April 28, 2008

Two More Days till Giveaway

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Here. You have a really good chance of winning. Because there aren't a million people reading this blog. Try it.

April 27, 2008

Best Review I've Heard in a Long Long Long Time

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My sister recently got back from a trip to Utah, where she ate at TGIFriday's. She was telling me about it... something like, "I've only been to TGIFriday's twice and both times the food has literally tasted like poop."

Have you heard/seen the new TGIFriday's commercials with Guy Fieri? Obnoxious. I haven't been to one of those restaurants since I was in college. I'd like to keep that memory fading.

April 22, 2008

Eat Big? Win Big! Then Eat Big Again.

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Did you eat something recently that knocked you on your ass and made you say "WOW"? (In a good way OR a bad way) Was it at a Portland restaurant? Was it in your kitchen? I want to hear about it!

Tell me about it by posting a comment on this entry and be entered into a drawing to win a $50 gift certificate to the new-ish Italian restaurant Mercato in NW Portland. They have pizza, panini, and pasta and a plethora of gelato. You've got nothing to lose.

Let's hear it Portland!

**Please comment by Wednesday, April 30th. The drawing will be on May 1st.

April 21, 2008


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I have been eating out. A lot. And not writing a damn word. And then the memories get all mixed up and I can't recall with much clarity what went down.

Here are some highlights that I do remember:

Meatloaf at Kenny and Zuke's. De-light-ful.
Chicken Wings at Muu Muu's. Ordinary. Spicy.
Crab/Seafood Cakes at Henry's. Eh.
Cervelle de Canut at Carafe. (Goat cheese on toasted walnut bread.) A little goat cheesy, but good.
Seco a la Nortena at Andina. Unbelieveably savory and filling and comfortable like an old sweater.

And on that note, I'm headed off to sleep in my old sweater of a memory. I promise more exciting and detailed reviews in the very near future. Peace out.

April 16, 2008

So Long, Farewell

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Today was my last day at my job in Canby. And I feel a little nostalgic, though I've only been working there for a year and a half. And I really feel the need to give a shout out to the ONLY good place to eat in Canby. Tres Cafe.

They have the best BLT - one that I've fallen on my face for as I tried to keep it from tumbling out of my hands. They know my name when I come in. Their service is impeccable, and their menu consistently good. They are hard working people who really give it their all. And I just want to say. Thank you for making my stay in Canby worth it - if you only knew how many times your crisp, fresh sandwiches and your tangy pasta salads put some real pleasure in my day.

Wow I'm sappy tonight - but truly - shout out to Tres Cafe. Go visit them if you ever get to Canby.

Tres Cafe
243 NW 2nd Ave.
Canby, OR

Monday - Friday 7am - 4pm
Saturday 8am - 2:30pm

April 14, 2008

What Sparkly Water You Have!

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Walking into 23 Hoyt the other night for my restaurant group, I felt a little like I was stepping up a very tall step up from where I usually am. It rained heavily between my car and the restaurant and the heels I was wearing were unsteady. As I followed the uber-stylish hostess up the stairs to our table, I kept envisioning what I would look like falling down into the dining room below, in my rain-spattered, white slacks and now muddy heels, which would surely flip off in the fall and land on my pants, leaving me with a muddy stain in some awkward place, I'm sure. Without going into details, the picture in my mind of my social demise was not pretty.

I made it to our table without incident. But I was not comfortable. Not because the surroundings weren't completely perfect and the service perfectly wonderful, but because they were. And I am not comfortable with surroundings and service that so exceed my beauty and self-esteem level. (Please don't say Aw at this point. That was a joke.)

Because it was my friend Sara's birthday, I called ahead and spoke to the lovely manager, what's-his-name, who wrote it all down and was quite nice about it. They also said they would make up some special non-alcoholic drinks for us, since most of us don't drink alcohol, but we still like colorful, bubbly drinks that make us happy. That was nice.

In fact, when I sat down, the waitress poured me a glass of sparkling water. Did she ask me if I wanted it? I think she did. And I think I might have just been so relieved that I didn't fall on my way to our table that I said sure and didn't think about it. Funny. I think everyone at the table did the same.

Then she told us about the drink they had whipped up - hibiscus infused passion blood orange refresher. Would we like some? HELLO. Yes, of course.

So we had our pre-dinner cocktails, then our fancy appetizers. Potato and Goat Cheese Galette that was lovely and goat-cheesy. Oysters on the half-shell and Cauliflower Soup (!) with paprika also made an appearance. I was actually kind of full after eating my galette and then tasting the soup (which was the best way I've ever had cauliflower: rich, buttery flavor) and drinking my drink. I could have stopped there and been so happy. Yeah right. In whose world would that ever happen? (See my other blog for details on that ever elusive world.)

The dinner menu looked creatively amazing. I ordered the trout. Okay, the full description from the menu is: Sauteed golden Idaho trout in breadcrumbs with horseradish cream, toasted almonds, new potatoes and sauteed spinach. Much better. You know I'm just recently turning into a fish-eater and this was my first ever trout. And what a way to have my first trout. With crunchy non-ordinary salt topping the fish and the potatoes, I was really, really pleased - It was perfect and I didn't want it to ever end.

