Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Bubbles & Bix

Aren and I had a little B&B two weeks ago -- that is drinks at the Bubble Lounge and a very late (i.e., midnight snack) dinner at Bix.

The Bubble Lounge is a champagne bar in the Financial District, which I have discovered is the second Marina (the crowds are the same). We shared a bottle of Roederer Brut, a conservative yet reliable bottle of sparkling wine that we thought would fit the crowd with whom we were. I also had a champagne cocktail of sparkling wine and passion fruit liqueur. By the time we left, the cozy couches were overflowing and dance floor downstairs was a real meat market. Unfortunately, one has to pass through the mob of dancers to use the restroom -- my suggestion: avoid all eye contact.

Bix is conveniently a stumble away from the Bubble Lounge. It's touted as a swanky supper club, a description with which I agree. The food is so-so, which is also what most of the reviews I read thought. We shared potato pillows with creme fraiche and caviar, a watercress salad with smoked trout, an arugula and pear salad, and the restaurant's famous chicken hash, which are essentially crab cakes sans crab and with chicken. I don't believe in sharing dessert, so we each had our own bananas foster. Enjoyable, but not the best I've ever had (the best was in Cabo San Lucas and involved large quantities and many varieties of alcohol).

Stay tuned for Thanksgiving dets.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

An Empty Stomach & A Full Ear

Aren and I hit up Maverick, a new "American Eatery" in the Mission, last weekend with some Stanford pals. Maverick's concept is American comfort food with a refined twist. Cute, but not exactly creative, given the plethora of places like Home, Blue Plate, Chenery Park, blah, blah, blah.

I agree with Sir Bauer's assessment of the restaurant's atmosphere. To me, half the fun of a meal is the company with whom I'm spending it, and not the folks two, three, and four tables away from me. Perhaps I'm becoming more of a grump with age (I'm rapidly approaching 30), but why can't there be more tasty restaurants that don't require ear plugs?

And, the food? I find that a good way to judge a restaurant's quality is to ask yourself whether you can make a meal at least as good as what you're served. The fig salad, three bean chili, and mushroom side I had were all pleasant, but certainly not impressive.

Wow, I am becoming a grump, eh?