Our Holiday Sweets in fotos

Here are holiday sweets we enjoyed this season from cookies to pies, candy to cheesecake my waist has seen it all. Can’t wait for New Year to get here…
Lemon Pecan Pie from Hob Nob Hill Restaurant to go

 love Cotton Candy!

Cream Cheese Brownie from Extraordinary Desserts

Sof’ella Caramel Monkey Bread Mix from World Market

Post Nap remnants of Monkey Bread and Caramel Sauce

Sugar Cookies

Peanut Blossoms


Cheesecake Factory Key Lime and Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Yum!

Weekend roundup: Curry, Storm, Sunday Walk & Supper

Saturday was wet weather so once the sun came out I couldnt wait to get out and enjoy the warm fall weather. Here are some fotos from the rain and after, some yummy food we ate and a walking trip. Enjoy!
Stormy Pringle Street Looking West

Sunset Pringle Street West

Taste of the Himalayas see my review here: http://www.yelp.com/biz/taste-of-the-himalayas-san-diego-2#hrid:UnfCc1mwPrygxMBpaaH7Aw

Starter of lentil soup then split eggplant/chicken special and veggie coconut curry with Basmati rice and yumy nann flatbread. So good!

Pringle Street Looking West to Pt. Loma

Pringle Street looking at Downtown
Walking trails at Presidio Park, Serra Museum in Mission Hills


Views to Linda Vista, North

Looking East

Serra Museum

Add caption

Looking East to Inspiration Point, see my recent post on that lovely spot here.

Looking East, Blackberry camera not so great

Looking up the The Arbor area

The Arbor area

Ended the day with an early dinner at Hob Nob Hill in Bankers Hill with Mom, love this place!

Pringle Street Looking South to Downtown San Diego

Las Quatro Milpas Rules!

Las Quatro Milpas is one of my favorite places for amazing authentic Mexican food. Here’s a link to my yelp review. Here is a link to their Facebook page. I forgot my camera today, sorry about my Blackberry foto quality.

Las Quatro Milpas
1875 Logan Ave
(between Beardsley St & Crosby St)
San Diego, CA 92113
Neighborhood: Barrio Logan
(619) 234-4460

Update-New: Brooklyn Girl in Mission Hills – DiscoverSD.com

Michael and Victoria McGeath, owners of the former Trattoria Acqua in La Jolla, announced plans for their new culinary concept, Brooklyn Girl Eatery in Mission Hills, which is slated to open doors winter 2011.
Far from the fine dining vibe of their longstanding classic Italian restaurant, Brooklyn Girl will be a casual, welcoming neighborhood eatery designed for community interaction, and built on the all-important principle of affordable, approachable cuisine made with fresh, local ingredients. It’s a vision we’ve heard before, but one that we all believe in. Mission Hills is an intimate mid-city neighborhood that many local foodies call home, and McGeath’s farm-to-table experience may be just what the residents want.
The multi-use building on Goldfinch Avenue offers a raw, urban atmosphere, but the cuisine is what will bring the restaurant to life. The McGeath’s are excited to unveil the selection for new executive chef, Tyler Thrasher – a young rising star in the culinary scene. Tyler Thrasher was most recently with Oceanaire Seafood Room and Jsix at Hotel Solamar, both in downtown San Diego.
I spoke with Thrasher on his first executive chef post: “This will be the first restaurant I’ve opened, and I’m excited to challenge myself in a way I’ve never done before. The menu will be very approachable, flavorful, natural, and local. We will use California proteins, sustainable fish, and local produce from Susie’s Farm.”

As for details on the new menu, Thrasher is still in the creative process, and is planning to research his way through New York in late October, eating at signature restaurants in Brooklyn and Manhattan for raw inspiration. Although he couldn’t disclose any specifics, Thrasher emphasized that his menu will feature slow-braised items and will be packed with flavor. Thrasher describes himself as an interactive chef, and is most looking forward to developing personal relationships with local Mission Hills diners. He admits he will miss the convenience of the Gaslamp for post-work socializing, but as for the Convention Center masses consistently invading the city streets, they will not be missed.

Brooklyn Girl Eatery‘s blog says they are slated to open their doors in the winter 2011, serving Chef Tyler Thrasher’s new dinner menu, before rolling out a lunch and brunch menu in early 2012. 

New: Brooklyn Girl in Mission Hills – DiscoverSD.com

Also see other MHL posts with “Brooklyn” label:

Blueberry Bar recipe from Water’s Fine Foods shared

Water’s Blueberry Bars, a summer tradition

I noted this recipe for Blueberry Bars recently listed on Waters Fine Catering Facebook page. Back in the early 90’s, I worked for Mary Kay Waters at Water’s Catering. She was my neighbor, which also made me the occasional family babysitter. I held the position(s) of sous chef, catering secretary/assistant; creating menus, proposals, working parties and prepping in the kitchen for credits towards my culinary arts/hospitality degree.

