Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Princesita Taca Truck

Ain't stress and pressure from unrealistic expectations the greatest? Couldn't sleep so here I am back after a 3.4 mile late-night explosive sprint session to post up more of my food adventures.

Jeez all I do is bitch bitch bitch...

Tacos from the Princesita taco truck in Linda Vista.

Starting from the rear: carne asada, pastor, and cabeza

Easily the best tacos in San Diego. That's excluding Mariscos German, of course. Those guys deal with seafood so I'll keep the two separate. For $1.50/taco this is a real steal! Open salsa and condiment bar means you're free to lop on all the guac you want. If you're like most college kids who have been eating at the various shittastic "Mexican" restaurants (Roberto's, Riggoberto's, Sergio's, Los Primos, Coti's, Santana's, El Indio, etc.) the time has come to stop eating bland overcooked meat! Asada and pastor are marinated very well and the explosion of flavor hitting my umami receptors sent shivers down my spine. Yah I had a mouthgasm.

For the hardcore asada fans, try the $4 carne asada burrito. It's an epic two meal affair. Or just one if you like to stuff your face...but your ass will look big in those jeans if you keep it up.

Fish tacos can be had for only buck and it is my opinion that they are better than the ones at Mariscos German. More meat and less batter. Hey you might even find a big fried shrimp in yours if you're lucky. I'm 1:3 right now.

This is definitely a must-try if you live in San Diego. It's just a bit south of K's Sandwiches, so you can even pick up dessert on the way home! They got some fantastic filled croissants.

Oh yeah. I had a pretty big typo in my last post. When I said "filets are the tastiest of cuts" I really meant they aren't the tastiest of cuts. I don't proof-read anymore.

Now to take my sleeping aids...

Princesita Taco Truck
6882 Linda Vista Rd
San Diego, CA 92111
Weekdays dinner time 5-11pm?

Saturday, June 20, 2009


Thought I'd get settled in nicely both domestically and career-wise, but things still aren't working out....hence the lack of updates. Heck I don't even get on my computer often these days. G'damn this job market and g'damn the fierce graduate school competition.

On a happier note, here is a quick post from L.A.'s Grace. I've been dying to eat here but was waiting for a good occasion (read: excuse to spend money). so when my father came to visit, I took the family out to dinner.

Mother ordered the 3-course prix-fixe:

Maryland Blue Crab Cake - warm curry vinaigrette

One huge crispy lump of crab meat. The vinaigrette was really subtle with the curry despite it appearing like a thick heavy trail in the picture. Nice way to kick things off!

Sautéed Day Boat Scallops
spring vegetables, savoy spinach, potato confit, fennel pollen

I'm still not sure whether I like this dish or not. From the gorgeous presentation and nicely seared appearance of the (ginormous) scallops, it's easily an A+. As for the texture, that's where I can't make up my mind. It was kinda like biting into a medium-well scallop with more emphasis towards the "well" end of the spectrum. The center felt a bit like chewing on albalone. My mom really enjoyed it though. Love/not-quite-like for me.

Strawberry tart
vanilla mousse, lemon ripple ice cream

Easily the best tart I've had to date. Doesn't quite look like a tart in the traditional sense with all the purty ridges, I know. But though the crust looks more like a cracker, it does have a texture similar to tarts we're more accustomed to seeing. So what makes this tart such a winner? The perfect balancing of flavors and great mouthfeel. This mousse isn't exactly light and airy like typical mousse...it was more like a really really soft and fluffy cheese thick and rich with vanilla-bean n caramel creme goodness. Pair it up with the sweetness and acidity of the strawberries and you get one explosive flavor combo. Deliciously sweet n crumbly crust makes it even better.

The rest of us ordered regular menu items:

Spinach & Arugula Salad
endive, candied walnuts, fried feta, grilled
onion red wine vinaigrette

Fried feta? Neat-o. Doesn't do an awful lot to make it tastier (unlike fried mozzarella), but it sure does make things more interesting! Great salad to start.

Sautéed LaBelle Farms Foie Gras
grilled pineapple, brown butter
brioche, black pepper ginger caramel

Wooo! Lookit that glorious slab of foie gras! Haven't had one seared this nicely in a long time! And my god, the size of this thing... Make sure to get a bit of pineapple in each bite. Having a bit of sugar and acidity with foie gras is a must! And to clear the palate, ya have slices of ginger. While the brown butter brioche soaked in fat from the foie gras looked temping enough to shovel down, in practice...not quite the case. My mouth got tired of it awfully fast so I left most of it alone. Brother spooned it all down though. What a fat fatty.

Ya fatty.

Lamb Pappardelle
braised lamb, roasted tomatoes, olives, fennel, parmesan

This oughta be an entree. Silky buttery egg noodles really soaked up the rich broth from braised lamb. Awesome. Wish I was able to taste more than 1.5 bites though. I was too busy workin' the foie gras.

