Friday, January 30, 2009

Melt Brunch

Melt! Frittata on the top, waffle with poached oranged on the bottom.

I couldn't get my sister to keep her fork out of the frame while I took the picture.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Having My Cupcake and Decorating it Too

Every year Starbucks brings cupcakes back into their pastry lineup. Every year I hate them for it. I hate walking in for a newspaper and a latte and finding myself face to face with a gorgeous red velvet cupcake at 8 in the morning, with dessert so many hours away. "I'll get one later," I think, and then I never do.

I finally got one on Saturday. As described by my friend Monica, who gave me the cupcake, "It's not the best thing ever, but it's still a cupcake." Which about sums up my review of the red velvet cupcakes at Starbucks.

And in other news, during another trip to the aforementioned Starbucks, I dumped half of a 12 ounce latte onto my work computer. Over the keys and everything. I was literally holding my laptop upside down, dumping hot coffee out of it, and cursing wildly. The barista behind the counter was amazing though-- when I told her I'd spilled my drink like a child and made a huge mess, the first thing she asked me was if I wanted another one. I turned it down. Clearly I can't be trusted with beverages.

Anyway, remember my cookie wreck from a few weeks ago? I've started taking a cake decorating class with a couple of my co-workers at Cincinnati Cake and Candy Supply in... Sharonville? Somewhere over there. There wasn't much to show from the first class, but based on my last pastry decorating experience, I can only improve from here.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Cold Boston, Hot Pizza

If you find yourself in Boston and you fancy a slice of pizza, find the local chain Upper Crust. Behold the razor thin crispy crust.

My slice, front and center, was the slice of the day with proscuitto, basil and banana peppers. Slightly spicy, and spicy is good when it's freezing outside. And a $3.50 lunch on Newbury Street? Heck yeah.

Anyone have a Boston favorite?

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Terry's Turf Club

I finally made it. What can I tell you about Terry and his Turf Club that you haven't already heard? The place is electric. The burgers are out-of-control good. But you know that. Here's what we ordered:

I had the burger with Swiss, red wine sauce, and grilled onions per Terry's recommendation. Messy. Perfect.

My sister got the goat cheese-red pepper sauce, blue cheese, and bacon on hers.

All I have left to say is if you are still waiting, still making excuses not to go to Terry's, you are living a lie. Go. Whatever the price you pay - long wait, crowded dining room, arctic temperatures - is worth one of Terry's burgers.

How do you order your burger at Terry's?

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Bittman Knows Best

NY Times food writer Mark Bittman seems to have tapped into our collective New Year's Resolution to cook more often with fresher ingredients. His article last week featured some tips on revitalizing your cupboard for the new year. Cheers, Mark, and here's to fresh croutons in 2009!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Viva Buffet

This is where I spent a few days last week. A city bursting at its seams with culinary possibilities. Emeril? Colicchio? Toby Keith? They've all got a restaurant. Time was scarce and there was much scurrying around the city to do for work, so I didn't get to try many of the dining options. I peered jealously into restaurants like Fiamma and Shibuya every time I walked through my hotel. We did have time for a full dinner at Emeril's, and it was indeed bam-worthy. Late into my final night in Vegas I found myself at Wynn for an event with some awesome catered food. Spicy shrimp cocktails, fancy sporks, and the crowning glory-- the dessert table. Nothing makes me happy like an endless supply of desserts and an open bar. Even though I didn't do any real gambling in Vegas, I still came out a winner.

Monday, January 5, 2009

It Takes Two to Dingle

Dingle House. I can't get over the name of this restaurant. I recently lured one of my friends to dinner there by emphasizing the beauty and intrigue of the name.

"It's called Dingle House. DINGLE."

She couldn't resist. We started with beer, as many dinners at Dingle House start. Especially when they start before 7 PM on weekdays, when select beers are cheaper. I had a Samuel Adams Light, she had a Beamish. Beer course was followed with clam chowder course, which was almost as good. There was kind of a skin on my soup when it arrived from the kitchen, but it was a fine clam chowder.

I followed clam chowder course with the Dingle house salad. I was worried that the maple-balsamic dressing would be candy-sweet, but it was creamier than expected, and delicious. Definitely a nice house salad.

I had a few of the pub wedge fries and I can also endorse them. I like toast nearly burnt, and I liked these crisp, dark fries. Overall, I was happy with the Dingle House. If you find yourself in the remote regions of West Chester during happy hour, visit the Dingle House for some appetizers and an excellent beer. And, of course, some top-notch dingle.

Some Dingle House fun facts, or "you know you're at an Irish pub when...":
-Guiness is listed on the menu as an appetizer
-Diners wearing kilts will receive a free appetizer
-Happy Hour starts at 11 am

Dingle House Irish Pub on Urbanspoon

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Last Night at Kona

The lease is up and Kona Bistro in Oakley is closed for business. As a Miami student, I frequented Kona's location in Oxford as often as I could scrape together enough cash for an Indian stuffed burrito.

When I heard that the Cincy location was closing, I felt it would only be appropriate to make my last dinner of 2008 my last meal at Oakley Kona. I called. They told me the last dinner would be a buffet-- all the artichoke dip and Jambalaya I could eat for 18 bucks. Sold.

The Indian burrito was on the buffet line. So was the Kona brownie. It was everything I wanted. I guess I'd say that Kona wasn't a superstar on the Cincinnati indepent restaurant scene, but I liked knowing it was there when I needed it. Decent eats, nice atmosphere, and a reasonable price. It was a little piece of Oxford in my backyard.

The last night at Kona was festive. I wasn't sure what to expect-- crying? Gnashing of teeth? Not so, there was holiday cheer and buffet food aplenty. I grabbed my burrito, ordered a cocktail, and settled in to enjoy the last meal at Kona.