Today her enterprise has expanded to include Water’s Fine Foods to Go, with  two locations, one near Mission Hills on W. Morena Blvd, and the other in Solana Beach. Also new, Fibonacci’s Campus Pointe Bistro by Waters brings delicious, quality artisanal food to La Jolla’s UTC area. Recipe after the jump with more photos.

Be sure to take a trip by Water’s Fine Foods to Go and pick up some Water’s Brand Hand-Crafted Granola, Salt & Pepper Blend and Salted Peanuts. Perfect gift ideas!

Dining: Local Habit | On my must try list

While walking my dogs at Dusty Rhodes dog park in Ocean Beach, I met the chef’s wife of the restaurant Local Habit in Hillcrest. We both have new rescue dogs. The following day I noticed this new review in the SDUptown. After the post I included some links to past articles, yelp reviews etc. Comment back if you go or have been. Sounds yummy.

By David Nelson | SDUN Restaurant Critic

Anyone who remembers the California-style “fern bars” (airy places hung with masses of potted ferns and similar greenery) that were cornerstones of boomer social life in the 1970s may be too long in the tooth to make a habit of hanging at Hillcrest’s new Local Habit. But a few fern tendrils in its woodsy, high-ceilinged room, with its bare wooden tables and vast windows offering views of 5th Avenue, create the same cozy feeling as those now quaint venues, encouraging patrons to make a habit of visiting their “local,” as Brits frequently refer to pubs.

“The décor just came together; it kind of chose us,” says co-owner and manager Adam Hiner, who evidently shares a talent for scavenging with partner/chef Nicholas Brune and partner/occasional bartender Barry Braden. “We found all this reclaimed wood and figured out what to do with as we brought it in.”

If the décor to some degree designed itself, the menu and bar lists show a careful, deliberate approach to hospitality. Local Habit is in fact a successor to and continuation of the previous occupant, Pizza Fusion, which apparently needed a little more pizzazz—and more than high-quality pizzas—to make it. 
First at bat on the Local Habit menu: a list of imaginative, appealing pizzas built on guests’ choice of traditional Naples-style dough, or whole wheat or gluten-free crusts. “There must be a genuine sensitivity to gluten on the part of management, in fact, since almost every item bears the logo “gf” encased in a red circle.” Exceptions include a savory bread pudding enriched with Gouda cheese and roasted tomatoes and peppers, and a bread salad with grilled seasonal vegetables, arugula and tomato vinaigrette. If these items show an eye to pleasing vegetarians, they should, since Local Habit also offers substantial vegetarian plates, such as sandwich of grilled veggies, house aioli and mixed greens assembled on a whole wheat baguette that is, of course, gluten-free.

The counterpoints to Local Habit’s carefully composed but easy-going menu are highly selective lists of bottled craft beers, California wines, superb ciders and home-made sodas. The beers are choice and often seem on the pricey side, but most are bottled in quite large portions, of 22 ounces (for example Port Brewing Shark Attack and Eel River 2009 Climax Noel, both $10) or even, in the case of the $17-a-pop AleSmith Speedway Stout, 750 milliliters, which is one big brewski. Hiner notes that his restaurant is “the only craft beer place in Hillcrest,” and that customers who used to head to foamier neighborhoods now make Local Habit a regular port of call.

The wine list misses a baker’s dozen by two, but offers boutique choices such as Terra Savia Chardonnay and Keenan Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon ($6 to $12 by the glass, $24 to $38 the bottle). Cider was a mainstay of American life until the Temperance movement commenced striking in the 1830s, when entire orchards of apple, pears and cherries were chopped down. Local Habit revives a fine old tradition by offering Julian Hard Apple Cider, and Fox Barrel pear and black currant ciders. Priced at $2.50, the rich-tasting root beer and ginger ale cost no more than do diet colas at dozens of nearby restaurants, while they clearly offer much more in the way of flavor. Unsurprisingly, servers pour water into canning jars from large beer “growler” flasks (growlers typically contain 64 ounces), which have become another local habit since Stone Brewing Co. introduced them several years ago.

