Tuesday, December 20, 2011

cognoscenti coffee and proof bakery baked goods to feed the soul

yeekai lim's cognoscenti coffee was a pop-up that roamed no more when he finally settled his coffee talents at proof bakery in atwater village. if you want to wrap your cold hands around a good cup of joe that ranges in price from $2-$4, then i suggest you make your way to the eastside and nestle yourself in this stellar bakery with a plate of baked goods as well as a cup of coffee by cog...of course.

the scene around the cups of coffee is no slouch either. proof bakery in atwater village boasts some rather awesome baked good and sandwiches for you to nibble on as you shoot the breeze with your buds. check out this roasted cauliflower and kale sandwich ($7) in its super slender, crusty baguette, and tasty supermodel form. delicious AND pretty to look at.

the roasted pepper, feta, and olives sandwich ($7) was just as yummy. i loved the the pops of olives in every bite.

without a doubt, the baked goods are amazing here. this delicious persimmon scone ($3) was dense with bursts of persimmon chunks.

the chocolate croissant ($3.50) was decadent with a hint of chocolate oozing out. what a tease when you know just one big bite will take you right to its chocolatey center.

the almond croissant ($4) was probably my favorite at proof. flakey, soft, with bits of almond slivers sprinkled with powdered sugar...what's not to love about it?!

the salted chocolate chip cookie ($2) was to die for as well. i've always loved, and always will love, the hint of salt in my sweets. this cookie by far was a sophisticated bite for any cookie monster.

i definitely feel lucky to live in silverlake and to have access to so many great, surrounding neighborhoods. just a short little drive takes me to proof bakery goods and cognoscenti coffee, a luxury any day of the week especially when one needs a coffee break badly. and trust me, when i'm not on vacation, i need coffee breaks really, really, badly.

Proof Bakery
Cognoscenti Coffee
3156 Glendale Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90039
(323) 664-8633

price: $
verdict: omg, i love it!
Proof Bakery on Urbanspoon

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

let your dogs, eat my blog

the 4th installment of eat my blog will be taking place this saturday at pita jungle in pasadena. i'm super excited to be a part of the eat my blog planning committee for a second year in the row and will be baking as well...though you will have to be a four-legged pooch to actually appreciate what i'm making.

i got this idea from tien who baked dog biscuits for emb last year. genius. seriously, we should allow our dogs to stuff face too!! and for a good cause to boot! since i have 3 furry doggies of my own, i really wanted to honor all the four legged friends out there with these pumkin peanut butter dog biscuits.

not trying to sell them too hard *ahem,* but let's just say that after giving my three dogs a taste of the test biscuits i baked, my biggest/tallest dog promptly climbed the counter the following day to steal the rest. a$$hole.

"let me just have a bite of the leg...."


i think your dogs will like them too! hope to see you there!!

UPDATE: eat my blog raised $4,323.86!

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

allston yacht club for holiday boozing (echo park)

picture courtesy of allston yacht club (ayc)

i did not grow up celebrating thanksgiving. in fact, i might have tasted my first turkey at koo koo roos. shhh.... but as i grew up, the once foreign traditions of thanksgiving and green wreathed holiday cheer began to infiltrate our tightly fobby traditions. as each year overlapped the next, smashed potatoes, pumpkin pie, honey-glazed ham, eggnog etc...began to share the same space as the chow mein, fried rice, roasted duck, and eggrolls that normally occupied our holiday tables. so nowadays, the mere hint of cinnamon, nutmeg, and cold weather automatically sparks warm feelings of holiday cheer in me too...thanks for the melting pot effect america.

my holiday celebrations were kick started this year by allston yacht club in echo park. my sis and i were invited to try a few of their holiday cocktails and to nibble on some of their happy hour menu items.

accursed fruitcake cocktail. photo courtesy of ayc.

no joke, one of the best holiday cocktails ever. fragrant and boozy in the most subtle way. if you can squish christmas, thanksgiving, and a freakin' decorated pine tree into a glass cup, you will get the accursed fruitcake cocktail. i am TOTALLY going back with my friends to get my asian glow on with this sucka.

figgy pudding cocktail. photo courtesy of ayc.

the figgy pudding cocktail was an ultra sultry, boozy version of eggnog. if you like getting messed up while singing a christmas carol, DO so as you fist a glass of this.

a reasonably priced happy hour menu for food and drinks. yay!

korean style wings with dragon sauce...aka siracha? a tasty accompaniment to the real stars of the show...holiday cheer and boozy cocktails! yeah!

