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by Brett Johnson
September 16th, 2016, 9:08 am
Forum: Cellar Rats (ITB)
Topic: 2016 West Coast Vintage Weather Thread
Replies: 510
Views: 40611

2016 West Coast Vintage Weather Thread

Direct press grenache picked for rose this year. Killer flavors, harvested at 20b earlier this week, from Happy Canyon.



pressedrose_V2.jpg
by Brett Johnson
May 19th, 2016, 3:23 pm
Forum: Epicurean Exploits - Food and Recipes
Topic: New Range Advice/Opinions/Comments...Blue Star 48"
Replies: 133
Views: 11884

New Range Advice/Opinions/Comments...Blue Star 48"

The oven ignitor is fine; it clicks on normally, just takes a lot of time to get to temperature. Using the uber broiler is a good idea though.

For me, it's the ignitors on the range that go bad. One of them was screwed on so tightly that it stripped and I can't get it out.
by Brett Johnson
May 19th, 2016, 1:47 pm
Forum: Epicurean Exploits - Food and Recipes
Topic: New Range Advice/Opinions/Comments...Blue Star 48"
Replies: 133
Views: 11884

New Range Advice/Opinions/Comments...Blue Star 48"

Yes, in fact have done that when run out of space but griddle does take a bit of time to heat up Btw clean up is a breeZe on this thing so that is good too What is your preferred method of cleaning? I agree on the crazy slow lag to warm up the oven. I've also experience that the ignitors on the ran...
by Brett Johnson
June 9th, 2015, 4:48 pm
Forum: Travel and Restaurants Forum
Topic: Santa Barbara
Replies: 46
Views: 3878

Santa Barbara

Bump.

Anyone been to El Encanto lately?
by Brett Johnson
June 3rd, 2015, 9:32 am
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: Just Back From The Santa Rita Hills... what a place! (long, with pics)
Replies: 38
Views: 2660

Just Back From The Santa Rita Hills... what a place! (long, with pics)

Great report! Unquestionably my favorite AVA for pinot in the SB area. You're spot on with the SRH "baking spice" trait; every vineyard has that nuance (as well as amazing pH levels). For the past 6 years I've been dabbling with SRH pinot (vineards from east SRH to the west) for my own enjoyment and...
by Brett Johnson
May 14th, 2015, 12:03 pm
Forum: Epicurean Exploits - Food and Recipes
Topic: Portland Eats
Replies: 246
Views: 15576

Portland Eats

P. Willenberg wrote:I highly recommend walking across the street from cocotte for a cocktail at expatriate before and after dinner.
Definitely do this!!

We made the mistake of leaving and crossing the street to Beast; should have stayed put.
by Brett Johnson
May 11th, 2015, 9:56 am
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: Rosé wine 2015 - what are you loving?
Replies: 162
Views: 11237

Rosé wine 2015 - what are you loving?

I rarely drink Italian roses, but this was a very nice find: Tasca d’Almerita Regaleali Le Rose.
by Brett Johnson
May 7th, 2015, 9:51 am
Forum: Beer and Spirits
Topic: The Cocktail Thread
Replies: 474
Views: 42252

The Cocktail Thread

As someone mentioned up thread, warm weather is moving me away from bourbon and rye to gin and tequila. So, that means classic G&Ts (Fever Tree tonic, boodles gin), gimlets, or margaritas made in a variety of ways i.e. blanco or reposado, limes, blood oranges, watermelon, agave nectar, cointreau, ci...
by Brett Johnson
May 6th, 2015, 9:57 am
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: Rosé wine 2015 - what are you loving?
Replies: 162
Views: 11237

Rosé wine 2015 - what are you loving?

Banshee rose of pinot noir. Never heard of this label before, but very impressive.
by Brett Johnson
April 27th, 2015, 12:05 pm
Forum: Beer and Spirits
Topic: The Bourbon Thread
Replies: 3523
Views: 191923

The Bourbon Thread

image.jpg Long day at Knott's Berry Farm. Needed something to unwind and wanted something superb. This fit the bill nicely. Fantastic stuff. Have you had Michters Sour Mash? If yes, how does it compare to this regular bottling? I really dig the Sour Mash, haven't had the regular. That's not the reg...
by Brett Johnson
April 27th, 2015, 9:26 am
Forum: Beer and Spirits
Topic: The Bourbon Thread
Replies: 3523
Views: 191923

The Bourbon Thread

JKim wrote:
image.jpg
Long day at Knott's Berry Farm. Needed something to unwind and wanted something superb. This fit the bill nicely. Fantastic stuff.
Have you had Michters Sour Mash? If yes, how does it compare to this regular bottling?

