Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Best Dishes 2010

2010 was a fantastic food year for me thanks to the opening of some new local spots, several Cobaya dinners, continued excellence from local favorites plus trips to Charleston, Boston and San Francisco.

The following are the 20 30 35 best  things I ate in 2010.  I told you it was a good year...

35. Salumi cone at Boccalone (SF)
34. Stone crabs (to go) at Mr. Lobster (Islamorada)
33. Quail bao at Chow Down Grill
32. Fish dish tie- line caught wild Alaskan halibut, baby purple artichokes, meyer lemon, taggiasca olive at Bourbon Steak Miami (Cobaya) & triggerfish tempura, shaved fennel and buddha hand salad at Altamare (Cobaya)
31. Short rib meatloaf at Gigi
30. Shack Burger at Shake Shack
29. Crawfish Bread "French Dip" with Gumbo Consommé (featuring sausage and quail confit) at Chef K & Chadzilla, Sol Kicthen (Cobaya Gras)
28. Coq au vin at Chanticleer South (Islamorada)
27. Croque madame at Bouchon (Yountville)
26. Tie octopus a la plancha (green olives, crispy chorizo & smoked paprika aioli) at Cafe Boulud (PB) and octopus with warm farro and chorizo at Altamare (Cobaya dinner)
25. Red beans and rice & fried chicken- Chef Mike Marshall (a/k/a Big Basco) Cobaya Gras
24. 3 way tie- Oysters at Zuni Cafe (SF), Neptune Oyster & B & G Oyster (Boston)
23. Korean fried sweetbreads & spicy frog legs at Sakaya Kitchen (Cobaya in the night)
22. Burger at Zuni Cafe (SF)
21. Kimchi Benedict (with pork belly) at Michael's Genuine Food & Drink
20. Cracklin duck herb sandwich at Dim ssam a go go (Sakaya Kitchen truck)
19. Veal cheeks with mushroom polenta at Casa Tua (prior chef)
18. Xiao long bao (soup dumplings) at Yank Sing (SF)
17. Pork Belly with spicy melons at American Noodle
16.Tie Charcuterie plates at McCrady's (Charleston) & Perbacco (SF)
15. Lobster roll at B&G Oyster (Boston)
14. Pork belly and geoduck clam salad at Michael Mina (SF)
13. "fruits de mer", octopus, uni and bay scallops at French Laundry 
12. Warm lobster roll at Neptune Oyster (Boston)
11. Pork buns at Sakaya Kitchen
10. "Five Seas" a tasting of five fish with five preparations at Michael Mina (SF)
9. Veal sweetbread ravioli with porcini mushrooms at Fig (Charleston)
8. Hudson Valley foie gras terrine w/ strawberry, grains of paradise, pistachio, blue basil at  Bourbon Steak Miami (Cobaya dinner)
7. Neptunes on Piggyback (crispy oysters & Berkshire pig) at Neptune Oyster (Boston)
6. Uni (sea urchin) nigiri at Naoe
5. Nantucket Bay scallops & pumpkin risotto at Bourbon Steak Miami
4. "Oysters and Pearls" sabayon of pearl tapioca with Island Creek oysters and white sturgeon caviar at French Laundry
3. Porchetta sandwich at Roli Roti Truck (SF)
2. Crispy caw caw pork trotters with a sunny side up farm egg and field pea succotash at Fig (Charleston)
1. Risotto, sea urchin, butternut squash, celery, black truffle at Benu (SF)

I'm really looking forward to 2011!!

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Favorite Spots 2010

The following is a list of my favorite restaurants for 2010, in no particular order.  These are places I enjoy frequenting on a regular basis because they consistently serve great food and are the best in class.  I highly recommend each place on this list with some of my favorite things at each.  I'm sure I've neglected to mention some, sorry.

