Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Grilled Lobster & Lemon Risotto

Monday. The last day of the Memorial Day Staycation. I busted a move and mowed the lawns and felt so accomplished that I decided I wanted to tackle something else... Why not make Lemon Risotto? Risotto takes a lot of love and an attention. It also takes a lot of Parmesan and butter too. The lobster was sweet and delicious. Back to work today!

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Il Giardino - Ojai, CA

Hello Memorial Day Weekend! Despite some wind on Sunday afternoon it was a gorgeous day. So much so, a little patio sitting was in order. Enter Il Giardino in Downtown Ojai.

Don't expect to get your food in a hurry but when you do actually get it, it is worth it. Just a simple Fish Sandwich (Tilapia was the Daily) but very tasty. French fries were the chosen side and they did the job well.

I know they always have entertainment and it may be worth another visit to check out the rest of the menu.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Melissa Good Taste likes this...

Spotted in Ojai. A Spanish Charmer with a landscape that makes me smile. Just thought I would share this with you guys! Makes me crave a margarita!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

George's - La Jolla, CA

Recognize this? It is an order of "Fish Tacos" from George's. It was listed as Aaron Sanchez's "Best Thing I Ever Ate" and I have to agree. A unique spin on a regular fish taco. The deconstructed formula utilizes yellowfin tuna, fried avocado, cabbage, corn nuts, jalapeno aioli, petite cilantro, radish and lime.

Now that is Modern California Cuisine.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Westside Cellar - Ventura, CA

I stumbled upon a Ventura County Dining Guide some time ago and it got me thinking... Suppose, I ate my way through the County and then blogged about it? Novel idea! Next stop - Westside Cellar on Main Street.

Basically a one room dining area. Quaint, but lovely.

Tasty bread, served with tapanade and butter.

Creamy Tomato Soup was very filling! So much so, I had to stop otherwise my appetite would be ruined for my main - and dessert.

Market Greens - very fresh and beautiful.

Viola! Fish special - Salmon with a gift shrimp on top. The sauce was a light citrus sauce and worked perfectly with the salmon. It was cooked to perfection. Best salmon I have had in a long time!

Filet Mignon with a gorgonzola broiled on top. Vegetables with cooked nicely with balsamic and there was a pesto wash, creating a very pretty plate! Yum.

When there is Creme Brulee I must have it. This was not the best but a little sugar at the end of a protein heavy meal is a good thing!

No alcohol on this review so the bill was very respectable. $70 is a steal in my mind. The food was delicious and the server was a doll. I would return and give it another go.

Arriaga's - Bakersfield, CA

If your ever in Bakersfield and cruising down Hughes Lane pull into Arriaga's...

The chips and salsa will keep you happy while you want for your dinner!

Must order: The Chile Relleno with rice and beans. Super spicy green sauce! I loved it.

Will return and order this again!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Agave Maria's - Ojai, CA

When a new restaurant opens in Ojai, everyone knows about - especially me. It took me awhile but I finally got the opportunity to cruise down the hill and check it out...

I had a great group of foodies with me this evening to give it a go and I was excited. On arrival you will notice how beautiful the restaurant has become, the patio most of all. Unfortunately it was raining last night so we dined inside but the tile work and fire breathing fountain is just gorgeous. The chips and salsa were good, quite spicy but just perfect enough to get you in a festive mood.

My fellow dining companion, Greg and I ordered the Red Snapper with Mango Salsa. Finely diced mango, pineapple, onions and chile topped the wonderfully cooked fish. Fingerling potatoes and red peppers were aside, as well as nicely seasoned asparagus. The fish was a lovely choice if you are feeling for something on the lighter side.

Next up, tacos! Linda ordered the Tacos Del Mar - one shrimp and the other white fish. They came with the usual toppings of cilantro, cabbage and onions but they also threw in a spicy guacamole to round out the dish. Served with rice and your choice of refried or black beans. Nice touch. Scott ordered the Tacos Doble with tri-tip, he enjoyed his very much as well.