But it did end. And then it was time for dessert. I was having a little celebration in my head for lots of little good things in my life, so I decided to celebrate with sugar (shocker) and ordered the German Chocolate Cake with coffee ice cream. I was surprised to discover that I didn't really care for the cake that much, and the ice cream was much too strong for my taste. I much prefer dense cakes to the spongy kind of cakes. So my blood sugar lucked out on that one, as I left most of it on my plate.

We always have excellent discussions at the restaurant groups and I can honestly say that my dining companions that night are my very, very, very, good friends. And its such a good thing I was at 23 Hoyt with very, very, very good friends. Which brings us to the bill. Oh the bill. Now we all saw the menu and knew the prices, there should have been no shock there. Except the sparkling water that we all guzzled down all night in quick succession. We didn't think to ask how much it cost and we drank a lot. But it was such a nice luxury to have someone pouring sparkling water all night. It was so bubbly! Sigh. Well, as it turns out, some of us got a little out of control with the hibiscus drinks, too. Oh and then there was the matter of the gnocchi appetizer ordered instead of an entree, but so nice, they made it into an entree. It was only $10 more than the appetizer. Probably not an ideal place for a group of money-conscious people.

After all the laughing subsided that yes, we really did just spend $42.50 on water, we walked outside, me still wobbly on my heels and I realized that while I LOVED my dinner, I might not go back to 23 Hoyt. Mostly because I'm afraid that next time, my social demise might become a reality, either by falling down the stairs in my ridiculous but really pretty heels, or by having to wash the dishes to pay for my water. And well, we can't have that.

In a unanimous decision, we have decided that next month's restaurant group will be at a pizza joint.

23 Hoyt on Urbanspoon

April 2, 2008

The Church Ladies and the Veggie Melt

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Down I-5, a little southeast of Wilsonville, lies a little town of little consequence. It is the town where I work. I think I can safely say that the skateboard park could be the most exciting part of Canby.

Restaurants are not Canby's strength. And sometimes when I do venture past the microwave for lunch, I have a culinary adventure. Like today.

There's a new restaurant in town. Biscuits Cafe (with multiple locations around the Portland metro area, Canby is their newest.) The first thing I saw when I walked in was a wooden sign for the restrooms (is that really the first thing you want someone to see when they walk into a restaurant?), which said in large, white, childish writing: "RESTROOMZ". Do they think that we think that a kid really made the sign? Because it's too neat to be by a kid, but misspelled and too messy to be by an adult. So what does that tell us? I don't even want to think about the meeting where someone decided that Kute Kid writing would be a great idea. But hey, what do I know? (Besides how to spell the word "restrooms.")

I could almost smell the nursing home where surely most of the customers must have come from. I was seated in the corner, diagonally from three church ladies. Since the waitress was pretty slow with my food, I stared at the church ladies and eavesdropped on their conversation, in between texting myself with their comments that I just had to remember.

"We're going to put little statues of animals all over. It will be very nice," said the talkative one. The lady with the cross around her neck nodded.

"That will be very nice." The white-haired lady across from them didn't respond. Then the talkative one repeated it louder. "WE'RE GOING TO PUT LITTLE STATUES OF ANIMALS ALL OVER." Then the white-haired head nodded.

"My grandson. The only time he goes to church is when he's with us. He has visitation with our son at our house every other week. So that's good." The crossed lady nodded. "I mean their lives are just so fragile. Their mother, she's nice and everything, but she doesn't have a husband."

"MY GRANDSON. HE GOES TO CHURCH WHEN HE VISITS US." The white head nodded again.

I had to stop from laughing out loud. But that was easier once my plate of food arrived. I had ordered a Veggie Melt. Olives, mushrooms, peppers and onions with blue cheese and jack cheese. Holy hell. There was so much cheese on that sandwich that it must have weighed 1/2 pound. And the white bread was heavily buttered, lightly toasted and soggy. The blue cheese added in that slightly moldy flavor of cheese gone bad. I'm afraid it wasn't good. The fries were pretty hot, though and kind of good, in a Denny's sort of way.

There was a sign in a stand on the table that said "Fresh Squeezed Orange Juice. Gently Pasteurized." Huh. Kind of weird to advertise that. If the juice is squeezed and then pasteurized, is it really fresh squeezed? And what exactly does "gently" mean? Maybe someone could enlighten me on that subject - I'm no science scholar, or juice scholar for that matter.

Biscuits Cafe serves breakfast all day, which might be the only reason I go back. If one day, I'm just sitting at my desk craving the pancakes my grandma used to make like I was five again then, I might jaunt over to Biscuits Cafe, where I could both see a replica of my grandma and eat replicas of her pancakes.

Biscuits Cafe
102 N. Ivy St.
Canby, OR
"We don't serve fast food... We serve fresh food as fast as we can!"

Monday - Saturday: 6:30am - 2:30pm
Sunday: 7:00 am - 2:30pm

Problem Solved!

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Okay - I think I fixed the problem with Firefox and made the site look a little more smashing. If you are still having troubles viewing it, please let me know. Thanks!