Tuesday, December 29, 2015

"My Favourites" of 2015

Once again this year, instead of calling my end-of-year compilation list for 2015 a "Best of" (which is just my opinion, anyway... even if I am 100% correct), I am calling this "My Favourites" (which is still my opinion, but no one can say that they aren't my favourites... well, they can, but they'd be 100% wrong).

Keeping with the "Top Ten" format of the past few years, the easiest way to rank these was just to go back through all my 'blog-entries from 2015 and see which ones had the highest Glen Bacon Scale Rating. Simples!

1) As strange as it may seem for someone that normally prefers "savoury" over "sweet" dishes for breakfast, for the fourth year in a row, the top honours go to le Pain Perdu at Baker Street Bistro (see last 'blog-entry from April 19th ~ et aussi January 3rd). As I have stated many, many, many, many times in the past, this is not only one of the best versions of French toast in all of San Francisco, it may also be one of the best in the entire U.S. of A., mais bien sûr.

2) Zucchini Cakes at Dottie's True blue café (see 'blog-entry from January 4th). These really are a great "invention". I always like to explain this to people as simply Eggs Benedict in una versione italiana (o Uova di Benedetto).

3) Farro & Beet Hash at the Fat Lady (see 'blog-entry from May 24th). Additionally, I am claiming the Fat Lady as "My Favourite" New Find of 2015.

4) breakfast vegetarian griddle cake at Buttermilk ~ Southern Kitchen (see 'blog-entry from August 9th). While this ain't yo' mama's standardized IHOP® kinda sweet pancake, I will have to claim it as "My Favourite" Pancake Dish of 2015, mainly because it had a high GBS Rating (and also because it was the only pancake dish in the Top Ten this year).

5) potato scramble (with grilled asparagus, roasted Brussel[sic] sprouts, carrots, and Havarti cheese, and eggs added) at Ella's (see 'blog-entry from April 12th). Asparagus AND Brussels (which is the correct spelling, Mademoiselle Audrey Kathleen Ruston) sprouts?! Oh, yeah! That is why it is rated so high.

6) Oeufs Baker Street Bistro at Baker Street Bistro (see 'blog-entry from September 5th). Where do they come up with these complicated names for all these dishes?! Coincidentally enough, this great take on Eggs Benedict was also ranked #6 for 2014.

7) new mexican homestyle frittata at green chile kitchen (see 'blog entry from January 25th). I am not sure if this dish is meant to be named as if it comes from Santa Fe or Albuquerque (or Tucumcari, even), or if it is because it is una nueva cocina de México; either way, it was very tasty.

8) Caramel Sea Salt Waffle at Dolce Amore (see 'blog-entry from December 19th). This was another great dish from this "sweet" little place.

9) Artichoke-Spinach Scramble at Cafe Golo (see 'blog-entry from January 18th). Not only did this included a couple of my favourite (or "My Favourite") green vegetables in it, it also had a good amount of sun-dried tomatoes. The extra added bonus of having a choice of their country potatoes (which include standard potatoes and sweet potatoes) as a side dish and their most excellent pastries/baked goods really make the difference.

10) Mumbai (Benediction) at LaLe (see 'blog-entry from February 1st). Another very interesting take on Eggs Benedict ~ and for those keeping count here, that makes three out of the Top Ten being some kind of Eggs Benedict dish this year (2014's list had four different versions of the eggy "lost bread" thing, too). Can you say "beets/mushroom/lentils-patty" (in place of any of Mr. Thomas'[1] plain ol' boring faux-crumpets)?

2015 Specific Categories (& Honourable Mentions)

"My Favourite" New Potatoey Side Dish Find ~ homefries at Cafe Mason (see last 'blog-entry from June 27th); these are definitely good enough to be considered a main dish even, just lay an egg or two on top of them (that is, if you happen to be a chicken). GBS Rating: 7.4. (Of course, it goes without saying that the Excellent! Roasted Home Potatoes at Eats are still "My Favourite" Potatoey Side Dish; GBS Rating: 7.5.) 