Mauro's Pizza-an authentic and great NY slice of Pizza. (Downtown Hollywood)
Sage Bagel and Deli-for the best bagel in South Florida. (Hallandale Beach)
Bourbon Steak- burgers, truffle fries and an old fashioned. Wagyu flat iron and strip rock too.  
Naoe-outstanding Nigiri plus a great bento box to start. (Sunny Isles)
Sakaya Kitchen - Just order everything-to go go and pig out. Make sure you double up on the pork buns.
Epicure Market-tuna fish salad sandwich. None better. 
Michael's Genuine Food & Drink- Brunch, lunch and dinner.  It's all good.
Shake Shack-burgers but don't forget to try the dogs.
Chow Down Grill-fresh Chinese inspired cuisine. Squid ink dumplings.Special board filled with winners.
Gigi-short rib meatloaf & pork belly BLT.
American Noodle-pork belly with spicy melons.
Yakko-San-crispy bok choy, manila clams, kimchee buta, black pork belly.
Sugarcane Raw Bar-tripe w/ kimchi, duck egg & beef tongue stew, bacon wrapped dates, kobe sliders.
gastroPod-banh mi tacos, mo better burger and an old dirt dog.
Sol Kitchen-word on the street is hot regarding the sol roll and banh mi burgers. Crack dip doesn't stink.
El Goyo Pollo- chicken draws crowds but I go for the ceviche mixto, tripe and beef hearts. (Hollywood)
El Tamarindo- great bang for your buck. (Hallandale Beach)
Nakorn- reliable sushi and thai take out.(Hollywood)
Lola's on harrison- gnocchi and short ribs.
Le Tub- don't overlook the gumbo.
Pho 79-banh mi (Pembroke Pines)
Tark's- gator bites and clam bellies.
Timo-oyster salad, pastas.
Altamare- octopus with warm farro & chorizo, housemade wild mushroom ravioli.
Bulldog BBQ-cornmeal crusted oysters, shrimp n grits, beef brisket.
Gourmet Diner-popular caesar salad w/ chicken, vegetable souffles, tenderloin tips and beef burgundy
Southport Raw Bar-steamed old bay shrimp and raw bar.
La Petit Prince (le sandwicherie on Hollywood Beach) salami provolone or pate.
Pizzavolante-cacciatorini and some burrata.
The Cheese Course- applewood bacon sandwich.
Anthony's Coal Fired Pizza-solid pizza and even better wings.

RIP- Talula

Places I like that I just didn't get to enough in 2010 to include-

Red Light
Bond St.
BLT Steak
Meat Market

Places I look forward to trying in 2011-

db Bistro Moderne
Pucci's Pizza (long time fan of the prior incarnation)
Royal @ The Raleigh
Area 31 (new chef)

Monday, December 27, 2010

All Cried Out- Last Tiers of a Burger for 2010

I've been on a burger bender again recently so the timing is right for the last Tiers of a Burger for 2010.  

The following burgers are my favorites for 2010 ranked by tiers.


Bourbon Steak (bar/lounge menu)
Burger & Beer Joint 
Shake Shack


Michael's Genuine Food & Drink
Charm City
Le Tub
Red Light *have not had in >9 months
Kingdom  *have not had in >9 months


Five Guys
Jack's Old Fashion
Elevation (Coral Springs)

A TIER of Their Own (great non-traditional burgers that are tier one worthy but deserve their own tier)

GastroPod's Mo Better Burger, short rib, brisket and sirloin topped with poached egg, slaw and gPod sauce.
Sakaya Kitchen's Angus beef bulgogi sliders with spicy goat cheese, pickles, roasted pork & kimchi. 
Sugarcane Raw Bar's Kobe sliders with tonkatsu sauce and fried quail egg.

THE WORD UP TIER a/ka The Cameo Tier

Zuni Cafe- SF (easily would be in tier one if local)

Busts (recent disappointments)

Heavy Burger (Aventura) not bad but not tier worthy.

2011 Burger to eat list

The original db Burger @ db Bistro Moderne- sirloin burger filled with short ribs, foie gras and black truffles
Banh Mi Burger from the Sol Kitchen
Boardwalk Burgers (Boca)
Return to Kingdom and Red Light soon

Thursday, December 16, 2010

podBrunch III 12/26/10

I  unfortunately missed the first two podBrunches hosted by Chef Jeremiah and his gastroPod Miami but will hopefully make it to numero tres.

Hey guys & gals, the pod is at it again! We are excited to announce the 3rd installment of the podBrunch series which first took place back in August and then again in October! These are some of the goodies we served at both brunches:
  • Kahlua Iced latte
  • Smoked Trout
  • Sweetbread Sliders with Pickled Peaches and Watercress
  • Cheddar Grits, Poached Egg & House Bacon
  • Sunday Gravy Over Orrechiette
  • Orange Crush Float
  • Trotter Cakes
  • Huevos Rancheros
  • Ricotta Gnocchi
  • Roast Chicken
  • Iced Hazelnut Coffee + Madelines
Our next brunch will take place on Sunday December 26th at 12:30pm. at GAB Studios in Wynwood.
Individual tickets are $28 and are available using the link below:
Buy Now on PayPal
OR you can get 4 tickets for $100 using the link below:
Buy Now on PayPal