Since I knew I would be blogging this experience I figured I might as well go all the way and order dessert! There were churros, cheesecake and Tres Leches Cake on the menu and I knew right away which one was the winner. The cake was so moist and the fruit topping was a nice addition of tartness to the sweet cake.

There are a couple of components to make a dining experience fantastic in my book. First being the company you keep, a great conversation can make any meal wonderful. Thank you Greg and Linda for that! The service, our delightful waitress made sure we taken care of throughout the entire meal. And lastly, the food! Only fresh, quality ingredients were used in our dinner and I appreciate that.

Agave Maria's you have got yourself a loyal customer.

Monday, May 16, 2011

San Diego Padres

Let me get this straight: I am a Giants fan to the core. However we had the amazing opportunity to get seats right on the grass at Petco Park to watch the 5/6/11 Padres vs. Diamondbacks game. So we went and enjoyed every bit of it! Thank you to John Kratzer for supplying us with such great seats!



Ahhh... memories. Matt Williams former Third Baseman for the Giants.

Padres Win!

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Nine Ten - La Jolla, CA

In honor of my birthday a beautiful spread was prepared for me... It was called, "Mercy of the Chef" course after, course paired with wine, came to the table... Enjoy the fast with your eyes!

Cheers with some bubbly!

Thank you Scott for making all of this possible.

Our amuse bouche for the evening - Tuna Tartare. In my opinion, it was the one of the most delicious things all night!

My goat cheese and beet salad. Very light and tasty.

Salmon Citrus Salad on the far end...

My Salmon and Farro. The salmon was cooked perfectly.

Jealous of Scott's fantastic looking Halibut!

Beef Cheek for the mister, the glaze looked amazing!

Lamb for the lady, served with fava bean puree.

Lemon curd with raspberry sorbet and freeze dried merguine. Holy yum.

Raspberry sorbet, strawberry and freeze dried meringue as well.

Can you believe all these courses? All paired with terrific wines! What an experience. I was full but in a good way. I feel like this dining experience has changed me. I am a better person for it. Thank you again Scott for arranging all of this. It was perfect.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Strolling through La Jolla...

If you have never been to La Jolla this is a pretty good run down of what to see and expect...

Enjoy!
One of the many caves - Kayakers had fun cruising through them.

Beautiful blue water and lots of birds!

Seals taking over the Kid's beach. Baby seals were everywhere!

Now go to George's during the daytime. Ask the cool waiter to take your picture overlooking the ocean. He is a pro!

Order the ceviche while your there too. It is fantastic!

Mosey on down to the Grand Colonial hotel and saddle your self up tho the lobby bar. Don't bother asking for a drink menu; order the Iron Fist brew and share!

If the ceviche didn't fill you up ask for the Cheese platter, so delicious!

My ocean front house in La Jolla - I wish. Isn't it just the cutest?

Wind & Sea - a memorable surf spot.

When walking up and down the streets burning off ceviche, beer and cheese do not get lured in by this cute cupcake shop.

The mini cupcakes are cute but they are a little dry. I do recommend you trying the Organic Strawberry Milk served in a glass container. Now, that is a score.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Rusty Pelican - Newport Beach, CA

Newport Beach. Newport Beach!! I live close to the Housewives of Orange County! No seriously, check out the Rusty Pelican's menu; all things Melissa Good Taste would love...

Let us start off this food extravaganza with a glass of pinot and a bowl, yes a whole bowl, of Crab Bisque. The bisque was so heavy, I loved it - bring on the cream and butter baby!

Fish Tacos for Scott, Mahi Mahi. There was a tropical salsa on board and that just sent this meal to the moon! The fries were nice and crispy. Great lunch!

My meal looks like dinner! But there was no way I could pass up Sea Bass, lemon caper sauce and mashed potatoes. That just sounded too fantastic to waste. So I went ahead and ordered it and ate the whole darn thing! So good.

A beautiful day in the harbor!

More food posts to follow... Loosen up your belts this is going to be a very filling ride!!

My sweet ride!

She's a beauty isn't she?

Sunday, May 1, 2011

The Ranch is Happy!!