Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Eatonville

Our first sit down meal at DC was at Eatonville, a southern style cuisine restaurant. I ordered the Shrimp and Crawfish Etoufee which was outstanding. The dish was flavorful, mildly creamy and seafood was well cooked but still soft and delectable. I tried a bit of everyone's dishes which were also all enjoyable.


Eatonville - Southern Food



Hushpuppies - Rock Shrimp and Leek Fondue Stuffed with Creole sauce (Yum, yum, and did I say yum?)



Shrimp and Crawfish Etoufee - With long grain rice and fried okra



Pecan Crusted Trout - Over rice pilaf and grilled asparagus with creole mustard cream sauce



Oyster Po Boy



Crab Burger - With pickled onions, arugula, remoulade, Cajun fries and coleslaw



Pear Cider BBQ Glazed Mahi Mahi - Over sweet potato andouille sausage hash and asparagus



Peach and Blackberry Cobbler With Vanilla Ice Cream - Came Hot and Toasty. It was absolutely scrumptious


The hushpuppy is deep fried and delivers on flavor. Just staring at it made me hungry. The dessert was also fantastic. It came hot out of the oven, with the melting ice cream perfectly accompanying the tangy sweet fruit baked inside. A great way to finish off the meal.

Eatonville
2121 14th St NW
Washington, DC 20009
http://eatonvillerestaurant.com/

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Mediterranean Food Cart

My friend had been raving about how there was a Mediterranean food cart in NY that was open till 4am in the morning and also that it would be the best Mediterranean food I would ever have (at least from a value standpoint). He was right. The first 5 bites, I was in meat/rice heaven. Alas, after those five bites, the grease started to kick in, but those 5 initial bites were damn good. The cart also provides two types of sauce (white and red) which go really well on top of their food. You might want to take the red (spicy sauce) in moderation because it sure has one hell of a kick.


A very long line at only 11:30PM on a Tuesday night



Lamb on Rice w/ Pita and White Sauce


Mediterranean Food Cart
53rd St & 6th Ave

New York, NY 10079

http://www.53rdand6th.com

Friday, June 26, 2009

Carmines

It seems like good food is to be found in almost every nook and cranny of New York. I heard Carmines was comparable to Bucca di Beppo (A restaurant in San Francisco that serves family style Italian food), which I'm not a huge fan of. Thankfully, Carmines surpassed my expectations and made another food adventure worthwhile. Our waiter was friendly and witty, which made the experience even better.


Carmines Restaurant @ Theater District



Zuppa Mussels - Cooked in Olive Oil, Garlic, White Wine, and Herbs
(Dipping bread into the broth was delicious)



Special of Night - Fusilli with Chicken, Mushrooms, Garlic, and white wine
(The Pasta was cooked al-dente mixed in with herbs and spices resulting in a hearty dish)



Veal Scallopine Marsala - The sauce was loaded with flavor that made my taste buds go wahoo!

The next time I go back to NY, I am definitely making plans to fit Carmine's into my schedule. The mussels were cooked just right without being too soft or too chewy (I'm really picky with my mussels). The food was absolutely wonderful and well prepared. If I had an extra stomach, I would have probably ordered a few more dishes. It's a great place to come with a group of friends and share several plates.

Carmine's
200 West 44
th St
New York, NY 10036
http://www.carminesnyc.com

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Dumpling House & Egg Custard King

Next, we headed over to Chinatown searching for Vanessa's infamous Dumpling House, known for its awesome deal of 4 dumplings for a dollar. The cheap Chinese in me just can't avoid it. Like a moth to the flame I had to taste this for myself, so we hopped in and took the dive.



House of Dumplings (Vanessa's) - I hope she hand makes them herself



Sesame Pancake with Egg - We watched them deep fry this baby into the Golden wonder you see above. It looked so delicious, but it is still mostly bread.



Chives and Pork Fried Dumpling



Cabbage and Pork Fried Dumplings



Chives and Pork Boiled dumplings - These little soft heavenly morsels were awesome (w/ some soy sauce vinegar)

Egg Custard King - Smooth Silky Custard...oh yeah...




Green Custard Tart - Yum! Honeydew Melon Flavor

They have a plethora of dumplings for you to choose from and they're all hand made. Seating is difficult to find so you may want to grab it to go. You definitely leave Dumpling House full (and potentially very greasy - a cup of tea or bottle of water is in order). Not a bad way to spend 6-7 bucks for an entire meal. The Green Dan Tat (Egg Custard Tart) was purchased at Egg Custard King 2 blocks down. I just love the odd color. Despite my initial objections of eating the unusual colored egg tart, it was actually delicious. The tart had a clean honeydew flavor while retaining a smooth and rich custard texture. They also have a large selection of other exotic egg custard flavors. I am so trying the Pink one next time.

Dumpling House (Vanessa's Dumpling House)
118 Eldridge St
New York, NY 10002

Egg Custard King Cafe
76 Mott St
New York, NY 10013

Juan Valdez Cafe

The following day, we dropped by Juan Valdez Cafe for Colombian pastries and Coffee to get us started. The pastries were full of flavor but not overpowering. We got a few different pastries to share, but my favorite by far were the Pan De Guava and Pan De Bono. Not only were they Warm and Fluffy, but the outer crust was oh so tender and soft. A great way to get energized for an entire day of walking around Manhattan.


