Orthogonal Thought | Random musings from the creator of Cooking For Engineers and Lead Architect of Fanpop

AUTHORS

CATEGORIES

ARCHIVE

ACTIONS

What I Ate: September 30, 2009 (Taqueria Star)

Posted 30 September, 2009 at 9:02pm by Michael Chu
(Filed under: Food, What I Ate) 3 comments

Lunch: I decided to make my version of an American classic - spaghetti and meatballs (yes, American - not Italian… I don't think any region of Italy puts meatballs, marinara, and spaghetti together in the way we Americans do). I used ground beef from Coyote Creek Farms' pastured cattle to make several large (1/8 pound) meatballs, browned them in a convection oven, and then simmered in marinara sauce. I served them over a bed of angel hair pasta alongside roasted squash and fresh arugula.
Italian Meatballs

Dinner: Tina and I drove up to Taqueria Star (343 S Congress Ave, Austin, TX‎ - (512) 909-8423‎), a taco truck parked in the parking lot of a liquor store on the corner of Riverside and South Congress.
Taqueria Star

Click here to read the rest of
What I Ate: September 30, 2009 (Taqueria Star)

What I Ate: September 29, 2009 (McDonald's)

Posted 29 September, 2009 at 9:36pm by Michael Chu
(Filed under: Food, What I Ate) 1 comment

Dinner: Having heard about the GO TEXAN Restaurant Round-Up which is a week long event set up by the Texas Department of Agriculture to promote local (Texan) produce and meats and to support Texas food banks. McDonald's was on the list of GO TEXAN restaurants and I was wondering what it was doing there? Would they have a special menu or something else special to support GO TEXAN Restaurant Round-Up? I posed this question on Twitter and GO TEXAN Restaurant Round-Up (@GoOutGoEatGoTXN) provided this response: "Yep, McDonald's is part of GO TXN Restaurant Round-Up. They serve TX beef. From TRIO @FSAustin to McD's, lots of ways to GO TEXAN!" So, I went to a McDonald's tonight and asked them if they get their beef was Texas beef. They said that there was no way to tell - they get it from a distributor. I asked them if they knew about GO TEXAN and that part of this week's proceeds would be going to local food banks - they did not. I mainly asked in order to make sure that part of the money I spent would go to a food bank (in case I had to order a special meal or something), but they didn't even know about the program. Oh well. I tried the Angus 1/3 pound burger. The burger patty was a bit too thick to be cooked the McDonald's way - otherwise, it was okay, but nothing special. If I find myself here again, I'll try the bacon burger or the mushroom and cheese.
McDonald’s - Deluxe Angus 1/3 Pound Burger

Lunch: I heated up some leftover carne guisada and chicharones and cooked a couple eggs over easy. Unfortunately, I messed up flipping the eggs so they were a bit messy.
Carne Guisada, Chicharrones, Eggs Over Easy

What I Ate: September 28, 2009 (Railroad Bar-B-Que, South Congress Cafe)

Posted 28 September, 2009 at 11:20pm by Michael Chu
(Filed under: Food, What I Ate) 4 comments

Dinner: We went to the Austin Restaurant Week Wrap-Up Party & Celebration (at Paggi House) which turned out to be more of a drinking party than a foodie get together. There were four different appetizers that went around - all good, but none very good.
Paggi House - Appetizers

Once it became clear that there wasn't any more food, Tina and I decided to go to South Congress Cafe to try dinner there. We had just had an excellent brunch there, so were eager to see how they would perform at dinner.

