house Coffee (Caffè) was




(Hey, Brian, what gives? "Summertime" in the Fall? And a Latin Jazz version at that?

What the hey?! I figured this would make about as much sense for a EweToobular juxtaselection as un ristorante italiano with a half-Frenchy name and a dish also with a Frenchified moniker.)


Sono tornato a Rocco's Ccafé per colazione (see previous 'blog-entry from October 12th, 2013). I even sat at the same table as I had on my initial visit (however, unlike yesterday, no one seemed to recognize me from two years ago).

This place bears repeating again (of course, that probably means another two years between visits). They open up nice and early for my liking and there is usually an abundance of nearby street parking to be found that early (I parked right in front this morning), and they have a very nice breakfastary selection from which to choose. There are several other ideas that I would like to check out: Fresh Vegetable Frittata w/ 3 Cheeses; Mushroom, Onion, Basil, & Parmesan Cheese Frittata; Avocado, Tomato, & Provolone Cheese Omelette (I just hope they wouldn't forget the avocado); Fresh Spinach, Mushroom, & Provolone Cheese Omelette; Grilled Homemade (well, restaurant-made) Polenta topped with Cheese (just not Cheddar, I hope) & Marinara Sauce w/ Eggs any style (which I would probably have to order with a side of Rocco's Breakfast Potatoes); or 3 Eggs Poached in a Sweet Tomato, Basil Marinara Sauce w/ Italian Sausage (which I would have ottantasei-ed, of course) & Warm Italian French Bread ("Italian French Bread"?! Maybe that is the connection).




I liked this breakfast. I ordered my (2, not 3) eggs done "over medium". It was served in a bowl atop a nice portion of  Rocco's Breakfast Potatoes. Their Marinara sauce is a nice one, which went nicely as a dipping aid for my toast (my choice of toast: sourdough; I am not sure if that was "Italian" or "French" sourdough, though). Not included in the description, but it did also have lots of chopped tomatoes, green bell peppers, and onions in it; however, it was missing one of the main listed ingredients: avocado. Much like yesterday's omission of any cheese of actual Dutch origin, I would rather have seen this made with either Mozzarella, Provolone, or Parmesan in place of the formaggio britannico maledetto

I didn't think to ask what the house Coffee (Caffè della casa) was, but it was good enough for me to finish two-and-a-half cuppas while I was there.

For condimentary supplements, Rocco's Ccafé has Tabasco® Brand Pepper Sauce (both Original Red Sauce and Green Jalapeño Sauce) and Tapatío® Salsa Picante Hot Sauce. I used some of my own Fat Cat Chairman Meow's Revenge (Scorpion Pepper Sauce) (Thanks, Greg & Cindy!) on top of one of the eggs and some Palo Alto Firefighters Pepper Sauce (Thanks agains, Amys and Brian!) on top of the other egg.

the Wild Parrots of San Francisco Interlude

While walking around the neighborhood (I had arrived about fifteen minutes before the place would open), I saw a small pandemonium of four Wild Parrots of San Francisco flying overhead on Folsom Street (heading southward, probably toward their own breakfast in the Mission).


Glen Bacon Scale Rating: 2 Eggs "Spuds di Rocco" ~ 6.4; the Wild Parrots of San Francisco ~ 8.5

___________________

1. Stupid, useless cunning linguist pointer of the day:

Why this is using the French (and feminine modifier to boot) "a la", non lo so. I figure a better italiano name for the dish should be: 3 Eggs "Spuds di Rocco"

For what it is worth, this restaurant does also use the French word "Ccafé" in its name, when I would probably also use the betterly suited "Ccaffè". 

Saturday, November 21, 2015

café bean


DE KOFFIE STAAT KLAAR![1]



(No official web-site*.)

*(Well, there might be one, but I can not seem to get it to work and it hadn't worked two years prior; so I am just saying that there isn't one.)


