Friday link-o-rama: Tomato cocktails, Michael Pollan has a sad, “dangerous” foods & more! »
Top Chef's Richard Blais, who owns a fancy burger joint in Atlanta that'll likely horrify you with its menu, is looking for partners in a new vegetarian eatery. This follows a monthlong experiment in veganism.
Zooey Deschanel is vegan-ing up Top Chef Masters next week. Yes we talk a lot about Top Chef around here, but if they’re going to put veganism on TV, we’re going to tell you about it.
However, grumparella Michael Pollan thinks “food shows” are detrimental to Our Nation’s cultural heritage—if we’re all watching people mix up soup from cans and pre-cut vegetables, then how will we ever loose our own culinary imaginations? Perhaps a valid point, but then he goes on to criticize first-wave feminism for “thoughtlessly trampl[ing]” the notion that a lady can find satisfaction in her food work “in their rush to get women out of the kitchen,” which is just the most privileged-white-dude thing to say he might as well be crying over the Stars and Bars. Shut up, Michael Pollan.
Oh my god, a job: Santa Rosa needs an operations manager for a “new vegetarian fast-food franchise business.” Go on, “qualified” hopefuls, send an application already. DO IT.
Elle magazine is killing me with its “10 Most Dangerous Foods" list. Smartly, milk and beef are on it, but so are tomatoes, bagged spinach, alfalfa sprouts, cantaloupe, and "nuts" (illustrated with a photo of peanuts!). What these non-animal devil foods share is that they’ve all made people sick with salmonella and/or e. coli contamination; what Elle fails to mention is how produce comes to be contaminated with bacteria that can only come from inside animals.
You can get heirloom tomato cocktails at Range! Including the famous (and vegan!) Sungold Zinger, with Sungold cherry tomatoes, No. 209 gin, lemon, agave syrup, and salt. If you are a tomato-lover, you should probably try this; it sounds like the perfect summery respite from your bland-ola bloody mary.
According to the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, after reviewing 50 years’ worth of scientific papers, “there is currently no evidence to support the selection of organically over conventionally produced foods on the basis of nutritional superiority.” The full results were published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, but having read what’s available I do not fully understand the conclusion.
Seoul on Wheels, the Korean food truck, returns to the streets in August! The menu has just one definite veg item, though possibly the chap chae, and—I hope and pray—perhaps the kimchee could be veg as well. My first solid food was Korean and I would do terrible things for some vegan Korean that went beyond bibimbap.
Our good friend Jen says: give me a sunny back porch, my abandoned knitting projects, and a few of these, please.
We say: AGREED! Also, the Paloma is made with Los Jarritos Grapefruit Soda which is deliciously readily available in the Mission. Sometimes I thnk there is a God. But then I think about Star Jones and I know I’m wrong. Or at least, our God is a vengeful one. Ugh. I can’t even hold the fact that she’s married to real-life Big Gay Al over her head anymore. I have nothing left to live for. Except the Paloma. SO CONFUSED ABOUT GOD.
Review: The Front Porch! »
The Front Porch has got to be the cutest restaurant I’ve ever been in. It’s like a puppy wrapped in a kitten and then sauteed in baby koala oil and served on a blanket of rainbows to a family of Care Bears. In addition to being the cutest, It has a down-home sorta sexy feel to it and you always leave kinda wanting to do it with whoever you came with. So don’t bring an ex-boyfriend you really want to have sex with again to this place because you will end up making a huge mistake. Or having a lot of fun. I guess that depends on your personal code of ethics and how much you hate yourself. Either way, mazel tov! What!
This place is always packed so be prepared to wait on their delightful front porch with one of their amazing, inventive cocktails or some delicious wine in a box (!!!). However, if you get there before 7 p.m., you might not have to wait. I’d say 6:45 is the perfect time to arrive because everyone else is coming at 7. If you do that, you won’t have to wait for a primo booth right in the front room. Sweet!
There are lots of vegetarian and vegan items on the menu and the wait staff is knowledgeable about what things are made with what. They always have a vegan special of the day, which might be a coconut okra stew or a sweet potato medley. Most of the time it is very delicious, except this one time when it was THE FUNK and we sent it back and the waitress took it off the bill and brought us about nine orders of their amazing thick-cut French fries with homemade ketchup as a replacement. Man, their fries are RIDICULOUS. A must-try. Must try nine orders. You also must get a side of the plantain fries if they’re on the menu along with the black bean soup with avocado. The sides are always changing but they make sure to have plenty of vegan-friendly options. If the coconut rice and beans are available, try them. If you’re not into the vegan special, you can easily make a dinner of the sides. A delicious dinner. That and their awesome cocktails and wine-in-a-box selection; this place is the shit.
