Monday, January 02, 2006

Food Envy
Wish List for 2006

• Whether schwarma, gyros or al pastor, I want it cooked on the spit. Not in a pan; not on the griddle, and surely not like too many al pastors, cooked and then re-cooked and then re-cooked again.

• Moreover, when it sez char-grilled, I want it grilled over charcoal. Flavorizer rocks are not charcoal.

• That all my French fries (home fries, cottage fries and similar) come exclusively from fresh cut potatoes.

• And all my coffee be served in real cups. Not only is it better for the environment, it tastes superior.

• That more will be inspired to take the eat local challenge, and that we find nary an asparagus in August or a Peach in April.

• Regardless, 98% of the tomatoes served should not.

• The relish tray comes back into vogue (and all those places still with a relish tray thrive).

• Dressings are homemade.

• Pepper is fresh ground.

• I can expound just a bit more like GAF, with the eye for detail of ReneG, add some of the scholarship of Antonius (or Erik M), be as smart an aleck as Hat Hammond, and just once, be able to talk wine with Steve P. Oh, and also, maybe earn an quote.

• Neither my palate nor pocketbook craves Alinea, Moto or Avenues, but I feel like I should visit at least one of these in 2006.

• But I would love to do a comprehensive assessment of Chicago’s steakhouses.

• Then, compare to Peter Luger.

Craft, Bouchon (Vegas edition), Joe’s Stone Crab, Bastide, and perienial wish listers Chez Panisse and St. John are all places I would travel to if I could; while the places close to home I most lust are Matsumoto and Toplobopampo.

• Also, go to Vancouver to see if the Chinese food is worth the fuss. Until then, I want people to pay more attention to what I have to say about Chinese food in Chicago.

• Also, also, another thin-crust pizzathon to restore my faith in Chicago pizza and answer Pigmon's challenge.

• As a committed believer in the Czech Paradox, I plan on consuming my full of dumplings and beer even as I finally loose that 40 lbs that’s been nagging me since I broke my wrist in law school.

• Eat more Scandanavian food.

• When the Condiment Queen makes a batch of caramels, plenty are left over for me.

Sunday, January 01, 2006

25 Best Things Eaten in Wisconsin in 2005

(First two, then no particular order for the other 23)

1. Lawyer (burbot) escabiche with smoked whitefish spread – Washington Inn, Washington Island
2. Vanilla custard (only vanilla is marketably superior) – Kopps, Layton (and other locations)
3. Sausage platter (Bohemian, Polish, Brat, and Knock) – Miro’s Little Europe, Kenosha
4. Boiled beef with mustard dumplings – Coquette, Milwaukee
5. Kewpie Burger – Kewpie’s, Racine
6. Donuts – Finley’s Holiday Inn, Washington Island
7. Wild raspberries picked slightly off-roadside – Sister Bay
8. Vanilla ice cream with Door County cherries mixed in (better than cherry ice cream!) – Door County Ice Cream Factory, Sister Bay
9. Vanilla custard – Leon’s, Milwaukee
10. Fly-in fish boil – Washington Island
11. Morning Glory pastry thingee – C. Adams/Milwaukee Public Market, Milwaukee
12. Glass of Senator Kohl’s milk – Wisconsin State Fair, Milwaukee
13. Assorted smoked fish – Charlie’s, Gill’s Rock
14. Cheese Danish – C. Adams/Milwaukee Public Market, Milwaukee
15. Hot green Serbian peppers in vinegar, with feta cheese – Old Town Serbian, Milwaukee
16. Tiny potato pancakes (a/k/a latkes) with ranch-ish dressing – Miro’s Little Europe, Kenosha
17. Every damn kringle – Bendsten’s, Racine
18. Summer sausage mitt – Bobby Nelson’s, Kenosha
19. Brat on buttered kemmel – Penguin Drive-In, Manitowoc
20. Fried lawyers – KK Fiske, Washington Island
21. Cherry crisp w/Ceder Crest vanilla ice cream – KK Fisk, Washington Island
22. Whipped cream sandwich – Wisconsin State Fair, Milwaukee
23. Breakfast sandwich of farm smoked bacon, fresh hen eggs – Farmer’s Market/Milwaukee Public Market, Milwaukee
24. Burek – Old Town Serbian, Milwaukee
25. Pie slices – Sweetie Pie, Fish Creek

Subject to change