I’ve been not totally head-over-heels for Gracias Madre in the past but three things redeem it for me:
1) This cauliflower and cheese dish with the breadcrumbs on the top. sometimes they have it with Brussels sprouts too. either way, it’s cheesy, spicy, and amazing. order it.
2) GET THE FLAN. It’s FLAN. But without eggs. IT’S EGGLESS FLAN. It’s perfect and delicious and I want to bathe in a pool of it with you OMG this just got hot all of a sudden.
3) Sweet happy hour deals with cheap beer, mojitos, and sangria. I think it goes from 5 to 7 p.m. and they’re all $3. This helps make up for the fact that you’re about to pay $13 for some rice and beans. I KNOW, I KNOW, it’s all organic and fair trade and that shit is important and I’m willing to pay for it (I’m lucky I can afford to do that and so are you!) but yeah, it’s expensive for Mexican food in the Mission. You can hate all you want but I said what I said and I never go back on what I say 50 percent of the time, OK!?
Definitely worth a visit, and you’d be wise to heed my recommendations. NAMASTE, BITCHES!
Flacos Restaurant Opens! »
It’s been a good few months for vegan Mexican food! It’s everywhere. Well, in two places. Gracias Madre is considerably better than when it opened. Or maybe I’m just less of a bitch today. PEOPLE CHANGE. Not me, but I’ve heard that some do. Like, in movies about people changing. Anyway, I highly recommend the cheesy cauliflower and patatas bravas because they are both the tastiest. But we aren’t here to talk about that
cult restaurant, we’re here to get down on some delicious East Bay Mexican food from Flacos. Yes we’ve reviewed them before, but now they have a stand-alone restaurant and it’s bare bones. You probably shouldn’t go with a group larger than four and you won’t all be sitting together. The food is worth it though, with the tamales and taquitos being the stand-out stars of the menu. Skip the pozole unless you’re a fan of things that are flavored like “red.”
I guess I really have nothing else to say. AND STILL I RISE. I guess I just wanted to tell you that Flacos is open in Berkeley and y’all should go so their asses stay in business and continue to be awesome so that I might get as delightfully fat as possible. Oh and they’re open from 12-9 Tuesday thru Saturday. And are cash only. FOR THE TIME BEING. I think they’re working on getting a credit card machine and to that I say: WORK FASTER! I joke but really, fuck you, Cha Ya.
Overfishing, under-(cover)inspecting, producing better produce plates, arguing about Alice Waters and MORE in today’s link-o-rama! »
Dolfapedia says, “They’re gonna make the dog ride the zip line because they need the coverage on Vegansaurus.” Doubt it! But if this happens someone better let us know so we can let you know and we can amass a zip line protest group ASAP. It’ll be the funnest protest ever (we will take over the zip line).
The LGBT Army of Compassion will hold a peaceful demonstration against animal cruelty on Sunday, Apr. 28 from 9 to 11 a.m. at the Northeast corner of the Heart of the City Farmers Market at U.N. Plaza. Click here for further information.
Items of social and political import!
Kinship Circle has volunteers helping animal victims of the Chilean earthquake and could really use your donations.
Whoops, another environment overfished to the point of near-destruction! There’s a ban on fishing in the Sea of Galilee and no one can play “Jesus and Disciples” anymore.
Oceanic nightmares: photos from a Japanese whaling expedition. I am not going to look at them because I will cry, but have at them, you all with your stronger constitutions.
FDA inspections of food manufacturing plants are few, far-between, and essentially useless. Color me fucking shocked.
But big businesses are using their big dollars to fight for the closure of legal aid clinics, including that of the University of Maryland, which filed a lawsuit against Perdue in March, “the first effort in the state to hold a poultry company accountable for the environmental impact of its chicken suppliers.”
This year’s first “positive side effect of global warming” is the super-low price of California and Florida strawberries. Fresh strawberries are SO GOOD, you guys, and remember, buy local and organic whenever possible because berry pesticides are nasty.
Six of the “seven essentials” of Alice Waters’ kitchen are applicable to vegans AND omnivores—imagine! We are of course not counting the business about getting children to help you, which is silly if you do not already have children in the kitchen. But did you know that everyone hates Alice Waters forever? She is the devil in a blue organic cotton apron.
