January 2006


Beverly Hills | California08 Jan 2006 10:35 am

See my comments on the San Francisco location. This newer of their places is larger and fun (see Dracula).

55 North La Cienega Blvd.
(Near Wilshire)
(310)652-7673

www.thestinkingrose.com

California | San Francisco08 Jan 2006 10:31 am

The original in San Francisco is a garlic lover’s paradise – garlic in everything, even in the ice cream if you choose (not me – I prefer hot fudge). I have not had a dish here which I haven’t thoroughly enjoyed. The starter of baked garlic/oil to accompany the bread is almost reason enough to stop here. I am partial to the garlic meatloaf and garlic mashed (smashed would imply too much eclecticness) potatoes. Wine choices are fair as well as the pours.

Their “gift shop” has some very unusual garlic-themed items. During my first visit I finished half a bottle of pickled garlic before bed time – WOW!

325 Columbus Avenue (near Broadway)
San Francisco, CA
(415) 781-7673
www.thestinkingrose.com

Italian | Michigan | New Buffalo08 Jan 2006 09:42 am

The hot New Buffalo area has a little gem of a restaurant. This explosive growth area with its upscale condos and boat slips on Lake Michigan doesn’t have an abundance of restaurant choices, but there are several quality places such as this one.

Soups are freshly made (maybe “homemade”) and entree portions ample and filling. Daily specials are always worth a try. While I wouldn’t classify Brewster’s as a ristorante, it is a full service restaurant and full service deli and takeout spot. Wine choices ample and fair.

11 West Merchant Street
New Buffalo, MI 49117
(269) 469-3005

California | Italian | San Francisco01 Jan 2006 05:42 pm

The North Beach neighborhood in San Francisco has a multitude of good Italian restaurants – and Rose Pistola came highly recommended by a midwestern visitor – thanks for the recommendation.

Our lunch consisted of several appetizers (though the meal was just this last October I failed to note the choices); also Italian wines by the glass from an interesting selection from many regions.

Next time I’ll take notes and make specific recommendations.

532 Columbus Avenue
San Francisco, CA 94133
(415) 399-0499

Highland Park | Illinois | Italian | Melanzane01 Jan 2006 05:24 pm

After a movie at the Highland Park cinema (the old place, not one of the hyped places), why not some good wine and eggplant? In a suburban North Shore spot where the big name restaurants are making inroads, head instead to a smaller, friendlier place. The place was humming late on Saturday, but the service offset any wait time for a table. Fair wines by the glass, good bread and oil, and well-prepared food make this place a good destination.

1899 Second Street
Highland Park, IL 60035
(847) 681-8300

www.bellaviahp.com