Friday, October 10, 2014

DEN: Tamales by La Casita

I just found out that my favorite Mexican restaurant in Denver, Tamales by La Casita, has a branch at DIA. It's in Terminal C in the central food court.

I am a tamale nut, so when presented with a restaurant that features tamales, there is no question what I will order. My pork tamales were excellent. The filling had that wonderful combination of tamale tastes and spices. The masa's slight sweetness complements the pork perfectly. I ordered mine Christmas style: one red and one green. I must say that the red sauce was my favorite. It had just the right amount of burn going down, enough to be pleasant but not too strong. I really enjoyed my lunch.

Tamales by La Casita on Urbanspoon

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Denver: Humboldt: Farm Fish Wine

Cathy suggested Humboldt for our lunch meeting. It's located on a quiet side street in a residential neighborhood east of downtown. We arrived early enough to be able to sit outside and enjoy the wonderful weather.

For our main courses, Cathy ordered a fish sandwich served on an English muffin, which she said was wonderful. I chose roasted chicken, which was flawlessly executed. The meat was very juicy and the skin was very crispy, giving a great texture contrast. The skin also had a nice dose of salt, which was an unexpected and pleasant accent.

For dessert, Cathy ordered creme brulee and I ordered the chocolate cake. The cake was very good but I think Cathy's made the winning choice. The brulee was both creamy and eggy with a wonderful flamed crust on top.

Humboldt: Farm Fish Wine on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Denver: The Delectable Egg

I enjoyed my breakfast at the Delectable Egg. The restaurant itself is bright, open, and sunny but it has a lived-in, comfortable feel that is very welcome at breakfast. A curated experience can be fun for dinner but at breakfast I want to relax and wake up.

I had a vegetarian omelet that was very tasty. The veggies were cooked but not mushy. The hash browns had plenty of crisp but still enough softness. And they give you pitchers of both water and coffee, the mark of a place that understands what people need at breakfast.

The Delectable Egg on Urbanspoon

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Denver: Milkbox Ice Creamery

i happened upon Milkbox while wandering around Union Station. It has quaint, old fashioned decor and very good ice cream.

They sell their ice cream by the ounce, which was perfect since I had just finished a big dinner. This is their salted caramel ice cream, which was outstanding. It was rich with caramel flavor and a hint of salt, but without overwhelming the creaminess of the ice cream. Their ice cream sandwiches looked extremely tempting. I expect to visit here again.

Milkbox Ice Creamery on Urbanspoon

Denver: Buckhorn Exchange

The Buckhorn Exchange is a touristy but fun reminder of old Denver. It was founded 120 years ago by one of Buffalo Bill's scouts. As you might guess, they specialize in meat: beef, buffalo, as well as several types of game. And to add to the carnivore buzz, the place is jam-packed with stuffed animals.

All the meals come with a salad and bread. They were fine, nothing special. But the salad isn't why you come here.

I thought about ordering a mix of buffalo and beef but decided to keep things simple and stick with the beef tenderloin. The meat was very well trimmed, leaving me only a very small piece of fat to deal with. I'm not sure where they source their beef, but it has a stronger, beefier flavor than standard grocery store meat. I ordered mine with Saratoga potatoes, the old fashioned name for homemade French fries. The Saratogas were very crispy and delicious.

Buckhorn Exchange on Urbanspoon

Friday, August 8, 2014

Palo Alto CA: La Baguette

La Baguette is an institution in the Stanford Shopping Center. I've enjoyed their baking since my student days. The shop always has a line of folks waiting for a treat.

Despite the humble name, their signature item is, in fact, the croissant. It is very buttery with a pillowy interior. I suspect their recipe has been slightly Americanized to have a softer, less flaky interior. But it is very rich and enjoyable nonetheless.

La Baguette French Bakery on Urbanspoon

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Sunnyvale CA: Dish n Dash

I had a very tasty dinner at Dish n Dash. Better yet, it was just a little more expensive than the meals at the Burger King across the street. Dish n Dash follows the n-choose-m format that has swept the burger world: pick your meat (or veggie) and starch, then add toppings. Sauces are free but many of the toppings are extra charge.

This is my chicken shawarma with eggplant. My starch was freekeh, which is a green wheat and was mixed with a bit of corn. The chicken was moist and flavorful. The dish had a very savory, complex taste that I really liked. I tried the mint sauce but the chicken would have been very good even without any sauce.

Dish n Dash on Urbanspoon