We have an appreciate/desire-to-punch-in-the-face relationship with Slow Food Nation—roasting a piglet for two days is saving the planet how?—but declaring 2010 the "Year of the Heirloom Apple" and providing consumers with a fancy informational booklet all about that fruit earns them a mark in the “appreciate” column.
Another study shows that unless you are participating in a lot of activities that make you more likely to get cancer, eating produce won’t make you less likely to get cancer. Kind of. It’s complicated, which probably means the science is real.
Europe is tired of cupcakes! Hi, All of Europe, you probably just haven’t enjoyed enough vegan cupcakes, because duh they are the best and everyone loves them forever. Who wants to move to a Nordic country, open a vegan bakery, and eventually find nice citizens to marry? Totally awesome social services for life, plus near gender/class equality! I speak two European languages and am NOT AT ALL JOKING about this.
More Social Kitchen news: They have a brewer’s permit, and have scheduled a “soft opening” for Tuesday, Apr. 20. Plus: the menu will be split into thirds for omnivore, vegetarian, and vegan dishes. Party in the Sunset!
Jonathan Kauffman loooooooves Gracias Madre, he just loooooooves it. “Oh Gracias Madre, mi amor,” he says, “te amo, te amo mucho.” Or something like that anyway.
Ezra Klein is mad as heck, and he is most likely not going to eat it anymore! What “it” is this? The ubiquitous, irritating, boring-ass grilled vegetable plate that totally doesn’t count as a “vegetarian entree,” gosh darn it. And Julian Sanchez totally concurs.
Here is a serious reason not to smoke, like, ever, as in not even when you’re drinking or stressed or sad or hanging out with other smokers or watching a lot of Mad Men, really for real never: the filters are made with pig’s blood.
Someone on Chowhound needs advice on vegetarian wedding menus. Anyone around here have any experience?
Wired explores foods/food-like substances/food-creation methods that are “changing the way we eat,” including pseudo-meat and aerosol pancake batter.
The Kitchn gives us 10 ideas for vegan breakfast, none of which includes aerosol pancakes.
What does “biodynamic” mean in relation to growing wine grapes? How does it compare to organic growing conventions? If you ever wondered when reading a wine list, this article may answer some of your questions. Maybe.
Regardless, I would rather drink a million bottles of mediocre, confusing, goddess-blessed biodynamic wine than one meat-infused cocktail, because BARF to the MAX. Why, god, why.
Philly Represents, by Megan Rascal.
Gracias Madre opening party TONIGHT! FREE DRINKS! »
Really, all you should care about there is: TONIGHT and FREE DRINKS. It’s from 5 to 7 p.m. Also, FULL DISCLOSURE, we have no confirmation on this and I’m not calling anyone. It’s near the end of the month and minutes are a valuable commodity that I’m sure as hell not wasting on your asses. Now, anyone in an office care to call and confirm? THANK YOU AHEAD OF TIME!
Here’s our initial observations about Gracias Madre. I’ll also add that you should skip pretty much everything except the cheesy cauliflower thing (it’s AMAZING) and OK, here’s the plan. Get to GM at like 5 p.m. Have a cheesy cauliflower dish and several free drinks. Wander down the street to El Farolito (or ANYWHERE BUT GRACIAS MADRE) and get a big-ass burrito for $5. Head on over to my place and LET’S PARTY (read: I’ll never tell you where I live EVER!!).
Grading the government, loving lemons, saving deer, giving presents to pigs and more in a special holiday link-o-rama! »
Every country is crazy and racist in its own way: in Japan, you can buy a box of tissues shaped like a bucket of KFC “chicken” with Obama styled as Col. Sanders and emblazoned with the English word CHANGE. I don’t know.
Next Saturday, Jan. 9 at Mix (4086 18th St. at Castro Street) from 3 to 7 p.m., Rocket Dog Rescue and Muttville Senior Dog Rescue are cohosting Iris’ Memorial Fundraiser! There’ll be music, art, a raffle, snacks, and drink specials, with all proceeds to benefit Rocket Dog and Muttville.