"My Favourite" Breakfastary Potato Main Dish Not Named "potato scramble (with grilled asparagus, roasted Brussel[sic] sprouts, carrots, and Havarti cheese, and eggs added)" ~ Temple O' Spuds (with) Lay an egg on top! at Boogaloos (see 'blog-entry from February 8th) and also gypzy hashish at homeskillet (see 'blog-entry from November 29th). GBS Rating: (both) 7.1.

"My Favourite" Homemade (Restaurant-made, whatever) Hot Sauce ~ Habanero Sauce at Boogaloos (also see 'blog-entry from February 8th). GBS Rating: 7.2.

"My Favourite" Mexican-ish Breakfastary Dish Not Named "new mexican homestyle frittata" ~ Chile Relleno at the Little Chihuahua (see 'blog-entry from June 28th). GBS Rating: 7.1.

"My Favourite" Breakfast Burrito of 2015 ~ Veggie Breakfast Burrito at japonica (see 'blog-entry from November 28th). In all honesty, I think that this was the only Breakfast Burrito that I had all year, so it made for an easy choice. Additionally, this little coffeehouse is also a gift shop with many great gift ideas (I should know, I spent about $200.00 there this year for Christmas). GBS Rating: Veggie Breakfast Burrito ~ 6.6; Cool Gift Ideas ~ 8.5.

"My Favourite" Breakfast Pizza of 2015 ~ Mushroom Spinach Pizza at Caffé DeLucchi (or Café DeLucchi or Caffè DeLucchi; take your pick) (see 'blog-entry from March 8th). Again, I think that this was the only Breakfast Pizza that I had all year, but it was still pretty good, anyway. GBS Rating: 6.5.

"My Favourite" New Coffee Find of 2015 ~ Snowbird Coffee (as featured at ★ The Richfield; see 'blog-entry from October 17th). They normally offer three different blends/roasts of Coffee to be made as pour-over Coffee.  I tried Southpaw (a delicious blend of an heirloom Burundi and Yirgaceffe ~ mandarin, rhubarb, honey sweetness) with my breakfast at 
The Richfield and I purchased a 12 oz bag of Zatarra (a special blend of 3 Africans [ sic ] Coffees ~ apricots, maple syrup, roasted hazelnut) to make for myself at home. I have also been back for a cuppa or two and have tried Myanmar Pyin Oo Lwin (a very earthy and herbal Coffee from the Shan State ~ toffee, orange, brown sugar). GBS Rating: Myanmar Pyin Oo Lwin ~ 7.5; Southpaw ~ 7.3; Zatarra ~ 7.2.


"My Favourite" Bready/Toasty Side ~ (World) Famous Cliff House Popovers(!) at the Bistro Restaurant at Cliff House (this is an exact duplicate of 2014's choice and should be no surprise; as long as they keep making 'em, I will keep eating 'em; see last 'blog-entry from September 27th). GBS Rating: 8.2.

Glen Bacon Scale Rating
Pain Perdu at Baker Street Bistro ~ 8.2; 
Zucchini Cakes at Dottie's True blue café ~ 7.6; 
Farro & Beet Hash at the Fat Lady ~ 7.5;
breakfast vegetarian griddle cake at Buttermilk ~ Southern Kitchen ~ 7.4;
potato scramble (with grilled asparagus, roasted Brussel[sic] sproutscarrots, and Havarti cheese, and eggs added) at Ella's ~ 7.3;
Oeufs Baker Street Bistro at Baker Street Bistro ~ 7.2;
new mexican homestyle frittata at green chile kitchen ~ 7.2;
Caramel Sea Salt Waffle at Dolce Amore ~ 7.2;
Artichoke-Spinach Scramble at Cafe Golo ~ 7.1;
Mumbai (Benediction) at LaLe ~ 7.1


1. Was anyone else aware that this 'merican version of an English muffin is now owned by the Mexican mega-corporation Bimbo? Think about this for a minute: American... English muffins... owned by a Mexican bakery company.

And they always told me that "Military Intelligence" was an oxymoron.

