Gearing back up the Grilled Cheese Machine.

Wedding Catering....

Wedding Catering….

 

You must know by know that my silence here means chaos and work elsewhere.  This gap has been no exception.  Catering has just gotten bigger and badder and cheesier and I am happy about that.  Our books are pretty much closed for the 2013 season.  If you have seen us recently you have also even seen we have gone sans brick.  Gasp!  Times are changin….

Although there won’t be that much major news left here in 2013, next year is already looking like the year of the cheese.  From a major Cheesemonger event coming to the Brie Area from NYC to the possibility of television time as we find out if I get a chance at Food Network’s Next Food Network Star, many foodie things are happening behind the scenes.  Also stay tuned for some news about a possible Pop-Up for the Philippines as well as the return to BTC dinners in Jan/Feb 2014 with a new way to share some stories.  I also hope to give it one more college try with the ole crowdfunding and see if we can get our cart on the streets to make this the team and myself’s full time passion!  That will take a lot from you cheesy fans so keep an ear out for the word!  I always try and keep you posted via Facebook and Twitter and our Events 2013 page.  I hope 2014 might truly bring me the time to get more writing of my own on this page.  Until then, enjoy seeing some of my foodie R&D via Berkeleyside NOSH & SF Station now!  It is fun to be writing and eating for two different sources in the bay area.  It has definitely been the place to be watching so many new chefs, restaurants, trends, and food movements take place all around here.  Hard to keep up and always leaves you hungry for more.

Enjoy some grilled cheese news from around the Nation and Happy Holidays to all!
Sincerely,

GrilledCheezGuy

Recipe: Grilled Cheese With Bacon, Apples And Blue CheeseNY1

Today’s recipe is for a fall-inspired grilled cheese sandwich with bacon, apples and blue cheese, served that with a side of broccoli steamed in a little apple cider 
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Upside-Down Grilled CheeseThe Daily Meal

The way to make a grilled cheese sandwich better is, arguably, with more cheese. Beg to differ? Bite into this cheesy, pan-toasted glory and you’ll reconsider.
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Pears transform grilled cheeseColumbus Dispatch

But what if the pears and cheese go into a grilled sandwich? If you can’t find pepper jelly, experiment with another preserve (such as apricot or fig) for a bit of 
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How To Make A Surprisingly Delicious Grilled Cheese French Toast Business Insider

Titled “The High Road Vanilla Melt,” the dish consists of vanilla Fleur de Sel-flavored ice cream between two cinnamon french toast grilled cheese sandwiches.
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Cheap Eats: Beat the winter chill with chower & grilled cheese at Supa!OregonLive.com

The chow: A half-dozen soups ($3.95/cup, $4.95/bowl) and eight “melties” (grilled cheese on Pearl Bakery bread, $5.95–$7.95). The soups change daily, but the 
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Come, Eat the Free Grilled CheeseBwog

at 9 PM in the East Ramp Lounge, the Culinary Society will be hosting aGrilled Cheese Faceoff between us and the grilling masters of Feelgood. Although we 
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Gen. Clark stumps for vets, grilled cheeseOCRegister (subscription)

For his next act, he’ll be conquering grilled cheese Cheesy Mac and Rib from The Grilled Cheese Truck includes macaroni and cheese with barbecue pork, 
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Triumph Grill Combines Meatlessness, Motorcycles and a Mean Riverfront Times (blog)

Overview: Triumph Grill is a classic new American restaurant that serves, among other cuisines, Asian, Italian and Southern dishes. While this restaurant 
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Little-Known Food Facts RevealedDigitalJournal.com

Camels like the Sahara desert because it is dry. Grilled cheese sandwiches also like a hot and dry environment — the pan. Put the butter or oil on the outside of 
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Bread. Cheese. Heat.Marshalltown Times Republican (blog)

But, even at the height of my laziest cooking, I can still master the culinary art of making a grilled cheese sandwich. But everybody can make one of those, right?
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How To Make A Grilled Cheese Ice Cream Sandwich – Business Aly Weisman

How To Make A Surprisingly Delicious Grilled Cheese French Toast Ice Cream  ice cream between two cinnamon french toast grilled cheese sandwiches.
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The Queens Kickshaw’s Grilled Cheese, Our Cheap Eat of the DayLaura Shunk

Grilled cheese sandwiches from The Queens Kickshaw (40-17 Broadway, Queens, 718-777-0913), $8-$10 A comfort food staple is endlessly reimagined at…
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Recipe: Grilled Cheese With Bacon, Apples And Blue Cheese – NY1

Today’s recipe is for a fall-inspired grilled cheese sandwich with bacon, apples and blue cheese, served that with a side of broccoli steamed in a little apple cider 
Grilled Cheese Eatery Opens in Fairfield: Grilled Cheese  - CT BitesKathleen Atkins

What is more comforting than the quintessential grilled cheese sandwich and a cup of homemade tomato soup? These are just a couple of the delicious items 
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Bacon-Topped Grilled Cheese Recipe | Taste of Home

This robust revision of an all-American lunch classic gets heartiness from bacon and extra flavor from onion, sour cream and oregano.—Nita Crosby, St. George, 
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Vancouver Foodie Tours Stops By Mom’s | Mom’s Grilled Cheese cindyh

Great lunch crowd today and the weather sure helped too! As soon as we lifted up our doors, the good folks at Vancouver Foodie Tours stopped by with a group 
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Mom’s Now Delivers!! | Mom’s Grilled Cheese Truckcindyh

Yes it’s true, Mom’s Grilled Cheese Truck now delivers, to the immediate area within the few blocks of our usual location. If you are within the 
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Delta Tau Delta To Table This Week for Grilled Cheese Soirée « My kroos

Delta Tau Delta To Table This Week for Grilled Cheese Soirée  to sell tickets for their philanthropic event, the Grilled Cheese Soirée, on Friday, November 15.
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Persimmon Grilled Cheese w/ Goat Cheddar & ProsciuttoAlison Needham

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Chugging down the rail lines is our new partnership with McClure's Pickles! I'm bringing the BEST chips from either coast to the brie area!

