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Everything posted by Al_Dente

  1. I'd guess the cab would run you $60-$70 round trip depending on the traffic. You could wait 20 years for them to build Metro out that way. I'm not familiar with Maestro. Perhaps there is a reasonable facsimile within the district, or at least close to a metro stop? Fill me in on the cuisine/atmosphere/etc, and maybe I could recommend?
  2. Anywhere where the waiter doesn't ask, "how would you like that boiled?"
  3. I once roasted a chicken forgetting to pluck it first...
  4. The guac rocks. I usually have a Barbancourt rum gimlet (at least thats what one bartender called it when recommending). I seem to vaguely recall an excellent quail appetizer. Cafe Atlantico-- one of my faves in DC!
  5. My apologies for having even brought it up. I may still give it a go... However, I'll probably modify the burger. I'm not sure I'd use cheese, I'd toast the bun, and I'll add some spices to the beef-- BAM! Also, no pickles or ketchup, and I'd use plenty of good mustard. What other ways could I mix "different levels of culinary sophistication"? Mrs Paul's in a Champagne Cream Sauce? Hot Dog and Truffle Risotto? Campbell's Tomato Soup with Creme Fraiche and Beluga Caviar?
  6. Good Ol Emeril had some folks on who were showing some favorite tailgating recipes. One grilling aficionado made cheeseburgers (with the bun, mustard, onions and everything) and stuffed them into a cornish game hen before grilling it. Seems whacky, but why not? Stuffing is mostly meat and bread. Would you try it? I might give it a whirl....
  7. I'm anxious to try this place out. I spent a couple of months in Greece and a month in Turkey. What would be the chances of finding seating Friday night at 6 for 6 people?
  8. Try this on for size. A snifter of Oban with a pint of Guinness on the side. mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm..........
  9. No no no no no... Don't use those lighters with the built in opener. You haven't lived until you can master my method. Once you can do it with a lighter, you can use nearly any hard piece of material. I've used a magic marker, a knife, and car keys using the same principle. I would imagine if you used enough Viagra.... nah, won't go there...
  10. Does "reticent" mean "like white bread soaked in milk?" Mmm, white bread soaked in milk. I had heard she was exec chef at Gourmet. Makes me all the more amazed she struggles to slice a carrot.
  11. I agree on the Alton Brown assessment. He has a great straightforward no-nonsense approach to his technique, and the show itself is quirky and often quite funny. His cook book has some excellent recipes-- try the roasted chicken under a brick! I don't know what it is about Sara. I guess I feel like she's teaching a kindergarten class or something. She often seems unsure of what she's doing and indecisive.
  12. There is a place call Bombay Curry Company in a shopping center on Mount Vernon Ave in the northern part of DelRay in Alexandria. I've had consistently excellent Indian food there at very reasonable prices. The owner is always walking around checking in with the customers and will make recommendations and cook up things not on the menu if he knows you. In Old Town Alexandria is a little place called the Pita House that makes great middle eastern pita wraps, dips, and bread. Super cheap-- especially for high rent Old Town.
  13. I really enjoy some of the cooks on the Food Network-- Mario and Emeril come to mind. I also think some of them are terrible. For instance, Sarah Whatshername doesn't seem to have any grasp of technique at all. What do you think?
  14. When no one is looking, and presuming the furniture isn't yours, place the edge of the cap on edge of a sturdy table (preferably a very expensive antique piece), and give it a good whack with your hand. Cap should pop right off. The edge of the table will end up with a good sized indentation or it might chip off altogether.
  15. Al_Dente

    favorite bottled beers

    My top 5 in no particular order: Sierra Nevada Pilsner Urquel Corsendonk Guinness Anchor Steam
  16. Once you get the hang of this you'll be surprised how easy it is. Its one of the most valueable things I learned in college: I'm right handed, so I grip the bottle with my left. Wrap your hand around the bottle so that your thumb and forefinger are flush with the top of the bottle cap. Take the lighter and wedge it underneath the edge of the cap by pushing down on the fleshy part of the bottom knuckle of your forefinger. Grip tightly enough so that your hand doesn't slide down the bottle as you pry the cap off using that fleshy part as the fulcrum of your "lever". Piece of cake...
  17. The best steak and town can be made at home. Go to one of those fancy shmancy gourmet grocery stores, pick up a USDA PRIME Porterhouse, sear it in a pan, and finish it in the oven. Deglaze the pan with a little red wine and VOILA, the best steak in town. Can't be beat. If you're not satisfied with the results, I'll come over and cook it for you. You buy the steaks!
  18. Ice cold butter. I guess the health dept takes it upon themselves to insist that the butter be refrigerated if not downright frozen thinking that there is such a risk of illness. Don't you love tearing up a piece of bread while attempting to spread a little butter on it? Ill conceived bar design. I often eat at the bar when dining by myself. It seems that even at bars that encourage food consumption (i.e. Tapas bars), the design of the bar makes it awkward to eat. Often there is this thick curved piece of trim at the front edge that gets in the way of getting the plate anywhere near you and the panel underneath the bar is so close to the bar top edge that you can't move your seat close enough to eat without leaning way over to get near the plate. Huge menus. Why do so many restaurants have menus the size of a highway speed limit sign? I can't even see over it to talk with my dinner companions, and I can't put it down on the table without risk of knocking over drinks or starting a fire over a candle. Two menus can equal an entire table top in sqaure yardage.
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