Lobster Cavatelli lobster, cavatelli pasta, english peas, chanterelle mushrooms

This is the rich people version of my ghetto college student chicken broth, spam, frozen peas/carrots, and macaroni dinner. I like the rich people version better. FML.

Grilled Tenderloin of Wild Boar roasted brussels sprouts, herbed yukon gold potato spaetzle, violet mustard sauce

A lil gamey, super tender, plus a faint herby taste that probably came from the pile of greens on top. 'Course the good ol' Maillard reaction imparted a great deal of flavor here too as well. I got some pretty big slices of boar in addition to a huge portion of the spaetzel (think gnocchi). The sauce isn't exactly mustardy. It was more like a rich sauce made with big bold red and drippings from the grilled boar. Man what a winner.

Grilled Filet of Beef farro, haricots verts, morcilla, Ossau-Iraty cheese, red wine sauce

Filets aren't exactly the tastiest of cuts. There simply isn't enough fat present, so extras like the morcilla and cheese in this case have to play an important role. And holy cow they sure do a great job. Yes, a USDA prime filet is already a winner in itself, but when you throw in tasty flavoring extras, the experience just gets so much better. I don't think I need to tell ya'll about the joys of chowing down on a perfectly grilled filet :) Words just never do it justice.

Chocolate Souffle Cake Affogato vanilla malt ice cream, espresso, brandied orange slice

This is one of those rare desserts that make me rethink my current "Dessert Favs" ranking. Everything about this dessert was just perfect. All details were well thought-out. The pool of espresso at the bottom? Brilliant! Why don't more places do this?! It makes a choco souffle 3x better. The standard vanilla-bean ice cream is always a great default choice for dessert, but Pastry Chef Mariah Swan jazzed it up a bit with a rich vanilla malt. Holy **** the difference in such a tiny change is huge. If you happen to be in the neighborhood, it's worth it to just swing by for this dessert. Seriously.

Pistachio Filled Doughnuts
chocolate buttermilk marble ice cream, dried cherries

She's good. She's g'damn good. Mariah makes something as commonplace as a donut taste nothing like a donut. I mean...dude. No one makes donuts with such a thin crispy exterior and fills them up with the smooth buttery richness of pistachio. A scoop thick dark chocolate ice cream afterwards sure does hit the spot. Now if she can make donuts taste this good, I'm wondering what she does with cookies and milk (it's on the menu!).

Wow what a treat. Even if you don't have deep pockets for a $32 entree, do try to stop by the bar or something and share an appetizer or two in addition to dessert. I demand a lot of bang for my buck and fellas, Grace definitely delivers. Especially when it's time for dessert.

Now remember, fellas: Will @ Eclipse Chocolat is having another epic cupcake weekend! Swing by on the Fourth of July weekend for an awesome flavor lineup in addition to killer deals on the best cupcakes in San Diego.


7360 Beverly Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90036

Sunday, June 7, 2009


Oh man oh man oh man! Boy am I excited! I got my hands on two bottles of The Abyss today. The beer Gods are surely smiling down at me.

The Abyss is one of Deschutes' Reserve series and is released in very very limited quantities. What makes this such a sought after vintage beer? Oh I don't know. Maybe it has something to do with its consistently high ratings on BA (A+) and RB (100th percentile) since its first release in 2007. It has been a smashing hit that is able to compete head to head with dominant players such as Three Floyd's Dark Lord and Portsmouth's Kate The Great. In fact, it is currently ranked #4 on BA, where it holds the rank as the #1 Russian Imperial Stout.

Also pictured is the 2009 vintage of Mirror Mirror, also part of the Deschutes Reserve. Again, this is a very limited release, though not as exclusive as The Abyss. The last release was in 2006, so I don't think we're going to see another vintage for awhile.

Samuel Smith's Imperial Stout

I was lucky enough to get my dirty little paws on two bottles of The Abyss. Finding this rare gem was the easy part. Now resisting the urge to drink both bottles in one go? That's the hard part. I'm definitely planning on popping open one bottle at the end of the year (it is still reportedly a bit "hot" at the moment), but the second is without a doubt going into long-term storage. Same deal with my two bottles of Mirror Mirror. One to drink at the end of the year, and one for storage.

Or I could sell the bottles of Abyss online in a few months when its value will jump as high as $60/bottle, as shown by sales trends since its release.

Heh. Like hell I would! It would be so wrong to deny my friends and I the pleasure of enjoying such a glorious beer. Charlie, I'm making sure you get a taste of this stuff!

Friday, June 5, 2009

So much work...

Swamped with responsibilities and working out career plan kinks for the past several weeks. Oodles and oodles of posts to come soon! I'm looking forward to posting a great shoot from Grace.