4 likes, 0 comments4 hours ago

Pizza cake. That just happened. #foodporn

0 likes, 0 comments9 hours ago

As the first to like, let me be the first to say that the men behind Frozen Kuhsterd and Sugar and Spun are going for #3 with Hookt Mini Doughnuts..

2 likes, 1 comments9 hours ago

I just supported farmCurious and her new Fermenting Set Kickstarter project! Why? Because everything she does is wonderful and with passion..

3 likes, 1 comments10 hours ago

Going #Oakland Korean BBQ tonight at #Ogane. Hungry crew is expanding......

"We're gonna need a bigger grill"

0 likes, 0 comments10 hours ago

Smoking bacon blunts. Our menu item for Sunday. See you soon stoners.

0 likes, 0 comments13 hours ago

Quit job.
Cut cheese
Check.

4 likes, 0 comments23 hours ago

Hello bay area.

I just gave my 4 weeks notice to my science job so I can go full time in serving you!

GrilledCheezGuy and Behind the Cart..

66 likes, 22 comments1 day ago

Why the hell is the condiment caddy not blowing up?

Wait till you see the smoked bacon blunts.....

1 likes, 0 comments1 day ago

Enjoy your lunch.
While looking at this.
Classic meets molecular.

By GrilledShane

3 likes, 3 comments2 days ago

Meet our newest #artisan creation:

The #CONDIMENT CADDY! Starring Bacon Hot Sauce, Kelly's Jelly, Brown Dog Mustard, and Sutter Buttes Olive..

2 likes, 0 comments3 days ago

Sorry Bagel Bites but soon Americans can TRULY have...pizza....anytime.

http://www.epicurious.com/articlesguides/blogs/editor/2014/04/pizza-vending-machine.html?mbid=rss_epilog

0 likes, 0 comments3 days ago

Coming to you soon. One of these items. Guess which one Bay Area....

4 likes, 1 comments3 days ago

This coming weekend's Off the Grid is double duty: 420 AND Easter.

We are gonna make that bunny get hella high.....jumping with joy of course.

0 likes, 0 comments3 days ago

To all who ate Pav Bhaji last night. Hope you enjoyed it! We enjoyed being an Indian street stand for a night!

To all who missed out! We..

0 likes, 0 comments3 days ago

We are doing it REAL STREET FOOD STYLE which means Pav Bhaji of Mumbai in #SF tonight!

If you know where we be, then the Indian is yours!

#Indianaddict..

0 likes, 0 comments4 days ago

guys.. every day this week days is gonna be the same backwards..
4/12/14
4/13/14
4/14/14
4/15/14
4/16/14
4/17/14
4/18/14
4/19/14

7 likes, 3 comments4 days ago

Home. Happy. Cheesy.

Thank you to everyone at, involved, and supporting of our final time at The Grilled Cheese Invitational!

So long..

4 likes, 0 comments5 days ago

It wasn't a miven who mighted us but it was damn close. #twinky ftw?!?

1 likes, 0 comments5 days ago

Pre-written I probably have either won or lost or enjoyed my one weekend off from #OTG so much that I didn't make it to the end. I hope you..

1 likes, 0 comments6 days ago

Award time.

4 likes, 0 comments6 days ago

CSA & Meatshare: The Iron Chef of the Home

We have been enjoying Capay Valley Farm Shop’s new Meatshare program at home.  Once a month we get 12 pounds of meat from local butchers that are frozen and in small servings of 1-3 pounds depending on what it is.  This is extra great for the two of us to enjoy each night.   Although it might appear to be challenge at first, we have very much enjoyed looking up recipes and playing around with what we get.  From beef neck bones to french lamb racks.  From a whole chicken staring at us daily in the freezer to an indian lamb rub we put on some lamb chops.

The program is only 3 months with the first month being a lot of beef and the second month having a lot of lamb parts.  We are very excited to see what comes next.  Hover over the photos to find out more about our delicious homemade dishes we enjoyed together.

If you are in the bay area I highly encourage signing up for the meatshare program when it gets offered again.  Links to their CSA & Meatshare are here:

http://capayvalleyfarmshop.com/

There is also a wonderful ocean CSA program called Siren CSA that I also recommend:

http://sirenseasa.com/

For more photos from our homemade cooking times check out my instagram:

http://instagram.com/grilledcheezguy

Flank SteakRIBS!Pav BhajiBig BurgerLamb chopsBBurritoOven Roasted French Rack of LambBeet TowerPizza timeWashingRed/Purple BasilBeetsSome of the recipes we found can be found here:

Indian Spiced Lamb / Indian Spiced Lamb

Lamb Shanks

Beet Stacks

 

 

Chugging down the rail lines is our new partnership with McClure's Pickles! I'm bringing the BEST chips from either coast to the brie area!

