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You guys!  Are you having the best summer ever?  I think I’ve overdosed on Vitamin D.

So.  No new reviews this week – I’ve got a few things on deck, but nothing I feel like I can comment on definitively at the moment.  Also I’ve been insanely busy getting ready for an avalanche of guests immediately followed by some travel abroad.  And when I say abroad, I mean the untamed bear-infested woods of Northern Wisconsin.

But you guys.  It’s all good.  Here are some random thoughts I have been thinking for your pleasure:

  • Top Chef Masters is a real treat.  I’m fairly limited in my regional knowledge of restaurants and chefs, but I do pay attention to other things bubbling around the country.  I’m constantly making mental notes about places I’d like to eat if I ever pay a visit to this or that city.  So it’s really great to see some of these names in action.  Cindy Pawlcyn (hot).  Roy Yamaguchi (nerd).  Wylie Dufresne (hot nerd).
  • I’m so in forever love with Hubert Keller.  He was chilling at the bar at Fleur de Lys when I visited San Francisco a few years back and I was completely charmed.  I had a completely vegetarian five-course dinner with wine pairings that totally upstaged all the meat-eaters at the table.  Even better was chef Keller resolutely striding across the restaurant into the kitchen and roaring at his crew: “SHUT THE FUCK UP!”.  It was very quiet after that.  *swoon*
  • Speaking of Top Chef, I’m sure you’ve probably heard by now, but we’ve got TWO contestants from Seattle in the new season premiering next month.  Ashley Merriman, the badass behind Branzino, and Robin Leventhal of the lately lamented Crave (which I always thought was profoundly overrated).  But who cares!  Finally some hometown heroes to root for!  I’m stupid excited about this.  AND!  The rumor, rumor, rumormill is buzzing that Seattle might finally be THE LOCATION for next season… oh I would probably just die of joy.
  • The burgeoning dessert emporium insanity continues in our fair city.  Megan Seling cries Uncle over here.  I tend to agree, but then you know I’m pretty indifferent about sweets.  Still, I’ve occasioned Molly Moon’s a couple of times, and stopped by Bluebird this past week.  The ice cream is creamier, milkier and freakier at Molly Moon’s, but Bluebird has that DIY vibe that I dig.  That said, they don’t seem quite ready for primetime.  Best of luck to them all – I hope it’s not a slaughter out there when the dark days return.
  • Café Presse still has the best goddamned Frites in town.  Hands down.
  • What is better than a Niçoise salad in the summertime?  How about a Niçoise salad from Skillet in the summertime.  Oh hell yeah.

nicoise salad

Photo via Flickr by PAAT
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