Sunday, December 27, 2015


"The heart is a lonely hunter..." 
~ Carson McCullers

(... and the liver is just a lonely drinker.)


Place: heartbaker
Location: 1408 Clement Street (at 15th Avenue)
Hours: Tuesday through Friday open at 7:30am (just for standard bakery items and Coffee); Saturday and Sunday open at 9:00am for "Weekend Brunch"
Meal: Skillet Baked Beans ~ white beans baked in tomato sauce with pesto and two eggs your way, served with housemade (bakery-made, whatever) foccacia; a cranberry-eggnog scone (which is also housemade [bakery-made, whatever]); and a cuppa Sightglass Coffee Medium Roast


(Here is a little-known Cliff Clavinoid fact: After flunking out of the Medical School program [where he was actually studying to be a Heart Surgeon] at 
North Carolina State University, Ryan Adams became a full-time baker in Raleigh. While working at the bakery and during down-times early in the morning, he happened to discover that he had a talent for playing the guitar and writing Rock-and/or-Roll songs.

If you don't believe me, you can look it up yer damnself!)

Wanting to end the year with a decent matutinal meal and on a high (I think it was in the Falsetto range), I decided to head back to heartbaker (see last 'blog-entry from May 18th, 2014) for what I knew would be a tasty breakfastary repast.

Unfortunately, they no longer offer any version of French Toast on their "Weekend Brunch" menu, which is a real shame, as it was truly exceptional. Luckily, there are still a few other decent items for stupid vegetarians from which to choose: Huevos Rancheros (two eggs your choice, with black beans, blistered Monterey Jack cheese, tortilla strips, and crema); Biscuit Sandwich (fried egg & white Cheddar on our [well, "their"] buttermilk biscuit served with house [well, "bakery"] potatoes or kale salad; don't fret, those of you that partake of the dead, decaying crispy porcine-belly bits, this can also have bacon added to it); Mushroom Ragu (with creamy grits and two fried eggs); or Heartbaker Kale Salad (Brussel [ sic ] sprouts, slivered almonds, Parmesan, and special house viniagrette; I would probably order that one with a fried egg laid [well, placed] on top).

Sorry, there is no corresponding photo of the cranberry-eggnog scone. I scarfed it up/down too quickly. This was very tasty and not your rock-hard variety that you might get at many local coffeehouses. You could really taste the eggnog in this, too.

Don't let the "baked beans" moniker fool you, this ain't your Uncle Bob's typical East Ender brekkie. Their tasty red gravy (and pesto, which was under both the eggs) was a good medium in which to dip the housemade (bakery-made, whatever) foccacia (of which I would have liked a little more, to tell the truth). I went with poached eggs as "my way"; I think that this was the best "way" to go for this dish. The portions here aren't really that big, but with the scone starter, there was still plenty of food for my appetite; if I had still been hungry, I was going to go with another one of their housemade (bakery-made, whatever) goods.

I noticed that there were bottles of Tapatío® Salsa Picante Hot Sauce for use as condimentary supplements on all the tables. Not really wanting to mess with the flavour of their red gravy and pesto, I used just a little of my own (also new from Christmas) Sunbelt Plantations Vidalia® Onion & Jalapeno Pepper Hot Sauce (Thanks, Cindy & Greg!) on top of just one of the poached eggs. This hot sauce (like their red salsa that I tried yesterday) really isn't that spicy, but it provides a lot of flavour from the Vidalia® onions.

Glen Bacon Scale Rating: Skillet Baked Beans ~ 6.6; cranberry-eggnog scone ~ 6.7; Sightglass Coffee Medium Roast ~ 7.0

Saturday, December 26, 2015

Saul's Restaurant & Delicatessen

A Boxing Day breakfastary roadtrip:
Berkeley, CA


Place: saul's Restaurant & Delicatessen
Location: 1475 Shattuck Avenue (at Vine Street), 
Berkeley, CA
Hours: open every day at 8:00am (except Thanksgiving[1] and Yom Kippur)
Meal: Mrs. Anderman's Matzo[2] Brei[3] ~ fried matzo and eggs with a touch of sweet onions, served with your choice of house made (restaurant-made, whatever) applesauce and sour cream or cinnamon and brown sugar; a side order of their great Latke (which also came with its own house made [restaurant-made, whatever] applesauce and sour cream); and a cuppa (with two refillas) Ruby's Roast[4]


(Today's EweToobular juxataselections should be pretty evident in that not only do both Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel have their birthdays today, but both Robert Zimmerman and Rubin Carter also share their birthdays with them today, too. And they are all of the Jewish faith!