4 likes, 0 comments4 hours ago

Pizza cake. That just happened. #foodporn

0 likes, 0 comments9 hours ago

As the first to like, let me be the first to say that the men behind Frozen Kuhsterd and Sugar and Spun are going for #3 with Hookt Mini Doughnuts..

2 likes, 1 comments9 hours ago

I just supported farmCurious and her new Fermenting Set Kickstarter project! Why? Because everything she does is wonderful and with passion..

3 likes, 1 comments10 hours ago

Going #Oakland Korean BBQ tonight at #Ogane. Hungry crew is expanding......

"We're gonna need a bigger grill"

0 likes, 0 comments10 hours ago

Smoking bacon blunts. Our menu item for Sunday. See you soon stoners.

0 likes, 0 comments13 hours ago

Quit job.
Cut cheese
Check.

4 likes, 0 comments23 hours ago

Hello bay area.

I just gave my 4 weeks notice to my science job so I can go full time in serving you!

GrilledCheezGuy and Behind the Cart..

66 likes, 22 comments1 day ago

Why the hell is the condiment caddy not blowing up?

Wait till you see the smoked bacon blunts.....

1 likes, 0 comments1 day ago

Enjoy your lunch.
While looking at this.
Classic meets molecular.

By GrilledShane

3 likes, 3 comments2 days ago

Meet our newest #artisan creation:

The #CONDIMENT CADDY! Starring Bacon Hot Sauce, Kelly's Jelly, Brown Dog Mustard, and Sutter Buttes Olive..

2 likes, 0 comments3 days ago

Sorry Bagel Bites but soon Americans can TRULY have...pizza....anytime.

http://www.epicurious.com/articlesguides/blogs/editor/2014/04/pizza-vending-machine.html?mbid=rss_epilog

0 likes, 0 comments3 days ago

Coming to you soon. One of these items. Guess which one Bay Area....

4 likes, 1 comments3 days ago

This coming weekend's Off the Grid is double duty: 420 AND Easter.

We are gonna make that bunny get hella high.....jumping with joy of course.

0 likes, 0 comments3 days ago

To all who ate Pav Bhaji last night. Hope you enjoyed it! We enjoyed being an Indian street stand for a night!

To all who missed out! We..

0 likes, 0 comments3 days ago

We are doing it REAL STREET FOOD STYLE which means Pav Bhaji of Mumbai in #SF tonight!

If you know where we be, then the Indian is yours!

#Indianaddict..

0 likes, 0 comments4 days ago

guys.. every day this week days is gonna be the same backwards..
4/12/14
4/13/14
4/14/14
4/15/14
4/16/14
4/17/14
4/18/14
4/19/14

7 likes, 3 comments4 days ago

Home. Happy. Cheesy.

Thank you to everyone at, involved, and supporting of our final time at The Grilled Cheese Invitational!

So long..

4 likes, 0 comments5 days ago

It wasn't a miven who mighted us but it was damn close. #twinky ftw?!?

1 likes, 0 comments5 days ago

Pre-written I probably have either won or lost or enjoyed my one weekend off from #OTG so much that I didn't make it to the end. I hope you..

1 likes, 0 comments6 days ago

Award time.

4 likes, 0 comments6 days ago

Kitchit & Our own Michelin Man

Yes I am a foodie.

Yes I like going to see what some of the newest chefs are cookin as much as I like hitting the streets and feasting on a chicken tikka burrito.

Serving for OITF and Chefs from Haven

I have taken the foodie flag even further by diving into all sorts of scenes from baguetting for the Yelp fans,  serving alongside cooks from various great restaurants, opening up new restaurants that lost their chef on the first night (Noire Lounge anyone?), and writing stories about my fellow foodies and some of the more underground scenes going on.   I was reminded by Twitter that it has already been a full year since I was accepted as one of “the” foodies of America via Eat Retreat which is still an experience and an event that I will never forget.  The diversity of the various projects and people that came together to open up and share their recipes and their stories and their lives in the food scene was profound.   One person in particular was a feisty feline I met early on by the fire on the first night.  It took only seconds for us both to identify ourselves as east coasters (NJ/NY to be precise…badabing!) and minutes to become friends during the weekend.  One of her many many projects she mentioned was a new site called Kitchit.

Kitchit is what Lyft brought to cab service and Airbnb brought to old time BnB’ing via the catering/private chef industry.   You want to have a dinner party?  You wanna have a cooking class?  You wanna have a five star dinner by a well known local chef?  Go online.  Pick your chef.  Let them design a menu (or just go for it).  Pick a date and there you have it.   Before using the service myself I actually had a small stint working Kitchit events with my very successful and talented Chef Joel Coleman.   It was an honor to work and serve alongside him at these various parties where we absolutely made each person’s/party/etc night with the food.   The best part was hoping and praying for leftovers so that I could scurry home and eat a much more simplified version of whatever we had served, sans usually the event’s favorite courses as those never survived.    The Kitchit work stopped only because Chef took on a new role that he is sharing via tumblr!  Kitchit the company, however, continues to expand to new cities.  It currently serves Chicago, San Francisco, and New York, aka the hottest cities for food in America right now!

