Thursday, October 05, 2006

Your Favorite Weekend: A Principled Eater

Every Thursday, skip the C-list celebrities and C-list recommendations in the LA Times column, My Favorite Weekend, and check out what real Angelenos have to say on Erin's Kitchen instead. Want to share your favorite weekend? Email erinskitchen [at] gmail [dot] com.

Colleen Cuisine’s Favorite Weekend

Rosie of Colleen Cuisine loves to eat. She hates raw Peeps, but loves them scorched. Despite her penchant for yogurt reporting, she is not a Pinkberry promotional web site.

When I started foodblogging earlier this year, I started eating out a lot. Not that I didn’t eat out a lot before - I did – but now I was really EATING out. Indulging for the sake of a good post, eating in the name of blogging, ordering two desserts to compare them side-by-side, you get the idea. Soon I realized that I’d be in trouble, physically, if I didn’t apply some sort of discipline.

You may have heard of the Pareto principle: the famous 80/20 rule used to describe everything from distribution of wealth to effective time management. In my case, I like to apply the Pareto principle to eating: 20% of my time is dedicated to consuming 80% of my weekly food intake. I don’t really think that’s the proper way to apply the rule, and I wouldn’t exactly write a diet book around that topic, but so far, it seems to be working.

While I refrain and suffer boring vegetarian meals 5 ½ days of the week (78.58% to be exact), the rest of the weekend is my time to party. And party I shall!!!

Most Friday nights begin at the sushi bar with my idol, Kazunori Nozawa (aka “the sushi nazi”). Whether he’s handing over a plate of butter-rich toro or rolling a blue crab handroll, most of the meal is spent with tears in my eyes (tears of joy, silly, not wasabi-burn). I have yet to find a sushi restaurant that tops Nozawa in terms of freshness, quality, or delicious-ness, and while the atmosphere is lacking, the austerity makes you stop and appreciate the simplicity of an absolutely perfect piece of fish.

After Sushi Nozawa, Brian and I usually head over to Vendome for a great selection of post-dinner drinks. Whether you’re looking for a vintage Krug, Icewein, cold unfiltered sake, the perfect Bordeaux, or all of the above, Vendome is sure to have it, with a friendly staff to match. While I normally like the smaller wine shops (i.e. Silverlake Wine), the Studio City Vendome is perfect when you want a bigger selection, but not quite the warehouse feel of BevMo.

(sometime between getting home and polishing off an ungodly amount of wine, I usually find myself at Taco Bell for the 4th Meal. I don’t recommend this.)

For those of you who wake up early on the weekends, hi, it’s nice to finally meet you. Myself, I’m rarely out of bed on Saturdays before noon, so my perfect “breakfast” is what most of you would call “lunch.” Or sometimes, “dinner” (those are the good Friday nights!). Whatever you call it, I usually spend it at Bread & Porridge in Santa Monica, with a big coffee press and a plate of freshly-cooked, fresh tasting food, prepared and served with love.

After a late breakfast on Saturday, we usually end up having an early dinner at Soot Bull Jeep in Koreatown. If you want to smell like a BBQ pit while eating some of the most delicious cow you’ll ever consume, this is the place. Soot Bull Jeep is an indoor, all-charcoal Korean BBQ joint that serves heaping amounts of perfectly marinated galbi and bulgogi. I think they have other delicious things too, but I’ll never know because I can’t get past the cow.

If we don’t eat at Soot Bull Jeep, or if we eat mid-afternoon at Bread & Porridge, we usually end up having a light appetizer/drinks combo at one of the upscale supper places around town. For a while, we frequented Grace for orange blossom martinis and truffled grilled cheese sandwiches (available on request), now, we’re on to Jar for lychee martinis, lobster salad, and butterscotch pudding. You’ll always find us at the bar, which delightfully enables you to bypass all the typical waiter up-selling, leave satisfied, and with
your wallet (mostly) intact.

After two nights of heaving eating, I try to sweep up the pieces at Hugo’s in West Hollywood. Serving fresh organic food for a variety of tastes, Hugo’s is like what your mom might cook for you if your mom was a culinary hippie. I don’t really know what that means, but the food is good and it’s good for you.

So after nearly 36 hours (21.42%) of eating galore, I’m back to my 80/20 diet and greatly looking forward to another debaucherous weekend.

Previous Favorite Weekends
September 28, 2006: The Campbells' Favorite Weekend
September 21, 2006: Foodie Universe's Favorite Weekend
September 14, 2006: Atwater Village Newbie's Favorite Weekend
September 6, 2006: Jill and Gavin's Favorite Weekend

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