Short Ribs and Random Thoughts- July 20 2017

There’s just too much news! Ye’r killing me.

The George Strait Phenom-  Everyone, even the New Yorker,  is celebrating Strait, whose  longevity in country music is amazing.  I have a G Strait story myself. During my Hawaii years, I had a duplex in Waialua, on the North Shore of Oahu, not far from  Schofield  Barracks.  The duplex across from mine had been rented in the past by G Strait when he was a young soldier at Schofield.  The owners, Mr and  Mrs Foo, told me that ever after when he came through Honolulu, he took them out to dinner. I told this to a homeless lady in the Roy’s parking lot who was wearing a George Strait T-Shirt. She said I made her day.

“End of Season”-I haven’t even got used to the idea that it’s summer yet, and the stores are advertising “end of season” sales. That’s so wrong!  

The Kitchen Trial-  I usually don’t comment on the local crime scene but I want to note that in the hubbub surrounding this case, the fact that the young man whose testimony  is most crucial is an HONOR STUDENT.  Can you imagine living though that chaos ?  I hope someone helps him with college.

Two Things You Don’t Know About Me-  I have never taken a selfie.  And I have never watched Game of Thrones.

The Parklets Abide-  remember when Rob Holmlund was first pushing the idea of parklets in Eureka?  I objected to losing more parking in Old Town.  A couple of days ago there was a followup in the Times-Standard.  Apparently a volunteer force from  Old Town businesses was entrusted to monitor parking and concluded that, hey, there’s PLENTY of parking in Old Town.  I’m a big fan of Mr Holmlund but my experience has been different.   The DAY BEFORE the piece came out in the T-S,  I tried to pick up a watch from Ten Window Williams.   When I had dropped it off, I found parking within a block.  When I came back (at 3 pm, carefully avoiding the lunchtime rush) there was nothing on the whole block except a half-space not big enough for an Isetta. Remember those? I ended up parking illegally on the sidewalk. I’m looking at having PT or surgery or both to improve my mobility but even if you’re not disabled THERE’S NOT ENOUGH PARKING IN OLD TOWN. Period. End of story.

Tour de France–  Do you watch it?  It’s the best low-rent travelogue on the air. Sometimes I even see places where I’ve been. It’s great TV. 

Benbow construction continues-  the $10M revamp of the Benbow was supposed to be completed July 17 but is now expected to continue until October.  It will be gorgeous and accessible then but right now the rear entrance is no more and those dreadful steps up the front are the only access.  I love the Benbow but we’ve cancelled a birthday party and I’m sure they’re losing a lot of other  business too. Let’s hope they finish up fast. 

I’m a Democrat and not at all religious,  but last night I found myself praying for Sen. John McCain.  I really did.





How To Gain Five Pounds In Two Weeks; Eating Out At Brick, Kyoto, Toni’s and the Benbow

Had a crowd of summer visitors? At least they’re a excuse for eating out. Here are some meals we enjoyed recently.

Brick & Fire- this is everyone’s favorite restaurant and if you haven’t been,  do yourself a favor and go.  Go now.   They’ve had a good run and nothing lasts forever.  Yes, it’s spendy but you could have a Wild Mushroom Cobbler ($9) which is pretty darn filling. Add a salad for $7 and you’ve got a nice meal. Add WINE  and your costs increase exponentially. If you order the brick-pressed bird, ask for it well done. ($22, enough for two meals.) The Italian Mac’n’Cheese ($15- also so rich it’s two meals) is so good I ordered it for my birthday dinner. We came back the next week and I ordered it again. We are so luck to have a bistro of this caliber I don’t even mind calling it a bistro.  Their website is HERE.

Masaki’s Kyoto- We wanted to see how the Kyoto was holding up without Eric Masaki, now with the HCSO and good for him. The answer is : just fine. We walked in on a Friday night with no reservations, ordered dinners and sushi-  lemon and Eureka rolls and something with eel. Service was quick considering  we were ordering sushi.  I’ve always loved the Kyoto but one of our group is a Shanghai native who has lived in Japan, is a damn picky eater and has an encyclopedic knowledge of Asian food. He pronounced the meal excellent and we all agreed. No website.

Toni’s 24-Hour Restaurant – is just that, a real restaurant, not a burger stand.  I didn’t take Toni’s seriously because all I ever heard about it was that it ‘s a great place to go when you’re drunk, hungry and it’s 3am. Also I could never figure out to get there. With someone else driving, and headed  for a movie in Arcata, we got there at around 7pm and found only a short line. The menu goes ‘way beyond burgers. The folks across from us were all eating chef salads and they looked good. I had a blue cheese burger on ciabatta and really liked the way they grilled the ciabatta. The onion rings, unfortunately, were cooked with oil that tasted stale,but I would try them another time. The burgers and shakes were excellent, but I would definitely think about getting the chicken-fried steak next time. Cozy atmosphere. Their website is HERE.

The Benbow Inn- Our family has always loved the Benbow and it just gets better and better. We lost a family member earlier this year 

and a reunion at the Benbow just seemed like the right thing. Actually, my parents spent the first night of their honeymoon there and I thought that perhaps the reason I love the place so much is that I was conceived there. HA! Probably not since it would have involved a two year gestation. Yes, its spendy but they’ll negotiate, especially for groups. We had nine, in three rooms and two KOA “cabins” and they gave us a rate of $175 for Terrace Rooms, which are much nicer than some of the “historic” building rooms and are located on the other side of the building. The Terrace Rooms are a lot better for anyone who wants to avoid that godawful staircase going up to the front entrance. The food was perfect as always. They were featuring a white gazpacho ($7) with grapes which was pretty wonderful and very refreshing.  (The temperature was 95 and it didn’t start cooling off till 8pm.) The salmon ($32) was great, the linguini with vegetables was a big hit ($19) and the crab cakes ($15) are good and substantial  enough for a main course.  If you drive down for lunch , which is a nice excursion, you can have sandwiches and that gazpacho. You won’t spend any more at the Benbow than you will at Jack’s and some other mediocre places in Eureka. Benbow is especially nice for lunch around the holidays, when you can eat in the lounge near a roaring fire. And you feel like a millionaire. The website is HERE.