It was after my stint with Chef Joel and the upcoming anniversary of my family that I started to have an idea.  My parents were both finally retiring from the Garden State of NJ to do what every good East coaster does and move to Florida aka Heaven’s waiting gate.   This meant my last childhood home was being sold and my only ties left to the tri-state area would be my friends still in the area.   We decided to have one nice last meal and my mom, a fellow foodie, started listing some places she was interested in.  My mom is of the old foodie guard which seems to be totally objected to any of the more modern takes going down in the kitchen so she totally scoffed at any Mamafuku or the like.   We tried to get into Daniel but it was booked.  Per Se was too much and apparently was not good enough as they had tried the bar food and were not too impressed.    As it got harder and harder to find a good meal, I got the idea of seeing what Akiko and the Kitchit crew could do.

What she did was find one of her favorite new Kitchit chefs and friend David Goody to drive all the way out from Brooklyn to serve my family in our little old suburb town of Montgomery, New Jersey.   We chatted a bit and I basically told him that my parents were foodies and that my mom was French and enjoyed French food.  I said you should try to placate my dad with some sort of meat and my mom loves scallops.  After that Chef Goody sent me a menu that had me foaming from the get go.  The menu looked like this:

— THE MENU —

Chilled Spring Pea soup, salmon roe, pea tendrils, lemon.

Baby Beets, Mache, Marcona Almond and Ginger Shallot Vinaigrette, Goat Cheese Mousse, Toasted Bread.

Seared Scallops, Cauliflower, Onion, Summer Truffle Coulis, Chervil.

Seared Duck Breast, Parisienne Gnocchi, Sauteed Grapes, Broccoli, Walnut Pesto.

Fresh Baked Madeleines with Lemon Curd, Meringue, Raspberry Powder.

CRAFTED BY CHEF DAVE GOODY
IMG_0713
I told my parents little.  I warned Chef my parents were of the chatty and curious type and then waited for the day to arrive.  Our family got all dressed up and treated it like we were going out to any of the above mentioned restaurants.  Chef Goody showed up promptly and proceeded to unload his bag of goodies into our kitchen.  I think the sheer number of plastic containers he had was enough to get both my parents instantly asking questions while he prepped.  We saw paper think slices of cauliflower floating in water,  dark black sauce next to bright white sauce, and CO2 containers that neither had seen before in the kitchen.  Chef Goody was able to handle the barrage of questions while putting together the meal in our home which made for a fun time for all.  We proceeded to drink bubbly and wine in the comfort of our own home while chatting with a Chef that more and more revealed his clout in the community.  I was pleased to get to impress my parents in front of him by being able to volley the latest names and restaurants and trends going on in the seen and he shared some great stories about the places he had worked and traveled.  I think one of highlights was hearing how he had recently served mister Murdoch himself in NYC, shrinking the world around us even further as well as exciting us about the food that was to come.
Chef did not fail there as each course was more beautiful and tastier than the next.
The amuse was fresh oysters served with some bacon fat and little onion pearls and the beautiful edible flowers you see.  He definitely knew how to get the party started with those little buggers.
IMG_0716

The first course was a chilled soup, something my boyfriend had not really tried.  It was “Chilled Spring Pea soup, salmon roe, pea tendrils, lemon.”  Those molecular lemon bites literally could be sold on the crack foodie market and make someone rich.  They were a mix of lemon and olive oil and just bursted with flavor each time you found one.  The most amazing little tidbit of this dish was the spring peas.  Chef actually took the actual peas out, made pea-like balls from cucumbers, and then replaced them with these faux-cumbers.  An amazing touch that definitely raised eyebrows and spoons quickly.  It only took one course to learn that another bonus that comes from enjoying this fine dining at home was the freedom to be a little more like us while eating.  What I mean by that is the GrilledCheezGuy family is not afraid to capture every morsel of tasty goodness if it is that good.  And this was no exception.  Bowls were licked clean right in front of Chef as he prepared the next course.

Pea SoupIMG_0715

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The second course was the following:  Baby Beets, Mache, Marcona Almond and Ginger Shallot Vinaigrette, Goat Cheese Mousse, Toasted Bread.

IMAGES NOT SHOWN

(DUE TO THE LACK OF RESISTANCE TO NOT START EATING IMMEDIATELY)

It’s true.  It seems it only took one course for us to forget to try and capture our foodporn moments.  All I can do is try to best describe to you what we witnessed during that course.  It was like a beautiful little art sculpture scene made up of beets made in various ways.  I am a huge beet fan and can remember savoring each bite of beet I had alongside the delicious goat cheese and other tasty bits.  It was quite beautiful and delicious and luckily we noticed our failing to photo before the next course.  We vowed to be more on top of our game so that we had some proof after we passed out from the food/wine coma.

The third course was a dedication to my mother’s request with an absolutely breathtaking plate of “Seared Scallops, Cauliflower, Onion, Summer Truffle Coulis, Chervil.”  The scene was something out of the garden of the Queen in Alice in Wonderland with the black and white from the truffles and the cauliflower and the scallops battling it out on the plate.  It was really hard to decide which sauce to use with the scallops more and I made sure to try and ration things out so that I had enough till the very bitter end.  I was happy to see my mom finishing first and raving about how well he had cooked them as I knew he had now satisfied her for sure, if I had any doubts.

IMG_0724 Seared Scallops

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It was now time for Chef to take our parent number two with his fourth course:   “Seared Duck Breast, Parisienne Gnocchi, Sauteed Grapes, Broccoli, Walnut Pesto.”  My dad is a hunter and actually still goes duck hunting on a yearly basis so it was funny when he didn’t recognize the duck right away on the counter (right picture).  Once served to us on the plate alongside some sauteed grapes and parisienne gnocchi (big difference!…look it up!) there was no question about what we were having!  I remember being quite full already and as I worked my way though this one while my father scarfed it down with delight.  So fast actually that he proceeded to watch me like a buzzard to see if I was going to survive the course or not.  I let him swoop in for a few bites as I could tell he enjoyed it so much.  It was definitely a treat and quite a large portion as well which everyone enjoyed.  By this point stories were flying about our lives and he was already family to us as we watched him start preparing our dessert.

