Friday, November 22, 2013

The One Where We Eat California (Part 2 of 3)

Here's part two of our California Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives adventure.  (Part 1 can be found here.)

(If it's been so long you've forgotten, when Dennis and I went on vacation to California at the beginning of October, we hit several Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives restaurants.  I'm also going to talk about some other CA food we had, not DDD related.)

Restaurant 4

(Formerly Taylor's Automatic Refresher)
644 First Street
Napa, CA 94559
(707) 224-6900

When this place was on DDD, it was called Taylor's Automatic Refresher, but apparently, they've recently gone through a rebranding.  (I did a little Googling, and it turns out the name change is a huge deal.  There are lawsuits and fighting and all that jazz.)

Dennis had seen the Ahi Tuna Burger on DDD, and he wanted to try that, and I wanted to try the Western Bacon Blue Ring burger, a burger topped with blue cheese and. . .an onion ring.  Why not?

Why not, indeed?

We also got some weirdly delicious garlic fries. . .

And I had a glass of Riesling (my favorite!)

Dennis liked his burger (although he was a little put off by the ginger in it), and my burger was awesome.  I may need to start topping all my burgers with onion rings.

Restaurant 5

4201 30th St.
San Diego, CA 92104
(619) 282-6044

This place was really hard to get a good picture of, so you get it from all angles!

Interesting thing about this stop.  We had spent the better part of the afternoon at the rental car place after having been rear-ended by a hippie in San Francisco.  (That's a whole other story for a whole other time.)

After we left the rental car place, I looked up "Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives San Diego" and we were originally going to go to some pizza place. 

Then Dennis was like, "What else is there?"  So I looked again, and we found this place. 

Best change of mind ever. 

The atmosphere in this restaurant was fun.  They had a bunch of weird artwork on the walls, cool servers, and a wall of beer choices.

They have all these weird types of burgers, including ostrich, gator, and kangaroo to go along with all the beer.  (Sorry for the glare!)

Dennis got a regular beef burger, but I ordered the kangaroo burger.  (Anything with horseradish sauce is OK with me!)

While we were waiting for our food, I also had some kind of cherry beer that I've since forgotten the name of.  I looked it up while we were out there, and it's not available in North Carolina anyway.  Bummer.

And then there was the burger. 

You guys?  Best burger ever.  I don't know if it was the meat itself, or the sauce, or the restaurant's atmosphere, but this was one of the most amazing burgers I've ever had. 

As it turns out, our waitress, who was super cool, knows Dennis' brother's wife, and also knows Dennis' brother's work.  (He's a tattoo artist.)  Small world.  She also knew another DDD place that was really good, so that's where we ended up going for dinner.

Restaurant 6

3667 India St.
San Diego, CA 92103
(619) 497-0914

That picture of the sign ended up looking like a floating sign, so I had to include it. 

I'm not sure how we went the entirety of our vacation (9 days) without eating at a seafood restaurant until this point, literally the last night we were there. 

Our waitress at lunch had told us this place was really good, really fresh, all the things you want in a seafood restaurant, so we checked it out. 

She was not lying. 

Dennis is a big fan of fish and chips, so that's what he ordered.  I'd never seen the fish part of fish and chips be such a large chunk of fish.


I had the Buffalo Sandwich, which was snapper topped with chipotle marinade, blue cheese, Pepper Jack, and avocado.  AMAZING.

Oh, man.  It was super fresh, a little spicy. . .basically everything I could have asked for in a fish sandwich.

That's it for our Diner, Drive-Ins, and Dives adventure.  Every single place we tried was fantastic, and I hope to someday go back and try all the rest of them.  (As a point of reference, there are 108 DDD restaurants in California.  Holy cow.)

I've got one more post planned for our California trip -- non-DDD foodstuffs.

I'm planning to pick back up with my cooking the books on a regular basis in the new year.  Don't get me wrong -- I'm still going to be posting, but there's a lot going on at the moment which will make it difficult to get any sort of regular schedule.  Stay with me, though!  Sarah Cooks the Books isn't going anywhere! 

Thanks for hanging in with me, guys.  

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