Food Adventure Collage.

carnitas snack shack. c-level. world famous. woodstocks. terra american bistro. buddies. corbins. casey's cupcakes. mandarin beijing. nazca grill. eiffel tower restaurant. gordan ramsay burgr. in-n-out. bankers hill bar and grill. los primos. bistro sixty. ruth's chris.


... to a place I like to call my very own. *waving hello*

I invite you to enjoy reading about the food adventures that I have with friends, family, and colleagues.

I adore food and I cannot just choose one particular food that is my fave.

Food is really is my favorite. Enjoy!

Friday, April 26, 2013

University Club atop Symphony Towers [Anniversary Lunch] - Downtown


The hubby and I were fortunate (and really ecstatic) to receive another invitation to visit the University Club atop Symphony Towers to celebrate six years of wedding bliss. The last time we visited for our 4th anniversary dinner, they were undergoing renovations and in the process of expanding their space so it was great to see that they modernized the club, by adding more color.   The very first time we visited, my organization just got a membership to "San Diego's premiere private social and private club" and I was super duper excited to go.

Unfortunately, we did not have the chance to explore and take photos (no private tour this time) so hopefully the next time we visit, we'll be able to! We were right on time for our reservation so they took us down the hall immediately to one of the main dining rooms, with, of course, a breathtaking view of the city.

We went for lunch and sat amongst business people, we could tell. A lot of wining and dining, corporate conversation were around us.... and there's us, two people celebrating love (and talking fantasy football strategies... yeah, seriously). OK, food time.

The crunchy bread was served with soft butter and an orange infused marmalade. The cute little ceramic squares were also filled with salts from France.

The hubby started out with a crock of sweet onion soup ($6.25). Mmm, this soup is always a favorite for the both of us. Sweet, caramelized onions, beef broth, toasted baguette croutons and, non-traditional, melted provolone cheese were the ingredients for the Club's version.

I had to order the steak frites ($27.25) again, especially when they only serve it during lunch. I fell in love with this dish when I first had it and could not stop thinking about it since. I ordered my steak to be cooked to a medium temperature and this is what I got...

My steak was definitely overcooked, but... I was hungry and, seriously, I was okay with it. The steak had a nice charbroiled flavor, the frites were cheesy from the asiago and crispy, and the Bearnaise sauce was on point.  Even the greens were dressed nicely in a tangy vinaigrette.  Everything was yummy.

Our server checked up on us after more than a few bites of our meals.

Him: "How is everything?"
Us: "Good - thanks!"
Him (to me): "Your steak looks a bit over."
Me: "It is, but it's really okay."
Him: "Not okay."

He quickly took my plate and returned it to the kitchen. Ten minutes later, I have a whole *new* dish, with a perfectly cooked steak, which unfortunately, I did not finish.  In fact, it looked like I barely touched it because I already ate a good portion of my first steak dish.  Still, I appreciated that the server insisted to return the dish.

The hubby ordered the almond crusted halibut ($20.00).  His dish came with rock shrimp risotto, charred tomato, and a citrus butter sauce to tie everything all together.  It was rich and so delicious.

We just had to get a dessert to share for our anniversary.  We ordered the apple tart ($9.00) with vanilla bean ice cream, fresh berries, and a caramel sauce.  It was warm, sweet, buttery and a perfect end to our anniversary.  

Here are pictures of our dinner from 2010 for when we celebrated four years:

[palate cleanser: refreshing mango sorbet]

[grilled filet mignon with truffle risotto and a port wine reduction]

[perfectly cooked seared sea scallops]

The University Club really is a real treat for us.  We are lucky to have visited and dined amongst business executives.  The service is great, there is a guy who plays the grand piano while we ate, and the view.... wow, I cannot get enough of the view on the 34th floor of Symphony Towers, overlooking the Coronado Bridge, Point Loma, and Downtown San Diego. 

University Club Atop Symphony Towers
750 B Street, #3400
San Diego, CA 92101

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Station Tavern - South Park

South Park? I was aware the area existed given the ever-so-popular North Park, but I have never been to a restaurant there before.

We had the opportunity to venture out to South Park when our good friends, J and J, bought a cute house over there. A group of our friends met at their house for a tour of their home and of their neighborhood. We walked to the Station Tavern and Burgers, their family friendly suggestion, for lunch on a weekend afternoon.  I was curious to see a beer tavern that is family friendly.

The restaurant set up is similar to the Lei Lounge, where the bar and half of the seating is inside the restaurant and the other half is outside.

They also have a cool wooden train for toddlers and/or youngsters to play in. The train is enclosed in a gated area and instead of sand, there was gravel instead.

I love restaurants with a simple menu. The Station Tavern definitely has one. They serve burgers, fries, tots, and have a small kids menu (an all beef hot dog, grilled cheese sandwich, or a tofu dog for $3.00 each). Burgers are reasonably priced ($6 or $7), but do not come with fries or tots.  The menu shows that they have local beers on tap, wine and cocktail list.

J took the liberty and ordered one full order each of the regular french fries ($3.50), garlic fries ($4.00) and sweet potato fries ($4.00) for the entire table. They ran out of tots... WHAT?

The server brought out the fries before our burgers.  I would say that a full order can feed about three people (two really hungry people).

The french fries were simply what they were... french fries. Nothing special about them. They were crispy and salted nicely.

J warned us that the garlic fries are *really* garlicky. I absolutely love the taste of garlic, as long as the garlic is not raw. I helped myself to these first. The menu description describes that these are tossed in fried garlic but it was not. I was expecting the chunks of sauteed garlic and parsley fries similar to Gordon Biersch. These fries had sweet chunks of roasted garlic slathered on top, which was super delicious. Every bite of the sweet garlic made me want the taste even more.

The sweet potato fries were exactly what I expected, but I LOVE them so they were scrumptious. These fries were served with a bleu cheese sauce.

Our burgers arrived at the table and unfortunately, between our son running around the restaurant, me being really hungry, and trying to cut up our son's kids all beef hot dog ($3.00), I only took a picture of my burger. The hubby ordered the turkey burger ($7.00), everyone else ordered cheeseburgers, and J ordered a the Yardbird (grilled chicken sandwich - $7.00).

I'm a cheeseburger gal - simple dimple. The cheeseburger ($7.00) is made with 1/3 pound Angus beef chuck and comes with the usual lettuce, tomatoes, red onion and pickles on a toasted bun. We had a choice of cheddar, swiss, or pepperjack cheese. Burgers did not come with any sauce. There were condiments on the table or you can pay $0.50 for one of their many homemade sauces.

The patty was a tad smaller than the bun, but I did not mind because the bun was soft, fresh and perfect for my medium temperature cooked burger. The flavor of the meat was good. It was well seasoned and it made my tummy happy.

All in all, the Station Tavern is a great family place - there were tons of kids and babies - AND a great place to grab a burger and a brew with your buddies. I really want to go back to try the tater tots, garlic style.

South Park has all these hidden gems, like a cupcake/ice cream place, this popular mariscos food truck in the grocery store parking lot, Whistlestop Bar and MIHO gastrotruck every Friday evening, Big Kitchen (which I have never visited) and a cute French creperie. We are definitely visiting South Park again to explore!

The Station Tavern and Burgers
2204 Fern Street
San Diego, CA 92104
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