Thursday, February 11, 2010

Tastyness Pause

So sorry for the brief pause of the The Blog of Tasty, but a few things needed to get done.  And of course I will be sure to write and discuss all things that have happened since that last wonderful Tasty Blog.  So onward.

Here comes the first installment of tasty treats.  My wife and I just visited the main land for a couple of days and ventured into the know Sierras for North Lake Tahoe.  Upon arrival at the cozy lake house that we were renting with 13 other people we were very happy to have driven from San Fransico to Lake Tahoe safely and unharmed and hungry.  Since there were so many of us it was much more effective if we bought and made most of our food.  So we made a loose menu and went to costco in Reno, NV to gather supplies. It was not amazing that we spent most of our money on Beer and Spirits but for the most part the food we made was quite good.  Julia and I went on a side trip and visited my Grandfather and Aunt right outside of Reno for a couple of days and enjoyed family and some of the best wine that my aunt has been collecting.  They live in the middle of nowhere and it was really refreshing to see such vast emptiness but still have a warm family feeling.  Once Julia and I returned to Tahoe we were ready for some fun with the friends that were waiting for us.  The whole group had a lot of fun skiing and snowboarding during the day and eating and drinking in a hot tub that was almost sub-warm temps the whole week we were there.  We ate mostly home made food to save money but we had some food at the slopes and at some happy hour places.  Besides the outdoor stuff I was really interested in the known northern country style of cooking.  The Sierras and most of that foothillsy areas and the northern part of CA/NV are well known for the very famous cooking techniques.  The masterful skill to make everything with some sort of greasy fat and make everything unbelievable unhealthy is an art for that I long to learn.  I have some background in the art of B&G and country style cooking but I want to learn more.  Unfortunately we were unable to eat all of these wonderful tastys because we were trying to save money on the trip, but we made it to one awesome spot called THE OLD POST OFFICE. Link to This Review. This is the review that I wrote in Yelp!  It was the last day of Tahoe and I really needed to have a good hearty breakfast before the long ass drive to SF.  It was truely what I want to eat everyday I am alive but in hawaii we don't have places to eat like that. But all in all I loved the beauty of the area.  I feel like Lake Tahoe might be the only other place that I would live besides Hawaii.

Soon it was time to leave the high country so we started our 5hr decent to San Fransico.  It was sad to leave but I was drooling over the idea of Cioppino, crab, mussels, bread and beer. It makes a man almost cry of the sound of cracked crab and the suds popping in the neck of a good beer.  But before we got to the crying we had to stop halfway and visit a known shop and market call Ikedas.  Don't ask about the name its not really that important, the place says it all.  its a little market in Foothills and this place makes everything from candy to hot sauce.  They have pies, beer, burgers, veggies, fruit, pies, bread, coffee, it is insane how much stuff they have.  Julia and I couldn't help but to buy tons of coffee (that was gone in a couple of days), and everyone else had armfuls of stuff ready to take with them to hawaii.  