Ian Pike noon, Dec. 8
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- Nanette Wiser: The Inquisitive Tongue
The Inquisitive Tongue: Nanette Wiser's Good Dish
Hello 2013! My New Year resolution includes more locavore eating, searching out new, nifty spots, going crazy for ethnic eats and cooking farmers' bounty. Tuong Ot Sriracha Thai-Vietnamese chili sauce is my favorite scrambled egg and stir fry enhancer. What am I drinking? Grey Goose Pear Martini, Basil Lime Daiquiri and The Black Grouse winter whiskey. Other trends to keep your tongue on are tasting menus as main course, global flavored breakfasts and a Black Forest charlotte.
Let's Eat San Diego: Sad to say sayonara to Anthologie's jazz and extraordinary eats and Del Mar Plaza's Harvest Ranch but happy that San Diego Restaurant Week gives us a chance to graze and discover new favorites. On my list to visit? Brick + Mortar, Saltbox, San Diego Soup Shoppe, Moonshine Flats, Blind Burro, UnderBelly ramen house, Chocolat, Krakatoa, Pupuseria and Cafe 222's green eggs and Spam. Yes I am.
- Gaslamp Strip Club's Sassy Hour in La Jolla and Downtown feature deals and steals on drinks and dinner. Enjoy $7 apps, $7 vodka martinis and $4.50 craft beers/house wines in La Jolla; $10 grill your own steak 5-7 nightly downtown with 1/2 priced martinis.
- Sprinkles Cupcakes La Jolla turns two January 13. Stop by Sunday for a free scoop of Red Velvet Ice Cream if you're the first 1,000 people who buy any cupcake/
- San Diego Wine & Beer Tours features a lovely backcountry excursion to San Diego Wine Country. The six hour tour include pick up and drop off in San Diego, a visit to three family owned wineries and a vineyard dinner.
- Terra American Bistro's Chef Table on Thursday evenings gives you a taste of why the restaurant's cookbook is a must-have. Still thrilling after all these years. - Neighborhood's East Village hip vibe celebrates casual gourmet cuisine and an eclectic craft beer line-up with 27 drafts and 30 unique bottles. Executive Chef Jason McLeod's Michelin star experience translates to innovative takes on traditional American fare served with homemade sauces and artisanal toppings. Craft whiskeys, sweet potato fries topped with blue cheese and artist murals amuse and amaze. - Humphrey's Brunch With Blues: What better way to spend Sunday than grooving, grazing and enjoying the water view 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
Cook's Corner: Bread machines are yesterday's kitchen equipment. Today's must-have accessory is the Wolfgang Jr. (Amazon) home flour mill with adjustable grind settings. Don't have time for "from scratch?" I like gluten-free Bob's Red Mill tapioca flour and Arrowhead Mill brown rice flours.
Upcoming Events: San Diego Restaurant Week (Jan.13 - Jan.18) brings the city's vibrant food scene to life for one week of delicious dining, showcasing the freshest ingredients, most flavorful dishes and tastiest culinary gems that San Diego has to offer! Home to some of the world's most delectable restaurants and master chefs, San Diego proudly welcomes back San Diego Restaurant Week where you can choose from over 180 of San Diego's most delightful and delicious eateries for a three-course dinner prix-fixe menus for just $20, $30 or $40 per person and lunches at $10, $15, and $20, depending on the restaurant. Enjoy a Pinot Noir Tasting at 3rd Corner Wine Shop, Bistro & Bar Encinitas Jan. 12 1-4 p.m. ($10/person) or the Masi Wine Dinner Jan. 15 6-8:30 ($50/person) four courses paired with amazing wines.
Elsewhere Edibles: The New York Public Library's whimsical showcase "Lunch Hour: NYC" inspires me. Pushcarts, power lunches, automats and hot dog stands and the evolution of the midday meal is not to be missed. Want to cook with 30 world-renowned chefs? Beaver Creek Food & Wine Weekend Jan.24-25 features seminars, tastings, cooking classes and a celebrity chef ski race. Join culinary rock stars Bouley, Casella, Lomonaco and Hergatt at the International Culinary Center May 4-5. Email email@example.com. Eldorado Hotel & Spa 's Chef Anthony Smith delivers joy, joy, joy in every dish he creates, a perfect respite after your winter wellness retreat to Nidah Spa.
Chefs We Love: Joanne Weir's culinary journeys and cooking classes to Provence, Marrakech and San Francisco should have been your holiday gift. I hope to go to her handmade pasta and pizza cooking course in San Francisco April 22-26 this year. Chef Charlie Parker's smoked fingerling potatos served with a green onion-spiked bowl of sour cream rocks my world at L.A.'s Freddy Smalls.
Spirited Advice: El Dorado Cocktail Lounge new Craft Shot Menu serves up luscious libations such as Bee Sting (gin, fresh lemon juice, honey, peach bitters), Spokane Apples (gin, fresh lime juice, housemade grenadine, baked apple bitters) and Gold Nugget (bourbon, fresh lemon juice, honey). A three-shot trio is only $12! Hats off to Food & Wine's Bubble Report: Must sip at Chicago's Bubbles WIne Bar, NYC Corkbuzz Wine Studio and L'Apico, Pittsburgh's Perle and Portland's Pix Patisserie/Bar Vivant. In Tampa Bay, Cassis, Bella Brava and Middlegrounds feature boutique, seasonal wine, champagne and cocktails worthy and wonderful.
Food 4 Thought: Eat healthier with The Quinoa Revolution, Dr. Mao's Secrets of Longevity, Wheat Belly Cookbook and if you must indulge, The Skinny Cupcake.