Monday, March 28, 2011

Impressive NCAA Soda Tower

I walked into an Albertson's today to be greeted by this truly impressive piece of carbonated architecture:
SDSU, NCAA, 2011

Those are dozen-canned boxes of soda you see there - Coke, Sprite, and Diet Coke.  Seriously - I'm impressed.  That's a sign of a store that takes a little pride in their business...or a store that doesn't generate a lot of business and in turn has a lot of time on their hands ha-ha.  Either way, I thought that was very cool.  

And check this out...

Three bucks for...a bag of 11 gummy worms?...

Three bucks for...a bag of 11 gummy bears?

What, are these things sprinkled with flakes of solid gold or something?? Who in their right mind would spend THREE DOLLARS for 11 GUMMY WORMS???  As a candy junkie, I'm appalled at this. For three bucks you can get three bags of those store brand worms/bears and they probably taste exactly the same.  "It's Delish"?  More like it's too overpriced and you're not making any money you foolios.  

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Film Festival Gourmet

This past weekend I attended the 2011 International Family Film Festival at Raleigh Studios in Hollywood where my uncle screened his new documentary Bollywood Steps.  Naturally whenever I go up to LA there will ALWAYS be food to stuff my face with.

First up is the Pork Chop Giganti from Frankie's New York Italian Restaurant in Santa Clarita, CA:

Grilled double cut chop with a sweet vinegar pepper sauce

As beautiful as this thing looked, I was monumentally disappointed with the bland tastelessness of the meat.  If it wasn't for the sauce this would have been the equivalent of an unseasoned overcooked piece of baked chicken.  The restaurant itself also seemed kind of confused with its identity; it was a small building with half of it being a bar and the other half going for fine dining.  However, the noise from the bar and the mediocrity of the food just made this place a mess.  I do appreciate the picture, though.

So the festival...I've always kind of wondered why the studio didn't have their cafe open on the weekend days of the festival.  But whatever.  Instead there was a food truck dubbed as Chef Brian's Comfort Truck which I think operates all over Los Angeles.  Anyway, here's what I got to stuff my face:

Fried chicken sandwich with spinach, saut├ęd onions, and some fruit-like sauce

I was really impressed with this sandwich.  Premium price, sure, but the chicken was really moist and the onions were cooked perfectly (I hate onions, for the record).  The sauce, which I think was some sort of cranberry-type fruit thing, enhanced the flavor.  Considering that you wouldn't pair quality with food trucks, this was a great surprise.  

For dinner we all went out to New Moon, a Chinese restaurant in Santa Clarita, CA.  We had, I think, three chicken dishes, beef, pork, pork rice, steamed rice, fried rice, soup, appetizers...well, just look:

A little bit of everything
But what was most memorable for me:
A tart

Oh man was that tart good.  Strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, and kiwis on top of a cream filling over a pie crust.  So.  Darn.  Good.  Oh yeah, and there was this:
Chocolate covered fortune cookie

So that was the weekend grub.  Thanks for checkin' it out, I'll holla. 

Saturday, March 19, 2011

When the "Full" Light Doesn't Go On

What really sucks is when the little light that's supposed to go on indicating you're full and have eaten enough doesn't actually go on.  This happened on my last trip up to Orange/LA and, naturally, I am here to provide the pictures.  First up is the half pound bacon cheeseburger from Watsons in Orange, CA:

The curly fries are a regular item on the menu.  Rare.  And Excellent. 

The food was really good.  Burger was wholesome and the curly fries were great.  What I really liked about Watson's is that it's a retro department store/diner combo that were around back in the 50s and whatnot.  

So the burger was huge and filled me up, needless to say.  Later that night I had this beauty:

Steak and chicken

At my aunt and uncle's in Valencia, CA, we had this amazing dish of steak and chicken.  While I didn't stuff myself, I simply continued to eat and eat and eat and eat and eat.  The meat, the potatoes, the vegetables, and the cookies afterward. And the three bottles of water since all the salt was mummifying my throat.  It wasn't until practically all the food was gone when I realized...I don't feel good.  I had eaten so much throughout the day that the little light that's supposed to tell me I'm full didn't work and I just kept going.

Thankfully I was okay, but there was a 45 minute period there where I felt like I was about to explode and nearly did about seventeen times.

Naturally that didn't stop me and the following morning I partook in another good meal at Dink's:

Bacon and eggs, potatoes and toast

Pretty basic breakfast and pretty good overall.  

But when that "full" light is careful. 

Friday, March 11, 2011

Gourmet Classics: Japan vs. USA

I wanted to post this as a salute to my Japanese friends/readers.  This blog has been viewed by over 20 countries on 6 continents and Japan ranks second in total views.  They had a devastating earthquake there the other day which sources have ranked between 7.9 and 8.8.  My warmest wishes and thoughts go to the people over there as well as my friends.  This post is for you guys.

One day my friend Josh asked "Dude, do you wanna represent America in an eating competition?"  Of course I accepted since I had to represent America's obese superiority and freak eating skills.  Here was the challenge: A 5-on-5 competition where each challenger has to complete the Lumberjack dish at Lake Murray Cafe in La Mesa, CA.  For a visual of the Lumberjack:

Three eggs, three sausage links, four strips of bacon, three pancakes, and potatoes

So here are the competitors: 

Team Japan vs. Team USA eager to begin the competition

Team USA anticipating the grub
Another shot of the teams

The food arrives and suddenly things get srsly serious

In the end, everyone completed the dish so it was a tie and in actuality there was little competition going on as everyone was just having a good time.  Josh and I were seasoned veterans with the Lumberjack so we had strategy to complete the dish - eat the pancakes last and don't fill up on bread (though their rolls are another story for another post).  

Best wishes to Japan. 

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Birthday Buffet

I frequently rave about this buffet I enjoy going to and today I actually have photographic evidence of my birthday dinner there.  I really love buffets.  You can eat as much junk food as you like for an affordable price - a winner in my book.  Here's a couple pictures from the Great Plaza Buffet in Pacific Beach, CA as well as the dessert items afterward:

I always start it off with steak and potatoes.  A gimme there.

Then I get into the Chinese dishes with an assortment of chickens and beefs

I call this the "transition" plate, where I finish the meats and switch to the fruits/borderline dessert stuff.

Usually I average 4.5 plates, but I only did 3 last night.  My record is 6.  Here's dessert, brought down from A Perfect Circle in Orange, CA:

The top of this cupcake came clean off.  Reminded me of that Seinfeld episode.

Caramel apples, one with Snickers and the other with nuts.  Delicious.

Today I also went to the great prime rib buffet as featured in the last post and downed 3 huge steaks; one medium, one medium rare, and one well done.  Incredible.  Unfortunately, photography is still prohibited so instead I'll just show this random picture of a prime rib I found online:

The medium rare steak looked very similar to this

Overall I had a great day and it was an especially great day for food and steak.  Thanks for reading!