Saturday, January 21, 2017

Update: Sprig

I am happy to report that Spring is going strong. The view of the adjoining park was beautiful. I started with these cheese grits fries---cheese grits sliced into railroad ties, coated with a light breading, and lightly fried for crispiness. They were delicious and gave an intriguing combinations of textures. The dipping sauce was thick with cheese and delightful.

My main course was this beautiful salmon. I ordered it medium rare, which made it enjoyably soft and moist. The plating gave a Japanese twist. Noodles underneath the salmon gave some starch and a nice bit of texture. The bit of teriyaki sauce around the sides added a umami boost.

I managed to sneak a peek at these grouper tacos. They were filled with big chunks of breaded and fried grouper.

Friday, January 20, 2017

DTW: Reflections

Reflections is part of the Westin hotel connected to DTW's Delta terminal. The hotel has its own security screening site so getting back into the terminal is very easy. The food isn't cheap, but the staff does an excellent job of smoothing jangled nerves amid a calming reflecting pool.

The meal starts with bread. It gives a comfortable chew and good flavor. The softened butter adds a welcome note of richness.

For my main course, I ordered the salmon. It gave me the rich protein boost I needed after my flight. The meat was cooked to medium, tender and juicy on the inside with a slight crust on the outside. The beans were luscious, with a great cream texture.

I finished with a cappuccino and a few minutes relaxing by the reflecting pool.

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Chamblee: Bismallah Grill

Bismallah Grill is a new entry in the Buford Highway derby. It's small and cozy; the owner was very hospitable and gracious. The food is good, too.

Their menu is an interesting mix of styles. It combines hard-core Indian entries like the mixed grill with very traditional Chinese dishes.

I ordered the chili chicken, which I found very satisfying. The chicken was very flavorful and tender. The brown sauce was rich enough to be a complement but not overwhelming. It also passed the tears-of-joy test: I teared up but could still read.

The tea deserves special mention. This is full-on Indian tea, complete with spices and milk. It's the sort of drink that makes you think Americans are too wimpy with our tea.

Saturday, January 14, 2017


Exercise demands its reward of protein; a good round of BBQ is the perfect follow-up to a round of golf. Today, my 19th hole was at D&T BBQ. This is excellent BBQ and I will be back.

I pulled up just in time to watch the pitmaster load wood into the smoker.

The ribs came out very, very hot. I let them cool a few minutes before I ate them. The bread on top---which was whole wheat rather than the usual white---acted as an insulating layer. Once I dug in, I found them to be excellent. Each rib had a nice, red smoke ring. The meat was toothy and very satisfying to eat. If you are going for the carnivore experience, you may go all the way. The pork flavor came through perfectly.

I asked for sauce on the side. It was so good that I took a sip after I finished the ribs. The best way I an describe it is very smooth. None of the flavors are overpowering but each comes forward in its own way. My initial impression was sourness from the vinegar. The tomato sweetness came through next. Finally, the sauce left me with a dose of heat. The sauce was a sophisticated experience that complemented the meat.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Decatur: Sankalp

Sankalp is the newest entry in the Atlanta Indian food derby. It's located just down the block from Patel Plaza. It is bracketed by no U-turn intersections so it takes a little planning to get there. I found my lunch to be well worth the trip.

Lunchtime is a buffet. It's entirely vegetarian so far as I could see. Don't miss the side bar of soup and sauces

My trip to the buffet netted me with several tasty items. Everything was well-spiced but not hot. The surprise hit of the plate was the dal, combined with corn and, I believe, some cream as well.

Your breads are custom cooked. They are the perfect size for lunch, satisfying but not overwhelming. This was a very enjoyable and satisfying lunch.

Monday, January 9, 2017

ROC: Red Osier

I've written before about the Red Osier stand at Rochester Airport, but it's so good that I couldn't pass up another opportunity to eat and write about it. For those of you who think that "western New York" is an oxymoron, remember that 200 years ago, Rochester was the frontier. It's a very different place from the five boroughs and the home of a lot of great food.

This is my beef on weck, which is roast beef on a kemmelweck bun. The pickles are standard and I added a little bit of horseradish. Every element of this meal was wonderful and they played together to make a wonderful tune. The roast beef is outstanding, meaty in taste, soft but toothy in texture. The kemmelweck bun provides a big contrast in texture. The combination of pretzel salt and caraway seeds gives two very distinct flavor notes. The pickles add the sour note and a nice firm texture. The horseradish adds just the right amount of heat. I slept happily on my flight back thanks to this meal.

Rochester NY: Canton House

Technical discussions are always better with food. Eby found an excellent place for our discussion with Canton House. It's a relatively small restaurant attached to a very large Chinese grocery and we greatly enjoyed our dim sum lunch.

The grocery has a full selection of items for Chinese cooking: fresh fish, vegetables, meat, sauces, spices.

Our lunch combined a dizzying array of dishes so I can only go through a few highlights here. The oysters were very fresh and with a wonderful sauce. The fried octopus were crunchy and savory, a real delight. The shrimp dumplings were outstanding. And I was a sucker for the scallion pancakes. Here are some photos.