Our friends at VegNews point us to the super-disturbing news that a “medium-sized” dog eats about 360 pounds of meat per year, which “combined with the land required to generate its food” means that a medium-sized dog has twice the carbon footprint of an SUV driving 6,200 miles per year, “including the energy to build the car.” In short: VEGAN DOGS 4 LYFE. The authors are also heartless advocates of keeping rabbits for company and supper, which obviously we do not support, but COME ON, vegans, are you really feeding your companion animals other animals?
Update: Just like Michael “shut up” Pollan’s “a Hummer-driving vegan has a lighter carbon footprint than a Prius-driving omnivore” (or whatever) comment, the above “facts” regarding the environmental impact of your meat-eating pets have been proven false by actual science. Vegansaurus maintains that giving your companion animals food like V-Dog instead of vile shit even offal connoisseurs wouldn’t touch is better for everyone.
Arizmendi Bakery, creators of amazing mint-chocolate-chip cookies the size of your face, among other phenomenal vegan baked goods about which Megan Allison has been known to wax rhapsodic, is expanding to the Mission! We are quite pleased.
Oh hey, the recipients of the Ed Block Courage Award were announced just last week Tuesday—NFL players are nominated by and voted on by their teammates—and guess who won for the Philadelphia Eagles? YES! Everyone’s favorite dog-abusing sociopath, Michael Vick! The Ed Block Foundation “celebrate[s] players in the NFL” while “improving the lives of neglected children and ending the cycle of abuse.” I can’t imagine what kind of courage it took to STOP TORTURING AND MURDERING DOGS and START PLAYING FOOTBALL AGAIN, Michael VIck; apparently, enough to reward you for it. A-plus, then. I guess neglected, abused kids have a lot to learn from such an upstanding citizen. Have fun at dinner.
The deer at Valley Forge got a “holiday reprieve,” as the National Park’s plan to have “sharpshooters” kill 1,500 deer over four winters (a November-to-March period), beginning with 500 in 2009, was indefinitely postponed by two lawsuits. The slaughter of these 1,500 deer would destroy 85 percent of the herd presently living in Valley Forge National Park.
LA Weekly says, Meyer lemons and red cabbage are where it’s at. I say, have you ever had German braised red cabbage, all sweet and sour and delicious? It tastes like staying warm on a snowy night, highly recommended.
There’s a new chef at Weird Fish who is reportedly changing the brunch menu and eliminating lunch altogether. Um. Do we have reason to worry, here? The brunch at Weird Fish is great, we fucking love Weird Fish, please do not mess around with our vegan brunch PLEASE PLEASE.
The Guardian has food writers name the most important (for varying reasons) food books of the decade. Fast Food Nation and The Omnivore’s Dilemma get mentions, how broad-minded. Or, you know, shut up, England.
And speaking of publications that irritate me right out of my holiday booze-haze, Bon Appetit lists “the 10 best dishes under $10.” Repping for San Francisco—and the meatless—Harvey Slocombe’s tin roof sundae. Shut up, Bon Appetit.
Northern California Dungeness crab fishing: the season is short, the majority of the dead crabs are canned and shipped out of state, and it has nothing to do with honoring the values of Slow Food goddamn Nation. Color me shocked.
But HEY! here is a video of some pigs getting presents! Aren’t they adorable?
At Gracias Madre! It’s open!
First impressions: they spent a shitload of money on this place. It’s like being in a fancy spa (in Mexico?). The super-white host greets you with a “Buenas dias.” Hehe. As expected, they ask you a question of the day (shoot me) and there is communal seating (shoot me) (although fairly empty right now so we’re relatively safe). Pretty much the entire menu is available (except a few of the desserts).
That’s our report from the front lines! We’ll be back with more in a little! Over and out!
Preview Gracias Madre! Right now! »
OK, more like “pre-taste,” but the prefix is the key here because oh boy: They’re serving Gracias Madre tamales at Café Gratitude right now! Oh I cannot wait for this place to open, one of everything to stay, please.
The tamales are described as follows:”Stoneground heirloom masa steamed in the husk filled with seasonal vegetables. Served with pumpkin seed salsa and black beans. Rajas – roasted poblano chile strips sautéed with onion. Calabaza – roasted butternut squash.” ¡Muy delicioso!
[thanks for the tip, Grub Street San Francisco!]