Not to get on a high horse, but I love when people have come up to me lately and ask me if I was still on that “diet”, like this morning. I gave the cliche answer of “Its not a diet its a lifestyle” because I was just too tired from the gym this morning to muster up another way to retort. In my mind, if I am going to change myself, it needs to be a lifestyle and a mindset. When I hear people say the word “diet” I feel that its a temporary thing to achieve a goal of weight loss, but then once they achieve the goal, they tend to go back to their regular eating habits.
I finally got to my parents house for a little Christmas vactaion time. Since I was flying across the country, I didnt take any of my suppliments nor protien powders with me for a 10 day trip since I needed the room for presents and such. That was a mistake, or it was a mistake not to bring something to last a day or two while I went to get more. So I went to the gym the day after my arrival and man was I hurting. I only brought a quart of water with me and I was winded after my fourth excercise. So I immediately hit the Vitamin Shoppe and grabbed some whey protien and pre workout, and that did the trick. Granted, the VS brand is not as tasty as what I usually get, but has worked so far.
My advice is if you are travelling, bring enough suppliments with you to cover 3 days. Anything longer than that I would suggest buying samples when you get there because the weight of the suppliments could offset the weight of extra clothig that you need.
What can you really do on a trip to San Diego when your girlfriend is competing in a body building completion all weekend and you are left alone to your own devices? There’s only one answer on a Weekend Foodie blog.
So over the weekend, I accompanied my girlfriend to San Diego so she could compete in a body building completion. Unfortunately, there was very little time to scope out possible eateries from the car on our way down since our drive on surface streets only lasted an entire 5 minutes before we got to the hotel. But just across the street from the Lafayette Hotel I found a BBQ joint tucked in the corner of some shops called BBQ 81. How can you gol wrong with a sign that has “Pulled Pork” in big letters? It’s like it already knew what I wanted…
There is not much to notice when you walk into this restaurant: several tables, a couple of TVs hanging on the wall (not enough on sports), and a fascination with a former player on the LA Rams. The staff huddled around the bar and one waitress told me that I could sit anywhere is wanted. Since it was only 3 pm on a Friday, I sat watching the Washington Nationals game.
After being presented with a menu, I paused to take a look at what I had in store for me. The basics were there, pulled pork, tri tip, Mac and cheese, etc. Being that I was probably. not going to get another chance to be here for a while, I stocked up with a tri tip sandwich, onion rings, Mac n cheese, hot links, and something that I couldn’t resist trying, the smothered tots.
Whoever thought of putting pulled pork on tater tots is a visionary. We have all thought about doing it, but this guy is doing it AND selling it. He has got cajones
After the massive order, where i think I shocked a couple of the staff, I finally got around to flipping to the other side of the menu and read the story of the restaurant. It was a story of a heartfelt tribute to the owners father who played for the LA Rams dawning number 81. It’s one thing to go into a Michelin rated restaurant with a top chef, you know you are going to get a great meal, but I love places like this because it makes me feel like that there is love in the food.
So now it’s go time. As I looked up from reading the menu, all of my food arrives at once. It was BBQ heaven. I think I drooled a little, but I don’t think anyone saw me. I had to dig right into those smothered tot..
Pulled pork has always been a favorite of mine and layering the goodness over tots didn’t disappoint. I am usually a little leery of ordering tots in restaurants for fear they will be soggy, but not here. The crisp crunchy tots made the dish with the pulled pork smothered in a sweet BBQ sauce. It was a good mix of sweet and savory, that is could have almost has as a finished as a dessert. I know that sounds weird, but I have been known to have meat for dessert on occassion.
The tri tip was seasoned in the basics and slapped naked on a bun. No frills here. There was a nice bark on the meat, but it was a little dry, so I added a little bbq sauce to the mix which brought out more of the tasty goodness of the tri tip. But I was not expecting a slab of meat on a bun, rather more of something sliced. Needless to say, I enjoyed the dish, but I don’t think I would order it a a sandwich again because the bread was REALLY filling and I had another couple dishes to go!
My favorite of the all had to be the hot links. They were the kind that tasted a little hot on the front end, but got hotter a you got thorough the link. Me likey.
Overall I enjoyed the restaurant and thought it had good food, but in the grand scheme of BBQ, there was nothing that stood out to make me crave it.
Im going to give it a a 3 of 5 on my foodie scale.
This quest for food started when I was looking for good sushi in the area. No offense, but Im not willing to get my sushi at Walgreens. Side note, if you don’t have the app “Around Me” for your iPhone, I would highly recommend it. Anyway, I found a sushi place, which I will write about later, just down the street from where I am currently working. Since I am trying to change my diet and daily habits, I am walking everywhere, so on my lunch break, I decided to try the sushi place out. Unfortunately according to a VERY faded sign on their door, they are closed from 330p-5p during the week.
Enter Nariya Thai.
Just above the sushi place was Nariya Thai, a place that I have driven past many times, but never stopped to partake. If you are keeping score, its right next to the Roscoe’s on El Centro and Sunset, but I digress. Since I was dying for a little lunch, I stopped on in.
My first impression was confusion, this is nothing like any thai restaurants I had been to, I think the country music threw me off. I sat down on the large outside patio with my view of Sunset Gower Studios and reminisced about great moments in Fresh Prince history while I looked over the menu. The menu was standard fare for Thai restaurants, nothing out of the ordinary caught my eye, so I settled on the spring rolls and a spicy beef salad for lunch.
The spring rolls were actually pretty tasty but the spicy beef salad was a little off putting at first taste. I don’t know how to describe it, but it was nothing that I was used to. I don’t know if it grew on me or I just accepted it, but the taste got better the more I ate. Typically if I am sampling something, I will have a few bites, but this was my lunch break so I scarfed everything down.
A week or so later, I decided to give it another shot, this time opting for the Thai sausage and mint noodles with chicken. I felt that the Thai sausage was too mealy, like there were way too many breadcrumbs in the sausage. And they serve it with whole garlic, onions, peanuts, and what I later found out to be CHUNKS of ginger. Wont make that mistake again. The mint noodles came with a heaping helping of food on the plate, and was rather tasty, save for the sliced whole peppers on top. I wish they would have incorporated the peppers into the dish more, but it seemed like they were just thrown on top for garnish.
I would say that Nariya Thai’s food is par for the course, its not overly great, but not terrible. One thing that kinda soured me on the deal is that my food got served on plates that were chipped. I can handle the food, but when you serve on plates that are chipped, that shows lack of attention to your customers and product.
Needless to say, other than location, this is not somewhere that I would be craving to go to anytime soon.
Things happen too quickly sometimes. You look forward to something for a while, and then its gone in a blink of an eye. That’s what the Taste of Italy was for me this year. Even though I spent about 3 hours at the event, I wanted more, but the length of the lines told me otherwise.
With the event being held across from Union Station downtown, it was a breeze to get there using the Red Line. Now that I live in the Valley, I parked my car at the North Hollywood station and took a leisurely trip that lasted about 30 min. Google maps predicted that it would take about 45 min with traffic to drive down, …