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Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Lotus of Siam

Spring rolls and Thai ice tea

Off the strip, hidden in a seedy plaza, is one of the greatest hole in the wall restaurants you will ever stumble upon. Lotus of Siam is tucked away in a sketchy area, but the restaurant was just renovated and its actually nice inside (not fancy, but nicer than the standard hole in the wall asian restaurants). This place has the BEST THAI FOOD...EVER! Their specialty dish is the drunken noodle sea bass (must try this!). The catfish is amazing too! (Warning: for you non asian readers, the fish comes with head attached, but you can ask them to not serve it with the head) When you order food from there you have a choice from a scale of 1 to 10 on how spicy you want your dish to be. I'm kind of a wuss and only get level 3, but I still have to have the thai ice tea to cool my mouth down. This time, I ordered the chicken panang curry (level 3) and it was the perfect amount of spicy. Curry is so good for you, so I try to eat it when I can.

Starbucks

So it's probably been a good four years or so since I've been to Starbucks. We were driving from Los Angeles to Las Vegas yesterday (actually I was driving....the entire way), and I started to get really drowsy so I broke down and had coffee for the first time in a really long time (had the Iced white chocolate mocha). While I was there I picked up a few of their fruit and snack plates. They were so perfect for a road trip snack. My favorite was the protein plate (13g protein packed into it). It came with a hard boiled egg (cage free), grapes, white cheddar cheese, apples slices, multigrain muesli bread, and a honey and peanut butter spread.

The Griddle Cafe

I've been adjusting my sleep schedule to London time and finally awake earlier enough to make it out to breakfast. I tried the Griddle Cafe today and it was AMAZING! I had "The Golden Ticket" pancakes. It came with bananas, walnuts, caramel, and steusel mixed into it. One order is three ginormous pancakes that are too big for the plate. You could share it with three other people and everybody would be full.  There were so many  different choices for pancakes and french toast, its ridiculous. I also split the "some like it HOT" scramble with my friend. It's like an open faced mexican breakfast burrito. I was a little disappointed that they don't serve corned beef hash. The bacon was alright.

This place is definitely a hot spot. I went on a Monday and the place was packed! Best of all they serve breakfast all day! 

"The Golden Ticket:
"Some like it HOT" scramble

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Disney's Soda Fountain & Studio Store

Special Toy Story 3 Sundae
An old school ice cream parlor with Disney mixed into it (located on Hollywood Blvd.). They also have some food on the menu, but mostly its just ice cream related desserts.

I had a Jr. Sundae with chocolate ice cream, melted marshmallow, and whip cream. Pretty standard sundae except the melted marshmallow took it to a whole other level.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Vinoteque on Melrose

I've been wanting to try Vinoteque ever since it appeared on Groupon. I actually didn't have any wine (although they had some good deals on tastings, maybe next time). The restaurant serves a french fusion version of tapas. It's a very casual and chill place with a very nice outdoor patio seating area.

I would definitely recommend the sweet potato fries (comes with a spicy ketchup), chorizo, arugula salad, kobe beef sliders, pork belly (very very rich and fatty) and the panna cotta dessert. The goat cheese stuffed lamb meatballs and tomato heirloom salad were alright. I didn't try the skirt steak or the blueberry cobbler, but my friends inhaled them so fast I would assume they were excellent. Overall I give this place a 7 out of 10. 

Pork Belly
Sweet Potato Fries
Goat Cheese Filled Lamb Meatballs
Blueberry Dessert


Panna Cotta

Simply Chicken

Sur La Table at The Grove holds cooking classes everyday and the one I went to today was their Simply Chicken class. This isn't one of my favorite cooking schools, but classes here are so frequent it makes it easy to sign up last minute. Most of the classes I've taken here follow the same itinerary: wine, demo, prepare food at different stations (some chaos), break, eat, wine.

Recipes at this class include:
Perfect Roast Chicken (easier to prepare than it looked, tasted okay)
Coq Au Vin (most complex recipe this class, tasted amazing)
Panko Crusted Chicken w/Honey Mustard Dipping Sauce (easy to prepare, tasted great)
Curry Chicken Salad with Raisins (didn't get to work on this one, didn't like the taste either)
Chicken Cutlets with Lemon and Capers (easy to prepare and delicious)

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Eleven Madison Park

I've decided to try as many restaurants as I possibly can named on the S. Pellegrino World's 50 Best Restaurants 2010 list. Two days after I found this list I found out that we were heading to New York for a day. I tried to make a reservation at all the NYC based restaurants on the list, but could only get into one. (Per Se I will be coming back for you!)

Eleven Madison Park is ranked at number 50 on this list. I'm not really sure how it made the cut. I've been to a few restaurants that were not on the list, but were far superior to this one. This restaurant was about a 7 out of 10. I'm happy that I tried it, but will not be revisiting it again anytime soon. It was 11 courses with many very unique dishes. They were all very well presented and looked delicious, but all were lacking flavor (yes even the DESSERT!).

Coconut Water

I just came back from Whole Foods (Sanfair) and they had pre cut young coconuts! The best coconut water to get is from young coconuts. I used to drink these all the time, but Justin was worried for the safety of my fingers (to open them you pretty much have to chop them machete style) and banned me from getting them. So I tried every brand of coconut water they sell at whole foods and found that Taste Nirvana no pulp is the best (comes in green glass bottles).

Coconut water is so good for you. It is rich in electrolytes, potassium, iron, and no added sugar. Best served cold.