Forget those hoary stereotypes about women’s eating preferences. The ladies love a good steak! Here are America’s ten best steakhouses courtesy of the online women’s lifestyle magazine PureWow. It’s a solid and not entirely predictable list that hits a pair of Old New York classics, Peter Luger and Keen’s, a celebrity chef spot in L.A., Cut, from Wolfgang Puck, and a trio of Midwest old-time favorites in Archie’s Waeside of Iowa, St. Elmo of Indy, and Oklahoma City’s Cattlemen’s. Have a look and argue to your heart’s content.
Don’t get us wrong, we love strawberry festivals and watermelon festivals but, let’s face it, those agricultural products grow all over America. The artichoke, however, is something special — almost all the artichokes grown in the U.S. come from California. The California town of Castroville is known as The Artichoke Center of the World. So when we hear that Castroville is holding an artichoke festival, well, we want to put down our strawberries and watermelons and head straight there! This weekend is the big event: the Castroville Artichoke Food & Wine Festival. Continue reading
Shake Shack announced last year that they would be entering the Los Angeles market sometime in 2016. That first area Shack should be open in West Hollywood by late spring. But there’s no need to wait! On Monday, January 25th, from 6 p.m. until 11 p.m., the restaurant Son of a Gun, at 8370 West 3rd Street in Los Angeles, will host a Shake Shack pop-up. ShackBurgers, crinkle-cut fries, and a whoopie pie dessert will be on the menu that evening. Mark your calendars if you want to see what all the fuss is about.
When the weather turns cold, and the scent of pine is in the air… and twinkling lights hang from the eaves, and fat men in red suits loiter on street corners and in department stores… it can only mean one thing: peppermint ice cream is back! We’re not talking about the green mint chip ice cream that is available year round (and which is quite alright by us) but that (unfortunately) seasonal pink concoction, often studded with red and white bits of peppermint candy. Continue reading
We’re big fans of the Agawam Diner of Rowley, Massachusetts. The Agawam was founded in 1940, bounced around The Bay State, and settled in a 1950s-model Fodero before resting in the town of Rowley. We’ve enjoyed dishes like hot dogs with homemade potato salad and mile-high banana pie at the Agawam but now want to return to try their chicken pie, which is good, old-fashioned chicken pie with one innovation: it’s served upside down. Also, it’s been named one of the country’s five best diner dishes by The Food Network. Continue reading
Gus’s Fried Chicken, which began life in the 1950s in the small town of Mason, Tennessee, northeast of Memphis, will be opening their 13th store early next year in Knoxville, TN. That’s not all for the spicy-crusted bird that many folks put on their top-ten lists. By early 2016 there should also be new stores in Los Angeles, Detroit, Fort Worth, and Kansas City (where it will face especially stiff competition). Future stores are in the works for St. Louis and Philadelphia.
Actual waterfalls, a giant (fake) redwood, a big hunk o’ meteorite, and Jell-O — it’s all back in Los Angeles as Clifton’s Cafeteria finally made its long-awaited return! Andrew Meieran purchased the 80-year-old California landmark that had seen better days in 2010 and promptly closed it for renovations, which dragged on for so long we were skeptical Clifton’s would ever reopen. But the doors were flung open on October 1st and over 12,000 customers were served over the first four days. Check out this series of panoramic photos of the five-story restaurant on the LA Times website.
Yep, this is the one — the festival with the infamous garlic ice cream. They give the stuff away for free, no less, apparently confident in its limited novelty appeal. In the same way that Hershey, PA takes on the aroma of its famous roasted bean, Gilroy, CA will fill the air with the heady scent of the stinking rose this weekend, July 24th through 26th, as the town hosts the 37th annual Gilroy Garlic Festival. Continue reading
California has the distinction of holding the summer’s first state fair (state fair geeks are aware that Florida’s fair, held in February, is the first of the calendar year). The California State Fair is one of the more popular state fairs as well, drawing almost a million people over its 17 days. This year’s edition opens in Sacramento on Friday, July 10th and runs through Sunday, July 26th. Continue reading
What makes the Sonoran hot dog? Is it enough to wrap a dog with bacon before cooking it? Does it have to be inserted into a bolillo? Or does it only become a Sonoran dog when the strangely compatible array of toppings — beans, tomatoes, onions, mustard, crema and/or mayo — lands atop the package? Dalina Castellanos writes about the Sonoran dogs’ origins in Hermosillo, Mexico, how it took hold in Tucson, Arizona, and Los Angeles’ eventual bastardization of the concept. Check it out.
Paul Hewson stopped in to Canter’s deli in Los Angeles with some friends very late Saturday night. He asked the waitress to decide for him what to eat. His 80-year-old waitress, a five-decade veteran, brought him some matzo ball soup and a Reuben. He finished his food which, if you know Jewish delis, is really saying something. His check came to $20. He left his waitress, who wasn’t aware that Paul Hewson’s stage name is Bono until after he had eaten and her co-workers clued her in, a $150 tip. Guess she chose his dinner well!
At 11:11 a.m. Saturday morning, the memorial for Mike Hardin, owner of Hodad’s in San Diego, began at Petco’s Park in the Park. It was a public event, open to all, including the many friends he made along the way. Some of them spoke at the memorial, including Guy Fieri, U.S. Navy Chaplain John Owen, and his fellow Messlords, a group of chefs who cook for American troops around the world. A common theme was Mike’s kindness, generosity, and humanity. Continue reading
The many fans of Ocean Beach’s Hodad’s and the man who ran the burger stand, Mike “Bossman” Hardin, were shocked and grief-stricken at the news of Mr. Hardin’s untimely passing last month at the age of 56. This Saturday, friends and family of Mike Hardin will hold an event at Petco’s Park in the Park in San Diego in his honor, to begin at 11:11 a.m. and end at 12:30 p.m. There will be a special video tribute and live musical performances. The memorial is free and open to the public.
The finalists for the annual James Beard Awards were announced this morning. Some of our personal favorites among the nominees include: Continue reading