What are the odds?)

Yes, it has taken me two years to get back to saul's Restaurant & Delicatessen (see previous 'blog-entry from December 15th, 2013), but just how many Meshugga[5] Beach Parties can one attend across the Bay? (A Jewish deli on Boxing Day? Makes perfect sense to me.) The traffic happened to be extremely light this morning on the Bay Bridge, both on the way over and the way back, but it is not usually the case on a normal Saturday morning, which is why it has taken me two years for a return visit.

They still have a few other tempting ideas on their breakfast menu which will garner another visit or two (once again, probably in another two years): Challah French Toast (which I would have had to order with a side of the excellent Latke, too); Backyard Omelette (v) (Chef's choice of seasonal vegetables and cheese; served with a mixed green salad; once again, I would have had to substitute the leafy rabbit-food for their excellent Latke instead); or (and for this one, I would need to get there during the week, as it is only available Monday through Friday) Malawach Yemeni Pancake (v option available) (fresh tomato, labne yogurt cheese, zhoug[6], harissa, and a poached egg; I have no idea exactly how any of that is made/served, but it sounds just meshugge enough that I know I would love it). 

meshugge, useless parklets mini-rant

New since my last visit, there is an obnoxious (and rather large) parklet right in front of the building, which (unfortunately) is sponsored by saul'Restaurant & Delicatessen. I won't complain much about this one as: 1) it's on a side roadway and not really blocking much traffic, 2) at the pace I am getting over there, I would only have to deal with it once or twice a decade, and 3) I don't live in Berkeley and can't really whinge about their stupid local city politics. 

I liked this dish a lot. (Maybe not quite as much as I liked their Shakshouka that I had the last time I ate there, but it is still roadtrip-worthy on its ownsome, Ms. Benes.) I guess the best way to describe this dish would be to call it a Jewish version of Chilaquiles. I happened to mention this to the extremely cute and Coffee-knowledgeable (We had a nice discussion on the merits of both Ruby's Roast and Philz Coffee. As chilly as it was this morning, she happened to be drinking a Mint Mojito Iced Coffee from the Philz on Shattuck ~ which is located just a block away. Sorry, Ruby.) waitress/server-person lady (Whose name I did actually get, Mrs. Huneycutt, but have since forgotten.) and she laughed and agreed with me at my astuteness (or maybe she was just laughing at my astupidness). The matzo cracker chips in the scrambled eggs/omelette mess would be the substitute for the corn taco chips. Plus, in Jewish cooking, they use onions as frequently as jalapeños would be used in Mexican cooking.

The latke was as good as I remembered it from before. It was deliciously crispy and crunchy and potatoey. 

For condimentary supplementation, I remembered from my last visit (well, I didn't really remember, but I did look back at my previous 'blog-entry this morning before heading over there) that saul'Restaurant & Delicatessen has their own homemade (restaurant-made, whatever) hot sauce. I didn't need to ask for any of it today as I had come prepared with two new bottles from my own collection that I had just received as a Christmas gift (I actually received four new hot sauces in all; Thanks, Cindy & Greg!). I wasn't sure if I was going to get to try either one depending on if I had ordered a "sweet" or "savoury" dish. As both the latke and Matzo Brei can be considered "sweet" (hence the added applesauce, etc.) or "savoury", I got a chance to use both this morning. I used some Old St. Augustine Snake Bite Datil Pepper[7] Sauce on half of the eggy-matzo dish (the other half I tried with the applesauce and sour cream provided); while datil chillies can be as hot as habaneros, this one was not over the top in heat, but still pretty picante. I also used some Sunbelt Plantations Vidalia® Onion Picante Hot Sauce on half of the latke (again going with the provided applesauce and sour cream on the other half); this one wasn't very hot at all (but very tasty due to the sweet Vidalia® onions) and I could use it liberally (I can see this one being used like ketchup and won't last very long).


