Friday, June 28, 2013

Off being a Cowgirl! - Tres Pinos, CA

My Northern California stay has been a busy one. I have been dining out alot but haven't had to blog as I have been cowgirling it up this week. The 80th Annual Saddle Horse Show and Rodeo is in full swing! I made eliminations in both my classes: The Ladies Horsemanship as well as the Ladies Stock Horse. I will have a busy rest of the week and will get to regular blogging schedule pronto.

In the mean time keep your fingers crossed for Melissa Good Taste!

Sunday, June 23, 2013

What in the World?!...

Oh my gosh what am I doing? I have been a little distant from my pretty, little blog and let me tell you why... I have been saddling horses for my darling husband and caring for their daily needs. It is a lot of work and I have been burning calories so I have been taking the easy route when it comes to my foodie activities.

Scott went surfing once this week and he treated me to one of my favorite meals ever... Fish and Chips. Ah, I love. However I am not going to lie, this dish from Spencer Makenzie's failed to impress because the batter was raw on the fish as I bit into it. The fries were fantastic as I dipped one by one into their fry sauce - Mayonnaise based. Yum!

Scott got "Tuna On Fire" and he freaked at the heat! It was spicy city but I might add it was a pretty healthy dish. Good choice man! Seared tuna and white rice, this is the stuff i used to eat all the time... Until I developed these crazy cravings for fried fish.

Also this week I made salad for dinner. It was filled with all things tasty: Arugula, pecans, chicken, goat cheese, strawberries, apples, poppy seed dressing... We love this salad!

Last night before Scott jetted off to Texas, I heated up a bag of Bertolli's (I know, I am L-A-Z-Y...) but the Roasted Chicken Risotto is so good. Keep a bag in your freezer when you don't feel like cooking.

Most nights Scott and I watch the Giants games on our Giants package that we purchased through Direct TV. We love the team, the sport and the idea of being super fans. They have been losing more than they have been winning but we are loyal and cheer, cheer, cheer. Scott's favorite player is Macro Scutaro and I just can't get Buster Posey's confidence out of my mind.

Melissa Good Taste is going home for a week... Be prepared for my favorite Northern California eats!

Friday, June 21, 2013

Kabuki - Oxnard, CA

They are doing big things in Oxnard, California. "The Collection" is a new shopping experience in the midst of being a shopping experience of Target, Color Me Mine, REI, Massage Envy, Whole Foods, Toby Keith's I Love This Bar, Yard House, Century Theater and of course... Kabuki.

It was surprisingly busy on a Monday night at about 6:00 pm. Most tables were full, as well as the outside patio area.

Scott and I started with a few appetizers - How does Tempura Mozzarella sound? It was exactly that, wrapped in seaweed and jalapeno. Also served with a teriyaki for dipping. Cheesetastic.

Scott loves asparagus so we also got sauteed asparagus served with a dressing of teriyaki. It went quite well with our deep fried cheese! 

Miso soup came with both of our meals. It was fine. Just another course to pass the time...

I feel like such a glutton after looking back at this meal, oh well here I go... Garlic Scallops, pan fried bacon, sauteed mushrooms and fried onions served with a side of white rice. It was very rich, fatty and I must say delicious. As I ate my way through it I started to get quite full and waived the white flag before I saw the white bottom of my plate. 

Sea Bass sauteed soy sauce and sake served with a tomato salsa, pan fried corn and rice. He enjoyed eating the pretty plate as he mixed everything as he went along.

The reason why we went to The Collection that night was because I was invited to a VIP Pre-Opening of Whole Foods to check out the store before the public did. It was very nice. We mingled around the store and were sent home with a bag full of goodies. 

It is good to be Melissa Good Taste.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Bianchini's - Petaluma, CA

Cowboy Ron likes to share with us his favorite hometown eats when we go visit him. Bianchini's is a place he like to grab lunch. Lets go on in and see what they have to offer...