We started with one of the specials: an appetizer of rock shrimp dusted in blue corn, fried, and served on a salad of mixed greens tossed in a lime-chipotle vinaigrette and served in an edible taco shell bowl ($12). The shrimp was perfectly cooked and the slightly spicy dressing was full flavored and worked equally well on the shrimp and on the greens.
South Congress Cafe - Rock Shrimp Salad
Click here to read the rest of
What I Ate: September 28, 2009 (Railroad Bar-B-Que, South Congress Cafe)

What I Ate: September 27, 2009 (Chuy's, Central Market Cafe)

Posted 27 September, 2009 at 7:15pm by Michael Chu
(Filed under: Food, What I Ate) No comments

Lunch: We met Jason Vierzba for lunch at Chuy's (4301 W William Cannon Dr, Austin, TX‎ - (512) 899-2489‎) where I had the Comida Deluxe Combo (cheese enchiladas, chicken flautas, a crispy taco, guacamole and chile con quesa wings). It was good.
Chuy’s - Comida Deluxe Combo

Dinner: After showing Jason our new home as well as some of the model homes in the area, Tina and I found ourselves at Central Market to do some grocery shopping. We decided to eat dinner there. I had a decent Cobb Salad (except the olives were a bit too salty and the onions a little too strong / abundant).
Central Market Cafe - Cobb Salad

What I Ate: September 26, 2009 (South Congress Cafe)

Posted 26 September, 2009 at 9:12pm by Michael Chu
(Filed under: Food, What I Ate) 5 comments

Lunch: We ate at South Congress Cafe (1600 S Congress Ave, Austin, TX‎ - (512) 447-3905) for the first time today and really enjoyed the entire experienced. We arrived quite late to avoid the huge crowds that we faced last week - around 2:45pm - and got seated immediately. We knew we had to try the Carrot Cake French Toast, so we ordered a single slice of that (a normal order has three slices, I think). It was incredibly good and not overly sweet (when you don't apply the delicious but decadent cream cheese pecan sauce that it comes with).
South Congress Cafe - Carrot Cake French Toast

Tina ordered the special which was a brisket hash served with eggs over easy. The eggs were perfectly cooked - a lot of places have runny whites as well as yolks when you over the eggs over easy, but South Congress Cafe got it right. The brisket in the hash was outstanding and much of it simply melted in our mouths.
South Congress Cafe - Brisket Hash

Click here to read the rest of
What I Ate: September 26, 2009 (South Congress Cafe)

What I Ate: September 25, 2009 (Pho Thaison, Tapioca House)

Posted 25 September, 2009 at 10:27pm by Michael Chu
(Filed under: Food, What I Ate) 2 comments

Lunch: Coming back from doing a walkthrough of our new home, we stopped at Pho Thaison (9500 S I H 35 # L800, Austin, TX‎ - (512) 280-2060‎) because Tina felt like Vietnamese vermicelli noodles. I wasn't in the mood for that so, I ordered the combination fried rice - which I found to be inedible due to a taste in the rice. I don't know how to describe it except that I could taste the water used to cook the rice. It wasn't too much water since the rice wasn't water logged or soggy, but it had a taste that I've had at other subpar Chinese restaurants. (I'm going to have to do a test one day cooking rice with purified water like I normally do and with hard water from the tap. I'm guessing it's the minerals in the hard water that gives the rice the bad taste - but I can't know for sure until I do this test.) After a few bites, then a few more after pouring soy sauce on it, then a few more after mixing sriracha sauce into it, I gave up.
Pho Thaison - Combination Fried Rice

I walked across the parking lot to Chick-Fil-A where I had a Chick-Fil-A Deluxe Chicken Sandwich and cole slaw.
Chick-Fil-A - Deluxe Chicken Sandwich with Cole Slaw

Click here to read the rest of
What I Ate: September 25, 2009 (Pho Thaison, Tapioca House)

What I Ate: September 24, 2009 (Texas Roadhouse)

Posted 24 September, 2009 at 8:57pm by Michael Chu
(Filed under: Food, What I Ate) No comments

Lunch: Tina made a ground pork chili and we ate it with bread.
Pork Chili

Dinner: After eating at Texas Roadhouse twice, I had people ask me why I didn't have a steak there since that's why people go to Texas Roadhouse. I hadn't known that was the reason to eat there, so I decided to go back and order a steak. I started with a house salad.
Texas Roadhouse - House Salad