A written-daily blackboard supplements the printed menu and offers some pretty zingy options, such as a pizza with anchovies, tomato, shaved onions and Spring Hill Cheese Co. Firehouse Jack that instantly won the vote of one guest who exclaimed, “I like little fishies on dough!” When the pie arrived, it was greeted by a robust appetite and disappeared with impressive speed. Another irresistible choice, which shared perfectly, was a salad of top-grade blue cheese, assorted greens and quite wonderful organic almonds from SMIT Orchards, an artisan grower in Northern California. It was, in fact, a terrific salad. Local Habit also uses stone fruit from the same excellent grower. 

Photography by Jarett Boskovich
The pizzas are said to be individually sized, but depending with what you preface the main course with (if anything), you might well share one with another guests. They are notably thin-crusted and, while “delicate” seems an unlikely concept at Local Habit, the pizzas fit this description. They’re delicious, too. Although one a purist insisted on a pie topped simply with Petaluma Jack cheese and house-made beef pepperoni (the flavor is different and rather assertive), he could have ordered imaginative choices decorated with house-smoked pork loin, shaved red onions and two cheeses, a Hawaiian-style combo of braised pork shoulder, pineapple, onion and cheese, or sunny side-up eggs, crisp bacon lardons and pesto made by hand in a mortar, just like they do in Genoa.

The creativity continues with sandwiches, notably rustic Italian bread stuffed with cured-on-premises pepper bacon, local farm tomatoes and frisee lettuce in cider vinaigrette, and such salads as grilled Romaine tossed with cucumber, tomato, pungent garlic croutons and a creamy buttermilk dressing. Optional side dishes include sauteed greens with julienned onions and garlic (certainly not fare you would have found at ’70s fern bars) and roasted Brussels sprouts with house-made mustard and chives (ditto). The cheese boards are deluxe, and definitely make fit companions for Local Habit’s carefully selected reds. When the server suggests dessert, just say “yes” and look forward to treats like the seasonal bread pudding, which may feature whiskey-marinated Santa Rosa plums and a sublime vanilla-whiskey sauce, and the remarkable fudge brownie with SMIT Farms pecans and raw coconut caramel. Topped with a chiffonade (a fine julienne) of basil, the gluten-free triumph comes close to fudge. A first bite caused one guest to say, “Oh, wow!”—and just might do the same to you.

Brooklyn Girl Eatery coming to Mission Hills

Cant wait for this new restaurant to open! I noticed the permit on the window a few weeks ago. Their website says:

Casual neighborhood American eatery with a
sustainable farm-to-table attitude.

We will be open breakfast + lunch + dinner + late night with an
extensive menu of seasonal and locally sourced organic products
at very attractive price points.

Full “artisanal” bar with a great selection of locally produced craft
beers on tap and an extensive and affordable wine list.

In addition we will have a “chef’s pantry” offering daily selection of
salads, pasta, sandwiches, pastries and pre-prepared entrees to go.

Locally owned and family operated,
we want to be YOUR neighborhood “go-to” restaurant!

More information is listed on here in their blog

Brooklyn Girl Eatery – San Diego Newest Restaurant!

Mission Hills Liquor is the place to be – happy!

I’ve been coming here my whole life and it’s still home. Sam and Suzie provide a central hub for North Mission Hills. MH Liquor is a meeting spot, hang out and read the paper place and a great place to snack and chat with friends. My favorite sandwich isn’t on the Menu, Tuna with Jalapeno slices aka The Suzie Special. The spice of the jalapeno is perfect. Stop by and check out their amazing deli selection, basic groceries, snacks, ice cream, candy, an ATM for convenience, fine cigars, drinks, cold beer and GREAT WINE! Take a stool at the counter and relax, you are home.

Mission Hills Liquor and Deli offers a wide variety of wines, spirits, liquors, specialty liqueurs, and gourmet gift baskets. We carry one of the widest selections of port, sherry, single malt scotch, and champagne available in San Diego. Our full service deli is open from 10 am – 6pm. Catering platters and special orders are available by prior arrangement. We also stock a grocery section with essential pantry staples. Check the current events page for our free wine tasting events.

Click here to go to MH Liquor’s Facebook Fan Page

Starlite Lounge is all about quality drinks, food, and atmosphere

I happened to see Starlight Lounge as I was exiting the freeway the other day. This bar/foodie hang out is conveniently located on India Street between Little Italy and Mission Hills/Middletown. The lighting offsets the modern architecture touches. Today I opened the SD Uptown News and discovered a nice review copied below. If you are looking for an intimate edgy lounge this is your place, down to the Bowie tunes playing in the background.

Click Here for the Cake Menu

Click Here for Sunday Brunch Menu

Click Here for Sample Dinner Menu

Click Here for Yelp Reviews – Starlite on India St.

Click here for a link to Starlite Devils Food Cake Recipe copied from another great San Diego Blogger AliceQFoodie.