Place: café bean
Location: 800 Sutter Street (on the corner of Jones Street); phonicular contact: (415) 928-0888
Hours: (possibly?) open at 7:15am every day of the week (there was a sign with one of those little clock-deals on the front door that stated: "Will Return" and it was set at 7:15, which I am guessing meant "ante" not "post" midday; again, without being able to confirm or deny the actual hours of operation from their official web-site ~ or none, I am sticking with this time for now)
Meal: Rembrandt (Omelette) ~ ham (ham), mushrooms (paddestoelen), olive tapenade[2] (olijventapenade), and cheese (kaas), served with whole wheat toast (buttered; the front counter/
owner-guy actually asked me if I wanted this buttered); and a medium (medium) cuppa (koppa
New Guinea "Organic" (now as to the actual brand name of the Coffee that is served there, I really have no idea whatsoever; there is a sign on the Coffee-dispensing thermoses that states "Chester's"; however, the last time I was there, the lady at the counter [whom I assume is Mrs. Owner-guy], said that was not actually the name of the brand, but just what the owner-guy had named it)



("Listen up students, the correct way to prepare an olive tapenade is to always use the choicest bits from the spleen.")

(And, yes, I know that I could have linked a EweToobular juxtaselection of the Rembrandts one hit song, but haven't we all pretty much heard "I'll Be There for You" enough through reruns of "Friends"?)


Ik keerde terug naar café bean als ontbijt (see previous 'blog-entry from November 17th, 2013 ~ which was almost exactly two years ago, give or take four days; it is pretty funny, the owner-guy remembered me from my only other visit there and even remembered the seat at which I was sitting before; he said he remembered me because he saw me taking out my hot sauces and pepper grinder again today). I sat at the cool, corner booth area (which is cushioned and has large throw-pillows for back-supports) that can seat up to six or seven people comfortably. (Don't worry, I didn't hog ~ of varken ~ the space; there was only one other customer inside the entire time I was there, and she had the large table [which can seat about eight to twelve] in the center of the room all to herself, too.)

There are still a few other good ideas left to try on their menu and worth going back again again: 

  • From the Omelettes section: 

Van Gogh (bell pepper, onion, avocado, and cream cheese); or
De Vries (egg white, tofu, bell pepper, onion, and tomato);

  • Several different breakfast sandwiches (made with either whole wheat toast, croissants, or bagels);
  • and they also had two other omelettes on the specials chalkboard:

Michelangelo (who I am pretty sure wasn't a Dutch-guy); and
Daniel's (who may or may not be/have been a Dutch-guy, Dame Elton). 
(Neither of which of these did I bother to copy down the actual ingredients, though.)




Of course, I ordered the omelette zonder dat de dood, rottende varken vlees. The cheese in/on the omelette was Cheddar, I am pretty sure. Why not a nice Edam or Gouda (or Limburger, even, Moe and Larry)? Ik weet het niet. Maybe Chester or Daniel would know the answer to that. I was very happy to see that the olive tapenade was made with real olives, too (quite possibly of the Kalamata variety). My one minor quibble (kleine klacht) would be that all of the ingredients seemed to have been incorporated into the scrambled egg-base and then just folded over into an omelette; I would rather have liked to have seen all the ingredients on the inside of the folded over stuff.

Additionally, there are still no potato (aardappel) side-dishes offered; even though they do have a working (mini-)kitchen ([mini-]keuken) area.

The Coffee (Koffie) was a very decent cuppa. In addition to the New Guinea "Organic" (whichever brand it is), they also had two other thermoses from which to choose: French Roast and Kona Mac Nut (blend). I tried a little of the Kona Mac Nut and it really wasn't half-bad (whether the cuppa was half-full or half-empty or not).

From what I could see (as I didn't really bother to ask), café bean had for condimentary supplementation just Tapatío® Salsa Picante Hot Sauce. I went with some of my own Lucky Dog Medium Fire-Roasted Pepper Sauce (Thanks, Brian!) on the omelette.


Glen Bacon Scale Rating: Rembrandt (Omelette) ~ 6.3; "Chester's" New Guinea "Organic" ~ 6.8

___________________

1. Stupid, useless cunning linguist pointer of the day, nummer een:

This was a sign on the wall of the café (of koffiehuis). It simply means "The Coffee Is Ready!" in Dutch.

2. Stupid, useless cunning linguist/pseudo-culinaristic pointer of the day, nombre deux:

"Tapenade" is a French word. It comes from the Provençal word for "capers", "tapenas". 

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Village Market


Richmond (District) Coffeehouses ~ #14



(No official web-site.)


