Posts Tagged ‘sonoma county restaurant week’

Good Food, Good Times

A drive for 2.5 hours in the pouring rain to get to a 1.5 hour dinner at a French restaurant has got to be worth it to make the trip. La Gare was cozy, the service was friendly, and the food was delicious. Although I went to get the $29 prix-fixe menu that was available for Sonoma County Restaurant week, I actually ended up ordering from their regular menu and have no regrets.

I got the Beef Wellington! I’ve always wanted to try this dish ever since I first heard Julia Child mouth these words and it made me curious. I don’t know, I have this weird fascination with wanting to eat foods I see on TV shows/movies. Not really on cooking shows but actual sitcoms or movies on TV or theaters. Because of this fascination, I’ve tried countless items including Peanut Butter with Marshmallow sandwiches (Who’s the Boss?), Bananas in Milk (Sesame Street), Boeuf Bourguignon (Julie & Julia), and Braciole (Everybody Loves Raymond).

I have a love/hate relationship with food. However, I love it more than I hate it, which is why I had a blast last night even though A) the torrential rain I drove through tried to kill me, B) the food is everything that is against my diet, and C) I was wearing heels that were bound to cause a fall in the soaking wet environment I was wallowing in. No mother nature bitch fit was going to stop me from having a good meal. There is just something about food that brings people together at any gathering. It can act as a matchmaker, an educational tool, a definition of oneself, a form of entertainment, or even a form of torture depending on how you look at it.

One equation I’ve always gone by: Good food + good company = a great time. Here are some pics of our meals:

Pea soup – perfect size, won’t fill you up

Butter Lettuce Salad – my favorite lettuce of all time, like velvet on your tongue

Beef Wellington – with pate & ham, carrots, green beans, & country potatoes

Fettuccine Alfredo – made with the most pungent of french cheeses. The French are famous for cheese, you know. ;0)

Coq Au Vin – Chicken in red wine with mushrooms, rice & veggies. Very tender meat.

Chocolate Caramel Dome – This was delicious. Chocolate sponge cake with caramel & chocolate mousse, creme brulee, coated in chocolate ganache, sitting in a pool of raspberry sauce & creme anglaise. Oooh, did you get goosebumps?

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Sonoma County Restaurant Week

It’s Sonoma County Restaurant Week! They have 3 different prix fixe menus at $19, $29 or $39, with each restaurant offering their choice of price & menu and it ends on Monday 2/28 so you’d better hurry! I never knew there existed something like this outside of San Francisco; very similar to Dine About Town.

Every year, San Francisco restaurants participate in Dine About Town to get people to come try their food at a low cost, just to get patrons in the door. I believe it began as an upscale restaurant response to the recession 10 years ago. It is organized by the San Francisco Convention & Visitors Bureau. For Dine About Town, lunch is a 2 course meal at $17.95 or you can do a 3 course dinner at $34.95. The link for Dine About Town won’t work right now since it has passed but not to worry, Dine About Town should return in June as it used to be a month long event once a year but they have since divided it to be twice a year at a length of 2 weeks each time in January and June. I enjoyed Ruth’s Chris Steak House last month and it was delicious! I did not end up ordering from the Dine About Town menu because they had their own prix fixe menus to choose from that were sounded just as tempting.

It’s nice to know other counties are doing the same. Through Dine About Town, I’ve been given the chance to try places like Mecca (closed), House, Ana Mandara, Chouquet’s, Roy’s Hawaiian Fusion, Waterfront, Lark Creek Steak, and countless others I can’t remember off the top of my head right now. Ana Mandara is by far, my favorite. It’s so gorgeous inside, absolutely breathtaking. I’ll be fine dining at La Gare tonight. I don’t know what it is about fine dining that makes you feel a little more joyful, giving you an extra pep to your step. Doesn’t really matter what I’m even eating, just serve the betch! Hopefully, I won’t come crashing down on my heels.