Duck Brease Duck Breast

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And what a dessert it was.  Keeping with our frenchy roots he served us all beautiful plates of “Fresh Baked Madeleines with Lemon Curd, Meringue, Raspberry Powder.”  I love lemon curd like a fat kids loves cake…..specifically the kind with lemon curd in it.   Somehow the taste of the dessert brought me back from the brink and I was able to polish off every last bite of it.  The one fascinating fact about this one was the raspberry powder.  Chef told us there is a store in NYC (Kalustyans) that actually sells all types of powders you can buy and use.  I loved this simple addition that brought life to the plate and the dish at the same time and look forward to seeking it out.

Madelines!IMG_0727

All in all the Kitchit experience truly is like nothing else you can find in a restaurant and not just because it is not in an actual restaurant.  It is because both sides bring a little of of their lives and their loves to the table and make for a once-in-a-lifetime meal.  A meal that the chefs concoct especially for you in mind which is especially nice as often fine-dining occasions can include a few rounds of plates that you really might not like.  I’m not saying this means you should give your chef a list of demands, but like Eleven Madison Park does with their menu, it is nice to list some of your favorite foods to see what the chef might do.   It is also fun because you will always be more comfortable in your own home, whether that be literally because of the cozy chairs you have or because you are free from the constraints that some places bring with them.   For us, there could not have been a better way to say goodbye to our New Jersey home than to spend it in the room we shared together the most, enjoying a meal that no restaurant in NYC could have made more perfect for us.

 

If you are living in the NYC area then I highly encourage you to check our Chef David Goody and see if he is still available for hire.  If you are fortunate to live in any of the cities that Kitchit serves, then I encourage you to find an occasion or a reason to have a chef come and serve you soon.  They are always evolving and now allow for things such as “Going Dutch”, which means you can have your friends all split the cost and pay separately directly on the site!  A great way to have a fun food party with friends.  I hope to try this idea myself in the near future!  Want to learn to cook like the chef that served you? Many teach cooking classes for you and your friends where you can learn AND eat in the same day!  There are a variety of options to choose from and they even have full concierge service to walk you through it.   Stay tuned for future posts about Kitchit experiences from both sides….

Update: Chef David Goody will actually be doing some traveling before he moves to the bay area to become a sous chef at a yet unnamed mid-market restaurant.  Excited to see he will be serving us out here!

Sincerely,

GrilledCheezGuy

oyster

 

 

 

 

 

 

Photos by Michael Davidson

 

 

New Taste Marketplace is really Newish this Time!

Remember when I was helping run New Taste Marketplace?  Yea…. me too.  Remember what happened?  No, probably not.  Well the good news is it appears the Gods there only don’t forgive me so make your merry way over to Potrero Hill this Sunday to try out 20 NEW vendors that have never passed the gates (doors) of foodie heaven at St. Gregory’s Church.

Make sure to make a visit to Sugar & Spun, the new venture part owned and operated by my personal favorites Frozen Kuhsterd.  Those guys are definitely going to bring some fun and creative twists to cotton candy that I’m sure will turn heads (or cones!)

I would most certainly be attending myself but have the honor of working alongside the crew of Outstanding In the Field this weekend.  I will make sure to take plenty of photos and share them with you next week!

In the meantime, your food prayers are answered this weekend!

New Taste Marketplace’s Hot New Flavors

Saturday June 22nd, 2013 Noon – 5pm

@ St. Gregory of Nyssa Episcopal Church: 500 De Haro, San Francisco, CA 94107

Photos - http://www.flickr.com/photos/newtastemarket/

 

Food trend watchers can taste the hottest food flavors at New Taste Marketplace. Sample 30 new food vendors on Saturday, June 22nd , 2012. Many of these small batch food artisans are start up businesses from the Bay Area using this community market as a launching pad to share their passions and  new flavors.

Curious eaters will get the first tastes of Hella Lumpia,Flan FlanTa-Tas,and Kale Mary Full of TasteBrilliant Elixirs concocts herbal tonics which are a tasty alcoholic alternative with unique flavors like chocolate chili pepper. Sugar Knife Artisan Sweets infuses sugar and booze in their marshmallows and brittle. For a full vendor list visit www.newtastemarketplace.org

Have a fun food experience with food demonstrations and beer and wine pairings. Come hungry to our daytime dance party and relax in our outdoor beer and wine garden. NTM is a beautiful space to shop and enjoy the afternoon with friends, family and foodies.

Proceeds benefit The Food Pantry and St. Gregory of Nyssa Episcopal Church connecting the community to great new food and increase awareness about hunger issues in San Francisco.

Pride Pop Up Power!

IMG_4579

 

Words can not describe the chaos that was Second Glasses Wine Riot this weekend.  Therefore, I will just leave you with pictures and a few moments.

To the woman who stole all our shirts.  You did not go unnoticed.  I got an email from someone who saw you.  I don’t really care about the shirts as much as I want to know what you will do with them.  Re sell em?  Give to friends?  I can’t wait for the day someone tells me their friend got them this shirt at Wine Riot.  I might just slap them so they slap you.