Place: Village Market
Location: 4555 California Street (on the corner of 8th Avenue); phonicular contact: (415) 221-0445
Hours: open Monday - Friday at 7:30am and Saturday & Sunday at 8:00am
Meal: Fried Egg Sandwich ~ Judy's organic egg, organic wild arugula, herbed butter (org. butter, cilantro, & parsley), NY extra sharp Cheddar, pickled onion (org. r. onion & r. wine vinegar); a cinnamon roll/bun and a raspberry bombolino (which I only discovered after I had already ordered and had finished half of the cinnamon roll/bun); and a cuppa (single-serving/fresh-dripped) ARTíS Buttondown Blend

http://www.artiscoffee.com/


My originally planned destination was going to be a return visit to Rocco's Café; however, it had been raining most of the morning (and only stopped about an hour before I left the house) and I really didn't feel like dealing with wet, city streets. So, instead, I decided to keep it local and continued on with the Richmond (District) Coffeehouses series. Next up along California Street (and that leaves just two more further down California Street, I believe; after which, I will start at the westernmost end of Clement Street and head back eastward, Clint): Village Market.

"Hey, Brian, what gives?! Are you plannin' on reviewing all the neighborhood markets that sell cups of Coffee to go?!" Well, no. This place is going away from being an actual neighborhood corner-market and seems to be transitioning (for the most part) to a coffeehouse only. The market used to be larger, but now it is more of a wine shop/boutique bodega[1]. They have replaced most of the grocery shelving now with tables and chairs: four tables for (one, two, three, or) four; two bench seating areas for two-to-three people; and there are a few sidewalk benches and tables (weather ~ or whether ~ permitting).

For a little corner market-coffeehouse, they have a pretty interesting breakfastary selection (which they call their "Brunch Menu"). A few other nice ideas: Kamron's French Toast (all org. eggs, milk, cinnamon, vanilla extract, powdered sugar, maple syrup, & fruits, with Semifreddi's bread); Brad's Special (three Judy's org. eggs scrambled with org. avo, org. arugula, org. pickled onions, & Prather sausage ~ this plate is served w/o bread); Veggie Sandwich (all org. pear, arugula, & pumpkin seeds with Redwood Hill goat cheese on Semifreddi's bread, a touch of fresh ground pepper & white Balsamic); and (off-menu/
handwritten) Veggie Special Sandwich (org. Winesap apple, org. arugula, NY white extra sharp Cheddar, spicy plum chutney [Italian plums, sugar, raisins, vinegar, onions, spices, garlic, mustard seed, salt] on Semifreddi's bread; this looked interesting and would have been my second choice).




This breakfast sandwich can be made with org. avo, bacon (Hobb's) or suasage [ sic ] (Prather) (however, it was noted that they were out of avocado [or avo] today; the irony of a market being out of a produce item was not lost on me). It was interesting how they actually fry the eggs; they do so on a skillet on top of an electric hotplate. The arugula and pickled (r.) onions were a nice touch; plus, the Semifreddi's bun/roll is soooo much better than what Mr. Thomas usually has to offer. I would liked to have had the bun/roll toasted, though (they have a couple of toaster ovens in the small "kitchen" area, so I know they can do so).

Sorry, there is no supporting photo of the raspberry bombolino. I scarfed it up (or scarfed it down) almost as quickly as I picked it up (or put it down). Needless to say, I liked it a lot.

This was a nice cuppa. I am not sure if I have ever had ARTíS before (and that would be "before today", Mr. Nose E. Brandt). This place used to serve Blue Bottle Coffee exclusively, but, since April (I asked), they have been selling ARTíS only. Their reasoning is that Blue Bottle has raised their prices and, with Blue Bottle's own coffehouses opening up all over (in an effort to go National/International), is making it harder for smaller local places to obtain their Coffee. I did happen to notice that they are still using the Blue Bottle cone/funnel drippers to make the single-drip cuppas (I have one of my own to use at home, too).

For condimentary supplements (over by the sugar and cream area), Village Market has bottles of Pain is good. Habanero Pepper Sauce (which they also have for sale in the actual market). I only noticed their hot sauce offering after I was done eating and wandering around the market-area. I had come with some of my own hot sauces and simply used some (well, a good ketchup-serving size) Palo Alto Firefighters Pepper Sauce on the sandwich.


Glen Bacon Scale Rating: Fried Egg Sandwich ~ 6.3; raspberry bombolino ~ 6.9; ARTíS Buttondown Blend ~ 6.9

___________________

1. Stupid, useless cunning linguist pointer of the day:

It is interesting to note (well, if you are a linguistics-geek) that both "boutique" (French) and "bodega" (Spanish) have the same word root: from Latin "apotheca" (meaning "storeroom" or "winecellar"), from Greek "αποθήκη (apothíki)" (meaning "depot" or "store").

