: views from the Hill

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

SiteMeter. Foodie reviews in the paper. Foodie blogs. SFMOMA.

I was checking my SiteMeter, because on not infrequent occasions I'm an ego surfer (who could guess that???) and wonder who the heck is coming here and why.

Today, well, someone came here with ... a search for "manresa egg egullet."

David's egg is yummy, but ... I strolled through the other hits (I was ten on the list, six if you don't count the sub-domains of the prior hits.) and wondered whether I belonged with these folks whose true passion is digital pictures of their dinner plates and being on first name basis with the Davids and Lukes of the world.

Do I belong with them? I don't ... think so. I love a good restaurant, admire a creative food genius, enjoy watching a staff seamlessly working a room, but ... I'm not Pim (whom I met at David's at a dinner put on by Alder) and won't ever be.

I haven't been interested lately in writing up where we've been eating and how yummy it all is. Call it foodie-blog fatigue and apologies to those who came here looking for foodie porn. Maybe I should just list the week's visits with + 0 - sorts of reviews with mini-reviews.

I was admittedly appalled to find out today that my cynical his nibs was absolutely right. Can you believe it? Local papers have foodie columns ostensibly written by foodie sorts who are actually ad types selling ad space to restaurants and using their columns as a "hey! I'll mention you here if you'll buy ad space."

How crappy is that?

As a "there're no free meals or ads in my blog" service to readers, I'll tell you where we've been in the last week or two:

Ristorante Cinque Terre has an unfortunate location a half block off the Columbus Avenue tourist restaurant corridor. Cinque Terre has Italian food that will please the turistas (if they'll only walk half a block up Vallejo from Columbus) and will please the locals. his nibs liked the Insalata Di Polipo-Octopus salad. Ymmm. I had the carpaccio because I happen to be the (sorry, vegan friends) raw beef sort of gal.

For the main squeeze, I had the Gnocchi Mare-"Potato and seafood dumplings with fresh clams, roma tomatoes, and fresh basil in a white wine sauce." Tons of clams. Ymmy gnocchi. his nibs had Cannelloni All'Astice-"Homemade crepes stuffed with Maine lobster in a zucchini sun dried tomato saffron béchamel."

The dinner we had was excellent enough that we brought an out-of-town visitor (one who doesn't like "funny" food) back the next week. She cleaned her plate(s). Another good meal and a happy out-of-towner. Try it.

We also went to Capp's Corner within the last week. his nibs was craving Leg of Lamb. I knew I'd be getting Osso Bucco with Polenta. Dinner is a deal and comes with bread and butter, a pot full of minestrone and a bowl of green salad. Filling. No room for dessert before we headed back home. (I took some back and had Osso Bucco with the vegetables I didn't have room for for lunch later that week.)

Where else have we been? We headed over to Flytrap (606 Folsom St San Francisco, CA 94107 (415) 243-0580) for lunch before we walked on to SOMA to see Paul Sack's photography show.

Flytrap has a history. I wanted to see what their sweetbreads were like. We shared an Oysters Rockefeller as an appetizer.

Ymmm for the oysters. Double ymmm for the sweetbreads.

Call those three pluses -- places we might come back to.

Paul Sack's show was ... amazing. It's over, so I won't tease you too much about what you missed. Check out SFMOMA, though. I didn't much care for most of the Richard Tuttle work, but I'd really enjoyed their René Magritte show a while back. Sorry we'd missed their Chagall show.

On the minus side we went back to Frisson, where we'd eaten on Easter Sunday and scored two chits for $$ off our next meal. Easter Sunday was immediately after Daniel Patterson had left the restaurant and they'd had an abbreviated menu and sparse clientele. What we had was certainly edible. We decided it was worth another visit -- especially considering we had two $25 chits. After our return visit I say, Frisson? Don't bother.

The food was hit or miss. I order what was billed as pork ribs. I got a pork chop (Not the same, eh? and I am not a fan of pork chops) that was thick and solid enough that the knife I had wouldn't cut it. I had to ask our server for something serrated, but they didn't have such a thing. He went back to the flatware layout and found a "newer" knife that was sharper than the one I had.

There are so many restaurants in San Francisco, some of them very excellent, some of them undiscovered. Why would I want to go back to Frisson?

Where else have we been recently? I can't remember, but looking at the foodie-focused sites, ... I'm not sure that I'm all =that= focused on food.

Maybe when I have less weighing on my mind ... and life.

Until then maybe I'll do the + 0 - rating.

Next week we're due for a Penfolds dinner at French Laundry. Whether it will live up to expectations is the question. At any rate I'd like to see if the hype is deserved. We've booked the same hotel we stayed in when we had a big family hoo-hah for my parents' 75th six years back. The hotel is within a block or two of the restaurant so we can stumble back after imbibing Penfolds.

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