I really dig the Sour Mash, haven't had the regular.
by Brett Johnson
April 20th, 2015, 9:22 am
Forum: Beer and Spirits
Topic: The Bourbon Thread
Replies: 3523
Views: 191923

The Bourbon Thread

RHF is my favorite, getting harder and harder to find. The higher rye and proof are right in my sweet spot as well. Don't want to over-hype it, but you should really like this one.
by Brett Johnson
April 17th, 2015, 11:47 am
Forum: Epicurean Exploits - Food and Recipes
Topic: Bo ssam
Replies: 148
Views: 13101

Bo ssam

Help! I plan on doing some this evening (well to eat tomorrow night, but need to cure the meat for 24h if I understood correctly), and I didn't see any quantities in the NYT recipe. How much sugar and salt do you need to do the brine? Thanks! Edit: ok so I did some search, and found the following: ...
by Brett Johnson
April 14th, 2015, 6:02 pm
Forum: Epicurean Exploits - Food and Recipes
Topic: Bo ssam
Replies: 148
Views: 13101

Bo ssam

Just to follow up, this recipe was an absolute home run. Obviously, no surprise to folks here based on many of the positive reviews in this thread. There was a 5 minute span when the entire table transformed from raucous chatter to utter silence. Then, followed by oohs, ahhhs, "so goood". The group ...
by Brett Johnson
March 24th, 2015, 10:26 am
Forum: Travel and Restaurants Forum
Topic: Croatia Travel & Wine
Replies: 10
Views: 686

Croatia Travel & Wine

Good to know, thank you!
by Brett Johnson
March 23rd, 2015, 9:12 am
Forum: Epicurean Exploits - Food and Recipes
Topic: Flank Steak - What's your favorite marinade?
Replies: 63
Views: 2562

Flank Steak - What's your favorite marinade?

For one flank steak, marinate over night:

¾ cup vegetable oil

¼ cup soy sauce

¼ cup honey

2 Tablespoons each vinegar and green onions

1 large clove garlic, minced

1 ½ teaspoon ground ginger
by Brett Johnson
March 16th, 2015, 9:35 am
Forum: Travel and Restaurants Forum
Topic: Croatia Travel & Wine
Replies: 10
Views: 686

Croatia Travel & Wine

My wife and I spent about 8 days in Croatia and Slovenia this last October and loved it. We had a great time in Dubrovnik especially and highly recommend the area. We spent some time in Peljesac and I would also recommend spending time there as well. As far as wine and wineries in the area, we went...
by Brett Johnson
March 13th, 2015, 10:13 am
Forum: Epicurean Exploits - Food and Recipes
Topic: LA Times' J. Gold LOVES Stephen Gelber's place Smoke.Oil.Salt
Replies: 55
Views: 3756

LA Times' J. Gold LOVES Stephen Gelber's place Smoke.Oil.Salt

Stephen,

Thanks so much for the detailed reply.

And, so refreshing to see a reasonable, sensible corkage policy.

[cheers.gif]
Brett
by Brett Johnson
March 12th, 2015, 12:01 pm
Forum: Travel and Restaurants Forum
Topic: Croatia/Slovenia Travel
Replies: 34
Views: 2283

Croatia/Slovenia Travel

This thread was very helpful, thanks for all of the posts!

Wife and I are thinking of visiting Croatia (pretty much Dan's itinerary) for two weeks in late September / early October.

Weather wise, is it still hot enough to enjoy lazy beach days, etc or did I miss that window?

