Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Random Shot #1

I'm going to start putting some of my favorite pictures - old or new - up on a weekly basis.


Sunday, December 27, 2009

Arleta Library Bakery & Cafe

Arleta Library Bakery & Cafe on Urbanspoon
Molly and Phil at ALBC
Phil, Eric and I went for a little drive out to Arleta Library Bakery & Cafe this morning. Well, this afternoon I guess. We were still in time for brunch (they are open until 2:30pm on the weekend), and we only had to wait about ten minutes for a table. Time we spent looking over the menu by the front door, and gulping down a cup of french pressed coffee. Arleta Library is very very small (even smaller than Juniors I think), so I bet there's a pretty serious line during the more normal breakfast hours, but I'd still say it's worth a much longer wait. Once we were seated, the specials were presented to us, including the quiche of the day, which was a wild mushroom and local greens mix. I was hell bent on trying as many things as possible, since Saba and Owen recommended it so highly to us. The Sicilian Hash was an instant pick after having watched the Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives episode that featured Arleta Library. Since there were three of us, and we were all pretty hungry, we went with four items, plus a side of bacon. In addition to the bacon and the Hash, we devoured an order of the Pane Dolce, Portland's Best Biscuits-n-Gravy, and The Tuscan. The Tuscan and the Hash each offer a side of either toast or a scone, so we had one of each. The Hash and the biscuits and gravy both came with a side of potatoes, which were large wedges, heavily seasoned and crispy on the outside, with steaming hot, gooey middles. In other words, amazing. We completely annihilated our plates of food (which impressed our server) by eating for a few minutes, then trading plates clockwise until they were gone. After we finished what seemed to be an impossible task a half hour prior, we all realized how "not overly full and sick" we felt, despite the amount of food we had just consumed. I chalked this up to being directly related to the lack of grease in our meal. Whereas most places serving up similar items would be dripping in animal fats, and greasy oils, Arleta Bakery somehow manages to pull off these incredible dishes with minimal greasiness, which left me feeling full, but really refreshed and happy. (I've been known to eat to the point of illness on more than on occasion.)

Although Arleta Library is a 12 minute drive from home (not sure on the bike length), I'm stoked to go back for more, and I can't wait to take more friends there.

ALBC Menu-3ALBC Menu-2ALBC Menu-1

Wednesday, December 16, 2009


Lark on Urbanspoon
Lark was not only a pleasure for the palate, but overall, gave me a comfy, warm feeling. The high ceiling, and beautiful wooden interior flowed nicely with the simple menu design, soft lighting, and bright, bustling kitchen that peeked through the end of the hallway. We browsed the menu, stomachs growling after two cocktails around the corner at Tavern Law, and found it hard to choose between rosti potatoes with clabber cream and roasted sunchokes with rosemary, garlic and lavender. Eventually, we settled on the salmon special (it had bacon, there was no contest), roasted sunchokes, sauteed mushrooms, Bluebird Grain Farms farro, chicken liver parfait, and many other things that my memory is not recalling. To be honest, "chicken liver" ANYTHING was not in my vocabulary (or belly) three weeks ago. After a brave taste a few weeks ago at Clyde Common, I was totally sold.

Our fish had crispy skins, with a silky, not at all dry, meaty inside. The farro was chewy, cooked to perfection (don't know if al dente is even a proper term here, but it's how I'd describe it) and tossed with what I believe may have been chard. The only thing I haven't mentioned is the bread. Oh goodness, the bread.... I don't know for sure where it came from, but I'm assuming it was baked in house? Heavy, wheaty, chewy bread to sop up all the delicious sauces at the bottom of our serving plates and bowls. There was no holding back. Perhaps I licked my fingers? But nobody seemed to mind.

Lark is very romantic, and I look forward to going back with Phil for a special occasion. Their dining area also comfortably accommodated the party of 8 or more who sat next to us. It's places like Lark where you want to bring a few friends, so you can order more dishes, and snag more tastes!

More friends.... More tastes!
Lark on Urbanspoon

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Wednesday, December 02, 2009