(I couldn't find a decent corresponding hyperlink to Sunbelt Plantations, though.)

As long as I was already there, on my way out I stopped at their take-away deli area and bought three different types of hamantashen[8] (traditional poppy seed, apricot, and mixed berries) to enjoy later today at home.

Glen Bacon Scale Rating: Mrs. Anderman's Matzo Brei ~ 6.7; Latke ~ 7.4; Ruby's Roast ~ 7.1


1. I'll bet not many of you were aware that Thanksgiving was one of the High Holy Days in Judaism. It ranks above even Hashanah's Head and Black Shabbat.

2. Meshuggeneh, useless cunning linguist pointer of the day (Oy vey!), number one:

Whenever I am taxed with coming up with a good definition of a Yiddish word, I always resort to my 
"The Joys of Yiddish", by Leo Rosten for the authoritative explanation. 

Pronounced MOTT-seh (not MOTT-so) to rhyme with "lotsa." Hebrew: The plural in Hebrew is matzoth, pronounced MOTT-sez, in Yiddish.

Unleavened bread (it comes in thin, flat, ridgy oblongs, and is semiperforated to facilitate neat breaking).

3. Additionally, there is this from the friendly folks at WikipediA:


4. This Coffee is a definite winner. If I hadn't already received three bags of Bettys Coffee for Christmas (Thanks, Greg & Cindy!), I probably would have picked up a bag for myself to make at home, too.

5. Meshuggeneh, useless cunning linguist pointer of the day (Oy vey!), number two:

While the Jewish Beach Party boyos like to spell it "Meshugga", I am going with Mr. Rosten's spelling of "meshugge".

Pronounced m'-SHU-geh, to rhyme with "Paducah". Hebrew: "crazy".

6. I have absolutely no idea what that is, but maybe our friends at WikipediA can explain it a little better:


7. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Datil_pepper

8. As meshugge as it may seem, this word is not listed in Mr. Rosten's book. However, it is a lexicon, not a cookbook, after all.

Sunday, December 20, 2015

ilana Coffee

Richmond (District) Coffeehouses; #19

(No official web-site.)

Place: ilana Coffee
Location: 2314 Clement Street (between 24th and 25th Avenues); phonicular contact: (415) 387-2313
Hours: open daily at 6:00am
Meal: Egg & Cheese Croissant; cinnamon-raisin bun; and a medium Chai Latte

Plodding along on through the Richmond (District) Coffeehouses series, the next coffeehouse heading eastward along Clement Street (and just a few doors down from last Sunday's stop) is ilana Coffee. As best as I can discern, that is the actual name of the place, with "ilana" in all lower case (and non-possessive) and with "Coffee", not "Café" nor "Coffeehouse" designator. After this place, there is going to be several blocks (at least twelve to fourteen from my best guesstimate) before we come upon the next café, coffeehouse, or Coffee, even.

There are eleven tables for two inside and two tables for two-to-three outside on the sidewalk area. I mistakenly decided to sit outside this morning as it was not raining (yet) and it was comfortable enough as long as I kept my coat on. (And, yes, I am well aware that one should never end a sentence a preposition with. However, you try writing "... and it was comfortable enough as long as on me I had kept my coat." and see if that makes any better sense.) The reason I stated "mistakenly" is because I figured (again, mistakenly) that by sitting outside, I would also get some fresh air. However, there were a few Vietnamese guys smoking cigarettes (after cigarettes... after cigarettes...) the entire time I was eating. They were not smoking in the sidewalk café area, but were close enough that the (ob)noxious fumes kept wafting over to me and it really was off-putting. I suppose I could have just gone back inside and eaten my meal, but I had no idea they would be chain-smoking for the entire fifteen minutes I was eating there. Of course, as soon as I had finished eating, I didn't linger there finishing up my Chai Latte; I got up and left right way.