[cheers.gif]
Brett
by Brett Johnson
March 10th, 2015, 9:54 am
Forum: Epicurean Exploits - Food and Recipes
Topic: Portland Eats
Replies: 246
Views: 15576

Portland Eats

Your experiences at Nong's, Roe, and the Farmer's Market mirrored mine exactly.
by Brett Johnson
March 6th, 2015, 2:31 pm
Forum: Beer and Spirits
Topic: How do you make your old fashioned?
Replies: 48
Views: 3674

How do you make your old fashioned?

I use 2 drops, about the circumference of a dime roughly. Agave is sweeter than sugar so a little goes a long way.
by Brett Johnson
March 5th, 2015, 9:19 am
Forum: Epicurean Exploits - Food and Recipes
Topic: TIRAMI SU
Replies: 4
Views: 249

TIRAMI SU

Never goes out of style for me.

However, I think a lot of restaurants make it poorly.

But when it's good, it's really, goooood.

When we make it at home, we use dark rum.
by Brett Johnson
March 4th, 2015, 9:46 am
Forum: Epicurean Exploits - Food and Recipes
Topic: LA Times' J. Gold LOVES Stephen Gelber's place Smoke.Oil.Salt
Replies: 55
Views: 3756

LA Times' J. Gold LOVES Stephen Gelber's place Smoke.Oil.Salt

My friend is going Friday night and is debating about bring some wine or ordering off of the list.

What's the price range on the wine list and is it all primarily Spanish wines?
by Brett Johnson
March 3rd, 2015, 3:15 pm
Forum: Travel and Restaurants Forum
Topic: Portland hotel/eats
Replies: 13
Views: 566

Portland hotel/eats

We did a biking tour of the Columbia Gorge water falls. Good way to burn off all of the food/drink you'll be having and it was quite scenic. The Farmer's Market at PSU is walkable from downtown. I forget the name of the vendor, but they served a killer fried chicken biscuit sandwich with shitake gra...
by Brett Johnson
March 2nd, 2015, 10:07 am
Forum: Beer and Spirits
Topic: How do you make your old fashioned?
Replies: 48
Views: 3674

How do you make your old fashioned?

I keep it traditionally simple, though out of convenience, I don't use sugar cube.

Start with a few drops of light agave nectar
Add a few dashes of Angostura bitters
Mix
add 2-3 ounces Rye, prefer Rittenhouse
add a Large ice cube
by Brett Johnson
February 26th, 2015, 2:18 pm
Forum: Epicurean Exploits - Food and Recipes
Topic: Bo ssam
Replies: 148
Views: 13101

Bo ssam

Making bo ssam for the first time Saturday night; picking up the Cook Pigs Ranch shoulder tomorrow.

Appreciate all the tips in this thread!
by Brett Johnson
February 26th, 2015, 2:05 pm
Forum: Epicurean Exploits - Food and Recipes
Topic: Portland Eats
Replies: 246
Views: 15576

Portland Eats

Wife and I visited this past October; had a blast eating/drinking our way through the city. Roe - absolute must imo. I loved the concept and food and can't think of anything similar we have in LA. Just up the street, is the Richmond ; cool bar/pub for a pre-dinner cocktail. Couldn't get a rez at Pig...
by Brett Johnson
February 25th, 2015, 9:53 am
Forum: Beer and Spirits
Topic: The Bourbon Thread
Replies: 3523
Views: 191923

The Bourbon Thread

Eagle Rare Single Barrel 10 Yr. Old How did you like the ER 10? I think it's hard to beat for the tariff i.e. sub $30 and perfect as a house bourbon. More interesting and enjoyable than Buffalo Trace which is about the same price where I live. Recently, I picked up a bottle of the base Old Forester...
by Brett Johnson
February 5th, 2015, 6:07 pm
Forum: Beer and Spirits
Topic: Alright, all you ballers
Replies: 38
Views: 2717

Alright, all you ballers

Ha!

I always use hot tap water, never had an issue with clarity.

Freezing anywhere from 18 to 24 hours; probably need to track this part better to get consistency.
by Brett Johnson
February 5th, 2015, 9:25 am
Forum: Beer and Spirits
Topic: Alright, all you ballers
Replies: 38
Views: 2717

Alright, all you ballers

I bought this too. Works well, but not perfect; I get crystal clear spheres, but sometimes there are indentations. I also have an issue with the storage tube, the caps are not secure. Overall, still pretty happy overall. I read about indentation issues, gotta make sure the mold is perfectly lined u...
by Brett Johnson
February 3rd, 2015, 2:35 pm
Forum: Beer and Spirits
Topic: Alright, all you ballers
Replies: 38
Views: 2717

Alright, all you ballers

I bought this too.

