Great Visit at Juniper in Boise


This was our first visit to Juniper Restaurant in Boise at 211 N 8th St, (208) 342-1142. Really very good food. It can get very noisy so go prepared. It was also great to have Kelsey join us there for brunch. It was great seeing her and talking to her. She has had some fantastic journeys. Come back soon, Kelsey.
The food is prepared fresh and from reading the menu, mostly from local or Idaho products. Everything was hot and had very good presentation. Look at their lunch and dinner Menu or their Brunch and Lunch Menus. Here is what we had. Enjoy! We did.

Restaurant Front on 8th Street

The interior. It can get noisy.

Great to have Kelsey with us and to see her again.

Bob, Robin and Kelsey at Juniper Restaurant.

Let’s have a drink! It is a Juni and the Jets. We each had one.

And we all shared this Cinnamon Roll!

Kelsey had this Mexican Breakfast!

Robin had the Eggs Benedict!

And I had the Pork Belly Benedict.

Good Meal at the Sandbar, Cafe with a Cause in Marsing, Idaho

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A really good, substantial, down home meal at the Sandbar, Cafe with a Cause in Marsing, Idaho on the Snake River. Definitely worth the trip from Boise or Nampa or Caldwell. Here is the link to their website and menus – Sandbar, Cafe with a Cause located at 18 Sandbar Ave, Marsing, ID. (208) 896-4124. Here is what we had for brunch. They serve breakfast all day and if you have something special, you may get the Chef to make it for you. Just ask. Left-Click any of these photos to see them enlarged. We will be back to the Sandbar! Everything is cooked fresh and they use local products as much as possible.

Main dining room

The Snake River from our table.

Over Easy Eggs

Texas Omelet with Pulled Pork

Good Night at the Buzz


Superb night with awesome food and wines!

Treasure Valley Food and Wine Blog

Just before the Ides of March, we had an awesome Wine Dinner at The Buzz in Boise, celebrating Italian wines. Superb appetizers, soup, salad, main dish and dessert. A good crowd was there to celebrate the feast. Thanks Cristi and Tommy and Peggy for a delightful evening. Left-Click any photo to see enlarged.

Tramezini Three Ways
2012 Montefalco Dango

14% alc paired very well with the salad [17] $26.00

Minestrone Alla Genovese
Another good paring.
2015 AvantiPinot Noir
12% alc good with the soup. not over powering. [19] $14.00

Southern Italian Style Salad
Super good salad and paring!
2015 Malvasia del Salento
12.5% alc another super paring [17] $16.00

Pizzelle e Salsa Rossa
2013 Castelli di Abola
Chianti
13.0% alc good match for the main course [18] $21.00

Bonet
Absolutely delicious!
2016 Saracco Mascato Di Asti
super paring. [18] $20.00

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3 Restaurant Visits

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26Feb2016_1_Sushi-Joy_Robin_Right-FacingWell, 2 out of 3 isn’t bad. Le Peep in Meridian, ID, at 3036 North Eagle Road, Meridian, ID, 208-629-0155, is a 3-Star restaurant out of 5-Stars. On the other hand, Alejandro’s Mexican Restaurant in Marsing, ID at 208 Main St, (208) 896-5339 and Sakana Sushi, 7107 W. State St., Garden City, ID 83714, (208)-853-4993, Mon.-Thur.: 11:00am – 10:00pm, Fri.-Sat.: 11:00am-11:00pm and Sun.: 12:00pm – 9:00pm are both 5-Star restaurants. I urge you to look at these links and visit the restaurants and make up your own mind.

Le Peeps reception desk.

Le Peep reception desk.

Le Peeps  dining area. Very open and may be loud and noisy if full.

Le Peep dining area. Very open and may be loud and noisy if full.

Lobster Omelet. It's the sauce that cuts this dish down.

Lobster Omelet. It’s the sauce that cuts this dish down.

Spinach Crepes. There's that "sauce" again. Plus the potatoes were cold.

Spinach Crepes. There’s that “sauce” again. Plus the potatoes were cold.

Le Peeps problem is in their Hollandaise Sauce. It is advertised as Hollandaise, but it is far from it. Not bad flavors, just not Hollandaise and an unexpected taste. Plus, the potatoes were cold as noted in the caption above. Just can not give Le Peep a higher rating. Two of the better restaurants we went to were –

Alejandro's Mexican Restaurant menu. #23 is superb!!

Alejandro’s Mexican Restaurant menu. #23 is superb!! (See the link above)

Camerones al Estilo Provincia were superb. Great flavor.

#23 Camerones al Estilo Provincia were superb. Great flavor. Sorry I didn’t get a photo of Robin’s 1 Chile Relleno and 1 enchilada

#23 Camerones al Estilo Provincia

#23 Camerones al Estilo Provincia

 Sakana sign on W State Street, Boise.

Sakana sign on W State Street, Boise.

 Cucumber and Calamari Appetizer

Cucumber and Calamari Appetizer

House Green Salad and Miso Soup

House Green Salad and Miso Soup

 Robin had a Sashimi Delux

Robin had a Sashimi Delux

 I had a Sushi and Sashimi Plate.