There are only a few other breakfastary ideas on their menu. Such as: Bagel with Hummus; Egg & Cheese Bagel; or maybe even a House Veggie Vietnamese Sandwich (Bánh mì? Bánh yù!).

I liked that the croissant came toasted, but the scrambled eggs were of the nucular version and the cheese wasn't really "cheese", but just that faux 'merican cheese nonsense. You know what would really have made this an interesting and fresh sandwich was if they had put some sliced jalapeños and cilantro leaves on top of the scrambled eggs (or even in with the eggs while being nuked).

I didn't check to see what they might have had in the way of any condimentary supplements. And for once, I had decided not to schlep any of my own hot sauces with me. This was another mistake, as some good hot sauce may have perked the sandwich up a bit.

Glen Bacon Scale Rating: Egg & Cheese Croissant ~ 5.9; Chai Latte ~ 6.5

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Dolce Amore


Place: Dolce Amore
Location: 1477 Van Ness Avenue (on the corner of Pine Street)
Hours: open Tuesday - Friday at 8:00am, Saturday - Sunday at 9:00am
Meal: Caramel Sea Salt Waffle ~ our (well, "their") popular Belgian waffle served with fresh bananas, berries, Maldon®[1] salted caramel sauce, Tahitian vanilla butter, Valrhona[2] chocolate, & crème chantilly; and a cuppa illy® Coffee


(I know that I have used this EweToobular song [at least once] before, but you try coming up with good juxtaselections for either "dolce" or "amore". 

I suppose I mighta coulda used "Ballroom Blitz", "Fox on the Run", "7 and 7 is", or "She Comes in Colors", but everyone knows that Glam Rock and Psychedelic Rock don't go very well with breakfast.)

Just as a complete whigmaleerie[3], I decided to head back to Dolce Amore (see previous 'blog-entry from September 28th, 2014) for another sweet take on breakfast. This morning I sat at the counter/jewelry display case/table-thing area in the front window. There are five high stools which are adjustable (luckily, as when I first sat down, I could not even get my fat, stubby legs under the table-base).

There are still many other good (dolce e salato) ideas yet to try here: Crêpe Omelet[4] (eggs, Gruyere [ sic ][5] wrapped in house made crêpe topped with spinach, bell peppers, tomatoes, & onions; this dish will have to be tried on my next visit); Signature French Toast (our [again, "their"] signature croissant French toast served with gelato, fresh berries, cinammon [ sic ] granola & orange caramel sauce with a hint of Grand Marnier®); Baked Eggs Benedict (baked eggs on house made puff pastry served with artisan cheese, house special sauce, & your choice of hot link sausage, Canadian bacon, or mixed veggies; I saw this ordered by another guy at the counter/jewelry display case/table-thing area and it comes with three [3] eggs and looked very good, too); or Breakfast Croissant (soft scrambled eggs, spinach, & Parmigiano Reggiano on our house made butter croissant).

What was not to like with this dish? Sea salted caramel... and Chocolate?! This was ridiculously good. Plus, the fresh bananas, strawberries, raspberries, and blackberries[6] easily added to the whole effect.

Once again, due to having a colazione dolce, I didn't bother to find out what Dolce Amore might have in the way of any condimentary supplementation. I had come prepared with a few of my own hot sauces, but none were used or needed.

Not that any GBS Rating points are ever deducted or added for the celerity in which an order is taken or a meal is served, but it was nice to see that today's service was noticeably faster than my first visit there (I was in and out of there this time in under a half-hour). Plus, I had been there more recently for an afternoon dolce snack (Thank you, Colonel Rocco and Emily!) and there was no undue delay in ordering or getting served then either. So, I am happy to say that I will be getting back there again one of these mornings (which probably means in another year or so).