Works well, but not perfect; I get crystal clear spheres, but sometimes there are indentations. I also have an issue with the storage tube, the caps are not secure.

Overall, still pretty happy overall.
by Brett Johnson
February 2nd, 2015, 4:35 pm
Forum: Beer and Spirits
Topic: The Bourbon Thread
Replies: 3523
Views: 191923

The Bourbon Thread

I was gifted a bottle of Michter's Sour Mash; lower proof than I usually drink, but really, really enjoyable. This will be a go-to in the future. Good to know. A buddy bought their Bourbon, so I bought their Rye, and both are decent to good (Rye is better). But we were wondering how the Sour Mash i...
by Brett Johnson
January 30th, 2015, 9:25 am
Forum: Epicurean Exploits - Food and Recipes
Topic: San Diego help
Replies: 76
Views: 4434

San Diego help

The three recs above are solid choices; I would also add Tapenade, more classical French if that appeals to you.
by Brett Johnson
January 28th, 2015, 9:37 am
Forum: Beer and Spirits
Topic: The Bourbon Thread
Replies: 3523
Views: 191923

The Bourbon Thread

Picked up an old favorite (Rock Hills Farms) and it's as delicious as ever. Price has gone up like most of the BT product.

I was gifted a bottle of Michter's Sour Mash; lower proof than I usually drink, but really, really enjoyable. This will be a go-to in the future.
by Brett Johnson
January 26th, 2015, 10:31 am
Forum: Epicurean Exploits - Food and Recipes
Topic: Eating and drinking in LA
Replies: 92
Views: 4143

Eating and drinking in LA

Thanks for the info on Bucato; still want to try Alimento.

Bummed, we ended up not going to Bucato because the building had a gas leak!
by Brett Johnson
January 23rd, 2015, 9:15 am
Forum: Epicurean Exploits - Food and Recipes
Topic: Eating and drinking in LA
Replies: 92
Views: 4143

Eating and drinking in LA

Anyone have thoughts on Bucato? Hoping to get a rez there tonight; couldn't get a rez at Alimento.
by Brett Johnson
November 24th, 2014, 9:39 am
Forum: Epicurean Exploits - Food and Recipes
Topic: need good Mac and Cheese recipe for the 12 and under age group
Replies: 18
Views: 670

need good Mac and Cheese recipe for the 12 and under age group

Standard mac and cheese is super super easy. Mornay sauce with pasta. Agreed. For my kids, I make some modifications to make it slightly "healthier" by: - using vege macaroni, I think the brand is Anthony's and there's no discernible difference between this and regular pasta - when making the roux,...
by Brett Johnson
November 13th, 2014, 4:29 pm
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: Best Pinot Noir wines from the Santa Barbara/Santa Maria area
Replies: 70
Views: 5284

Best Pinot Noir wines from the Santa Barbara/Santa Maria area

Lots of good recs so far, just two that I don't see that merit mention:

Zotovich
Transcendence
by Brett Johnson
November 3rd, 2014, 4:20 pm
Forum: Epicurean Exploits - Food and Recipes
Topic: Knives and Sharpening Advice Please
Replies: 16
Views: 615

Knives and Sharpening Advice Please

Go to Williams Sonoma, Sur La Table, or a restaurant supply store and get your hands on the various knives so you can get an idea of what feels good, bad, etc.