One complaint: no vegan desserts. This has been known to SEND ME OVER THE EDGE in the past but this last time, the waitress did offer to bring me out the pickled pears sans ice cream. I was a little enticed but decided to head up the hill to Maggie Mudd instead. Hey! Million-dollar Idea: OFFER DELICIOUS MAGGIE MUDD VEGAN ICE CREAM AS AN OPTION! Because it’s not like they are making their own ice cream (it’s Mitchell’s!) and they are already serving lots of vegan options, so it would totally help draw in a larger vegan crowd. I mean, if they want our hot (read: fat) asses in there then they are going to have to put out (read: give me my soy cream, assholes!!!)
So, in conclusion, eat here on a date with someone you want to have sex with. Or just with a friend. Who you want to have sex with. Maybe not your brother or sister. Unless you are from Kentucky. Then whatever, that’s God’s Country, who am I to judge??
[photos via yelp]
Review: Beretta! »
Beretta is totally fucking awesome. It’s chic, although I hate using that word because it basically negates its meaning. It’s like the word “classy”. Nothing that’s classy can be described with the word “classy.” AM I RIGHT OR WHAT? Beretta is hip, it’s the ALL RIGHT OUTTASIGHT BEST! Inside, you can sit at the bar, or at a long communal table in the middle, or at a personal table. If it’s warm out, you can sit outside along 23rd Street. Even if it’s not terribly warm, they have heating lamps and you own a jacket, you live in fucking San Francisco. They make insane cocktails—some of the bartenders formerly worked at the Tenderloin’s classy Bourbon and Branch—many of which include absinthe! I love it! My favorite is the Dolores Park Swizzle, which is made with rum, lime, maraschino, absinthe and bitters. It’s served on a mountain of crushed ice. It’s the perfect alcoholic beverage. Or you might choose to indulge in a Hemingway, which is white rum, lime, cane syrup, maraschino and grapefruit! Just thinking about their outrageous drink menu, I want to start drinking at 1:30 p.m. on a Monday. Jesus, take the wheel!
Now, all that’s fine and dandy. Great location in the heart of the Mission, super-sleek interior, outside drinking of amazing drinks but WHAT ELSE, VEGANSAURUS? WHY ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT THIS PLACE? SURELY A PLACE SO PRETENTIOUS-SEEMING AND BOURGIE WILL HAVE NOTHING FOR OUR PEOPLE! And that’s where I say, YOU ARE WRONG AND ALSO A JUDGMENTAL JERK I THINK I LOVE YOU! Because Beretta serves up some of the best thin-crust pizza in town MADE WITH VEGAN CHEESE (!!!) AND VEGAN SAUSAGE!!! A recent addition to their menu, we vegans must partake of it in mass quantities so that they know it was worth it! And it is! Because it’s DELICIOUS! I got the potato, rosemary, radicchio, and gorgonzola dolce, sub vegan mozzarella for the gorgonzola and add vegan sausage! HELLO AMAZING CHEESY POTATO SAUSAGE PIZZA! You can substitute vegan cheese FOR FREE on any pizza that already has cheese. Love that! In a world that STILL charges 50 cents when you sub soy milk, WTF?!, this switching cheese for vegan cheese thing is just totally wonderful. I think the vegan cheese is Teese but it might be Follow Your Heart; it’s high-quality. They can make almost all of their appetizers vegan too. Try the persimmon salad and the brussels sprouts, both fantastic.
I really love Beretta. It is now about five steps from my front door (I’m employing hyperbole, but it’s close) and so I plan to be there pretty much every night once the pile of money I’m expecting to land on my face arrives later this afternoon. I’m incredibly excited about Beretta and I want to scream it from the rooftops, I want to dress as a bear and set myself on fire and run down Market Street, screaming its name! Or write about it on Vegansaurus! It was a coin toss, a Russian Roulette if you will. You guys lose, so this is your review. BYE!!!
[photos via yelp]