My friend was in town so I met her & her family at Water Grill in Santa Monica. We order a bunch of items for the table to share. There was heirloom tomato salad, uni toast, ahi tuna poke, grilled Spanish octopus, lobster roll, one pound wild Mexican white shrimp, and one dozen oysters on the half shell. The uni toast was rich & buttery. The ahi tuna had a kick of soy sauce with avocados. The Spanish octopus was grilled perfectly with a tomato base. The lobster roll was one of my favorites. there were large chunks of lobster tail meat, with a light coating of warm butter. It was served inside a toasted soft bun, with a side of French fries.
We arrived in Tijuana at 9am, and we had the breakfast of champions at El Rincon del Oso. I had a little bit of gordita, chili relleno, and menudo. Everything was so authentically amazing. The gordita was cheesy, and the meat was so tender it basically melted in my mouth. As hot as it was that day, the menudo was very much enjoyable. the meat was also very tender, and the soup had the right amount of spices. I knew I came to Tijuana for a reason.
dineLA started last week, and the first place I tried was Cleo in Hollywood. The four of us shared an assortment of mezzo: spicy cigars, borek (cheese pastries), spanakopita, pickled vegetables, hummus, baba ganoush, and laffa. As my entree, I had the chicken tagine served over saffron rice with almonds & golden raisins. The chicken was moist, and flavorful. As full as I was, I still had the dessert of Greek yogurt sorbet. It was tangy, a little sweet, and just refreshing for a hot summer right. I was able to try the sticky toffee pudding, which was rich, and indulgent.
After the firework on Fourth of July, three of us walked to Ironside Fish & Oyster in San Diego's Little Italy. We shared the seafood platter (Mexican white shrimp, oysters, mussels), nectarine & apricot salad with Marcona almonds & goat cheese, lobster roll, salmon, clam chowder fries, and grilled Spanish octopus.
The shrimp was served with a tomato garnish, almost like pico de gallo. The oysters were fresh and the mussels went well with the aioli. The clam chowder fries were amazing and very similar to poutine. It is basically a large bowl of French fries, topped with ladles & ladles of clam chowder. The stone fruit salad was very refreshing. It was pretty simple, but I would've never thought to make that combination. The lobster roll had more lobster tail meat than anything. The roll it was sandwiched in was perfectly buttered & toasted. The salmon was grilled with sweet corn. Unfortunately, this one was just okay. The edges of the salmon was a little dry/overcooked, but the center was fine. This was not a bad dish, but it was nothing unique. The Spanish octopus was grilled until tender and served with a roasted tomato sauce.
From left to right, top to bottom: Sol azul oysters, Brussels sprouts nachos, roasted beet salad, duck mole quesadilla, burrata with shishito purée, grilled cucumbers & nectarines, hazelnut tres leches, churros with sliced chocolate, Meyer lemon bar with blackberry compote, and coconut cake with guava jam & toasted coconut
A group of girls & I went to Public Kitchen & Bar inside the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel. We had never-ending rounds of mimosas, with a brunch buffet. My first plate consisted of kale salad, yogurt parfait, salmon blini, cure meats, cheeses, roasted Brussels sprouts, burrata, and Rainier cherries. After resting a bit, I went for dessert: chocolate dipped strawberry, tiramisu, amaretto cupcake, chocolate mousse cone, coconut pudding, chocolate bombe, and cherry tart.