Well, cold beer on draft is a good start! This trip it was Blue Moon as the flavor of the day.

Scott ordered the Italian and it was filled with all cuts topped with provolone, lettuce, peppers, onions plus mayo and mustard on a really great, fresh roll. Sometimes lunch doesn't get much better tasting than a good sandwich.

I had toasted pastrami, melted provolone on rye. It was filled with sauerkraut and thousand island dressing. I like my food ooey and gooey, this was fantastic!

Sometimes lunch doesn't get me really excited and sandwiches can be boring. But on this day they tasted extra good... Who doesn't love sitting around the table with people you like, eating simple food and an ice cold beer. Days like this are for the lucky ones.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Zenshin - Las Vegas, NV

We attend cuttings at the Southpoint Casino a couple times a year so the opening of the new Japanese restaurant was a big deal for us! A new menu and martini in hand, I was excited to try Zenshin for the first time.

I am always fascinated by Pork Belly, as I watch the Food Network constantly. So when I saw the Miso Glazed bad boys on the menu with crispy shallots, I was pumped. They were delicious, even though I was basically eating just fat. 

I also adore Soft Shell Crab. The Soft Shell Crab Stack was deep into the starter menu and had all ingredients that I really love: snow crab, avocado and mango salsa. The only problem was that the crab was not as crispy as I would have hoped. Eating the avocado and mango salsa got a little tricky with chopsticks too!

My mom ordered the Eggplant fries and they were outstanding. The dipping sauce was said to be Nori & Garlic Miso dipping sauce but it tasted like straight mayonaise. I mean i love mayo, but it needed a kick.

We ordered the 8 Second Bull Ride Roll because it sounded amazing... Filled with snow crab, avocado and tempura asparagus then topped with Waygu beef. One problem, they then blow torched the top of the roll so it tasted like gas. Blech. They ruined a perfectly good roll. Ask them to keep the blow torch away and I am positive it will improve the taste.

Now dessert! We had the Tempura Banana Split and it was fabulous. Now it is your turn to give Zenshin a try! There are a lot of items on the menu so give them all a try. I know we will be back so look for more reviews in the future.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Buffalo Wild Wings - Fairfield, CA

Buffalo Wild Wings has always peaked my interests. Why? Because i do love all things spicy, chickeny and deep fried things alike.

I went for basic chicken strips with the Asian Zing Sauce on the side so I could dip to my hearts content. It was low on the spice level but very high on flavor. I asked for ranch dressing for the fries and they graced me with blue cheese.

Cowboy Ron went ahead had got a Mexican flavored wrap complete with chicken, tomatoes, lettuce, cheese and salsa served with chips.

Scott went ahead and got Hot Dog Sliders topped with pulled pork and topped with a pico de gallo type salsa. He loved the idea of what these were going to be but by the time he digested them he agreed it was kind of nasty.

I was not overly impressed with the food but the atmosphere for sports watching was amazing! I would love to go to a local one and watch my Jets, SF Giants or 49ers kick some tail while enjoying a nice, frosty beverage.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Bring on the Heat! - Ojai, CA

Scott and I were invited last weekend to our good friends, Linda and Greg, house for a little get together. They are a local couple we like to visit with so we looked forward to spending the evening with them.

Isn't their yard beautiful?! it was a warm evening so we sat outside and enjoyed the view...

The appetizers were amazing. I had about the entire platter of the brie, strawberry and honey toasts. They were my favorite! I will be using this recipe for future parties that I host. The shrimp and cocktail sauce also were also perfection.

Greg made me a "Queenie" Martini. What a drink! 

Our friends, mixing and mingling...

My plate, I ate so many appetizers, this was the best I could do! I was full but the salmon, asparagus, potatoes, corn salad and green salad were all superb.  

Dessert was a variety of mini cakes! So much fun! I had the sample of the Carrot Cake and Cheese Cake - both were excellent.

