Friday, November 16, 2007

Upcoming Reviews

I've let my blog go to the wayside because I've been too consumed by ExtraPounds lately. I did a copy/paste/edit job of the blog I posted there today, and my friend Tracy gave me a lovely compliment and I decided I'd better get cracking again. My readers demand it! LOL (I have zero readers on this site!)

Recent Restaurants I've visited and plan to do reviews on are:

Deer Park Villa (thats where Kendall's Bat Mitzvah was last weekend!)
Flemings Walnut Creek
Gaspare's Pizza

Recent Restaurants I've visited that I do not plan to do ANOTHER REVIEW ON, but here is a quick update:

Seafood Peddler-we took Bella there on Wednesday for her birthday and we had good service again and the food was also good. I didn't care for my stuffed prawn that came with my surf n' turf, though. It was too bready and I couldn't even tell there was crab in there. Other than that, all was well.

Izzy's-We took Bella (have I already mentioned that Rory very rarely joins us out to dinner? Although we did force her to go to SP for B's b-day.) to Izzy's again 2 weeks ago and once again, this place just shines!! I love that we always have to wait in the bar because I don't get to do the whole bar thing too often now that I have kids! We waited in the bar just long enough to finish half of our drink, then we were happily seated at our favorite table, with our favorite waitress, Gabriella (say that in your best Mexican accent!)!! She is a sweetheart, Bella loves her, and we are going to always request her! OMG, the food, the service! I had my usual filet mignon with Izzy's Own Scalloped potatoes & creamed Spinach. (I'm sharing this blog for the first time---with an EP friend---so, Tracy, are you sitting there thinking to yourself, "no wonder Shelley isn't losing weight!! LOL I did go running that day, so it almost balanced out, but not quite!!)

Cheesecake Factory-someone please remind me not to go here anymore! Its always a long wait, the service sucks (although our server was really attentive in the beginning when I was still at Nordstrom trying to find a dress and my family was waiting patiently for me), and the food just is not good! I had a grilled chicken breast sandwich and it was just tasteless. I will say that they make a mean cheeseburger--Bella had one and I had a bite (or 2). The problem is that this is the only restaurant at this mall.

Man, I am rusty! I can't even figure out how to add a link to a blog, or anything else for that matter. Practice, Practice.

The Panama Hotel

I met my husband at the fabulous Panama Hotel for dinner. What an awesome place. It's a tiny little jewel of a place tucked away in a corner in a really cute neighborhood. We've been there once about 10 years ago and keep meaning to go back.

There was live music last night, which is always cool! The guys name was Mark Robinson and boy, can he croon! He's kinda cute, too, and I had first row seating status! We bought his CD. Have a listen! I liked some of the jazzy cat faster songs better than the ballads.

After finding the somewhat hidden entrance, we made our way to the front desk. We were seated right away at a deuce right in the front. I would have preferred the available 4 top by the window, but surprisingly, this place was hoppin' for a Thursday. After having a moment to peruse the menu, we were greeted by our waitress, and we ordered a glass of wine.

I'm an appetizer slut, thats for sure. I always have to have one! Last night we tried the Ahi Tuna Ceviche (w/avocado, red onion, Serrano chile, yellow cherry tomatoes, & cilantro), and it was just ok. It reminded me more of a tuna tartare than Ceviche. It was served in a low ball glass and homemade tortilla chips, which were delicious.

I couldn't decide on my entree, so I asked our server for a recommendation, and she suggested the daily special. So, my entree was a grilled Petrole Sole served over a cherry risotto cake and a bed of hericot vert salad with cherry tomatoes & Kalamata olives. It was very good--lots of flavors popping-- but it was too busy for me. The fish itself was very good, as it was firm, and simple. I was trying to behave and went for the fish, but I really wished I had gone for the pork chop. I mean, doesn't this sound delicious?: "Grilled Pork Chop--Organic double cut with ancho chile peach chutney, mashed sweet potatoes, & hericot vert. The man at the table next to us had it and it had a great presentation and he seemed to enjoy it. Oh, well, I got some fish in.

I also got dessert in!!! I was so bad!! I think I needed to make up for the lack of satisfaction with my dinner, because I never order dessert!! I had bread pudding with a caramel hazelnut sauce and a teeny glass of ruby port wine. Delish!

I look forward to retuning to the Panama Hotel soon. Their menu is a bit limited, but the food was very creative and overall delicious. Plus, the service was impeccable! And I'm all about excellent customer service!

I'm giving this place 4 stars. ****