There’s an alcohol license up in the window of that thing on HWY 41 that used to be a BBQ-joint and a COMING SOON sign. Dear Dog who would drive out there for food. OK, I might.
Got into DARWISH–the new Iranian place in Grover Beach–and as per my usual with fairly unfamiliar culinary territory, tried to work around the edges of the menu–the really strange stuff. All the weird “stews” had caught my eye during my pre-opening visit, and I went straight at them. I was able to combine 2 favorites here in a smaller dish, off the appetizer menu. This is excellent for trying to experience a variety of tastes and you just flat-out can’t eat it all! This is Tadig, crusty rice topped with your choice of stew. I picked the ghormeh sabzi as topping: beef and lime and herbs and kidney beans. You know the crusty stuff at the bottom of the rice cooker that is so good? Now fry that in butter and saffron and you’re getting close to how good this is. Be sure and get one of the yogurt sides–mint or shallot–for putting on EVERYTHING. No wine list until April, so grab a bottle of something crisp and white and take it in for no corkage. All in all it’s ok. Dining room is cleaned up to a STARK white glow, great service: extremely white, everything well-explained… Basically EVERYTHING on the menu is available vegetarian–they even had a completely separate menu for vegetarians so you don’t even have to look at the meat dishes.
Finally made it to BEDA’S BIERGARTEN in SLO. I hate German food and have very bad experiences with it in the past. This was not like those experiences at all. I would eat there again. Had some sausages that sounded like ‘nurbergring’ and potato dumplings fried over warm sauerkraut. Completely workable winelist–although the beer is fairly exotic. German restaurants are actually kinda rare come to think of it. Used to go to that famous one in Auburn. Been to the one in San Juan Bautista. Never went to Old Vienna EVER, how is that possible? Have not been to the one downtown burgers & brats? and probably never will. Where else?
Cory Bidwell has moved to HATCH in Paso Robles from opening and running the kitchen at Cass House Grill since opening. One of my favorite local chefs and I hope this improves my impression of Hatch.
Is Outrigger MB open yet?
Is Brickhouse MB open yet?
Is the new taqueria in MB open yet?
JEWEL OF INDIA has re-opening there at Broad & Santa Barbara in SLO. Grand opening was Saturday (yesterday) although everything on the innerwebz says still permanently closed. Somebody go check.
My little experiment with LUX ITALIAN–CHEAPEST THING ON MENU + CHEAPEST WINE THAT’S NOT CHIANTI rolls on, this time at GENNARO’S in SLO. Pomodoro best yet. Linguini in OO & pepper absolutely inhale-able. Had a fun little sub-30$ Barbera with it.
Speaking of projects, in case you live under a rock: I concluded and published my BBQ REPORT and my in-box probably won’t survive. You people SHORE love your tri-tip and your paper plates
CENTRAL COAST VEG FEST comes to the “SLO UMC” (I don’t even know what that is) Feb. 23. Yes the poster caught my eye across the room because I though it said Vag Fest.
Did I talk about RESTAURANT LA VILLA in North SM last week? Tacos are great and the Panaderia next door is mind-boggling.
Oh ya: I did the ‘cheap Italian thing’ at MAMA’S MEATBALL too. Pomodoro was great. Wow so many interpretations. Maybe do a pomodoro-tour of SLOco?
OH, Teri Bayus’ TASTE BUDS Chef Competition rolls into the Paso Robles Event Center with the home show SUNDAY at noon. Admission is FREE and the lineup of contestants is a veritable who’s-who: Kari, Spencer, Wangaard, Mathers Ocean grill, Behrens Blue Heron, Towne Spoontrade… I will be judging so best bring your A-Game.
Rick Manson is opening CHEF RICK’S after what, a 12-year hiatus? In Orcutt at The Jetty. Bittersweet for me: far and away the best restaurant SM ever has had ever in the history of the planet, great local winemaker rapport, long missed, popular caterer–including a stint at Far Western–BUT loves the creole WAY TOO MUCH and ruins everything with that style. Nobody wants spicy burnt French food. I hope he is able to temper this desire with the new place.
LIDO at Dolphin Bay has ended their search for an EC but the name has not trickled down to me. This is a HUGE job, spanning the resort, events, room service, poolside, everything PLUS the huge restaurant–management and menu development–so I assure you their decision did not come lightly.
Speaking of Santa Maria, CRACKER BARREL opens MONDAY. Long lines are predicted as dirt-people queue up for dirt-food.
Late arrival: AS TYPING: Les Petits Canailles Paso Robles summer 2019? Son of Stephan l’Adventure. MOAR FRENCH RESTIES PLZ