I had a Sushi and Sashimi Plate.

 We watched as they made a Pink Lady for someone.

We watched as they made a Pink Lady for someone.

 We also watched them make a Candy Cane.

We also watched them make a Candy Cane. Someone had some beautiful and great food.

Wine and Chocolate – The Buzz


Good dinner and wines last night. Loved that soup with the pinot noir!

Treasure Valley Food and Wine Blog

10feb2017_1_the-buzz_front-counterSuch a great evening of fine wines and some really good food, especially the Spicy Chocolate Soup! A nice crowd was there and it was good to see 30 people! All of the wines that we had, as it turns out, were all rated at a [17]. There was only one that rated below [17]. Cristi’s birthday party at The Buzz, will be on February 24, even though her “real” birthday is February 29th. The next Wine Dinner is March 14th and 15th. The dinner is repeated on each evening. The theme will be “Italian Wines”. See you there! Here is what we had tonight. Left-Click any of these photos to see them enlarged. Cheers.

Opening wines were from South Africa. Opening wines were from South Africa.

Brie and Chocolate Tart Chorizo Chocolate Toast

Brie and Chocolate Tart
Chorizo Chocolate Toast

2015 Revelry Merlot

 Spicy Chocolate Soup (Awesome) 2011 Ammunition Pinot Noir (Awesome paring! Best paring of the night.)

Spicy Chocolate Soup
(Awesome!)
2011 Ammunition Pinot Noir
(Awesome paring! Best paring of the night.)

Spinach and Pear Salad Chocolate Vinaigrette 2015 Tranche Rose [15]

Spinach and Pear Salad

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Richard’s Re-Opens in Boise!

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10feb2017_1b_richards-opening_signYes! Chef Richard Langston has re-opened his restaurant at the Inn At 500 Capitol, Richard’s Restaurant. We were lucky enough to attend the grand opening and it was fantastic. The Inn At 500 Capitol is a superb hotel, and you can get information about it by following this link Inn At 500 Capitol. It is located at 500 South Capitol Boulevard, Boise, Idaho, 83702 USA. (208) 227-0500. (Left Click any of these photos to see them enlarged.

Wines that were offered

Wines that were offered

 Conference room. Notice the lighting. Made in Boise. Art Glass.

Conference room. Notice the lighting. Made in Boise. Art Glass.

 Tables and flowers.

Tables and flowers.

 Table centerpiece and wines!

Table centerpiece and wines!

The balcony looking at Boise.

The balcony looking at Boise.

 Richard's bar.

Richard’s bar.

 An open kitchen in the dinning area is always interesting.

An open kitchen in the dinning area is always interesting.

Appetizers - Squash Bruschetta

Appetizers – Squash Bruschetta

 Ham and Cheese on Rosemary Focaccia.

Ham and Cheese on Rosemary Focaccia.

 Trout in Romaine Salad.

Trout on Endive Leaves.

 Caprece

Caprese

3 Horse Ranch Vineyards Wine Dinner at Bella Aquila


31jan2017_2_3-horse-ranch_bella-aquila_frontBella Aquila Restaurante in Eagle, ID sponsored the 3 Horse Ranch Vineyards wine dinner. A full 6 course dinner was served with as many 3 Horse Vineyards wines. The participation was superb and the crowd enjoyed themselves. It was good to see the Cunninghams again – it has been a while. They are the owners of the winery. Also they have added Brandon St-Martin to their staff as the winery manager. Just look at this menu. (You can Left-Click any of these photos to see them enlarged.)

Gary Cunningham, owner of 3 Horse Ranch Vineyards, talks to the crowd.

Gary Cunningham, owner of 3 Horse Ranch Vineyards, talks to the crowd.

Brandon St-Martin, Manager

Brandon St-Martin, Manager

The menu. Look what you missed!

The menu. Look what you missed!

Passed Appetizers.

Passed Appetizers.

 Arugula Leaf Salad tossed with White Pear Vinaigrette, Fresh Pear, Polenta Croutons and Truffle Cheddar Cheese

Arugula Leaf Salad tossed with White Pear Vinaigrette, Fresh Pear, Polenta Croutons and Truffle Cheddar Cheese

 

 Baked Idaho Trout with a Strawberry Beurre Rouge, Roasted Almond Rice Pilaf and Asparagus

Baked Idaho Trout with a Strawberry Beurre Rouge, Roasted Almond Rice Pilaf and Asparagus

 

 Braised Leg of Lamb servedx over Creamy Risotto

Braised Leg of Lamb served over Creamy Risotto

 

 Pepper Crusted Smoked Flat Iron Steak, Bourbon Glaze, Twice Baked Fingerling Potato and Baby Carrot

Pepper Crusted Smoked Flat Iron Steak, Bourbon Glaze, Twice Baked Fingerling Potato and Baby Carrot

 

 Chocolate Lava Cake with Raspberry Coulis

Chocolate Lava Cake with Raspberry Coulis

 

The Chefs are congratulated on a meal well done!