Click here to read the rest of
What I Ate: September 24, 2009 (Texas Roadhouse)

What I Ate: September 23, 2009 (Perla's Seafood and Oyster Bar, Los Vega Restaurante)

Posted 23 September, 2009 at 11:58pm by Michael Chu
(Filed under: Food, What I Ate) 1 comment

Dinner: We joined Peter at Perla's Seafood and Oyster Bar (1400 S Congress Ave, Austin, TX‎ - (512) 291-7300) for his birthday dinner (as well as our final Austin Restaurant Week dinner for the year). We enjoyed the food very much and will be dining here again in the future. (I should also mention that Perla's should get extra bonus points for changing the menu to accommodate our group. Today's Austin Restaurant Week menu did not have the Lobster Roll on it and many of us wanted to eat it - so they made it available to us for the evening.)

Appetizers
Salt and Pepper Fried Calamari with Green Sauce and Marinara The calamari was fried just enough to give it a tender texture (that sweet spot between mushy/chewy and tough/chewy). The light batter was nicely seasoned, but some parts did take on a bit more grease than I would have liked. Overall, it was quite good and for an appetizer, the portioning was generous.
Perla’s - Salt and Pepper Fried Calamari

Bay Scallop Pozole Verde This scallop and cilantro soup was excellent. The radish and hominy added to the texture and flavor while the soup was warming, pleasing, and maybe even a little smokey. I can imagine a future meal where we just order of the pozole and been happy for the rest of the evening. Delicious.
Perla’s - Bay Scallop Pozole Verde
Click here to read the rest of
What I Ate: September 23, 2009 (Perla's Seafood and Oyster Bar, Los Vega Restaurante)

What I Ate: September 22, 2009 (Aquarelle)

Posted 22 September, 2009 at 10:11pm by Michael Chu
(Filed under: Food, What I Ate) 2 comments

Dinner: We headed off to Aquarelle (606 Rio Grande St, Austin, TX‎ - (512) 479-8117‎) for our second to last Austin Restaurant Week dinner.
Aquarelle

After ordering, we received an amuse bouche of broccoli something or other. I would know what it was called if the waiter who dropped it off hadn't mumbled the name while walking away from us. (Our server was great - reseating us and adjusting the thermostat when we found the room too cold.) I think it was a broccoli mousse. It was made with broccoli, cream, salt, and a touch of truffle oil. We didn't much like the taste or consistency (Tina's was a bit wet - like there was water on it or something).
Aquarelle - Amuse Bouche

Click here to read the rest of
What I Ate: September 22, 2009 (Aquarelle)

What I Ate: September 21, 2009 (Frank - Hot Dogs Cold Beer)

Posted 21 September, 2009 at 11:04pm by Michael Chu
(Filed under: Food, What I Ate) 2 comments

Dinner: Tina and I headed over to Frank (407 Colorado St, Austin, TX‎ - (512) 494-6894‎) for dinner. We had gone in expecting to order from the Austin Restaurant Week menu but realized that given the regular prices of some of the items it wasn't always a good deal to order from the ARW menu unless we got certain items that we weren't sure we wanted. So, we ordered a la carte (skipping the deserts and trying a couple sides instead).
Frank

Canadian Waffle Poutine Fries with brown gravy and cheese curds Their take on the Quebecois gravy smothered French fries and cheese curds was pretty tasty. I felt the waffle fries were a little undercooked rendering them softer than they would have been (even drenched in the gravy). Some bites were a bit overly salty with both the salted cheese curds and the brown gravy, but overall it's a pretty tasty way to eat fries.
Frank - Canadian Waffle Poutine

Click here to read the rest of
What I Ate: September 21, 2009 (Frank - Hot Dogs Cold Beer)

NAVIGATION

SEARCH