Chilebrown at home

Monday, April 22, 2024


 I have many bbq's and smokers. From the Big Green Egg to my trusty Weber kettle and they all get used during the year. I have to admit my Weber kettle gets most of the use because we love to grill. The kettle can also be used to bake when you use an indirect fire. To build this indirect fire, charcoals are banked in two metal baskets. The stock Weber metal baskets are made of a thin steel that works perfectly fine. The problem is after several years they burn out and need to be replaced. I wanted to get something a little more sturdy. I found a company called the Burn Shop out of Texas.

This is heavy duty steel meant to last. There are two removable and adjustable metal dividing bars in the center. You can make your charcoal containment area smaller or larger. There is plenty of air circulation to keep the charcoals alive. I even believe the thick metal heats up and adds a few more degrees to the cooking chamber. I have only done several cooks with this new tool and it works like a charm.

Monday, April 15, 2024


Ms. Goofy had a birthday that we recently celebrated. We braved the rainy elements and traveled to San Francisco to Osso Steakhouse. This steakhouse is located on top of Nob Hill. You climb the cable car steep streets to area of fancy hotels like the Mark Hopkins, Fairmont and Ritz Carleton. The weather was dismal but that may have been a blessing. We did not experience the usual traffic nightmare and had smooth crossing both way. We also parked in the parking lot of the Masonic Auditorium which is right next door. Tonight we will have a no price disclaimer. The parking and dinner was very expensive. If you want to play, you must pay.

We arrived at our reservation time at 6:00 pm. We were seated immediately. It also was a little strange the restaurant was empty except for us and waitstaff. The waiter did volunteer it was a slow time of year. The restaurant did get more customers as our dinner progressed. Ms. Goofy ordered this cheese bread which she had heard about. This could of been a meal by itself. It was so rich with butter and melted cheese throughout. It was warm sourdough bread that was a good start to the meal.

Ms. Goofy had a bone-in filet and I a bone-in New York. Ms. Goofy loved the most crispy fries with two wonderful dipping sauces. One was a chipotle ailoi and the other ketchup. Everything tasted fine and I could nit-pick a few culinary offenses. Okay, I will. My N.Y. was fine except the cooking was a little uneven. We paid a Kings Ransome for these cuts of beef and have a high expectations. It was medium rare in parts and a little over in others. The cooks also had a light hand in seasoning which also occured in the mushrooms. These are small details that could of made a good dinner great.

This was a fantastic birthday celebration. San Francisco has a well deserved bad reputation these days. Tonight we did not experience them. The stars aligned and we dined on top of Nob Hill in all of the splendor that we enjoy. San Francisco can be a magical town and Osso Steakhouse is a star that we enjoyed


Monday, April 1, 2024


Elena's Mexican Restaurant is newest latest trending new restaurant in San Francisco. It is owned by the Originial Joe's restaurant group. We had to go check it out. This restaurant is located in the West Portal neighborhood. It is far away from the downtown madness and closer to the ocean. It was quiet the drive to get to this location and parking Karma had left me. There are only coveted metered spots that one will be lucky to find. I parked several blocks away in a residental neighborhood and walked in the pouring rain.

We arrived at 12:30 p.m. and had a 45 minute wait. I understand without a reservation the wait time for dinner can be 3 hours. Elena's is a very modern restaurant with the trademark Originial Joe's open kitchen. We were seated at a very small table. There were people to the left of us and the right of us that I could of touched. We were close. Privacy is not an option in this modern establishment.

Our waitress was topnotch. Everybody that worked here was polite and welcoming. It was very crowded and our food did take awhile. Our waitress comped us a dessert for our wait. This was a nice touch. How was the food you ask?

The food was very good. The salsa pictured is a fermented guajillo pepper sauce. It lit up my taste buds with heat and flavor. Ms. Goofy loved her enchilada and my steak was cooked to medium rare to perfection. Was this the best Mexican food ever? No, but the ingredients seemed fresh and attention to detail was appreciated. I do need to mention the price. Our lunch with one beer came out to 120 dollars. 
    Would I return? Probably not. In the Bay Area we have many options for great Mexican food at a fraction of the price. I do think Elana's will do well. The neighborhood the restaurant is located is a tony area of San Francisco. Time will tell.


Monday, March 25, 2024


Ms. Goofy knows what I like. She bought me a 25ounce bone-in New York strip Snake River Farms American Wagyu steak. The marbeling in this beef is fantastic. I actually was a little afraid to cook this very expensive hunk of beef. It was a little thin to use the reverse sear method. I just cooked it the way I know best. I built a two level fire. Charocals on one side for a direct sear and no charcoal on the other for indirect finishing on my trusty Weber grill. The grates are cast iron. I cranked up the heat to smokin hot fire. The steak was branded on both sides. Flames were jumping resulting from all that yummy fat hitting the coals. The steak was finished on the indirect side. I pulled it at 120 and let it rest for a very long 10 minutes. It was a perfect medium rare. Ms. Goofy knows what I like.