After a good thorough walk through we had to be on our way and head into SF.  The drive into SF was a very refreshing feeling, being from the Bay area I could remember almost everything that ever happened to me while going up there.  Nostalgia only hit for a second, after that all I could think, smell, and dream of was bread, beer, and some tasty sea-creatures. Once we checked in to the hotel and before we were settled we had to figure out where and how we were gonna eat and drink as soon as possible.  We all agreed that for the only night we were gonna be there we would focus on eating as much good food and drinking as much good drink as we could, a food and beverage pilgrimage if you will, in the city that has everything, Mecca if you will of food and beverage.  The first location for happy hour was Nonna Rose's at #7 Fishermans Wharf.  Pupus and beer were pretty dang good, the real "happy" part of the hour was the fresh sourdough bread and the house ale.  The atmosphere was very nice, the smell of the bay was sweet and the outside seating was just awesome.  The rest of the food was pretty dang good too, the clams were killer and the oysters were fresh and tasty.  After more friends came to help us out with our mission to eat and drink good tasty stuff trough San Fransico we took a walk down to the Pier 39 to try and find a good place to have entrees.  After making a fool of myself by calling up a french restaurant on an island and asking how much dinner was and realizing that it would have taking all of our money to have one crab and a napkin, we walked to the Fog Harbor Fish House.  The FHFH was a pretty darn good place to eat, the food was pretty enjoyable and the beers were served cold but 20+ bucks for each entree was a bit pricey.  Everyone enjoyed their meal but I was a bit disappointed, my cioppino was too pasta saucy and over all was not what I had expected.  I know, I know, that some cioppinos do have the tendency to be that way but I prefer mine to be on the soupy side.  It's mostly a preference and thats how I make mine at home but it was still satisfactory.  Julia had some of the best Fish & Chips I have ever had and would really appreciate some right now just thinking about them.  All in all, the bread and beer was my favorite part of the eating of San Fransico.  I must say that Anchor Steam Beer is now one of my favorites, a must try for anyone who likes beer. And the sourdough bread is by far the best bread on earth and I hope that everyone might one day eat really good sourdough bread.  Onward, we decided that the night was young and we needed to part take in the night life of SF, cause we like to boogie. All references aside the Fog City Diner was closed and the only other option was to go drink.  We skipped to the Trolly and was pulled by cable car up to Union Square where conveniently the Sir Francis Drake Hotel was the first stop.  The trolly man told us that the Starlight Lounge was on the 21st floor and it was a good place to hang.  I looked it up on Yelp just recently and noticed that its kind of a touristy place to go but locals love to go there too, it was fun so no regrets.  Its a pretty fancy pantsy place and I felt as though I should be wearing a tux or something.  The Drinks are very tasty, I had a Macallan 30 and it was so delightful.  I just wish I had a wonderful cigar to compliment it.  We danced the night away and and headed back to the hotel to get a good nights sleep for the butt early flight back home.

