Eats & Treats in the US of A

As you can probably assume, my trips (regardless of destination) are always closely linked to food and what I’ll be eating – and where – upon my arrival. So I thought I’d cook up a little shortlist of my favorites (new and not so new) from both the Washington, DC area (my hometown) and San Francisco (as P’Trique would say, ob-sessed). It’s not as complete as it should be, but perhaps I’ll do a second installment if you so desire. *Photos posted below are not mine – rather than take snapshots of each meal I decided to leave the DSLR at home. Bad blogger! Sorry ’bout that folks.

 

Washington, DC
For those that think DC is just tourist buses and politicians in brown suits, you are nuts. Over the past several years the culinary scene has basically exploded and new spots are reminding us of the old classics that perhaps didn’t get the attention they deserved in the past. I love heading home for a visit, knowing I’ll be eating well no matter where I am in town.

Rasika – Indian with a gourmet, modern twist. Great cocktails, amazing atmosphere.
Zaytinya – One of the many gems of Chef José Andrés. Incredible Mediterranean dishes.
Nora – America’s 1st certified organic restaurant. Cozy, romantic, creative.
Patisserie Poupon – My go-to Upper Georgetown spot for an almond croissant.
Oyamel – José Andrés goes Mexican with this Penn Quarter hot spot.
Cork – Effortlessly hip wine bar and small plates restaurant on 14th street.
Crisp & Juicy – Arlington, VA’s favorite Peruvian chicken spot.
Baked & Wired – My favorite place for a huge cupcake and a cup of coffee.
Brasserie Beck – Stuff your face with mussels and other Belgian goodies.
Eastern Market – Farmer’s market heaven. Head inside to the breakfast counter.
*Special mention to the no-name taco truck that parks in the grocery store parking lot in South Arlington that literally has blown my mind with how amazing its food is.

Pictured above: Restaurant Nora, Oyamel, Cork, Baked & Wired

San Francisco / Sausalito / Sonoma
I was only in SF for 4 days, but every bite I ate was better than the last. Seriously I’d move out there just for the food if I could. So much variety! So many local market offerings! Farmer’s Markets! Organic things! It was like food porn heaven on crack, times infinity. I pine to return with empty suitcases so I can fill them with food and goodies.

Ferry Building – Anything and everything available here.
Out the Door – Chic Vietnamese bites in a sleek setting.
Dosa – Indian food that will blow your mind.
Bi-Rite – Obligatory ice cream stop, do it now.
Bar Bocce – Perfect for a sunny Sausalito lunch on the marina.
The Girl & the Fig – French classics with a country twist.
Blue Bottle Coffee – Erases my memories of burnt BA coffee nightmares.
Tartine – Buttery pastries, hello there.
Ft. Mason Farmer’s Market – Free samples + food stands (tacos, German sausages)

Pictured above: Ferry Building Marketplace, Dosa, Bar Bocce, the Girl & the Fig

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Food Porn Friday

Happy Friday to everyone, near and far, hungry and not (though I have a hard time comprehending that). It’s Food Porn time again! After some time in the northern hemisphere where it’s clearly de moda to be a sweaty pig 24/7, I’m back in winterlandia where I’ve had to reunite with my heavy wool coat. What do I crave when I need to warm up? Lamb shanks, of course.

 

The original lamb shank inspiration. Oh, lover:

 

Photo Credit: Food Porn Daily & Groovy Foody

… And I’m Back

Hello amigos. After a glorious two weeks off – from blogging, work, winter, and real life – I am back in Buenos Aires and ready to hit the ground running. As usual, I ate my way through the good ol’ United States of Amurica, so it looks like I’ll be hitting up the gym more than usual to burn off those delicious Yanqui calories. I kind of feel (and look) like this:

Anyway, expect some photos (but not that many, it was kind of nice to enjoy meals without photographing every bite) of our culinary adventures as well as my top local picks for both Washington, DC and San Francisco (my new favorite city).

Glad to be back – missed you all so let’s play catch up!

Photo Credit: Deviant Art

La Panza in Yanquilandia

Hello amigos. Sorry for the radio silence lately! I was really under the weather last week and then was rushing off to make my plane to Washington – we arrived yesterday and this girl has never been happier.

I will be eating my way around DC as well as San Francisco, so expect things to be a little quiet around here for the next two weeks. When I get back you’ll be sure to see all the photos and hear about our most memorable meals!

 

2nd Annual BA Chili Cookoff

Last Sunday, right before the glorious 4th of July holiday, the 2nd Annual BA Chili Cookoff took place at Maxim restaurant in Palermo Soho. Nearly 20 chefs were at the ready with their homespun spicy delights, about to be judged by tons (seriously I think there were 25+ of us?) of discerning and hungry judges. Organized by Dan Karlin, (the man behind Anuva wines and the BA Podcast) Frank Almeida (mastermind of Sugar & Spice) and Larry Rogers (El Tejano, the man who brought brisket to Buenos Aires), this year’s event was a great time. I loved having the chance to be a judge and even though I literally almost exploded from eating so much, thought it was pretty dandy to be able to get my paws on all of the chilis before the rest of the crowd was able to.

Judges were invited early, which was nice since the space literally exploded with people by later in the afternoon. The only thing I would have liked to change would have been the guidance (or lack thereof) in terms of judging – we were given a blank sheet and told to score on a 100-point scale. We weren’t allowed to discuss with other judges, either. Basically this meant that I didn’t think of something creative/logical like breaking down the points into flavor, spice level, and overall yumminess. Nope, not me. I literally just bolted out of the gate and starting eating and judging simultaneously. Woops. Not the most methodical or scientific approach, but in the end it just led to my giving perhaps overly generous scores – which was fine with me! (I also would have appreciated it if a glass of beer weren’t $25 pesos but that’s just a side note.)

My favorites were Craig Jull’s smoky, meaty and spicy chili (which won both Judges’ and Peoples’ Choice), Daniel Tunnard’s Indian-influenced batch, and Johnny Deutsch’s Patagonic lamb with hints of chocolate and espresso (he won it all). Not far behind was Paul Strobl’s chili which had a heavy French lilt and was full of wine – I liked that it was different. It’s so interesting to see how a general concept of a dish can be interpreted in so many ways. Overall, a great experience which I hope to repeat next year! Congratulations to everyone who participated and won, and thanks to the event organizers for letting us stuff our faces all in the name of being “official.”

Happy 4th of July

No matter where you are in the world, if you’re from Amurica (or live there), I hope you find a way to celebrate today. Whether it be by eating apple pie, some pulled pork, or sporting your red, white and blue – Enjoy it. America, fuck yeah.

“You have to love a nation that celebrates its independence every July 4, not with a parade of guns, tanks, and soldiers who file by the White House in a show of strength and muscle, but with family picnics where kids throw Frisbees, the potato salad gets iffy, and the flies die from happiness. You may think you have overeaten, but it is patriotism.”
-Erma Bombeck