short rib poutine tostada was a bit tricky to eat and not that tasty. the short rib was dry and overly stringy.

the orange french toast grilled cheese sandwich was the oddest bite of food of the night. a definite skip unless you enjoy a failed combo of orange, bacon, and goat cheese....bleh.

you can never go wrong with garlic fries and these particular garlic fries were skinny and crispy, the perfect fry profile if you will. since my sis is a french fry enthusiast, as you can see, we got more than enough of our share that night.

with warm bellies full of booze and a heart clogged with french fry grease, i want to thank allston yacht club once again for jump starting my holiday cheer. i SHALL come back for the accursed fruitcake cocktail and fries as convos flow with old friends about life, love, and all the things we should be thankful for this holiday season. cheers.

Allston Yacht Club
1320 Echo Park Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90026
(213) 481 0454

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

rocking our tastebuds at raku (las vegas)

you start your life in preschool learning that "sharing is caring," but the real test of unselfish sharing comes when you are forced to part with possessions that you truly, dearly love. for some, it might be material, for others, it might be physical or emotional, but for my fat belly, it is usually of an edible nature. what a great first test for our marriage when we ate at raku in las vegas and i was forced to share each and every bite with my hubs...some harder to part than others.

let the sharing commence!

blue fin sashimi ($25) with soy sauce soaked nori which eliminated the need for a small saucer full of soy sauce. the blue fin was clean, fresh, incredibly silky yet firm at the same time. definitely a challenge to share when all i wanted to do was gobble them up, one piece of raw fish flesh at a time.

sashimi salad ($12) with pieces of blue fin tuna, salmon, and yellow tail on a bed of spinach leaves and crispy onions on top. a tart orange tinted dressing elevated this bowl of crunchy raw decadence to a craveable level. definitely hard to share...but i did. darn.

poached egg with sea urchin and salmon roe
($9) was a textural mess. slimey, cold, and gooey all at once. this one was never meant to be ordered or shared. *shudders*

the agedashi tofu ($10) had a slightly crispy, fried exterior which meant a muddled broth spotted with oil. a silken interior with distinct punches of flavor teases your tongue with every bite.

hanpen fishcake ($1.75) with mochi chakin ($2.50) was a warming bowl of sustenance though the texture of the mochi chakin left me yearning for something more toothesome. i had nooooooo problems sharing this one. unfortunately, my hubs was not too keen about it either so my efforts to share this dish garnered me zero points.

then came the grilled items. first up, grilled pig ears ($3). oh em gee. 'twas a fine day when humans decided to gnaw on little piggly wiggly ears. the crunch was fantastic. do share.

apple marinated lamb chop ($6) was another favorite bite of the night. slightly sweet and oh so tender. my husband had difficulties parting with this one...what a bad man.

tomato with bacon ($2.80) was ordered to pay tribute to my shin sen gumi beer slinging days. i loved the dangerous pop of piping hot tomato innards in your mouth as you quickly chase the warmth on your tongue with a swig of cold beer.

kobe beef outside skirt with garlic ($7.50) totally didn't taste like a ruffled, polka dotted skirt. it clearly had a bold, beefy presence in flavor with a slightly bitter trace from the garlic. share it.

last but not least, one of my favorite offals to finish off a night of sharing, kobe beef liver ($4.50). a perfectly grilled piece of liver will be silky and somewhat creamy in texture. this skewer was perfectly grilled and left my full belly yearning for more. tis a sign of love when i share my liver...and i did.

though there were a few misses with the meal, overall raku taught me a valuable lesson that night. every single morsel tastes 100x better when shared with a loved one so i suppose, "sharing is caring" and sharing what you eat also decreases the calorie count. win both ways.

5030 Spring Mountain Rd.
Ste 2
Las Vegas, NV 89146
(702) 367-3511

price: $$$
verdict: tasty, try it!
Raku on Urbanspoon

Friday, November 11, 2011

was the timing perfect? ;) did you make a wish like the gazillion other people that watched their clocks closely? i hope it comes true.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

mohawk bend for a quick trip down memory lane (echo park)

without specifying the digits that makes up my age, let's just say that i remember mohawk bend as an old movie theater and not as its current fashionable state as a vegan/vegetarian friendly feeding ground. in fact, i even watched "ghostbusters" there as a kid. yup, i'm kinda old and echo park has changed A LOT. trust.

after the theater finally closed its doors, the space remained vacant for a very long time and was a hotbed for graffiti and the homeless on sunset blvd. every time i drove by that boarded up theater, i always hoped it would reopen once again so i can catch a flick and reminisce about growing up in silverlake and watching movies with my cousins in echo park. but alas, any reminiscing will now be relegated to beer slinging in the now sultry, sexy mohawk bend. beer vs. popcorn, you decide.

