Ristorante Savini, Amsterdam NL

August 2013

While working in Amsterdam I dined out nightly at the local restaurants.  There were many great ones to choose from, all featuring authentic dishes of many different cultures.

This night I dined outside at an Italian restaurant called Ristorante Savini, Cucina Italiana.

Located at Spuistraat 1D, 1012 SP Amsterdam, their website can be viewed at http://www.savini.nl/eng/index.php

Dining around 9pm is uncanny in Amsterdam as it does not get dark until 10:30-11pm. The late afternoons seem to never end, which is a good thing.

Tonight I had the beef carpaccio and house penne pasta with Italian sausage.

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Al’s Italian Beef, Chicago IL

December 2012

My uncle JD is a life long Chicagoan and gave us a tour of Chicago a few years ago and for lunch one day he took us all to famous Al’s #1 Italian Beef.

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Stepping inside was like stepping back in time where the ambiance and food is exactly the same as it has been for the past 25+ years. Their specialty is their roast beef dipped sandwich, they also sell Chicago hot dogs and tamales and a few other items. I had to try a little bit of it all.

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Everything here is classic and tasty. Don’t plan to sit down, though, there are no chairs and tables here, just a counter to lean on, but its fun.

Al’s #1 Italian Beef is located at 601 W Adams St. • Chicago, IL  Phone (312) 559-2333
Website http://www.alsbeef.com/

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Stock Cafe, Amsterdam NL

August 2013

While in Amsterdam I discovered a drink I’d never heard of or tried before.

Mint tea.

So simple, fresh mint, hot water, honey.

Stir all ingredients together and enjoy. I found I really like this tea for breakfast.

Stock Cafe can be found at Hotel The Exchange, Damrak 50h · 1012 LL · Amsterdam
Phone 31 (0)20 427 5382  website http://www.hoteltheexchange.com/caf-a/caf-a.htm

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Yard Pizzeria, London UK

August 2013

After work, on another hunt for a local restaurant in London, I went searching for a few highly rated place to have dinner.  Unfortunately the place was so crowded there was a line out the door and down the block – damn they must have really good food there!  It was time to revert to plan B which was a pizzeria that was down the road another block.

Yard Pizza can be found at 140 Tabernacle St,Shoreditch, London, EC2A 4F
Website: http://www.yardrestaurants.co.uk/

When I found the restaurant, I was surprised to see it was in a former fire engine house.  The decor was top notch and interesting, but instead of sitting inside I opted to sit at the outdoor seats and enjoy the warm night air and watch life go by in London.

Service was quick and efficient, the menu selection very good, and the food tasted excellent!

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I had their Rocket & Prosciutto pizza which had black olives, mozzarella and tomato sauce, topped with prosciutto, fresh peppery rocket (arugula) and shaved Grana Padano.

This pizza paired nicely with a local brew called Camden Hells.

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Having very much enjoyed the quality fresh pizza I had to also try their desserts and picked out their Vanilla Pannacotta that came with a mixed berry fruit compote.

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I was really amazed how great a pizza could taste – this place wowed me on all levels.

From their website:

The Yard, Shoreditch is set in a converted fire station and retains many of its original features. Inside; The Yard has a unique warehouse feel – whilst outside you will find a great seating area, but we’re not just famous for our location and atmosphere – we are renowned for serving up a diverse selection of pizza toppings and our unbelievable ‘Yard of Pizza’ which is perfect for sharing.

 

Forest ride on a Ural, Silver Lake CA

I’ve been riding motorcycles since I was a kid. I have 2 bikes now, one is my beloved Harley Road Glide that I’ve had for 11 years and the other is a funky Russian motorcycle sidecar rig called a Ural.

The Ural is a bit of a rough rider but it’s different and fun. When people ask me how it rides, I tell them that it “runs smooth like tractor” heh.

August 2014

Using my GoPro Hero Black 3 camera I  made this short film of a ride on my  Ural motorcycle from a campsite at Silver Lake West to Kit Carson Lodge on Silver Lake.
It’s a short ride, but the scenery is nice.

Fish Central, London UK

August 2013

On my first night in London, I was beat. After a long 25 hour day of traveling (from the time I left my house until I arrived at my hotel in London), I was beat and ready for dinner.

I researched ahead and knew  of a couple of nice restaurants a few miles away but after the long travel day I wasn’t up for taking a cab or walking around so I searched my iphone apps for a local restaurant near my hotel and I found a well rated seafood place right behind my hotel.

Turned out it was even better then I was expecting.  Nice ambiance, good service and the seafood tasted very fresh and very good.

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Fish Central can be found at 149-151 Central St., St Luke’s, Greater London EC1V 8BY
Website: http://fishcentral.co.uk

About Fish Central from their website

We believe the national heritage of the “Great British invention”, fish and chips, something we have built our reputation on for 40 years will always be with us.

However as eating out has become one of the nations favourite past times Fish Central has evolved into a bustling neighborhood restaurant with a private function room. we serve the well known as well as the more exotic varieties of the freshest fish, combined with daily produce purchased from borough market to create a value for money menu for everyone.

We endeavor to purchase the freshest fish and Crustacea from ethical and sustainable sources without compromising the high standards our loyal regulars come to expect.

In short we try to do the best for our customers, producers, fishermen and the environment, so we can be here for another 40 years.

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L’Orecchietta, London UK

June 2014

Pizza for lunch.

While working in London a few years ago, I stopped by this bar/restaurant a few times for lunch while working just down the street.

L’Orecchietta is located at 29-30 Wakley Street, London UK, Phone 0207 8330097 Website http://www.orecchietta.com/

At first appearance it did not look like they would have good food here, it was a dark, subdued bar, but they had plenty of table seats and a menu so…

After finally figuring out I needed to order at the bar, I walked up and placed my order.

I was pleasantly surprised by the great quality of the pizza that I ordered and enjoyed it very much.

Lesson learned, never go by appearances only…. this place turned out to be a hidden gem.

This pizza that I got below is made with parma ham with mascarpone cheese. I love wood fired pizza’s and this place makes outstanding pizza’s, highly recommend this restaurant if you’re ever in this part of London.

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