To the kids we fed at the end of the night who were beggin and pleadin.  We gave you a lot of high quality scraps in the end.  A dollar was not appropriate.

To the guy who lied and conned his way into getting a grilled cheese before the last 16 people were were waiting patiently in line.  You are a douche and I am glad I called you out for being a douche.  One guy definitely tried to start a mob against you.  I would definitely not have stopped them, you douche.

To the lady from NYC pouring wine next to us.  Mad props for knowing about Vik’s Chaat in Berkeley and not the Ferry Building in SF.

To the guy who took food and then my fellow GCG pointed you out and I called you out.  I am sorry.  We were working so damn hard and it was the heat of the moment.  I believe you didn’t mean it,  only after you brought that bottle of wine, not when you paid.

To the guy at the end of the night that I was teasing.  You were cute.  You said goodbye with your friends outside by your car.

To the other 500+ people we met and served and chatted and fed and shareed wine and laughs and good times with.  Thank you.  It was a pleasure.  You are a riot.

In case you missed our fun dishes at Wine Riot, we are keeping the momentum going with a popup at Truck this Sunday!  Come celebrate PRIDE month with me and my main man & main man co-worker as we put on a fabulous menu for you to enjoy!

 

Click here to remind yourself about the festivities this Sunday Funday!

Bacon Date

bacon / blue cheese / date

Cold Cocked

big iced homemade dill pickle

3some Cheesesome

grilled cheese trio / soup shot

Bang & Mash

local sausage / cheese potatoes / spring peas

Peaches Christ!

organic peaches / mint infused balsamic / creme fraiche

Puddin’ In

bread pudding / chocolate / vanilla ice cream

 

A Tale of Two Food Tours: Part 2 ~ Localite Food Tour goes Hog Wild!

After writing for NOSH about the first Dishcrawl, Serena and Gretchen, the founders of Localite Food Tours, invited me to join them on one of their five tours they have.  You can choose between the Pork Tour, The Retro Cocktail Tour, Urban Nature, Handmade Tour, and the Enchanting Dinner Tour.  I, unfortunately, have such a busy schedule I was only able to attend the Pork Tour anytime soon.  Tragedy, I know.  Little did I know I was bout to take a journey through time and pork and would come out the other end feeling like I had just went on the best food tour Oakland has to offer (and possibly better than some of the other recent mentions in the news lately).

Ratto's

This food tour does everything right and nothing wrong.    Other food tours like Dishcrawl made me feel like I was constantly trying to find my circle of friends, Localite Tours are maxed out at 14 people (unless you book a private group!), with ours being 8 total for the day.  Although it didn’t guarantee a Breakfast Club group by the end, it definitely allowed for us to all becomes at least foodie friends with each other without having to place the social circle game.  The other important factor is that this Pork tour did an entire tour, without ever once taking advantage of the Pork Belly craze!  Eat that SF foodies, we got no food snobs here!

I arrived promptly on time for the event and was greeted by both founders of the Localite Food Tours.  We chatted about their ambitious line up of food tours for the summer and I was excited from the moment I met them.  It didn’t take long to realize just how serious this food tour was as Gretchen pulled out a box of pork buns from Bread of Life and begun telling us the story of Broadway and Oakland.   They reminded of how Oakland got its name (the oaks, duh) and how Broadway was the first main boulevard in Oakland.  I enjoyed gaining knowledge alongside the calories and fortunately this type of storytelling continued throughout the evening.

Broadway remained our focal point as we walked back and forth to various Old Oakland establishments learning the significance of pork to the area.  Pork had an impact onthe beginnings of many of the local establishments like Ratto’s, still with it’s old sign, to Swan’s Market, built to handle the long tables full of various meats and cuts of pork that various immigrants of Oakland were craving from their home countries.   Ratto’s served up various cured meats paired with white wine while the owner came out to share the history of her establishment, which has been passed down from generation to generation.  We followed this with a quick stop at Battambang where the wonderful owner told us how she pickled daily, something definitely noticed while enjoying the fresh and delish pork spring rolls.  The next stop was Swan’s Market, which was exciting for me as I have wanted to try Rosamunde since hearing about this Brooklyn transplant.  The interesting fact about their meats was their choice to make small, thinner sausages as they believed they capture more taste and juices inside.  Our wild boar sausages came as two and were served alongside a plethora of homemade, tasty condiments.  From the homemade mustard to the spicy marmalade, I made unique bites each time and never concluded which one was my favorite before finishing.  I know it was good enough to bring all the remaining condiments home with me when our group was finished!

Condiments

Condiments for my boar sausage, and later on various other foods at home

Rosamunde

Wild Boar Saussages!

The next stop was fortunately a little bit of a walk to visit Tina Tamale and La Borinquena Mexicatessan in the area that I learned used to be the true spanish area of Oakland.  It wasn’t until  Oakland decided to put in BART and freeway that the spanish population decided to move (not sure it was quite this simple, maybe ‘made their way?’) south and make Fruitvale the area it is today.  Tina Tamale and her family have been serving the local community for generations and Tina is truly the first one of her family to embrace technology and social media and take the restaurant/catering business to the next level.   We first started working side by side at the Oakland Art Murmur, where eventually she purchased the truck of the former Guerilla Grub to bring Tina Tamale to the next level . Now you can find her and her truck all over the place including Bites Off Broadway and the Oakland Indie Awards.   She took our group on a personal tour of the restaurant and showed us the old stone miller and talked about the insane numbers of tamales that are made during the holiday season.  One of the more interesting stories shared took place right outside her spot on the sidewalk where a placard marks the 10,000 steps project (including one in front of Ratto!) The project involves tryign to collect all the stories and history of the Old Oakland area and placards have been scattered throughout to show areas of interest.    It is a great idea that reminds me of the current payphone project going on in NYC right now.