as my friend and i settled down for our mohawk meal, we were given an extensive beer menu to peruse. i decided on the orange wheat beer ($5) which was delicious, fruity, and absolutely lip smacking pleasant for a non-beer lova like me. if i can swig a few glasses like this orange wheat, i reckon i will become a beer guzzling, beer enthusiast in no time. and for all the criticism about mohawk bend's food, you really can't beat their 72 beers on tap which to some folks may make a fine liquid dinner...screw the stuff that requires mastication and jaw work.

that night, we decided to pad our bellies with their fire roasted artichoke ($9) which was standard eats verging on boring. skip.

the cold jj kale salad ($8) with garlic, chili, and jicama fared slightly better. i enjoyed the ruffage and the acid from the dressing, but again, the taste profiles were neither mind blowing nor note worthy.

the keenwah ($10) salad with organic quinoa, pomegranate, red & gold beets, herbs, lemon-maple vinaigrette was tasty. the pistachios added a much needed crunch since the salad wilted rather quickly under the quinoa and beets.

the side of rosemary fries ($4) with togarashi for dipping were probably my favorite bites of the night. but then again, how does one eff up fries? yup, you just don't. the slightly sweet element to the togarashi makes this a must order beer accompaniment for me.

overall, although i am sad that i can no longer catch movies in this space, i am certainly excited for a place to unwind and hang out with friends over drinks. i think to avoid disappointment, do go in with the knowledge that food will be average but the libations are extensive and will cater to most beer lovers. hip hip hooray for drinking sans eating!

Mohawk Bend
2141 W. Sunset Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90026
(213) 483-2337

price: $$
verdict: (food) it's aight (beers) tasty, try it!
Mohawk Bend on Urbanspoon

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

amour for le saint amour (culver city)

as my black board eats discount for le saint amour descended into its eleventh hour, a sense of urgency filled my belly. 30% off?! do i allow this percentage to go down the drain or do i contact every single hungry person i know in my hungry people rolodex in hopes of connecting with another starving soul? alas, i was successful and off my sis and i went to culver city for a little french dining.

tools for our night of ravenous eating.

the first item up for consumption was the foie gras terrine ($15) with a side of mesclun salad. my tongue was mesmerized with the decadently smooth, well seasoned, foie gras which paired quite nicely with the sweetness from the apricot jam. the crostinis were superbly buttery and provided a wonderful platform for this fatty goose liver. a must order for me.

the escargots de bourgogne ($12 for 6) burgundy snails, garlic, parsley, with a puff pasty cap was delightfully buttery and garlicky. might i recommend drowning, and i mean DROWNING your already dead snails in the sauce before delivering it to your mouf? please do.

i enjoyed resting my escargot on the puff pastry cap before taking my swift bites.

the truffle mac and cheese ($10) was somewhat disappointing. it was rather watery with just a faint hint of truffle. although pretty to look at and priced decently, it would not be worth the extra dimple that will surely surface on your buttocks from the extra calories after consuming it.

i was rather excited to try their moules marinières ($18) mussels, white wine, shallots, and french fries which came with glowing reviews from justin and misty....until our server approached us with this question in his thick french accent, "do you want the good news or the bad news?" bad news first of course. "the bad news is that our french fry machine broke." WHUT?! OH HELL NO! I WAS TOLD THEY WERE AWESOME! :'( "the good news is that this is good for your body" and he said this while waving his arms up and down his slender frame. UGH. instead, we had to replace the unavailable fries with haricot verts. but luckily, the mussels were delicious and the creamy pool they rested upon was a perfectly delectable sauce for us to dip our bread in. drool. i almost forgot we were missing the fries.....

tasty, buttery, and garlicky green beans...but nowhere near a french fry. oh dear. oh sadness.

chef bruno's housemade sausages; lyonnais, toulouse, boudin noir ($20) was one huge sausage party on my plate. my favorite from the trio was the blood sausage while the other two fell limp in flavor. overall, not my favorite dish of the night.

we only briefly contemplated dessert before we decided to head home. my belly was freakin' full with french food and even a 30% discount wasn't going to expand it anymore than it already did. anyways, au revoir! till we meet again.

Le Saint Amour
9725 Culver Blvd

Culver City
, CA 90232
(310) 842-8155

price: $$$
verdict: tasty, try it!
Le Saint Amour on Urbanspoon
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