Saturday, November 14, 2015

Sparrow Bar & Kitchen




http://www.sparrowbarandkitchen.com/


Place: Sparrow Bar & Kitchen
Location: 1640 Haight Street (between Clayton and Cole Streets)
Hours: open for breakfast Tuesday - Friday at 10:00am; open for "Brunch" Saturday & Sunday at 10:00am
Meal: Quinoa Cake ~ spiced Brussel [ sic ] sprouts, Romesco[1], garden herbs; a side of Fried Cauliflower ~ sage and garlic; and a cuppa (or would that be a "pressa" ~ as this came in a 12oz French press pot) Sightglass Coffee Blueboon Blend

https://www.sightglasscoffee.com/coffees/blends/blueboon



(Just as an exalted lark[2], I am using this song today.

Besides, I have already used "Maybe Sparrow" by Neko Case, "Lark" by Linda Lewis, "Blackbird" by the Beatles, and "Black Vultures" [Twice now?] by Daniel Norgren. There really aren't that many good "bird" songs left, anyway.)


I went back to Sparrow Bar & Kitchen (see previous 'blog-entry from May 3rd, 2014) for "Brunch" this morning. Other than the use of that snooty early morning meal nomenclature and that they don't open until 10:00am, I like the food and location of this place. I sat outside in the backyard patio/garden area once again. They had several of those tall gas-lit standing heater things going, but I made sure to sit in the corner as far away from them as possible. What is the point of eating outside if you have to be warmed by some kinda contraption? However, I did keep my jacket on, all the same; I am not an idiot, after all. 

They have a pretty decent selection (even if it is called "Brunch" on the weekends) of items from which to choose (for both stupid vegetarian-types and those that partake of the dead, decaying animal flesh). The menu changes seasonally and some of the other meals that I was leaning toward were: 

(from the Savory section)

French Omelette (Brie and Prosciutto with vanilla bean poached apple salad; the salad thing sounded interesting, but I would have nixed the Italian ham-stuff, of course); Huevos Rancheros (salsa verde, Iacopi [Farms][3] gigante beans, house hot sauce, red pepper crema, corn salsa); Spring Soft Scramble (brown button mushrooms, oven dried tomato, basil, & Humboldt Fog[4]; I didn't have the heart to tell them that "Spring" was six months ago); or Cheddar Grits (grilled broccoli rabe, poached egg, and paprika; I was originally going to get this one, but was informed by the friendly, attentive waitress/server-lady person, Chelsea, that it was a larger dish, and I may not have been able to order the Fried Cauliflower as a side, and I really wanted to try those).

(or from the Sweet section)

Mini Souffle Pancakes (Bartlett pear compote and vanilla bean whipped cream; I will definitely have to get back there again to try this one ~ insert Homer Simpson-ish moaning/drooling here) or French Toast (hazelnut Chocolate, caramelized banana, and pure maple syrup; and while this may not be as Homer Simpson-ish moaning/drooling-inducing, it sounded pretty darn tasty, too).




The Quinoa Cake was a nice idea (and probably way too healthy for me). It had lots of roasted Brussels (please note: correct spelling) sprouts on it. The Romesco sauce was pretty nice, too. They used to offer this dish with a poached egg on top; I think they stopped doing that to make this a 100% Vegan-option. 

I liked the Fried Cauliflower well enough, but I would have liked to have seen (and tasted) more garlic and sage in it. There is no such thing as "too much garlic" in my book. And unlike David Lindley's hair, this was not "way too greasy" in the least, but I think that if they had roasted the cauliflower instead this would have been even better still. This was a pretty good-sized portion and probably would have been too much food for me if I had ordered the Cheddar Grits. (Thanks for the tip, Chelsea! Hey, wait... aren't I supposed to be tipping her?)

The cuppa was good, but I have had better roasts/blends from Sightglass Coffee before. This was a bit on the weak side for my tastes. It was either a mild blend or possibly there was not enough Coffee grounds in the French press to begin with. (And, yes, I am fully aware that one should never a sentence end a preposition with. However, "... there was not enough Coffee grounds in the French press with which to begin." just sounded even more awkward.)

