There’s an alcohol application up on the window of Naked Sushi downtown with the sushi menu still up alongside. Turns out it opened TODAY and a Park owns it, so full-on Korean and Japanese menu. I looked at it today and it is mostly sushi with a few Korean things thrown in like bibimbap but no sign of banchan.
OLD SLO BBQ is now saying “May” for the new location in Marigold Plaza.
ROSALINA in Santa Margarita easily wins for *hideaway restaurant you haven’t been to yet* in the area. Holy wow are they killin it! The drinks are amazing, the food nothing short of spectacular, and Saturday evening it was PACKED, with not a single seat open in the house. Quite a change from 5 or 6 people lined up at the bar several months ago. I had the jar of pickles (amazing) and several wines from their list and the chiliquiles–OMG. THE best version of *nachos* you will have in this county, with spicy pulled pork, salsa, and a soft-fried egg on puffy house-fried tortilla chips. It is nothing short of shocking how this place is delivering. Santa Margarita is the next Los Alamos of the dining scene. I’ve been saying that for a while and Rosalina is proving it.
El Matador in that horrible strip on Chorro in San Luis Obispo is gone and a new permit is applied for San Luis Taqueria. The Pastie shop next door is also opening soon as something else…. I don’t really care as nothing on this strip merits attention. I actually kinda liked El Matador–the tacos rated fairly well on my list. But with the possible exception of the eateries in the mall by Barnes & Noble, few sections of town are more boring for food. Well, maybe the Foothill strip…
The new taqueria in Morro Bay opened Monday it’s called Mes Vajoles or something. It’s up on the old highway just a couple blocks north of Spencer’s.
A strong rumor of Stephan’s son of l’Adventure fame opening a restaurant in Paso Robles.
A deli is going into downtown Atascadero across from Entrada’s EXPLODING food & drink section. All the new places in the Colony District down there are amazing. Check it out.
PORTO LEON is opening this week *allegedly* on Chorro across from Black Sheep in the long-closed Pluto’s location. Spanish Tapas, a raw bar, individual paellas, a $60 steak and an impressive winelist. Should be interesting. High hopes. We’ll see.
Got into UPPER CRUST TRATTORIA for the second time in my life. This place is interesting and quite flies under the radar of most locals I believe. For the second time, I was overwhelmed with the ambiance, the winelist, EXPERT service from mature wait-staff, a deep menu and ridiculously cheap prices. For this visit, I again followed my recent theme of *cheapest Italian wine bottle and lowliest pasta dishes* and was generally pleased. The tomato-basil capellini was near-perfect, although the gnocchi in pomodoro was full of pancetta and had a strong lemon element. It was a bit odd, but otherwise–WOW. Check this place out! Easily the week-day *I don’t feel like cooking* entry about town and Monday nights all bottles are half off?!?!? There are some SERIOUS bargains on that list.
BRASSERIE SLO in the quickly-finishing Hotel Cerro is now saying April.
I ate at MR. PICKLES last week. I don’t eat at too many chain deli’s. I have loved the Subway “Cold Cut Combo” for decades and never gave this small grouping of restaurants much creedence with their silly name and mascot. Boy was I wrong. This is expertly-designed stuff in a hassle-free environment. The thing I hate about Subway is how you have to repeat over and over and over what you want on your sandwich, even though “everything” seems quite a simple word. At Mr. Pickles, I said, “Everything” ONCE and boom: perfect sandwich appeared, with obviously much-higher-quality meat and bread. I might never go underground again. Good job! There’s even a surprise free cookie in the bottom of the bag!
Taste Buds TV held their annual Chef’s Competition this past Sunday at the event center in Paso Robles. I was a judge and the contestants this year were: Gregg Wangard, Shaun Behrens, Jacob Towne, Spencer Johnston, Bryan Mathers, and Kari Ziegler. This deserves its own post with full details. Give me a couple days.
That’s about it for this week. If you missed something, I probably talked about it LAST WEEK.
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