Glen Bacon Scale Rating
Caramel Sea Salt Waffle ~ 7.2


1. http://www.maldonsalt.co.uk/

2. http://www.valrhona.com/accueil.aspx

3. I saw this word on defacedbook recently. It was on a picture of a window/storefront of a shop in North Yorkshire. Of course, I had to look it up and share it here.

Not really a stupid, useless cunning linguist pointer of the day (as this is an actual English [via Scottish] word), but more of a stupid, useless etymological pointer of the day:

noun (Scottish)
1. a trinket, whimsical ornament, or trifle
2. a whim or caprice

Word Origin
C18: of unknown origin

I would also like to point out that Wild Bill Gates and his goose-stepping band of Nazi-Spellcheckerers at Microsoft had absolutely no idea what this was and offered no suggested alternative spelling for this word. I love it when I beflummox the flummoxers!

4. Why they have "Crêpe" spelled with the correctly accented French "ê", but do not spell "Omelet" as the French word "Omelette", je ne sais pas.

5. I also don't know why they have "Gruyère" mispèldèd. They obviously have the use of the "è" as it is on their menu in both "crème chantilly" and "crème brûlée".

6. The real joke here is that of these four fruits, only bananas are an actual botanical berry, Chuck.

Sunday, December 13, 2015

Royal Ground Coffee

Richmond (District) Coffeehouses
18th and counting


Place: Royal Ground Coffee
Location: 2342 Clement Street (between 24th and 25th Avenues)
Hours: open daily at 6:00am
Meal: Bagel Veggie Special ~ cream cheese, tomato, cucumbers, avocado, green pepper, onion, & sprouts; an apple turnover pastry-thing; and a 
Café Borgia (which is basically an orange-Mocha)

(The first song is an EweToobular juxtaselection for today's extremely wet weather. The second one is just because "Renée" sounds a bit like "rain". I went with the Four Tops cover over the Left Banke original simply because I like this version better.)

Continuing eastward (ho-ho-ho) along Clement Street for the Richmond (District) Coffeehouses series, I went to Royal Ground Coffee, which is a sister coffeehouse to the one on Geary Boulevard (see previous 'blog-entry from August 30th, 2015). I am not sure if this shop has the same owners as the one on Geary; there are twelve coffeehouses in this small local chain, but (as per their web-site): "All stores are individually owned and may have different offerings.".

This one is also within walking distance of my apartment (at only nine blocks away) and I did walk over there during a short break in the rain this morning (and it had just started raining lightly two blocks before I got there). However, while I was sitting there eating at the coffeehouse, the deluge arrived again (I think I even saw Noah across the street working on his new boat), so I decided to just catch the bus back uphill on the way home. There are lots of inside seating at this place; plus, there are two sidewalk tables for two people (of course, it was way too wet to sit outside this morning).

Like most coffeehouses, their food menu isn't really that extensive. I did see a few other ideas that would have worked for me: Bagel Egg & Cheese; Bagel with Cream Cheese, Capers, Tomato, & Onion; or Egg Salad Sandwich (off the non-breakfast sandwich portion of the menu, which I would have ordered with the optional choice of croissant).

I went with a sesame bagel as the basis for the sandwich. Sure, this was "just a bagel sandwich", but it was a verrry good "just a bagel sandwich". It had all very fresh ingredients in it and it was piled extra high. The only thing that I can think of that would have made this even better would be to substitute hummus in place of the cream cheese. Oh, yeah!

I mainly chose another Café Borgia to compare it with the last one that I got at the other Royal Ground Coffee. I felt that this was a much better version (less sweet), but the best version that I have ever had is still the old one that used to be offered at Simple Pleasures Cafe (made with a quarter slice of orange in the bottom).

I really didn't check to see what Royal Ground Coffee had for condimentary supplements; I would suppose they had at least Tabasco® Brand Pepper Sauce (Original Red Sauce). I used some of my own 
El Yucateco® XXXtra Hot Sauce Salsa Kutbil-il® de Chile Habanero (Thanks, Brian!) on half of the bagel-sandwich. I also had just a little Toad Sweat Chocolate Orange Dessert Hot Sauce™ (Thanks, Sean!) on the apple pastry-thing. No really. It was a nice complement to the Café Borgia.

