Saturday, April 26, 2008
This past Tuesday, with the sun out and the weather warm I decided I would enjoy my usual Tuesday night dinner with my girlfriend at W.A. Frost http://www.wafrost.com/home.html. The biggest reason I decided to cross the river was Frost's A+ Patio which is best enjoyed once the weather becomes tolerable. It is simply the perfect outdoor dining experience and since it was the first truly nice day I had seen in quite some time, I jumped on the opportunity. The air became a bit chill as the night grew on but a perfect spot next to the charmingly warm fire took care of the bite in the air. Frost has a truly compelling bar menu as it relates to both food and cocktails. I rolled the dice on a Modelo with Tabasco, lime and worcestershire. I think if you would have lost the worcestershire I would have been fine, but it was a bit too much. A quick change to a simple micro brew EPA from Portland was a great fix. Jessica and I decided to order the Duck and Pork bratwurst and the BLT and split the two. We had the fries to accompany the brat and I had the mixed greens with the BLT. First of all the fries were outrageous, meaty and crispy, to put it simple: Perfect. The Brat was totally out of the park - the duck raised the big brat flavor to a new level and the sweet pork stood up well to the flavorful duck . It was accompanied with pickled onions, a Guinness reduction ans a nice roasted corn salsa. It was a big flavor that mingles well with a smooth EPA. The BLT was good, but not great. I loved the Bib lettuce accompaniment, I'm always a huge fan of fried eggs on just about any sandwich, and the Sriracha mayo provided an much needed bite to the profile. The biggest short falling was the bread, which was a simple toasted white variety akin to Wonder - we all know the bread is the foundation of a good sandwich and it just fell short. That being said there were about five other items on their bar menu that I would have ordered on any other night and my allegiance to a BLT just won through. I'll have to find a good night to go back, but as I look outside at the snow on April 26th, I realize that may be a few days away.
The best part about Frost is their patio. They pour great cocktails, have exceptional service and the environment is second to none in the state. I highly recommend heading over to enjoy this little slice of serenity whenever possible. Just call ahead for outdoor reservations on the traditional dining nights. I promise it will be well worth it.
I'm off to tear into my first crack at pulled pork. Hopefully that will help get the chill out of my bones. Spring in MN can be cruel...
Saturday, April 19, 2008
OK, so I haven't posted in a while. However, make no mistake, I am no less obsessed with food today, it's just that I've been busy, so have a heart. So I love good food and I love cheap food - cheap eats if you will. I'm going to make it more of a point to write about the cheap eats I love. There is nothing better then rounding out a prefect day on the go, filled with fun activities, then to hit a quick spot where you can get a quick, exciting meal and get on to the next event. Enter Grand Avenue in St. Paul and Shish Mediterranean cafe. They serve breakfast, lunch and dinner and specialize in Mediterranean and middle eastern dishes. I love their food! The first time I hit Shish I had to have the chicken shawarma http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shawarma . I fell in love with shawarma when I was studying on the Gold Coast in Australia where it is a common street food. One huge culinary component I feel is missing from this city is a tremendous culture of street food, but that is for another post. The shwarma was warm, spicy and balanced with tender, spicy chicken and the crunch of a few onions and crisp lettuce. Mix that in with a cool hint of cucumber sauce and you have a great meal on the go, although I woulkd have loved some sweet chili sauce! The second time (OK serious nod to Shish simply based on the fact that I ate there twice in 2 weeks) I at there I had a burger that was celebrated with a Med feeling and style. Take a nicely grilled burger, (OK, maybe it was a bit dry - let's up the fat content people, my BMI is just fine!) top it with good quality feta, grilled tomatoes and onions, a light and earthy hummus add a dollop of Tzatziki and you've got a serious meal and a community of flavors that has all the comforts of a good old burger and all the flash and excitement of middle eastern cuisine. The fries were outrageous too. They were perfectly crisp, well salted and had a hint of curry in the finish. Head over to Grand just past Macalaster and before Snelling if you are looking for a good on-the-go lunch in St. Paul. Oh and by the way. It's straight up cheap!
Tuesday, April 1, 2008
Wanted everyone to know there is no better time to look into a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) crop share then right now. I'm trying to figure out the best way for me to get into one right now, as I am just one mouth to feed. Hopefully the roommates will realize the benefits of eating outside of the realm of Chipotle and microwavable cuisine. My parents have done this the past few years and you get some great stuff out of it. And of course it supports the local Ag communities around the city. It's fresh produce, grown with sustainable practices, and since you don;'t know what you are getting until it shows up, it can be down right exciting. Wow, I am obsessed with food. Take a look at the following link to learn more about local CSAs .