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Everything posted by FoodZealot

  1. kitchenmage- nice photos! I recently got a D70s myself, but I haven't had time to cook, much less document it. BTW, is that the kit lens you're using, or another lens? Looks like much shorter depth of field than I thought it would be capable of. ~Tad
  2. trillium, unfortunately or fortunately, that part of the trip probably the least planned at this point. In general, I'd prefer to travel overland, so time permitting, I could go to any point in between. Any particular spots you would say are not to be missed? Would you recommend Phuket and Phi Phi, etc? I have LP for Vietnam, and will look for the others. Thanks! ~Tad
  3. I think this might be it, but I'm not sure because it was on a page about convention halls and meeting rooms, not cutlery per se. Maybe someone here can verify? There are some threads about Japanese knives in the cooking forum, and Fred's Cutlery Forum at Foodie Forums and In the Kitchen at Knifeforums.com are also good sources of info. The external links have a ton of threads from newcomers asking for first knife advice, so it's a good idea to read around a bit before posting. I'll certainly help if you start a new thread on eG. And thanks, easternsun, for your opinion. ~Tad
  4. Thanks for the tips and links. I'll research those and come back to condense them here. Definitely, I would be interested in cooking classes. Especially ones where everything is made from scratch. ~Tad
  5. Hello, all. I'll be visiting several countries throughout November and December. This is a vacation with a purpose, as I am excited to finally change careers into kitchens and restaurants. As you can guess, this trip is all about food: to taste the best (not necessarily expensive) and most traditional cuisine as I can find, to absorb as much food culture as possible. While my trip will only permit a sampling of each place, I am looking to make the most of it. BTW, I have language tapes and phrasebooks for Thai and Vietnamese, but I doubt I'll be capable of real conversations. Any comments or suggestions for my tentative itinerary/agenda would be appreciated! Especially from a cook's perspective, like intermediate to advanced cooking lessons, specific restaurants or hawkers, seasonal foods to look out for, local specialties, etc. In terms of budget, I'm much more inclined to stay with street food and family owned restaurants rather than chains or hotels. Singapore - 3 days - Chilli crab, Sri Lankan jumbo crab Malaysia Penang - 3 days KL - 2 days Vietnam - 12 days total - including HCMC, Hoi An, Hue, Hanoi, Halong Bay Laos - 3 days - including Muong Ngoi, Luang Prabang Cambodia - 3 days - including Angkor Wat, Siem Riep, Penom Penh Thailand - 12-14 days total - including Bangkok, Chiang Mai, Krabi Please PM me if you are interested in meeting at any point during my trip. As the days get more concrete, I'll make specific arrangements as early as possible. Thank you very much for your guidance, ~Tad
  6. Hello, all. I'll also be coming to Japan at the end of October and the first few days of November - I know there are several travel threads bouncing around right now, and I've been learning from all of them. But if you would allow me to ask for a few suggestions, I'll be very grateful. I am excited to finally change careers into kitchens and restaurants. As you can guess, this trip is all about food: to taste the best (not necessarily expensive) and most traditional cuisine as I can find, to absorb as much food culture as possible, and additionally in Japan, to buy some pro quality knives in person. While I know it's far from adequate, I'm limiting my stay to 8 days and focusing only on the Tokyo area and Sakai/Seki and what's nearby for this trip. This is my first trip to Japan, but I hope to visit many times in the future. BTW, I have language tapes and phrasebooks, but I don't read Japanese at all. Any comments or suggestions for my tentative itinerary/agenda would be appreciated! I've been reading on eG and elsewhere - I'll just list all the places that I've culled, and if you recommend one over another, please post. In terms of budget, I'd splurge on a $200-350 meal or two. But mostly, I'd like to spend about $60-70 per day on food. I like Kris' suggestion about hitting expensive places for lunch when possible. I'll be on the lookout for seasonal items - sanma, buri, saba, persimmons, chestnuts, sansai - any others? Tokyo area Tsukiji Fish Market - Sushi Dai, Ryuzushi, Sushisay (sp?) or ...? Kappabashi - Union Commerce, other cutlery showrooms, restaurant supply shops wild unagi - Nodaiwa or Obana or...? depachika monjyayaki izakaya Okinawan ramen I'm planning on getting a JR railpass. Kansai Osaka - Doguya-suji How does this compare to Kappabashi? Is it worth a 1 day detour? true Kobe or Matsuzaka or other super premium beef Seki - Gifu Prefecture Cutlery Hall kaiseki-ryori Please PM me if you are available to meet at any point during my visit. Thank you for your guidance, ~Tad
  7. FWIW, I have a waterstone which is dead flat, and I place the flat side of the knife on the stone and carefully apply pressure to the scallops side while making small circular motions. It works decently well for me.
  8. Looks fantastic - wish I could have been there! Dim sum - heck yeah!!
  9. Evan, you are correct. My apologies for the typo. BTW, the oldest remaining McDonald's location is in Downey, with the Speedee character and the arches on the building. There's a little museum there. In terms of food, the only thing of note is they still deep fry the apple pies rather than bake them. Not really worth the drive, but it's a good bit of trivia.