Scott and I are usually busy at horse shows so being able to spend it locally was awesome. Enjoy your summer everyone, it is going to be a hot one! Pull out the grill, put some drinks on ice and invite some friends over. I am looking forward to entertaining Melissa Good Taste style...

Friday, June 7, 2013

White Sand - Ventura, CA

After Scott surfed on day at C-Street we decided to head downtown and try a new restaurant, White Sand Thai has been on our list for a while. We sat outside to engage in people watching and to enjoy the nice weather.

I ordered the Egg Rolls first because I was hungry and was in the mood for something fried. They were very good. I liked the sweet and sour dipping sauce as it was very thin and not thick and gloppy. I would order these again.

Scott ordered the Thai Ribs that were on special and I am not going to lie... These babies were tough. Hard to pull away from the bone. Very chewy. I had one and it seemed to be stuck in my teeth for days. He ate them but I did not find it enjoyable.

For my entree I had the Wor Won Ton soup and it was ok. Broth mildy flavorful and wontons very small. I didn't mind just got very bored with the soup quickly so I bathed it in siracha sauce just to liven it up.

The patio seating was lovely, service fine but food just did not do it for me. 

Thursday, June 6, 2013

El Pueblo - Lamont, CA

Attention Readers! Excellent Mexican food alert! I was taken to one of the best Mexican Restaurants recently I have to jump ahead of a few posts to let you know all about it. We arrived to a table of guacamole, chile verde sauce and salsa. The chile verde sauce was served warm and I downed two bowls of it pretty much by myself. So good!

I ordered a margarita, you know the little sized one but drank it down pretty quickly. So the waiter brought this one out to replace my little glass. It was quite funny. I didn't finish it, thank goodness -could you imagine the hangover the next day... It was very good though and i give the waiter props for his sense of humor.

I ordered two shredded beef enchiladas with red and green sauces. I could not pick a favorite! They were both really unique and delicious. I must say that the shredded beef was excellent as well. I didn't eat too much of the rice or beans because I was pretty much stuffed at this point.

You will not probably ever just find yourself in Lamont so make a point to go there specifically to visit El Pueblo. We have many cuttings in Bakersfield so you better believe I am making it at point to return! Please try for yourself!

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Circle Oak Dinner - Petaluma, CA

We always have fabulous meals at Ron and Sara's while staying in Petaluma. This night was no exception to that. The wine is always terrific too, Ron has good taste!

On the menu this particular evening was lamb! Ron worked his magic with garlic, salt, pepper and olive oil. He kept it simple!

After a quick trip on the barbecue this is what we looked forward to enjoying!

This is the loaf of bread we got at Della earlier that morning. It was fantastic! Chewy and carbolicious! Great for sopping up stray lamb juice too!

Our plates were perfectly colored, a sign to a healthy meal! The side was a curried squash which was amazing and green beans to finish. It was a lovely evening shared by friends. 

This ended our trip to the Circle Oak Ranch... Can't wait for next year!

Monday, June 3, 2013

Della Fattoria - Petaluma, CA

While we were in Petaluma we had a power outage one morning due to a car accident nearby. It took out the electricity, which in turn cut the pump so the water was scarce,  so we decided to go into town to get our morning fuel...

Ron and Sara adore the bread the owner makes so we walked in and took a seat at the long farm table and made our selections for breakfast.

Scott ordered a Vanilla latte and it was beautiful. Nice swirl and cool mug.

Ron, Scott and I all ordered the Toast Sampler: Smoked Salmon, cream cheese, cucumber, capers and red onion on whole wheat. Egg Salad on sourdough. Rancho Gordo Cannellini bean puree on white.

Sara ordered Stacey's Breakfast which is essentially a breakfast salad! Three poached eggs, bacon, avocado, greens and hot sauce. What a meal! It looked lovely.

We bought a couple loaves of bread to go and made our way back to the ranch. Such a leisurely way to spend the day working horses! Now that is the life!