Jack and I just returned from a vacation on the west coast in Berkley and Portland OR. The theme of the trip wasn’t necessarily all about food, but it certainly turned into a trip that had quite a few food tastings and samplings, which was not a bad thing at all.
Jack’s sister played host for us, and took us to quite a few places in both Berkley and San Francisco. A bit of a foodie herself, she was very easily able to guide us to all of the fun and delicious places in town, such as The Cheese Board, which was totally overwhelming, but awesome nonetheless, Zachary’s Pizza, and the House of Curry. In San Francisco, we visited Ghirardelli, Boudin Sourdough bread, the Cowgirl Creamery, Humphry Slocombe Ice Cream, and the original Irish Coffee bar. Needless to say, the belt buckle had to be loosened a notch after that visit.
I loved all of the places that we saw and ate at in San Francisco, but I think what I liked best was being able to cook a meal together with fresh ingredients purchased at a farmer’s market, and lots of delicious cheese bought at the Cheese Board. We also went to a fabulous little Italian restaurant in Sonoma while wine tasting, that had to have been one of the best pasta eateries I have been to in a long time.
Our destination for the second half of the trip was Portland, OR. We had no specific plans for the city, other than to rent bikes to ride around, but we were very pleasantly surprised. The city had loads of farm to table restaurants, including Wildwood Restaurant, which was outstanding. I had a clay pot roasted chicken with garlic mashed potatoes, sautéed leeks, and chanterelles. Another awesome place was the Deschutes Brewery, which had some good brews, but even better food.
The highlight of the visit there though was Voodoo Doughnuts. I had been recommended to go there by the flight attendant we had on our trip there, and it was certainly not disappointing. They had the weirdest flavors, and all were delicious. The best one, hands down, was the maple bacon doughnut. I never could understand the desire to mix bacon with anything sweet, but my goodness, I totally get it. It was like a pancake and bacon breakfast all in one doughnut.
Overall our West Coast visit was a success, and by the time we returned home, we never wanted to eat again, until we heard a rumble in our stomach and saw a million tomatoes ripened in our garden. I am looking forward to returning sometime in the future, but for now, I need to recover from eating like a queen!