There's really no better way to figure out what knife will work best for you.
by Brett Johnson
October 20th, 2014, 10:02 am
Forum: Epicurean Exploits - Food and Recipes
Topic: Mama's Pecan Pie
Replies: 126
Views: 10801

Mama's Pecan Pie

I've made one tweak to this great recipe, browning the butter.
by Brett Johnson
October 13th, 2014, 11:42 am
Forum: Epicurean Exploits - Food and Recipes
Topic: Need Portland restaurant
Replies: 83
Views: 3249

Need Portland restaurant

Brief run down of where we ate this past long weekend: Pok Pok: amazing Thai, meets the hype Roe: best meal I've had in a very long while and will rank very very high in all-time list. It has the whole package; vibe, service, wine, and unique, delicious food. An absolute must visit. Bijou: killer br...
by Brett Johnson
October 13th, 2014, 11:23 am
Forum: Travel and Restaurants Forum
Topic: Thoughts on these Willamette Wineries
Replies: 11
Views: 627

Thoughts on these Willamette Wineries

Following up, ended up going to: Anne Amie: like the whites here, particularly the pinot gris. Anam Cara: great vibe here, small, down-to-earth; liked their riesling Roco: very nice pinots here; the '12 Marsh was the standout. Youngberg Hill: another strong showing of pinots, even the shy 2011 vinta...
by Brett Johnson
October 1st, 2014, 3:54 pm
Forum: Travel and Restaurants Forum
Topic: Thoughts on these Willamette Wineries
Replies: 11
Views: 627

Thoughts on these Willamette Wineries

Thanks everyone, very helpful! Perhaps I should stay in McMinnville and visit all those mentioned. Any thoughts on Domino IV? My experience with Westrey was at a tasting in LA years ago, but I really enjoyed the wines then. Couldn't hurt to go back. Maybe Bergstrom or Penner Ash (and Patricia Green ...
by Brett Johnson
October 1st, 2014, 9:40 am
Forum: Travel and Restaurants Forum
Topic: Thoughts on these Willamette Wineries
Replies: 11
Views: 627

Thoughts on these Willamette Wineries

Staying at Youngberghill and have read a lot of the previous posts about the area. I could just stay in McMinnville too (I love Westrey wines, but looking for some new finds), but I'm curious about these wineries (style, price point, tasting experiences, etc) below that were recommended to me: Penne...
by Brett Johnson
September 26th, 2014, 4:01 pm
Forum: Epicurean Exploits - Food and Recipes
Topic: Need Portland restaurant
Replies: 83
Views: 3249

Need Portland restaurant

Pigeon is out; no realistic reservations.

Any thoughts on Beast?
by Brett Johnson
September 25th, 2014, 2:32 pm
Forum: Epicurean Exploits - Food and Recipes
Topic: Need Portland restaurant
Replies: 83
Views: 3249

Need Portland restaurant

Locked in Roe; working on Le Pigeon.

Any info on food carts is appreciated...
by Brett Johnson
September 24th, 2014, 4:35 pm
Forum: Epicurean Exploits - Food and Recipes
Topic: Need Portland restaurant
Replies: 83
Views: 3249

Need Portland restaurant

Great thread, thanks everyone for the insight. Wife and I are visiting in early October and staying at the Monaco (and then Youngberg Hill).

Chef friend of mine recommended Le Pigeon so that's on the list in addition to Pok Pok and probably Roe.

Where are the best/most interesting lunch carts?
by Brett Johnson
September 9th, 2014, 9:36 am
Forum: Epicurean Exploits - Food and Recipes
Topic: Here, piggy, piggy, piggy.......
Replies: 7
Views: 734

Here, piggy, piggy, piggy.......

Looks awesome!
by Brett Johnson
August 26th, 2014, 11:32 am
Forum: Wine Talk
Topic: Malibu wine growers vs. coastal protection plan
Replies: 13
Views: 485

Malibu wine growers vs. coastal protection plan

I heard supervisor Yaroslavsky on the radio last night, debating with the rep for the winegrowers in the Malibu AVA along with an LA Times reporter. The take away was the vineyard issue is really minute compared to the overall proposition and it will not stop a unanimous vote on Tuesday. We shall se...
by Brett Johnson
August 13th, 2014, 9:45 am
Forum: Beer and Spirits
Topic: The Bourbon Thread
Replies: 3523
Views: 191923

The Bourbon Thread

I've had the Blanton's Single Barrel and Elmer T Lee open for a couple of weeks now and it's been fascinating to follow their evolution. I did not know until today that these are the same mash bills, essentially the same age . Along the same notes, the same as Bulleit and Four Roses. Pretty much th...

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