Last night after an early dinner at Central, (which was delicious but a bit heavy) we said our goodbyes to Josh and Jamie and headed to the memorials. We saw the Washington Monument then the WW2 Memorial. We headed to Lincoln but decided to check out Jefferson first. But first we met up with Jennifer who we’ve been corresponding with via email about the conference but never actual met in person. Lots of smiles an hugs. Our goal earlier had been to see the monuments at night but we gave up since it’s summer and the sun stays out forever. Luckily the monuments are deceptively far so by the time we hit Jefferson across the tidal basin it was all lit up. We sat on th steps with Jefferson to our backs and the tallest mason tower to our front, off in the distance across the shimmering water. We were taking shop and for a minute I involuntarily tuned out and thought to myself “this is surreal. I can’t believe I am here.”
Then I felt sorry for all the bachelors living in amazing cities like DC or Paris because breathtaking views like this are commonplace. You couldn’t be much of a pimp taking a girl to “this great view” you know because she’s probably been there a million times before with every other guy who thought ge was original also.
Note: This meal took place on August 16, 2008.
A date to visit Prakash was quickly set which is par for him and I. We don’t dabble in dates and scenarios. We just set a date and work at planning for the trip. And what planning I did! I had the obligatory Google Map laid out with key shops and restaurants I had to eat at. The best part? Prakash was up for anything! Love that guy!
Dave and Jessica met us out in Berkeley for lunch. I had to try Chez Panisse, Alice Waters famed restaurant. I was not expecting much other than dependable (possibly boring, but) delicious food. One person I spoke to described it as a restaurant that really pushed San Francisco into the culinary spotlight but really never moved on. So it’s important in that it inspired many other chefs and restaurants but now it’s sort of aged, like Citronelle in D.C. Anyway, this description was spot on.
We had reservations for a slightly later lunch. The Barcelonas came from Alameda and we came from Sunnyvale. We met up within 15 minutes of each other. We ate upstairs. The service was nice, perfect for the price and atmosphere. The decor was nice, not modern but not rustic either.
I had the squid because what I really wanted, the duck, was sold out. It was good, though some pieces were kind of pasty tasting. The citrus note really saved the day.
Monterey Bay squid roasted in the wood oven with shell beans, peppers, and salsa verde
Dave had the chicken which he confessed to not liking later on. In fact, he seemed to have diner’s remorse after, saying he didn’t think it was worth it. I sort of agree, and would definitely agree if the prices were only $5 more.
I think Chez Panisse is a very important restaurant in SF culinary history and still is a wonderful place to dine at when you want a nice meal without having to spend too much or dress up too much. I am glad I was able to check it off my list. I doubt I’ll be back.