August 15, 2013
We love lists.
In honor of summer coming to a close, we have compiled one more: The Collective, Last Days of Summer Eating Bucket List 2013.
Here’s how it works: we have selected our absolute favorite, must-try restaurants, bars and eateries to send you on your journey to taste bud nirvana. Not only that, we picked the dish according to meal or craving, including all that is present on the heavy to light hankering spectrum. From burger to salad, salty to sweet, we have you covered.
All aboard the crave-y train.
Brunch: Sunday morning calls for a celebration, don’t you think? Say good morning over The Red Door Restaurant + Wine Bar’s freshly baked sticky buns: hot out of the oven with cream cheese frosting, honeyed pecans and cinnamon glaze. In a word (or a few): the ultimate breakfast dream for the sweet tooth inflicted. For savory breakfast fans, Chef Miguel Valdez’s smoked salmon benedict with house smoked salmon, sauteed baby spinach, a fluffy, country biscuit, rich hollandaise and white truffle creme fraiche is a crowd pleaser. Terra American Bistro’s Buffalo Chips plate includes two eggs over easy, scallions, sour cream, applewood smoked bacon and sharp cheddar. Ideal for the adventurous brunch-er. Just carve out two hours of sitting time at your table to marvel over what you just ingested.
Salads: Listen to Mom. Eat your greens. For the August scorchers fast approaching, head to Shelter Island for Chef Paul Murphy’s Guava + Pistachio Salad at Humphreys Restaurant, full of leafy baby field greens, smoked gouda, pistachios, refreshing cucumber and grape tomatoes lightly coated with a citrusy guava dressing. Or, go to Barrio Logan for Blueprint Cafe’s Signature Salad: a flavorful combo of grilled spicy chicken, crisp romaine, sweet onion, pinons, dried cranberries, grated white cheese and a chili lime ceasar-style dressing. From the time you delve into the first bite to the moment the last pinon is on your plate, you will be pleasantly speechless. Promise.
All-American Eats: Beef, people. We can’t stay away from Blueprint Cafe. You, too, will feel our pain after having Chef Gayle Covner’s simply titled #1 Burger, that has all the locals crowding her multi-use space during lunch hour to devour the avocado, bacon, chipotle sauce, vine tomato and cheddar miracle on a kaiser roll. Jeff Rossman’s Bunz. Need we say more? If you insist. Try the Cowboy: smoked bacon, onion rings, cheddar cheese, roasted poblano pepper, lettuce and tomato atop a sesame, brioche, whole grain or foccacia bun, drenched in Jeff’s beer BBQ sauce. And, of course, 100% hormone and antibiotic free premium Angus. Yee-haw!
Tacos: Let’s taco bout it, shall we? Humphreys Restaurant’s hidden gem: Sculpin-battered Pacific seabass tacos with cilantro-lime mayo house slaw and cheddar. Add bay views, a brew and bam. Heaven.Try the Taco Especial, or as we like to call it, the best $3.50 ever spent. You can get the smoked fish, shrimp, scallops, cabbage, cheese, onion, cilantro and avocado stuffed Oscar’s Tacos creation until 11 p.m. every night at Bar West.
Quick Bite Apps in a jar? Sure thing. Impress your date over Terra American Bistro’s olive oil poached albacore tuna jar with marinated red and yellow tomatoes, cilantro garlic and edamame. Consider the brownie points earned.
Drinks: Bottoms up. The Wellington Steak and Martini Lounge’s Cholly Mojito, developed by Snake Oil Cocktail Co., is equal parts refreshing and tasty with cruso organic rum, fresh garden mint, cranberries and lime zest. In the Gaslamp? Gaijin Noodle + Sake House’s Asian Pear Vodka infusion awaits your arrival in its large, jar-like container. If the delicious drink had a voice, it would consistently chant, “drink me.” The Remedy at Terra American Bistro is proven to alleviate summers-over blues: Sage bourbon, ginger lemongrass and Terra-made tangerine bitters with lime and soda. Yep, that will do that trick.
Seafood Splurge: Treat yo’self Feel like Prince William for a night at The Wellington Steak and Martini Lounge. Yeah, they know how to do steak. And, seafood, good sir. The Fresh Catch of the Day plate features a generous piece of fish from Catalina Offshore Products, fresh daily and pan seared with housemade herb gnocchi, sauteed hedgehog mushrooms and pearl onions over a saffron bouillabaisse.
Late-night weekend craving: Drunken noodles. Tongue & Cheek? Not ready to go home after your Gaslamp bar shuts down? Gaijin Noodle + Sake House serves until three to satisfy your post-night-out craving. Gaijin Drunken Noodles, with sake, beef, jidori chicken, bacon, fresh veggies and oyster sauce, will send you home feeling wonderfully clear-headed. Not in a noodle mood? Try Chef Antonio Friscia’s Beef “Tongue & Cheek” Bao Bao: steamed bao bao with jalapeno, cilantro, red rock sugar and peanuts. Surely the classiest 3 a.m. meal you have ever had.
We have equipped you with the tools. Now, go.
Let the feast begin. Ready, set, eat!