Thursday, April 23, 2009



In doing this foodie documentary, I had the pleasure of meeting so many interesting foodies. If only I could get paid for continuing to do this documentary, I'd be more than happy to dedicate the rest of my life to filming food and foodies.

My network has just expanded to include over 50 new people - all of them foodies. I'm now on Menuism, another restaurant review site, and finally joined Pleasure Palate, a dining group. I was already on yelp, foodbuzz, and had my own food blog and now all I need is a digital SLR and I can really feel like I'm prepared for combat.

I even got invited to dine at the One Group's two restaurants STK and One Sunset with some other food bloggers. I feel very validated. I got to eat all this food for free but I would be willing to go back to eat some of this stuff again.

Last Thursday, I went to STK and met up with Abby's cohorts, some whose blogs I've been following (Choisauce, Mattatouille, Sinosoul, Glutster, Gourmet Pigs, Wandering Chopsticks), and others who I've heard of and will now be following (Alli 411, Food She Thought, Gastronomy, Kung Food Panda, The Liquid Muse, Matt Bites, Street Gourmet LA, When Tara Met Blog).

We met at 7pm for drinks before eating and we got to sample a variety of cocktails. Some were interesting to look at but tasted way too exotic for me. Case in point:

capsicum mojito
bacardi, lime juice, mint leaves, bell pepper rings

This drink tasted like bell peppers. I know some other foodies loved this though. I ended up drinking most of it anyway because it wasn't too popular and I didn't want to feel bad about hogging a drink all to myself but it seemed like no one minded that I hogged this one.

My favorite out of all ten thousand cocktails we got to try was the uva caipirinha.
uva caipirinha
leblon cachaca, red grapes, lime, clover honey

Now THIS is what I'm talking about! You could taste the grapes in this one and the sweetness was very natural (prolly the honey) and not too sugary. Obviously, I felt bad about hogging this one but I couldn't help it.

When everyone got there, we mosied on to our table(s). We split up and sat in three different tables. It's so fun to eat food with foodies. The facial expressions alone are noteworthy and addicting.

We were introduced to the STK peeps and got menus in case we got too drunk or insane to remember all the food we were about to stuff in our faces. It came in handy as I'm writing this review but I still can't tell the difference in my picture of the mac & cheese vs. the crack corn (will get to that later). Next time I will be taking a note pad with me.

First, we got this bread that was exploding out of two containers stuck on a wooden thing with a dipping sauce. The bread was soft and buttery but I only ate one because I knew what I was in for (smart).

On to the food extravaganza:

1) Tomato 4 Ways (Special Appetizer from Chef Todd)
Absolutely beautiful in taste, texture, and aesthetics. I wanted to eat the whole thing by myself and I am not your biggest tomato fan. This reminded me of that one time I went to Joe's and had their tomato based tasting menu. I loved starting with this because it was light, flavorful, and crave-worthy.

3) Roasted Beets (coriander, micro mint, yogurt, curry)

This dish was good. Nothing to write home about but still pretty good. I think I'm not the biggest beet fan. I always thought they tasted too much like dirt and hated the color. I think the only beets I ever liked were at Fraiche when I first had them all pale pink and candylike but then I noticed that every restaurant started doing this and now the novelty's gone and I'm not sure if I'd still like the beets at Fraiche if I go back.

4) Arugula Salad with apples
2) Jumbo Lump Salad (green melon, avocado, mache greens and kaffir lime)

This is an example of how I don't remember what this dish was. It could have been the arugula or the lump salad. I don't remember much about this dish. I may have gone to the bathroom at this point and missed the other green stuff to photograph.

5) lil' big macs (Japanese wagyu, special sauce and sesame seed bun)

Oh to the Em to the JeeH!~ This was So Freaking Good. How the HELL do you make a slider this good? I think this was a controversial dish but I loved it. It was crunchy, soft, tender, juicy, sweet, salty, all in a few bites. I was already full by this point but dayam, I didn't have trouble finishing this one off.

6) Tuna Tartare (citrus yogurt, jalapeno, orange and plantain chips)
The tuna tartare + plantains is an interesting combination. I am not a fan.

7) Cowboy Steak - Rib Eye Bone In (Dry Aged)
I think I wet my pants a little when I had this. Sure it could have been a bit warmer but the juices and the fat and the tenderness was a party in my mouth. I wish I wasn't stuffed by this point because I would have eaten way more than a slice and now I'm craving it.

8) Filet with Foie Gras Butter (Wet Aged)
This one was aiite. I am more of a rib eye person so it wasn't my favorite. Didn't really taste the foie gras.

9) Organic Roasted Chicken with turmeric, baby carrots, chive

Pretty random dish. I have a few places where I go to for good chicken and I never really like the gourmet versions of roasted chicken. It's all about the pollo a la brasa, man!

10) Red Snapper with ponzu, shitake brown butter
This dish almost tasted like the kind my dad makes but not quite. I was still waiting for the next awesome dish.

11) Sweet Corn Pudding

And here it came! The crack corn. It either looked like the pic above or the pic below. I can't tell by looking at my pics which is which cuz my dumb butt didn't take a pic of the inside of these dishes. Well, the corn was sweet and salty and gooey and delicious. It was like crack. I kept coming back to it to snort another line ever 15 seconds. It was wiped out in a few minutes. They should have given us a tub.

12) Macaroni and Cheese

The Mac & Cheese was good but nothing to write home about. My fave Mac & Cheese might be at Taste.

13) Broccolini

This might have been asparagus because that's what it looks like. I don't think I had more than one spear. It was good and a good contrast to all the starch and fat by this point in the dinner.

14) Parmesan Truffle Fries
Sauces: Creamy Horseradish, Herb Bearnaise, Red Wine Sauce, Blue Butter, STK, Lemon Mustard, Bold STK and Toasted Peppercorn
I had a few fries. They were really good but I would have enjoyed it more if it was one of few starches. I kept eating so much of the crack corn that I don't think I paid enough attention to all the other carbs around. Sorry, fries.

We had a few drinks with our meal.

la cienega
corzo silver, lime juice, cucumber slices, mint leaves

capsicum mojito
bacardi, lime juice, mint leaves, bell pepper rings

"great gatsby"
hennessy, cointreau, lemon juice, orange juice

stk's delicious

patron xo, raspberries, mint leaves, lime juice

I think my favorite was the delicious. There is a reason for why it is called that plus it has everything I love - patron, mint, lime, and sometimes raspberries. It was a nice finish to the meal and it felt like it cut the grease just a little bit.

All in all, I'd go back for the sliders, the crack corn, the rib eye, and the uva caipirinha and the delicious.

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