Monday, March 18, 2024



The Women's Auxillary of the Galileo Italian Club sponsored a Sunday brunch this Saint Patricks Day. These events are a great way to eat a whole lot of food. This particular picture shows the omelete station to the right and in the center is a combination of home made and store bought pastries. I partook of both stations.

There was an early visit from the Easter Bunny today. It was kind of fun to see young children getting excited to see an oversized bunny hopping around the club. This was a fun and tasty event.

Monday, March 11, 2024


Dinner and a show was on the menu tonight. We love going to our local playhouse and seeing plays. This weekend was one of my all time favorites; The Music Man. I was standing by as an understudy just in case one of the performers needed a break. I do know this musical word for word and song for song. We had a nice dinner beforehand. The picture is a little sub-par because the lighting was pretty dim. This stuffed pork chop was perfect.

They never called me up on stage but it still was a very enjoyable night.


Monday, March 4, 2024


 I got married on my birthday. It is convenient and I am guaranteed not to forget the date. We returned to Originial Joe's 'North Beach' in San Francisco to celebrate this occasion. My parking karma was in full swing evident by the metered parking spot right in front.

Pork chops & raviolis for me and short ribs for my bride that I married 31 years ago. Originial Joe's is not the most fancy restaurant in San Francisco but what they do, they do in style. Everything was delicous. Ms. Goofy ordered her favorite ooey gooey butter cake and I; gelato spumoni.

We had a blast. This was the perfect way to celebrate our special day. We understand they are opening a new Originial Joe's in Walnut Creek. We look forward to giving it a try.

Monday, February 26, 2024


It is that time of year again. For those of you that know; know. It is that time of year that Costco sells Snake River Farms corned beef. These are American Wagyu beef rounds that have been corned. (not corned brisket). They are so very special. We always buy a couple and put some in the freezer. Yummy!!!!


Sunday, February 18, 2024


Smokey maple bacon mustard is on the plate today. This is a very good rendering of a real bacon infused product. Terrapin Ridge Farms actually uses bacon in their offerings. It is a tad sweet for my preference but it has all the right moves otherwise of maple, smoke, mustard and of course bacon. I like it.  I need to make a sandwich. 

Monday, February 5, 2024


I do like my spumoni. If it is offered on the menu, I will order it. It is interesting to see what I will get. I have seen many variations of spumoni. I do not think there is a correct spumoni. I do remember spumoni as a child being vanilla ice cream (only) with nuts and unidentifiable mixed dried fruts. I did not like it back then. Tastes change and now I am on a quest to find the best.


Saturday, February 3, 2024



It does not get any better than this. Breakfast consisting of leftover cornbread smothered with apple maple bacon jam and coffee. This particular product has flecks of real bacon throughout. It is a great way to start out the day.

Sunday, January 21, 2024


We have some Fatted Calf Bacon in the frying pan today. Fatted Calf is a high end expensive meat purveyor that has been around for awhile. They are doing something right and turn out a good product. This bacon had all the right moves; salty, sweety, chewy/crispy with good pork flavor. This is not your supermarket bacon.  I do have one critism and you can bypass if you do not want to hear my rant.

Fatted Calf and other meat markets have embraced the descriptive term "Heritage". The premise of heritage meat is that it comes from animals with a long history and proven quality lineage. My gripe is that meat companies are using the term "heritage' as a catchall word that does not define what breed of pig that is used. I asked the clerk what breed pig was used and he replied; It could be Berkshire, Duroc, Tamsworth and other breeds. The clerk did not know what breed it was. That is fine and dandy but what if I really like this bacon? Using the term Heritage, I may never know what I am getting. I cannot search out the particular breed that I have really enjoyed. That is all of my rant today. Go out and cook some bacon.


Monday, January 15, 2024


The Holidays are over but the sweets keep pouring in. I receive a quarterly subscription from Southern Supreme Fruitcake. This way I can get fruitcake at least 4 times a year. This box of goodies included fruitcake cookies. They were good not great. I do look forward to the next shipment.


Monday, January 8, 2024



My sister always gives me bacon related presents at Christmas time. This year she gave me a jar of Bacon/Cheese Stuffed Olives by the Big Paw Olive Oil Company. Big Paw sells their products at many local farmers markets. These olives are good. They are salty with brine with good olive flavor. The cheese adds a texture with a little smoky element. Where is the bacon? After further investivigation; it is bacon cheese. I only assumed there would be a sliver of bacon involved. I guess if you use your imagination, bacon  might happen. Even though bacon was only in the label, this product is still very tasty. I am enjoying them and they will not last long.

Monday, January 1, 2024



One always reflects on the New Year on self improvement and responds with a resolution. I gave up a long time ago. My only resolution for 2024 is to eat more pie. Pictured is glorious plate of sea food rissoto Ms. Goofy ordered last night at Casa Orinda. Happy New Year