I didn't bother to ask this morning, but from my last visit there, I had noted that Sparrow had Tabasco® Brand Pepper Sauce (Original Red Sauce) and some form of a Sriracha sauce (probably Huy Fong Foods Inc.) for condimentary supplementation. Unlike Wednesday morning's breakfastary sojourn, I had come prepared with a few of my own hot sauces
I used a little Pope's Whiskey River Hot Sauce (Thanks, Amy and Chef Joe!) on the Quinoa Cake dish and the last of my Fairhope Favorites, Inc. Moonshine Hot Sauce XXX (Thanks, Phyll!) on the fried cauliflower (and because garlic is one of the ingredients in it, it aided a bit in the lack of garlic provided by the restaurant).

(Not Necessarily) the Wild Parrots of San Francisco Interlude

I had parked over on Cole Street on the northern side of the Panhandle and walked over to Haight Street hoping to espy some of the Wild Parrots of San Francisco in the tall Eucalyptus trees along the way. Unfortunately, I didn't see any of the little red-and-green chatterboxes, but I did see a small murderous bunch of Crows[5] enjoying their own breakfast on the ground (I am pretty sure they were Crows, and not Ravens, because Ravens don't usually congregate in groups of more than six at most ~ besides, the only murderous Raven is retired and now works for ESPN).


Glen Bacon Scale Rating: Quinoa Cake ~ 6.6; Fried Cauliflower ~ 6.7; Sightglass Coffee Blueboon Blend ~ 6.5

___________________

1. "Hey, Brian, just what the heck is 'Romesco'?"

Well, it ain't some kinda despotic Romanian dictator, if that was what you were thinking.

Sometimes it is just simpler to cheat and use a WikipediA link:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Romesco

2. All of two people may get that awful pun.

For what it is worth, the Term of Venery for a group/flock of Sparrows is called "a host".

3. http://www.cuesa.org/seller/iacopi-farms

4. http://www.cypressgrovechevre.com/our-cheese/soft-ripened-cheeses/humboldt-fog-grande.html#.VketB3arSM8

5. See stupid footnote #2 above.

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Toast Eatery


Wednesday, November 11th



http://www.toasteatery.com/


Place: Toast Eatery
Location: 1748 Church Street (on the corner of Day Street)
Hours: open daily at 7:00am
Meal: (me) Sicilian (Omelet) ~ spinach, sun dried & fresh tomato, pesto, onions, & Feta; (Shannon) Southwestern (Omelet) ~ peppers, olives (which she skipped), onions, & Pepper Jack - topped w/ sour cream & avocado (all Scramblers & Omelets served with hash browns & choice of toast); and we both had a cuppa the house Coffee (whatever it may have been; didn't ask)


My niece Shannon (seen in above photo) is in town visiting for a few days and I actually had Veterans Day off this year for a change (you would think that they'd treat us WWII Vets better). So, before we headed out on my 50¢ Tour for the day, we decided to start the morning with a little breakfastary repast and went to Toast Eatery (see previous 'blog-entry from May 24th, 2014). We went to the one on Church Street in Noe Valley which is just around the corner from where she was staying. I have eaten at that specific location in the past. There is also their newest location on West Portal that I need to check out one of these days, too.

They offer a pretty nice variety from the Omelets and Scramblers sections of their menu (stupid vegetarians and Vegans take note: "All Scramblers Can Be Substituted with Tofu"). Additionally, there is a House Favorites section that offers some more interesting choices: Hash Brown Hill (a mound of hash browns covered with melted Cheddar - topped w/ sour cream, avocado, & green onions; I know I would like that one and would probably order it with an egg laid[?] on top) or Wet Veggie Burrito (flour tortilla filled w/ scrambled eggs & served w/ black beans, avocado, salsa, sour cream & Cheddar, topped w/ Ranchero Sauce - served w/ hash browns; a burrito and hashbrowns? Yeah, that is for me!). 




I liked my omelette. I knew ahead of time that I would with spinach and Feta being two of the main ingredients. I went with sourdough for my toasty choice and Shannon went with whole wheat. I have stated this before, for a place with "toast" in their name, you'd think that they would offer their own homemade (restaurant-made, whatever) breads or at least a better/more interesting selection of toast choices.

For condimentary supplementation, Toast Eatery only had Tabasco® Brand Pepper Sauce (Original Red), which I used on my hashbrowns (mainly because I didn't feel like schlepping any of my own bottles of hot sauces around with me all day long).


Glen Bacon Scale Rating: Sicilian (Omelet) ~ 6.6 
(I didn't ask Shannon for her GBS Rating for her omelette, but she seemed to enjoy it well enough to scarf the whole thing up)