December 31, 2006

My Favorite Things of 2006

I'll admit it, I really like Oprah. I wish I had time to watch her show, but it’s unfortunate because it’s on way before I get off work. Anyway, once a year, she does a "favorites" show where she showcases (and gives away!) her favorite products. I guess this is my foodies take on Oprah's favorites show, minus the free stuff part. Sorry, folks.

In no particular order:

Raisin Nut Bran Cereal
I must credit Mr. Tall for this first item on my favorites list. I had never had Raisin Nut Bran cereal before in my life until a few months ago when he had it at his apartment. I was starvation central one morning so I just had a bowl of the cereal, and I was pretty much enamored. Crunchy bran flakes with slivered almonds, and the best part is the plump raisins covered with a sort of subtle nutty coating. I am a bargain shopper so most items I purchase at the grocery store are on sale. And Raisin Nut Bran never goes on sale! When they are ever on sale, I jump at the opportunity and buy at least 4 boxes at once. I always contemplate stocking up more, but I would not want to hog the cereal for other Raisin Nut Bran lovers.

Bristol Farms' Meat Department
If you want some fresh and high quality meat with very knowledgeable service to boot, check out Bristol Farms. Forget Ralph's, Vons or even Whole Foods, Bristol Farms has by far the best selections of all sorts of meat and poultry. Mr. Tall and I have explored some amazing choices from pork loins to Porterhouse steaks. The price may be slightly higher than Ralph's or Vons, but the extra bucks really come through in the quality of their products and selections.

Wine from Trader Joe's
Whether it’s the usual 2-buck-chug or other varieties, I can usually find wine from every continent at TJ's for more than reasonable prices. I love to drink wine; I’m not a wine connoisseur or anything, but I remember buying a bottle of Chilean white wine for a mere $3 and it was damn good.

Anything Mint Chocolate
I think that's pretty much self-explanatory because it is one of the best sweet flavor combinations ever.

Trader Joe's Joes Joes
They can be described as Oreo with a peppermint crunch filling. It is perfect for the holidays with just a glass of milk or even a mug of hot cocoa.

Crate & Barrel
Every time I visit the mall, I always have to stop by Crate&Barrel. I don’t always purchase something (the last thing I bought there was the potato ricer), but Mr. Tall knows very well by now that I just love to go into that place. I remember when Mai randomly asked me if I ever get married, where I would register, and without hesitation I answered, "Crate & Barrel."

Grilled Cheese Sandwiches
Again, I must give credits to Mr. Tall for reigniting my love for grilled cheese sandwiches. It's so simple yet enjoyable. You can put just about any sorts of cheese in between whatever bread you have on hand … maybe throw in some BBQ sauce or even pesto … The possibilities are endless! And, of course, grilled cheese sandwiches pair so well with soups.

I have loved crepes since my days at UCSD at the Farmer's Market every Tuesday. Bibby’s crepes booth was my favorite, next to the local fruit stand, of course. There is a crepe station in Bristol Farms where you can get made-to-order sweet and savory crepes. Even the 7, 8, 9 Dinner Club whipped them up! Crepes are so easy to make and absolutely delicious—sweet or savory!

Ghirardelli Hot Fudge Sundae
Most people who know me know that I have been spreading the gospel of the Ghirardelli Hot Fudge Sundae since the first time Mr. Tall took me to Ghirardelli in Downtown San Diego. I had never been a big fan of hot fudge sundaes, but after a big of Ghirardelli hot fudge, my life was changed. Honestly, if you haven't had a Ghirardelli Hot Fudge Sundae, you have not experience real hot fudge.

Almond Roca
What can I say—the combination of buttercrunch toffee, chocolate, and almonds is perfection.

My Favorite Restaurants, again in no particular order:

Mama Testa
The best taco shop (and more) in San Diego. Period.

Good ambiance and good Thai food.

The best Indian food in San Diego.

Sushi Deli 1
Cheap and tasty sushi.

George's Ocean Terrace
Spectacular view and excellent food.

Happy 2007 to everyone ... Keep on cooking and eating!

Little Miss Contrary

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