Glen Bacon Scale Rating: Bagel Veggie Special ~ 6.4; Café Borgia ~ 6.5; apple pastry-thing ~ 6.3

Saturday, December 12, 2015

Sears Fine Food


Place: Sears Fine Food ~ World Famous since 1938 
Location: 439 Powell Street (between Post and Sutter Streets)
Hours: open daily 6:30am
Meal: Veggie Omelet ~ asparagus, mushrooms
red bell peppers, tomatoes, zucchini, Monterey Jack cheese (served with hash brown potatoes and buttered toast and jelly); and a cuppa (and two refillas) of whatever the house Coffee was

(This was one of the top songs for 1938. Here's a little-known Cliff Clavinist fact: the B-side to this record was "Finish the Finuishe"; unfortunately, that one never really became much of a hit for Artie Show, though.)

I finally got back to Sears Fine Food (see previous 'blog-entry from November 21st, 2010) for breakfast again. It has been five years since my first visit. I suppose at this rate, I should probably be revisiting them again in the 2020's. 

There are many other good offerings on their breakfast menu from which to choose for both stupid vegetarians and those that partake of the dead, decaying animal flesh: 

Lee's Eggs Benedict (two poached eggs, English muffin, Canadian bacon, topped with Hollandaise sauce, served with hash browns; now I don't know why "Lee" gets this dish named after him/her, it sounds pretty much like a standard Eggs Benedict dish to me; perhaps "Lee" was Benedict's first name); 

Eggs Florentine (two poached eggs, English muffin, fresh spinach, Hollandaise sauce, hash browns; I don't know why "Lee" didn't claim this as his/her own creation, too);

Al's Special (two eggs, corned beef hash, nine little pancakes and hash browns);

Spinach Omelet (chopped spinach, sautéed onion, cream cheese and fine herbs; I was thinking about getting this one, but I am not a big fan of cream cheese in an omelette; Swiss cheese or goat cheese would go much better with spinach); 


Sears All Meat Omelet (sausage, smoked bacon, diced ham, Cheddar cheese; I think the menu states that this dish even comes with its own EKG afterward, too).

Additionally, their Our World Famous (this is their claim, not mine; however, this urbane legend has never been confirmed by either the Guinness Book of World Records or Snopes.com) 18 Swedish Pancakes (especially with the With Lingonberries[1] option) really does need another taste-check. After all, this is supposedly the worldly dish that keeps the touristas from all over the World happy and coming back for more.

Just for the Heck-of-it 1938 Interlude

Best Picture: "You Can't Take It with You"
President of the U.S. of A.: Franklin Delano Roosevelt (serving his second term; his Vice President of the U.S. of A. was John Nance Garner ~ yeah, I didn't know who he was either until I looked it up)
World Series Champions: some American League team from da Bronx

This was a decent enough omelette. It was chock full o' "veggies" and they were all fresh (and, for which, that odious moniker "Veggie" can be overlooked). I wonder where they get fresh asparagus this time of year; probably from South or Central America (Take that the Donald!). I went with sourdough toast and substituted home fries for the hashbrowns (it's always nice when there is another option for a potato breakfastary side).

For condimentary supplementation, Sears Fine Food has just Tabasco® Brand Pepper Sauce (Original Red Sauce). I went ahead and used some of my own Pope's Whiskey River Hot Sauce (Thanks, Amy and Chef Joe!) on the homefries.

the Wild Parrots of San Francisco Interlude

After breakfast, while walking through Union Square, I saw a medium-sized pandemonium of about ten to twelve Wild Parrots flying overhead.

Glen Bacon Scale Rating: Veggie Omelet ~ 6.3; 
the Wild Parrots of San Francisco ~ 8.5


1. Stupid, useless cunning linguist/pseudo-botanical pointer of the day:

The name lingonberry originates from the Swedish name "lingon" for the species, and is derived from the Norse "lyngr", or "heather".

And, botanically-speaking, lingonberries are an actual berry, Chuck.