We followed up this part by going to an area that is present in every major city, and that is Chinatown.   Here I learned that Oakland’s Chinatown is a little different and atypical as it does not have any main gate as most do.  I pondered this interesting fact while enjoying pork dumplings from Shan Dong and asking my fellow foodies if they knew if other Chinatowns had the everywhichway crosswalks like Oakland did.  Apparantly they do.   The guides walked us around the area, one of my favorite places to bike to and get dim sum on Sundays, and concluded the area with a tour of the Asian library in the center of Chinatown.  They took us to the back to show us that they actually carried a considerably sized library of Asian cookbooks that were written in English.  Definitely a great resource that I would not think to seek out if it wasn’t for the food tour!

As we headed to our final location, our guides gave us a sample of Phat Matt’s BBQ’s candied bacon that was somewhat hard to go for at this point (at least for me).  We munched our little snack as we walked past the PopUp Hood area and were told various stories about the people who have made it the place today, including the cobblestone sidewalks the whole way!

We were about to head into El Borgo Italia where a secuirty told us we could not enter due to an “incident”.  A steamed employee came oustside while police stood inside and proceeded to vent about the owner shafting him and his staff after he put his family’s recipes and furniture into the place.  We quickly diverted to the Trappist to enjoy a refreshing beer and a little cruidite to end the tour.  By this point everyone on my tour was full, happy, and fully engaged about the history and stories they had learned about Old Oakland.  I felt that at the end of this tour, we had not only become better fooodies of the Old Oakland area, but better citizens and residents who could appreciate all the people had come before us to make this area the porky place it is today.

Trappist Crudite

Trappist Crudite

I definitely felt this tour was the best one I have been on yet for it’s mix of both food and story, both in excess, but just enough that you could walk away without waddling and without feeling you had just sat through a boring lecture.  They have 5 total tours for this summer that all focus on different areas and topics and I truly hope to get to hit them all up before summers out!

Check out some additional photos below:

Sincerely,

GrilledCheezGuy

ps – you might be asking yourself, Cheesus Crust, why are there not a lot of pork pictures from this pork tour? The answer my son is that at the times that were porkiest, I was too busy eating.  My sincerest apologies.  It just means you will have to take the tour!

 

Scientist. Grilled Cheeser. Shark man. Blogger. And now, writer!

In case you don’t follow me incessant posts on Facebook and Twitter, I have made a point of getting my writing out in the ether for all to enjoy and critique and absorb.   At the beginning of the year I reached out to a few local papers and online papers to see if someone would give me a chance to do some foodie writing.  The only group that did was Tracey over at Berkeleyside NOSH.   Fitting considering my first home on the Left Coast was in Berkeley and I still know and eat much more in the East Bay than I do in SF.

So in case you don’t know about NOSH and didn’t realize I was writing for them I am posting here so you can go back and ready all 3 of my wonderful articles about some of the local foodies in the scene.

First is my article about Little Shop Artisan Box and her first pop-up dinner with Chef Peter Jackson of Canvas Underground.

Second is my article about Dishcrawl’s first trip to Alameda with local foodie Fer of Fer’s Bite.

The most recent was covering S + S Gastro Grub’s first round of dinners at their private test kitchen.

I hope to keep up the writing with NOSH as well as here.  Already I wrote the Tale of Two Food Tours posts because I was invited on both tours after they read my articles!  Ah the power of food!  So read up and eat up on my past article and then go back a few blog posts and catch up here too.

 

Sincerely,

GrilledCheezGuy

 

A Tale of Two Oakland Food Tours: Part 1 ~ Dishcrawl

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.   I feel like tours fall into that category with other things like plays, musicals, family gatherings, etc where they really teeter towards only one side or the other for some reason.  You never have a mediocre time at these things.  Maybe because you are trapped and can’t leave till these shows are over no matter what? Whatever it may be, the food tour idea appears to be really catching on and gaining momentum.  My article in NOSH about Dishcrawl Alameda covered the first ever food tour for me and I was both happy and full at the end.  Little did I know this would be just the beginning.  Afterwards I was contacted by the organizers behind Localite Food Tours to come out and join them for one of their five local tours.   Where Dishcrawl appears to be out to show a good amount of people four locations within walking distance of each other, Localite Tours brings a handful of people on a very personal tour where food isn’t the focus, but definitely the fuel to keep your feet moving!   This week’s tours was a DishCrawl Oakland tour of Temescal, my old home, and a Localite Pork Tour of Old Oakland.

Sample Crawl About Town!

March 49

Dishcrawl Oakland was on a Tuesday starting at 7:00pm at Marc 49th on Telegraph.  The weather was perfect for a walk and Marc 49 was a perfect place to start the crawl with a drink.  Although I have dined at every place around Marc 49, I have never actually step foot inside and truly regret it.  This should be the place I am going to have a drink while waiting to get into Burma Superstar instead of the Green Tavern.  The atmosphere is beautiful and has a very nice wine selection.   Right from the start, I noticed that this Dishcrawl as compared to the Alameda was more of a SampleCrawl then a Dishcrawl.  Although I’m not sure how the logistics works for each, the difference between the portions and plating between the two was quite notieceable and mentioned here and there.  Marc 49 served a small sample cup of hummus and cerviche next to a piece of caramalized onion and goat cheese bread.  The hummus was good but the small bites only got my hunger geared up to eat.

