Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Playing Tour Guide in San Francisco Bay Area

We've been having the best time being hosts & playing tour guide to guests visiting from Shanghai, China. I think Gil is the best tour guide because he know where to go, where to park & doesn't get lost (just ask Eileen & Nance!) 
My hosting duties began Sun. nite dining at House of Prime Rib...as usual, everything was perfect & our guests were impressed by the food & service. The guests, Leon & Sophie had never tasted prime rib so tender & juicy.

King Henry VIII cut with creamed spinach
Next day:
1st stop on the way to Napa, Kara's Cupcakes at Ghiradelli Square:
Top row: Smores, Passion Fruit, Red velvet
Bottom row: Chocolate velvet, Carrot cake, Fleur de sel
 2nd stop: A walk across Golden Gate Bridge... then lunch at Mustard's Grill:
Whetted our thirst with a cool & refreshing house-made Lime-ade

Onion Rings

Yukon Potatoes filled with bacon  & gucamole

Slow Smoked BBQ Pork sandwich

Grilled Ahi sandwich

Niman Ranch BBQ Baby Back Ribs

Half pound Niman Ranch Bleu Cheese Burger

Seafood Tostada
 After our filling & leisurely lunch we barely made it to Robert Mondavi's for the last tour. Gil & I waited at the tasting room while Leon, Sophie, & Jonathan went on a private tour of the winery. Since I'm a wine club member I got to try their reserve wines, which was good, good, good. Leon & Sophie thoroughly enjoyed the tour & even taught their tour guide a few chinese words!

The last stop for the evening was dinner at Marica's in Oakland. This is the 2nd group of Shanghai visitors that I've brought to the restaurant, which happens to be owned by my cousin Nedda & her husband, Christopher (who is the talented chef there). The restaurant is skillfully run by their talented son, Austin, manager-extraordinaire, who makes the best Cosmo (among his many talents!). As with the 1st group, Leon & Sophie throughly enjoyed the food...even though we were still full from lunch, not a crumb was left on our plates!!!! The food is always, always good!!!!!
We started with a trio:
Sweet white corn soup with shrimp
Chopped salad, avocado, romaine, red bell pepper, hard boiled egg, white wine vinaigrette, parmesan
Seared Scallops

Quail with carrots + parsnip puree
The carrot+parsnip puree was soooo good I wanted to lick the plate!!!

Organic Prime Ribeye Steak, port demi glace, portabella mushrooms, sauteed onion.
The restaurant was filled with so many people it stopped me from
licking the plate...it was that good!

Smoked Mussels
At this point of our dinner, we were very, very full, but this is Jonathan's
favorite & he had to have this. Somehow we all found room in our stomach
to polish it off!...It's the best!

Raspberry Biscotti Trifle, Panna Cotta, Chocolate Souffle
Um, umm GOOD!!!!

I think Leon & Sophie had a good time...I enjoyed my hosting duties...especially when I get to eat, eat, eat! If you're ever in Oakland, go visit Marica's, I know you'll like it as much as I do...and as much as all my guests have!

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