Juan Valdez Cafe @ Times Square



Arequipe Nevado - Yum all the caramel



Mocha



Pan De Bono - Cheese



Pan De Guava - delicious pastry with Guava and cheese filling



Arepa De Chocolo - Baked Corn Goodness

Juan Valdez Cafe
1451 Broadway @ West 41ST
New York, NY 10036
http://www.juanvaldezcafe.us/

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Sushi Palace

After our lunch at Bar, we visited Yale, drove over to east rock to get a better view of the city and finally ended up at Sushi Palace for Dinner. It was over 2 years ago that I came here with some friends for a sushi buffet that included live lobster sashimi (didn't order since I couldn't stomach the thought). This time around, I focused on mostly fish and a few side dishes in hopes of satisfying my sushi buffet craving.


Front Entrance of Sushi Palace



The unique orange and red lighting highlighting the sushi chef's work area



Seaweed Salad - Perfect combination of sweet and sour flavors without overpowering



Crab Salad - Sliced veggies with crab meat flavored with a bit of mayo



Grilled Salmon in Teriyaki Sauce



Grilled Eel and Spicy Tuna Roll



Salmon, White Tuna, Albacore Tuna, Tamago, Soft Shell Crab and More (YUM!)



Round Two because one plate surely was not enough


Two years later, the sushi is still good especially for a sushi buffet in Connecticut. The fish was fresh though we were not huge fans of the white tuna. The salmon was very pleasing to the palette and so were any of the rolls with Grilled Eel in it. One of the highlights was the Tamago nigiri (they call it egg custard on the menu). The egg was sweetened just a tiny bit and was generously thick. Underneath was a moderately sized roll of rice with slightly crisped seaweed. Everything else was yummy and we left full and satisfied. Actually maybe an extra emphasis on the full part. Rounding off the meal was a small scoop of Green Tea Ice Cream which makes everything go down so much better.

Sushi Palace
1473 Dixwell Avenue
Hamden, CT 06518
http://www.sushipalace.us

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Bar (BruRm)

After heading over to New Haven for a night of rest, our next goal was to find a good brick oven baked pizza. The friends I was traveling with have damn good appetites and so initially I thought we would kill two pizza pies between 5 people without the blink of an eye. I was dead wrong. The pizzas were huge and very tasty.



BruRm@Bar




Cozy brew room where they distill local micro brews and serve up pizza pies




the local brew




Large Red Sauce Pizza - Left Half: Italian Sausage and Bell Pepper - Right Half: Chicken and Spinach




Large White Sauce Pizza - Left Half: Mashed Potato and Bacon - Right Half: Seafood


I'm a huge fan of thin crust on my pizzas. The crusts were slightly crunchy while being thin enough to flop and fail under the weight of the toppings. You will need to fold your slice in half if you want to hold it in one hand. I'll admit that it seemed a bit odd to have bacon and mashed potatoes on pizza, but it wasn't half bad. However, I still think it tasted like a loaded baked potato slapped on top of a slice of pizza. The seafood side was fantastic and choc full of flavor. Eating the red pie was equally delicious in its own right. If you're trying to find a decent brick oven pizza to fill up on in Connecticut, head on over to Bar.


Bar
254 Crown St
New Haven, CT 06511
http://www.barnightclub.com

Monday, June 22, 2009

Chao Zhou

Over the span of a week, I've traveled with a few friends to New York, New Haven, Philadelphia, and Washington DC. We started out on our trip with a visit to Flushing, New York for a taste of Cantonese food on the East Coast. Generally, I do not expect a Chinese restaurant open at 1am in the morning to produce authentic edible food. In this case though, the food was quite edible.


There's the bowl along with neon Chinese lights. Such a bad habit to stick your chopsticks into the bowl! =)



Salty Fish Fried Rice w/ Chicken (w/ Peas, Eggs and Green Onion)



Beef Noodle Soup (Regular one)

A friend recommended their special beef noodle soup which unfortunately was unavailable the night we visited the joint. The fried rice wasn't too oily and had quite a bit of actual ingredients instead of being mostly rice. However, the salty fish was slightly bland and the general flavor could have been a bit stronger. But the food was in general authentically Cantonese (at least by ABC standards) and hopefully, if you drop by this place, they'll have the special beef noodle soup available.

Chao Zhou Restaurant
40-52 Main Street
Flushing, NY 11354

Friday, June 12, 2009

Sweet and Savory

Lunch time hit and a few coworkers and I headed out toward what we thought was a BBQ joint. Unfortunately, by the time we got to our destination, we realized it was no longer there. Conveniently, a bakery/deli by the name of Sweet and Savory was situated nearby and so we headed in to give it a try.


Too bad they don't have crepes or Chinese food here. Great Name =)


Turkey & Avocado between 2 slices of whole wheat


The sandwich was fresh and filling and hit the spot. Even though I could only finish half my sandwich, finding this bakery turned out to be a pleasant surprise.


Sweet and Savory
5694 Stoneridge Dr
Pleasanton, CA 94588
http://www.sweetandsavory.com/

Taste of Formosa

My sister recently came to visit and so my family and I went walking around our neighborhood looking for food and ended up finding this local Taiwanese restaurant. While I enjoy spicy food, moderation is generally up my alley and the place had a good selection of milder foods. They have quite a large selection of snacks (not sure how traditional) and dishes for sharing over rice.


Mapo Tofu - My tongue was on fire after a bite of this


Shrimp and Chive Dumplings - Delicious dumplings with a vinegar dipping sauce


Oyster and Egg Pancake in a Tomato Sauce


Spinach with Whole Roasted Garlic pieces


Taiwanese Fried Rice Noodle


Chicken in Clay Pot - This dish disappointed with lackluster flavor and very few ingredients.

Taste of Formosa
2484 Clement Street
San Francisco, CA 94121