After making some friends at the table, we started our first march which ended up being The Sacred Wheel.  I could sense it, as I have such an odd connection to the place.  That being that I met Jena and another familiy memeber way back in the day when I was selling grilled cheeses on the streets of the Art Murmur.  They told me how they were going to open a cheese shop and we chatted about the life of a cheese man.  Years later it is now true that there are two grilled cheese peoples in Oakland named Michael Davidson.  That is because I have no middle name and Jena is her middle name.  Her first name is Michael.  What a world.  Although I love them and their shop more than life itself, this was the first time I had their sandwich and was not too impressed the sammy itself, and most definitely the size.  I’m sure its not their fault but the small piece of grilled cheese alongside a standard cup of soup did nothing to help with my hunger.  Some of the new friends I made made the comment that “I think we got more water than food here.” which is never a good thing to hear.  What’s worse, one person mentioned the sandwich was something they could make at home, which I feel is the kiss of death when it comes to trying and maintaining that artisanal and special status in the sandwich making world.   If we don’t get a “That was the best grilled cheese of my life” at least once a night, we consider ourselves a failure.  Nevertheless, the people seemed to love the shop and walked around buying extra cheeses and oils and foods which was good to see considering they sell some of the finest cheese (Mt. Tam!) and best jams (INNA Jam!) in town.

IMG_4246

Sacred Wheel

 

 

 

 

 

 

The samples of cheese weren’t enough to hold my hunger and luckily the last stop was something of substance, but that wasn’t really try for everyone.  The third stop of the savory portion was Asmara.  It was both amusing and surprising to see many of the diners who slowly admitted they had never really tried Ethiopian and did their darndest to pretend to try it there.  One woman left all her Kik Alicha (yelllow split peas) and I truly wanted to take it all from her if it didn’t seem too crass.  I happily cleaned my plate and was relieved to find another location besides Cafe Colucci to hit up in Oakland now.   At this point it was pretty mixed on whether you were still starving or not and this was mostly based on whether they ate this meal or not, considering it was the only one of weight.   We ended the evening back across the street at Tara’s Organic Ice Cream where Kealoha passed out a small variety of samples, which made everyone happy.   This ended the tour and some of my newest friends headed right nextdoor to go “actually eat” at Burma Superstar as they were still starving and had never actually tried it.  Although I had a good time again with the people and the places, I’m curious to know which event represents the amount of food usually seen.  Maybe the Alameda event spoiled me and it is my fault for starving myself a tad in preparation, or vise versa.  I still love the concept and hope to try more of them in the future to continue to see how they play out.  Either way, this food tour was not my only one for the week and in Part 2 I will cover Localite Tours.

Dishcrawl Crew at Marc 49

Thank you very much to ambassador Kealoha for inviting me on the crawl!

Join me for Part 2 of this story tomorrow……….

Sincerely,

GrilledCheezGuy

 

Check out the blog post from the ambassador of the Oakland event here:

http://www.dishcrawl.com/blog/community/10/temescal-round-2-for-the-win

The next Dishcrawl for Oakland is June 19th.  Tickets and info for it here:

http://www.dishcrawl.com/oldoakland/

Before we reveal the name, let’s win him a $5,000 prize!

The word is out.  I DO have a food cart now.  It needs work.  It needs life.  It needs a lot.  Like $5,000 a lot.  Luckily Intuit is into helping small businesses like me by giving five grand away in a new contest.  You can VOTE ONCE PER DAY.  So like today, tomorrow, and everyday until May 12th.  I can’t tell you how helpful this would be to us and getting this cart ready, wrapped, and permitted to be on the streets.  You have always thought and wished I was a truck and although we aren’t there yet, we would love to take the next baby step to food cart.

So please take a moment and click, vote, and share in everyway possible.  We can do this.  We have done this before.  Once again, I thank you for all your support and love in advance.

 

VOTE VOTE VOTE!

SHARE! SHARE! SHARE!

VOTE! VOTE! VOTE!

 

Thank you for your votes,

GrilledCheezGuy

 

PS – Stay tuned to hear about how we do at the Grilled Cheese Invitational 2013 this year & the revealing of the cart name!

A Blog for All Things Grilled

I feel sheepish every beginning to write this like it is actually going to amount to anything you might even call a post.   I recently (which means 6-8 months ago in my mailbox) received an email from a fan who wanted to share with me a blog post about grilling.  Since I am a griller of cheese, and a perty good ta boot, I figured I would be much obliged to share that very post with you.  And it’s not just a post actually, but a post about 25 blogs that have great grilling things going down.  So that means that I’m not just giving you one little site to visit but 25 sites, each with it’s own host of recipes and other 25 lists for you to continually search and click and look at until you are bored and finally go out and actually cook or find someone to cook the food you have been drooling over inside.

So without further ado, I send you forth with nothing but a link for you to click on and enjoy.   I hope to spend this week leading up to this year’s 2013 Grilled Cheese Invitational actually writing blog pieces that are both cheese related and more recently related to some of the wonderful things that have been going on in the background here at GrilledCheezGuy.  (Did you hear we got a cart? I announced this new fact on National Grilled Cheese Day and will be announcing the winning name online today!)

Happy Grilled Cheese Month America & Brieyond!

Sincerely,

GrilledCheezGuy