Overall, it was a wonderful trip!  Going to see family and hangin with friends was very nice.  I just wish Julia and I could do that more often.

Notes and Sidenotes

  • Four-wheel drive vehicles are very important in snowy mountain areas.(Ask for a four-wheel drive and double check if you rent one)
  • Do not bring/drink beer on the cable cars in SF. You will be asked to waste your beverage
  • You will freeze if your hot tub is not hotter than 80 degrees
  • Always go for a walk after happy hour so you can digest and enjoy the next meal
  • If you love food, food will love you back
Until I blog again

The Blogger of Tasty

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Post Holiday Tasty

I believe that every family has their post holiday rituals of food and drink, and as far as I'm concerned its probably the most enjoyable parts of the holiday.  There is nothing the makes me more happy after a holiday feast than to create another awesome feast with the left overs.  In my opinion I think it takes a bit more skill to do an awesome left over meal.  What I mean is, you have already cooked stuff that already taste great but how do you make it taste different and make something that is completely a new meal.  For example, Turkey enchiladas make for a wonderful post holiday entree the next day or a couple days later.  You can prep them up and freeze them or cook them up that night.  I personally love the turkey enchiladas.  My grandfather Buzz used this awesome recipe for years and we always had a left over turkey enchiladas party after Thanksgiving and Christmas.  My dad always made turkey soup out of the left overs, he would spend all day cooking the bones and some other wonderful ingredients for the stock of the soup and it was just gallons of lovely soup.  They would always plan to make more food for the holidays just so we could get those left over meal delights.
As for Julia and I, it was a wonderful Christmas dinner this year with friends and their families.  Our friends Liz and Kristian invited us to have dinner with them and my job was to cook the awe-inspiring and heavenly turkey of the century.  Everyone else was to create the other highlights of the meal.  We were to have the occasion at the secret rustic location in the middle of the island that cannot be disclosed on the internet.  It was quite and very beautiful there and if anyone was to know about it it would get ruined and destroyed by hotel zombies.  Anyway, cocktail time supplied us with appetizers of calamari caprese, smoked salmon pate, and spicy artichoke dip.  There was copious amounts of wine and beer before the real eating began and I was having to much fun, artichoke dip, and conversations around the fire to remind myself I was in Hawaii.  The bell rang and it was time to put on the dinner jackets and sit down for the meal.  Everything seemed to come together as though we were all cooking in the same kitchen all day.  I could not have asked for anything better for a holiday meal.  Turkey was great, the potatoes and gravy were fluffy and tasty, the veggies were so good, and homemade cranberry sauce hit the spot.  The dessert time was nice as well, Mike(bouncer/master of the secret location) created some delightful cookies, and Kristian's mom made one of the most moist scrumptious cheese cakes of my life.  The party ended too soon and as we all went are own ways, I thought in my mind, the next week will be more fun cooking left overs than cooking for the Christmas dinner itself.  I quickly gathered some left over pieces and the carcass of the turkey to take home and begin the Dr. Victor Frankenstein "Turkey Leftover Experiment".  Of course I don't want to make the turkey live again but rather be recreated again in another awesome meal.  I awoke the next morning to begin the process of leftover holiday tastiness.  I roasted an onion, bell peppers, habinaro pepper, and some carrots. I took the carcass and all of those roasted items and put them in water and let that simmer for a day or so.  After it was ready I cleaned up the stock and put the rest of the turkey meat and potatoes, carrots, onion, celery and some awesome herbals.  I can't believe how good it made my house smell.  I was almost willing to go to the CEO of Febreeze and tell him to make a turkey soup smell.  Yah awesome right, who would spray that all over your home everyday? Hell, I would spray myself too!  After the initial taste I found out that for never making this before I am really good and it.  I had never made left over turkey soup in my life and I wanted to attempt to recreate what I watch my father do my whole life.  "I saw a guy do it once", I told myself, and now I am gonna make turkey soup like that every year. Im sure I will attempt something different in the years to come, but for the most part I loved it. I bottled up some, froze some more and I will be eating it for lunch for the next week. I wish that there was more turkey leftover for those Buzz enchiladas but maybe I'll just make a turkey so I can make leftover Buzz enchiladas anyway.
Well, I sure do hope that everyone had a wonderful holiday and some leftover bliss this last week.  I saw some pictures of my father's prime rib he did for the Christmas dinner in NJ, it looked very very good.  And for all of you who love leftovers too, keep up with the Jones and make sure to create instead of just reheat.

Notes for the day:

  • Turkey sandwiches are really good with stuffing too
  • Don't use chicken stock for gravy if you just cooked a turkey
  • Green velvet dinner jackets work best for Christmas
  • Have a good New Year
She loves it! Direct quote from the wife