The Chefs are congratulated on a meal well done! Bella Aquila Manager is in the background.

Very good 2014 Vivacious™ wine.

Very good 2014 Vivacious™ wine.

Citrus and Celery Salad and Lamb and Peppers Ragu


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Oh my! Such a good dinner. Loved this lamb. The Citrus and Celery Salad, which is posted in the Boise Foodie Blog Recipe File – along with many more recipes, was a delightful addition and paring to the Lamb with Peppers Ragu. Take a look at this delicious meal. The dinner is not difficult to prepare. Just use good lamb. We got this kabob lamb from Meadowlark Farms in Nampa, ID. (Our normal supply of lamb from Felzien Farms is limited to chops and ground this year.) This lamb is great with a Merlot or Malbec. Great to have Marnie with us for dinner.

 

 Citrus and Celery Salad

Citrus and Celery Salad

 

 Lamb with Peppers Ragu

Lamb with Peppers Ragu

 

What Cooking Oil Should I Use?

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captains-shack_2Such an interesting and important topic. From About.com in this mornings email, “Just a decade ago it seemed like the only kind of oil available to the home cook was either vegetable or olive oil. Today it seems there’s no end to your options. Sesame, peanut, coconut, red palm, avocado… the list goes on! Here is an easy guide to everything you need to know about cooking oils, from smoke points to storage and more!” And the link to the ongoing article is Cooking Oils 101. And a brief snippet,

This is the first post on a series about plant-derived cooking oils here on About.com’s Produce Channel. We’ll be looking at numerous types of cooking oil in-depth: how they’re made, their uses, their health benefits and risks, and other particular information sensitive to the oil in question.
First, we’ll be doing a two-part breakdown of the numerous oils available on the market, their primary cooking uses, and their smoke points.
Just a decade ago it seemed like the only kind of oil available to the home cook was either vegetable oil or olive oil? Today it seems there’s no end to your options. Sesame, peanut, coconut, red palm, avocado… the list goes on!
But what differentiates each oil from the others? There’s numerous factors to consider.
The smoke point is one major consideration. The more refined an oil is the fewer impurities and the higher heat the oil can withstand before it begins to smoke, lose nutritional value, go bitter in flavor, and eventually catch fire if heated further…
Another consideration is the flavor of the oil. Some oils contain a rather neutral taste such as vegetable oil, while others such as sesame oil remain punchy and strong in flavor…The important thing to realize is moderation. Only use just as much as you need, which in most cases, be it stir-fry or salad dressing, is only a few tablespoons at most. (Deep-frying, naturally, is a unique situation and the unhealthiest option.)

cooking-oils-labels

Wild Root Cafe and Market at the JUMP in Boise

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21jan2017_1a_jump-wildroots_prep-areaA good evening. Thanks to the JUMP Staff (Jack’s Urban Meeting Place – named for Jack Simplot) for their assistance in having a wheel chair available for Robin and handicap parking available for the car. Security was extremely helpful as was the Staff. Here is a link to their site: JUMP Boise.
I believe that this was the first time that Wild Root Cafe and Market was at the JUMP. They are located at 276 N 8th Street, Boise, ID 83702, Call. (208) 856-8956 Their hours are: 8:00 AM – 3:00 PM – Monday – Wednesday; 8:00 AM – 8:00 PM – Thursday-Saturday; Brunch served until 3:00 PM on Saturday; Closed Sunday. Kitchen closes 15 minutes prior to closing. Here is what was on the program tonight.

The menu was really interesting.

The menu was really interesting. Mignardises are: Small sweet tid-bits served at the end of the meal (after dessert), usually with coffee. It’s derived from the old French word, “Mignard” which means either small child, or graceful, pretty and delicate.

Endive, citrus, shallots, pistachio cracker, cheese cake, pomegranate vinaigrette

Salad –
Endive, citrus, shallots, pistachio cracker, cheese cake, pomegranate vinaigrette

Main Course - Coffee bison short rib, beet gnocchi, celery root, fava, winter vgreens, dmi and micros

Main Course –
Coffee bison short rib, beet gnocchi, celery root, fava, winter greens, demi and micros

 Dessert -Orange hazelnut mignardises, passionfruit puree, goat caramel, meringue, chocolate and citrus oil

Dessert –
Orange hazelnut mignardises, passionfruit puree, goat caramel, meringue, chocolate and citrus oil

2013 Tikal Merlot

2013 Tikal Malbec and Bonarda

2015 Moscado d'Asti

2015 Moscado d’Asti

Preparing dessert

Preparing dessert

Three rows of tables were setup. This was our table.

Two rows of tables were setup. This was our table.

All in all, a good night. The food was good, although Robin and I both thought a little salty. We really watch our salt intake and use very little at home. The room tended to be a little noisy and could use some sound baffles – tapestry on walls, etc. Wild Root Cafe uses as many local products as possible. Not much grows around here in the winter – especially this winter.