  10. At Tommy's, may I suggest a number 1 combo (double patty, double cheese) with the chili on the side, fries well done and your drink of choice. Some may say that it's somehow less than the real experience to order the hot meat mayonaise on the side. But by doing so, they serve it in a one of those paper trays, you end up with more chili, you can add chili to each bite of burger, it's easier to eat the burger, and the fries can be dipped in chili. I suppose if you're a maniac, you could get the chili cheese fries, but it's overkill to me. At Fatburger, may I suggest the Kingburger (1/3 pound patty), specify on the char (otherwise it'll be on the griddle), add cheese and a fried egg, everything except relish, onion rings, and your drink of choice. As a side note, depending on which location you go to, they may offer either skinny fries, steak fries, or curly fries. At In-and-Out, you may have heard of the "secret" menu. I get my fries well done there as well, but they're still not satisfying. I know it's not really your thing, but I also like The Counter and Father's Office, both in Santa Monica, for different burger experiences. In regards to Tito's Tacos, Loteria Grill and El Tepeyac (another legendary place), I have always been disappointed by them, their popularity notwithstanding - just my opinion. ~Tad
  11. Unfortunately for me, I won't be able to attend. Please document the revelry.
  12. There's some info and pix in this Korean BBQ thread from a while ago. Shik Do Rak isn't listed on the link above for some reason. ~Tad
  13. I can see how it would be fun to experience it fresh as an entire group, but personally I'd go twice - more is more. While the template of the meal will be similar, several of the ingredients will probably vary. Plus you'll get to look like a baller when he remembers you in front of your friends.
  14. I'd second Taco Temple, Big Sky and the Market Night on Thursdays. Muzio's (sp?) near the mission in SLO is a gourmet shop with sandwiches for lunch. Mo's is decent for bbq, but their sauces are not to my liking. JD Boone's on Foothill does a pretty good job as well. Probably my favorite for bbq is Old Country Deli. The Barn near Avila Beach has some great fresh berry cobblers and such. If you feel like cooking, they have great fish at the pier in Avila Beach. ~Tad edit: to add OCD
  15. I have very wide feet, and so far have been really satisfied with Kingston-McKnight clogs - kmshoes.com. They've got some reinforcement in the toe, but I don't believe with steel. The slip-resistance is pretty effective - when the mats come up, other people wearing Birki's seem to slide around more than I do. Also, they weigh about half that of Birki's, and have a normal heel, rather than that "sunken heel." They come with a very thin insole for fitting, as well as one for support, so you can adjust as needed, or use your own insoles, I imagine. Service from the website was prompt and professional. ~Tad
  16. David, thanks for the Go tip. I had a nice meal there.
  17. Just bumping this thread up because it airs tomorrow night. Apparently 2 thirty minute episodes back to back. PBS.org site
  18. No offense to anyone, but Fatt Matt's was not to my liking. It's been a few years, and I suppose I could have been there on a bad day, but IMHO, the ribs seemed like they had been boiled first (tender, but not rendered, and no smoke ring), and the sauce tasted like the can the tomatoes came in. Cool atmosphere, though. ~Tad
  19. Great pictures, jeffj! Thanks for posting them.
  20. I'm not sure if this is the type of place you mean, but Philippe's has communal tables. Lots of opportunities for small talk asking if a seat is available, asking for the mustard, etc. It's hard to be in a bad mood at Philippe's, which doesn't hurt. The Mishima/Yashima restaurants usually have a central communal table for as well as regular tables. Ore, my opinion is that LA diners would go along with communal seating if they're told it's cool. For various reasons, people are less open to random meetings, and it has to be a declared interaction zone.
  21. Yuzu koshou is one of my favorite condiments. I like it on a simply grilled chicken, or instead of wasabi with sashimi. The brand I like best hasn't been shown yet - I'll take a picture and post it soon. I'll start looking for kanzuri as well. Please excuse my ignorance, but I don't know if there are there more varieties of chili pepper in Japan besides shishito and togarashi. Am I correct in thinking that yuzu koshou is made with normal green togarashi or is there a specific variety of chili from Kyushu that is used? Thanks!
  22. Thanks everyone, for the kind words. jschyun, umetaro - what are your thoughts about it?
  23. Glad you enjoyed Little China, but sorry to hear about your mirror.
  24. cake, welcome to eG! Thanks for the offer, but I bought the Wusthof 10" Crust Buster. I originally bought it with the idea that I could return it if I didn't like it, but I was comfortable with it from the start. It cuts thin slices of bread, and finishes the cut well (the bottom crust). I tried it head to head with a 9" forged Wusthof from a block set, and I prefered this one. I haven't had to sharpen it yet, but it appears that it would be somewhat easier to do since it has scallops or "reverse serrations."
  25. Okay, this isn't strictly the last three, but ... Urasawa, LA Manresa, Los Gatos Fiesta Tepa-Sahuayo, Watsonville
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