Monday, December 21, 2009

Tasty Holiday

I just finished watching the Grizwald(Christmas Vacation) family sit down to a wonderful meal only to find out that the aunt is crazy, and the turkey just exploded into a magnificent turkey of hot air. After laughing for a bit with the wife, I figured I would have to write how I felt about Holiday FSBW. For me holiday FSBW means, my family gathers together to eat way to much food and consume way too much SBW. To my recollection I believe that of all the families that I had the wonderful pleasure to visit on the holidays, my family would get head honors for shear amounts of food and booze.  Not to say that other families don't dabble in excess, but cases of wine and enough food to have family left over parties has not been a part of these other peoples holiday homes. Even if there was only 3 people at the dinner table there would be enough food for the town and booze to fill a busy bar for the evening at my family gatherings. All of this though, makes me really happy and nostalgic about holiday meals.
The stock holiday meal always involved a turkey(grilled), a glazed ham that my pops always makes super good, the typical sides like mashed potatoes, stuffing, veggies, and gravy.  Makes me hungry just thinking about!  I always enjoy the proteins and gravy a lot more than any other part of the meal.  Drinks would consist of for grandmother vodka and a very little splash of tonic, copious bottles of red and white wine and of course the always present bottle of Jack Daniel's.  Aunti Patty would always have a Sierra Nevada in hand and Uncle Joe Gabone would always have a Molson or two on staff too,  The verity always made me happy cause I could choose to be happy any way I wanted.  The best of the night though by far was when the best family friend Jeff Moore would show in tow a box of goodies.  The box was never the same and always concealed the fate of how the evening would end.  Most of the time though the tasty goodies would be a couple of bottles of imported Belgium beer like Duvel and Chimay, or a nice clean aged scotch.  Plus I almost forgot, cigars from all over the world made the lot of us very pleased and happy.  Dessert was my mothers secret weapon for the holidays and she would on point make some of the best pies I've every had in my short life so far.  I don't really eat dessert but if it is really good I will devour a slice after a huge meal.  I still look forward to the parties than I do any other part of the holidays.  I am a big fan of the turkey and ham combination as a holiday meal, any kind of gravy will do and the sides must be the potatoes and veggies. What I don't really enjoy is the dang fruit that gets allowed into the party.  Somehow though fruit salad and cranberry sauce have been hanging with turkey and ham since the dawn of time.  Don't get me wrong, I know that they go well together but my taste buddies don't like cranberry too much. The happy fruit salad jello thing might be either one of those genius things or some how it could be just like the crazy aunt from earlier that loves to forget that people don't eat cat food(please take no offense aunts of the world I was referencing the movie).  Now that "THAT" is off my chest I can continue.  However, back to Holiday FSBW!  For now I'm ready to make some sort of chipotle glazed ham this Christmas and maybe something to go along with it.  Our friends have invited us to have a wonderful dinner with them and I know they enjoy all of the FSBW that make this time of year so special for me.  AND PLEASE DO I PRAY FOR DESSERT.  I hope someone a.k.a. me makes a good old cheesecake too.  I can't help but wonder if this will be one of the tastiest holiday meals.  So as I dream of Tasty Holiday Treats and listen to my favorite Christmas music of yule tides(whatever that means) I bid you a wonderful holiday of glazed, stuffed, braised, roasted, buttered, and frosted holiday tasty treats.

I know that sometimes my writing is a bit all over the place and my spelling/grammar is elementary but it adds to flare and oddness of it all.  Not like I will ever be writing for Food and Wine or Saveur, but I am pleased to say that I might be way better at cooking and drinking than I am at writing.

Merry Christmas to the two readers and until we meat again. HAHAHA

Parting Holiday Notes:

  • Do not drink too much before dinner or you will not be able to taste the lovely meal
  • Do have as much fun as possible
  • Make sure that what ever you bring to the party it goes well with what ever you are eating
  • Lastly, record funny moments with you camera and bring them the next year to laugh some more

Friday, December 18, 2009

The First Tasty

First and foremost I think I need to make sure you know what I am going to be writing about, and then maybe over the next few post you might know what the heck is going on in my mind. This blog will be expressing my hope and failures over understanding Food, Spirits, Beer, Wine(FSBW) and how those things culminate to make me happy. I must say that in order to write about these things I need to tell you that I will do my best to eat and drink as much as I can to represent this blog to the fullest. Not only will I be writing about FSBW, I'll be talking about the environment of the what is apart of FSBW. You know what I mean right, like the songs, pictures, people, and things that FSBW comes into mind when taking it all in. Inspiration of the moment would be that most important part maybe. Enough of this babble explaining and lets also note that I will be the worst blogger and writer that you have ever know, I only say this because I have a attention span of 58 year old man from north Philly watching Rocky. I'm drooling all over the place just thinking about cheesesteaks. Hopefully the one person I know who would read this(my mom) will get to see me learn how to write and spell correctly. Mother will be proud and rejoice.
I also think it will be important for me to write about my love of FSBW Ofcourse, I'll explain later of why I do love these things but for the most part Booze and Food make me who I am. If I was to not express myself like this I would be doing everyone a favor I'm sure of it. I might even put some recipes in this blog and maybe just maybe tell you where it is good to eat n' drink in this damn world.
So from now on in the world of too many blogs and awesome writers I create The Blog of Tasty to make me happy and tell you of all the things that are tasty. Three cheers for Tasty!

Parting notes with a glass of some red juice and Led blasting my ear drums.
  • So far so good
  • Menage a Trois is an awesome cheap wine
  • Pork, Potatoes and Onions work well together
  • Last and final, Enjoy Everything Tasty