Friday, March 19, 2010

Friday Quickies #90: Springing Forward . . .

Tuna Burger + Asparagus
An absolutely delicious tuna burger at Pasadena's La Grande Orange

With all the fun events lined up this coming week (and beyond), that Spring forward won't be the only reason you'll be losing sleep!

Tonight, 5 to 8 p.m., Cabot Vineyard's co-owners John and Kimberly Cabot will be down at Glendale's Rosso Wine Shop to do a special tasting of three of their wines. For $15/person, you can taste their 2004 Confluence Meritage Blend, 2005 Klamath Cuvee Red and 2006 Syrah Kimberly's Vineyard. The price also include small bites of spring gazpacho, grilled merguez sausage and slaw to wash the delicious vino down.

Monday and Tuesday, March 22-23, Pasadena's La Grande Orange is celebrating their two-year anniversary with a special "neighborhood nights" discount, buy one lunch/dinner entree and get the second for only $2! To sweeten the deal for local lunchers, they are also offering free valet for March.

Tuesday, March 23 is the debut of Cart for a Cause, a gourmet food truck with $10 star chef-designed meals (think Lazy Ox Canteen's Josef Centeno, Animal's Vinny and Jon and Walter Manzke formerly of Church & State) with all sales proceeds benefiting St. Vincent's Meals on Wheels. Each chef's crafted meal will be served a month before it rotates, first in the lineup: Nobu Matsuhisa. Click here for deets, locations, etc.

Thursday, March 25, 6 to 10 p.m., Yes, Hatchi is back at Century City Breadbar and this month's theme is "Burning Sensation" with Sona's chef de cuisine Kuniko Yagi and pastry chef Ramon Perez, and as the name suggests, it will highlight the beauty of heat in char and spice. Dishes (as usual $8 each) include big eye tuna with burnt eggplant + mitsuba dashi sauce and harissa-marinated cod with celery root puree + crispy pig's feet. As with all the other Hatchi events, better get your reservation on early!

Next Sunday, March 28, Beer enthusiast Gev Kazanchyan is organizing a Men are from Malts, Women are from Vinos showdown at College of the Canyons' Institute for Culinary Education in Valencia. For $55/person or $100/couple, you can watch, listen and of course, taste, as beer and wine experts match wits and pairings with each other and the six courses served that night (three chosen by each team.) That's right, a sinful set of six dishes, six wines and six beers for your palate's pleasure. For more details on the event and ordering information, check out FoodGPS' more extensive post here.

And my fave of the Web this week:

*A trio of The Slaw Dogs reviews by Eating LA, Pleasure Palate and Gastronomy
I've only tasted Slaw Dogs to-go and it's definitely promising; I do agree with Pat on them needing bigger, hardier buns if they're going pile on so many toppings.

*And then, a duo of Worldfare early reports from Eating LA and SinoSoul
I was skeptical of the gimmicky-sounding bustaurant, but their positive thoughts have swayed me to give their bunny chows a checkout if they're near me.

*Also, a solo Deep-End Dining primer on Korean-style sushi
True to Eddie's style, it's unusual and freaky--and absolutely sounds like something I gotta try at least once (and I already have for some of his highlighted dishes)

*A two-month-old musing by The Minty on her identity, as a response to an infamous analysis and inquiry on foodbloggers' races
An enjoyable read and I agree with her viewpoints, being Asian and being a foodblogger just happened to be a part of who I am, but they hardly define my whole life.

*SeriousEats highlights the en papilotte ("in parchment [package]") technique
Totally reminded me to do this more often at home, it's a wonderfully flavorful, wholesome, healthy AND pretty effortless way to cook; throw it all together, wrap it up, bake, and break open the pouch for flavorful goodness! Speaking of which, Rants and Craves have a simple-yet-fab recipe for sake-steamed mushrooms en papillote.

*TIME ponders on disappearance of old-fashioned critics
For me, I think it's another hysterical "OMG traditional media is dying!" story; yes, the food review landscape is being more fragmented, but critics still wield considerable influence (which we all surely know by the difficulty of landing a reservation after a favorable mainstream media critic review.) And as far as ethical concerns related comp'd meals and such, I think the proof is in the pudding... those who shill here, there and everywhere will easily get outted and lose credibility, trust and audience.

*Salon notes that hipsters using food stamps to buy organic, specialty, ethnic foods
Fluffed up non-trend in my opinion, even the author of that article owns up to the fact that the overwhelming majority of food stamp recipients are the traditional populations of working poor, elderly, single parents, etc. And frankly, fresh and ethnic produce aren't that pricey if you know what's in-season and the right markets to shop. Finally, I'd rather see food stamp dollars used on fresh, organic groceries than overprocessed junk foods. Ok, so I'm a bit peeved at the thought of hipsters possibly gaming the system, but their food stamp impact pales in comparison to the other things federal and state governments are bailing out these days.

*CHOW's video series: Cooking with Grandma
Ok, sexism aside (what? Grandpas don't cook and share food culture stories? Mine sure did!) I absolutely love these video vignettes showcasing not just a recipe, but also its significance to the culture (not to mention getting me all drooly over my keyboard at Burmese prawn curry, a not-so-kosher brisket for Passover and gnocchis from scratch). And it's super adorable watching grandma and grandkid cook side-by-side, especially with all the "this is how we do it back in the day" tricks and tips.

*Also on CHOW, Revival of the Zombie feature on Tiki Drinks' Comeback
A worthwhile read for anyone who mistakenly associates Tiki cocktails as overly sweet and fruity drinks with ridiculous garnishes --the feature also contains several fun-sounding recipes for you to try at the next gathering (with all the ingredients involved, I personally wouldn't prep or mix them for everyday solo consumption--that's where a trip to Tiki-Ti, Cana or even Trader Vic's comes in.)


stuffycheaks said...

crispy pigs feet? Damn, i'll need to try! thanks for the info!!

H. C. said...

@stuffycheaks: indeed, let me know how it turns out!

Minty said...

Ha, I was wondering why I was getting so many hits on my Identity post. Thanks for the linkage.

Exile Kiss said...

Hi H.C.,

Thanks for reminding me about that Tuna Burger you enjoyed so much. I have to get back to LGO the next time I'm in the area and try it. :)

Pennsylvania medical malpractice said...

Great recommendations and links. Thanks for sharing them.


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