What is gracing this cutting board, you ask? The insides of a perfectly ripe fig smeared on honest-and-true San Francisco sourdough bread that my aunt brought over one day (thanks, Murlene!), topped with thin-sliced domestic prosciutto from Lunardi's, mixed baby greens, and balsamic reduction. Served with half an Asian pear and some more figs. Only thing missing: the local semi-hard Brie-style cheese. 'Cause we ate it in one sitting the night before.
Mr. Lemon and I had a chance to spend some time in Berkeley and San Francisco without Baby Lemon. Thanks to my awesome parents for entertaining him all day!
Mr. Lemon presented a paper at a conference hosted by UC Berkeley. We ditched the luncheon at the hotel for some genuine Berkeley fare. We decided to try Top Dog, a hot dog hole-in-the-wall place downhill from campus. We knew two things about this particular establishment: 1) best hot dogs ever, and 2) run by militant libertarians. Not sure if these were THE BEST dogs in the world, but they were very good. And their political leanings were unmistakable.
They had a wide variety of dogs all served up on this glorious, crusty, sesame seeded baguette. Ahhhh. I got the kosher beef frankfurter and the German (garlic) frankfurter. Mr. Lemon got the hot link and the Calabrese. The Calabrese was my favorite. Yes, we ate hot dogs like animals, even though we had a reservation at a lovely French restaurant later in the day. What can I say? We weren't going to pass up any food ops in a place like this.
We grabbed cookie ice cream sandwiches at Cream on the way back to the hotel. They were delicious. Again, my chocolate turtle cookie with pumpkin ice cream was good, but Mr. Lemon's snickerdoodle cookie with salted caramel ice cream combo was out of control. Why don't I just copy him all the time? I don't know.
After a crazy time trying to park a minivan in San Francisco on a Friday night about three blocks away from a few major and busy venues, we finally settled into our seats at Absinthe. I took no pictures because it was very dark and, honestly, it's just not a take-photos-of-your-food sort of place.
We shared some marinated olives (quite orangey, but fine olives just the same) and the crispy skin pork belly (black truffle jus, anyone?). I had the coq au vin, and it was lovely, truly just perfectly done, but Mr. Lemon aced it again with this grilled pork skirt steak that had some sort of corn and basil business under it and a panzanella salad. It was ridiculous.
This is an old picture Mr. Lemon took of some cioppino I ate earlier this year at Phil's in Moss Landing. Remind me to talk about it more someday.