Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Leaving Pasadena

Eastside Road, April 15, 2014—
Time to catch up again
Los Angeles, April 12, 2014—
LUNCH AT THE MUSEUM today, since we're here anyway looking at a marvelous Alexander Calder show, and have only an hour or two before catching Macbeth back in Pasadena.

I've been eating too much anyway these last few days. I think I'll settle for this Treviso salad: asparagus, feta, boiled egg, gribiche, croutons. What's gribiche? Let Wikipedia explain. Whatever the etymology — Wiktionnaire says "Probable variante de grébiche (« mauvaise femme ») voir l’emploi adjectival culinaire de bonne-femme"— it's delicious.
Arneis, Giovanni Almondo Ïl Ciliegie", 2011
• Ray's and Stark Bar at LACMA, 5905 Wilshire Boulevard, Los Angeles; 323.857.6180

Pasadena, April 13, 2014—
WE'D HOPED TO DINE at a new place on Colorado Avenue — promising for its reliance on local, sustainable provender, and for its canny North Italian menu — but on arrival found it simply far too loud for a party of four. There was no way we would enjoy an evening here.

I recalled seeing an attractive old-fashioned bar-bistro not far away, with steak tartare noticeable on its menu. Only a couple of blocks away: let's do it.

My Martini was acceptable, and if the tartare wasn't quite up to snuff — made and refrigerated in advance, a cold uninspired patty with the accoutrements mixed in, and cold tired brioche toasts on the side — the room itself was a marvelous study in retro. And we could hear ourselves…
Côtes du Rhône Villages, Château de Bord, 2011
Cheval Bistro, 41 South De Lacey Avenue, Pasadena; (626) 577-4141

Oakland, April 14, 2014—
A DAY ON THE ROAD: "breakfast" in the cheap motel office: a small muffin, so-so coffee, so-so "orange juice." Once in Oakland, though, 11:30 in the morning, we had time for a sandwich involving egg salad made with chopped grilled asparagus, parmesan, and arugula. On the side, pickled radish and carrot, mixed greens, and a first-rate hard-boiled "balsamic egg."

• Wood Tavern, 6317 College Ave, Oakland, CA 94618
(510) 654-6607

Eastside Road, April 15, 2014—
AND NOW WE ARE PUNISHED with the common cold, picked up Aesculapius alone knows where on the travels over the last five days. It's Tuesday; we should be fasting, especially after the feasting of the past few days — but I'm supposed to be minding my protein intake, so we're eating; and we have these colds, so Cook proposes a nice thick garlic soup.

She'd found some turkey broth in the freezer — I think of it as Fortunatus's freezer, it's bottomless. Lots of crushed garlic; maybe an egg yolk or two — I wasn't looking. A green salad afterward, of course.
Red, La Ferme Julien (Rhône), 2012

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