There’s a new eatery in the troubled spot on Chorro in Chinatown where the Iberian wine-shop was: about 5 tenants ago. THE HEALTHY CRAVE seems to promise more than just smoothies and I’m not sure what their shtick is, nor do I honestly care. Quite confident I will visit them exactly the same number of times I have visited every OTHER thing in this spot since the wine shop.
Down the street a block, side-by-side PARK and KULT have finally opened, and since LAST WEEK’S BLOG was basically just rapid-fire housekeeping, thought I’d show you some of my visits there. Been in to Park twice so far, though it ranks far-and-away THE most *place to be seen* SLO has had since probably bar at BLUE 10 years ago or Mission Grill’s bar a decade earlier. You literally CAN’T walk by on the sidewalk without seeing someone–and you can’t dine there without people stopping by to say hi. The first time I visited, I dove deep into their deep and eclectic winelist and opened both of their Musar’s. Was shocked how well it went with the olives & almonds… and then started doing the Mediterranean math… A few weeks later attended a Kathryn Kennedy wine dinner and the stunning dishes kept rolling. San Luis Obispo’s best restaurant at the moment? I don’t think there’s really too much competition in town currently.
Next door at the long-awaited KULT SLO, the vibe: energetic low-key, the aesthetic: Moroccan-Electric-Americana, the website: Instagram, the walk-in’s: non-existent, substitutions and corkage: verboten, the dress-code: millennial formal, the cocktails: crisp and crafty. Full disclosure: I HAVE NOT EATEN HERE YET. On the short-list, as the accolades toward the food keep drifting my way.
Need to do some serious maintenance to THE TACO LIST, as this is a sector rarely stagnant–even in weird times. In Atascadero, check out LA SUPREMA MEAT MARKET. In Pismo Beach, hit up MORENO’S TACOS. In Paso Robles, PAPI’S has taken over that strange Asian place next door to TASTE IN THE ALLEY but as far as authentic taqueria fare, PANADERIA MARTINEZ is currently my jam. A the opposite end of the county LA TAPATIA II on 13th St is THE al pastor to get, Lucy over at mothership LA TAPATIA has added quesobirria to the menu, EL GUERO parks at GBEATZ every day and LA PARILLA construction lumbers on.
Speaking of Templeton, the tiny gas station burger joint there for decades (why am I blankin out on its name) has been taken over by the Rangeland folks and is now RANGELAND GRASS FED. Kind of a bland burger, frankly. A testament to good burgers need to be not-so-pristine meat. I went back for mayo, ketchup, mustard, salt, pepper–ANYTHING to drive some flavor into this patty. Oh well: foodies gonna snob.
Other restaurant switcheroos: TRE FIAMME PIZZERIA TRATTORIA took over a sacred spot in Laguna Village. This is their best dish:
Unfortunately it is no longer on the menu, I can’t recommend anything else, have a nice day.
The egg sandwich is also no longer on the menu at the new addition to the BIG BUBBA’S BBQ stable of restaurants. Sheesh, this is getting depressing.
BELL’S in Los Alamos got a well-deserved Michelin star. I mean: how perfect a meal is this:
NOODLES! Let’s talk about noodles. Been on a bit of a noodle-kick lately…. The cold Sesame noodles at OKI KUMA are nearly a weekly habit. Just BEYOND good–especially while the weather’s so warm. Across town, I got talked into TIKI HUT by an employee. I had walked in once before some time ago and walked out: pigeon-holing it as just another of those boring poke-ricebowl-wrap places popping up all over millennials can’t seem to get enough of. My (much younger) tour guide said, “Oh no–you just need to know how to order. I don’t get that crap! Just get noodles!” Well then. There’s the magic word. KISS. Some time later (do NOT go at noon on a weekday!!! or 5-til or 10-til or even quarter-to!!!) I was presented with a gorgeous box of noodles I would def eat again.
I tried some other things for the first time in my life recently: Popeye’s Chicken. Chik-fil-A. Green Burrito. Capriotti’s. Surfside Deli. Burger King tacos. Sam’s Giant Manhattan Pizza. Little Bit’s. GAFCO. Madeline’s.
Have you heard about TYLER WINERY‘s little benefit lunches they are throwing regularly out at the homestead MAE ESTATE in partnership with BELL’S??? I got into one and gotta say: this is a refreshing experience. Talk about getting pampered! Check it out and sign up for a visit out there. SO WORTH IT.
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PLAY WITH YOUR FOOD!