Wednesday, June 30, 2010

The Smoking Goat is Smokin!

The tiny gem - The Smoking Goat opened up in February 2010 in North Park and I must say this is my new favorite restaurant in San Diego. Chef Frederick Piehl's who is a graduate of Le Cordon Bleu Paris created a menu that consists of classic bistro style food, in a rustic casual environment. This place is very small which to me makes it extra special. Only seating about 28 people at a time which is perfect if you want to host a private event! Open Tuesday-Sunday and they don't take reservations but you can call 30 minutes before you are coming in and the friendly staff is ready to assist. The menu is small but the choices on the menu are all tempting so good luck deciding what to order. I suggest you go with a few people so you can taste everything. The portions are very large and expect changes to the menu with the seasons. Everything served is organic and so fresh. Here is what we ordered and everything was fabulous!

Panzanella Salad - Italian salad made with crusty bread, local heirloom tomatoes, red onions, basil, champagne vinaigrette, and topped with Burrata Cheese. Burrata cheese is a fresh Italian cheese made from mozzarella & cream. This cheese is insane! The outer shell is solid mozzarella while the inside contains both mozzarella & cream. Burrata means "buttered" in Italian and this cheese is like butter. In fact the salad was like butter too!
Jidori Chicken - pan roasted breast with the wing on top of mashed potatoes, blue lake green beans & carrots, smothered with a smoked tomato & corn relish. I rarely order chicken but this is one chicken I will for sure come back for. Delish!
Burger on Brioche with brie cheese & fixings. Served with Duck Fat Truffle Fries. Yeah...I don't really need to say to much about this dish except for IT'S A MUST! Best fries I ever had!
The best dish for last. Macaroni & Cheese - made with Swiss, white Vermont Cheddar & pecorino cheeses.
Once you try The Smoking Goat you will come back for more...that is why The Smoking Goat is Smokin!
3408 30th Street San Diego, CA.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

5 Napkin Burger

Need I say anymore. My first stop in New York last week was 5 Napkin Burger. When my friend suggested burgers for dinner I told her I was really in the mood for sushi. Her reply to me was "They have sushi." I responded "Burgers & Sushi? This is a place I have to check out!"
The restaurants decor is upscale and you would not think the specialty at 5 Napkin is burgers.Why is it called 5 Napkin Burger? Because this burger is so juicy that you literally need 5 Napkins to eat it. Hands down this is by far the best burger I ever had & the juiciest.
The Original 5Napkin is what I ordered and the name says it all. 10 oz. fresh ground chuck, Gruyere cheese, caramelized onions & rosemary aioli on a soft white roll. Yes and I finished the whole thing to my friends surprise who are regulars to this treasure of NYC.
The other burgers on the menu looked fantastic.
Cheddar Bacon - 10 oz chuck, sharp cheddar, raw onion, lettuce tomato on a soft white roll
Italian Turkey - melted mozzarella cheese, spicy tomato sauce, vinegar peppers on a sesame egg roll
Ahi Tuna - marinated in ginger, scallions, and soy, served with wasabi mayo, tempura fried onions on a sesame egg roll
Inside Out - 10 oz chuck, house made pickles, tomatoes & wrapped in lettuce served with 5N sauce
Lamb Kofta - chopped tomato, cucumber, pepper & onion salad, tahini sauce served on a soft white roll
5Napkin Veggie - house made with 5N sauce (kind of like a thousand island), pickles, lettuce, tomatoes on a multi grain roll
Not in the mood for a burger? 5 Napkin Burger will fill just about anyone's cravings. Check out the full menu here. I could of gone just for the sushi alone. It was amazing! Also the Hells Kitchen Wings (green tomato and pineapple ketchup) are a must (do not pass this item up). They also have a wide variety of entrees & salads to choose from as well which look amazing. Make sure you save room for one of the Shakes or Floats on the menu. We had the Black & White Malted and it was divine! Oh and I can't forget they have over 100 different kinds of wines, 55 different types of beers, and specialty drinks to choose from too.
5 Napkin will be my traditional first stop every time I am in the city from now on. I really don't know how I will ever eat another burger again. I am now spoiled and no other burger will ever compare. Until my next visit 5 Napkin...for now I will see you in my dreams and pray for a West Coast location!
Hells Kitchen - 630 9th Ave. @ 45th Street
Upper West Side - 2315 Broadway @ 84th Street