Friday, August 12, 2011

The caesars aren't going to drink themselves

This has nothing to do with this post.It just demonstrates what a baller I am
Ok, so I haven't posted in almost a year. My absence began with the failure to find any caesars tasty or unique enough to bother writing about. This fact, coupled with my inherent sloth-like nature, brought me to the six month mark. After that, I was just too embarrassed by my unintentional hiatus to write. And also sloth-like.

But here I am! Rejoice, all those with a mild interest in my blatantly biased reviews of Canada's favourite cocktail! If such a person does, in fact exist.

What have I been up to this year you ask? To which I answer, "none of your damn business." This blog is about one thing and one thing alone: the quest to find the perfect Caesar. A quest I have been rigorously preparing for during my time off. By watching a lot of House and not exercising. OK....go!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Playing Downtown

Funny story. Well, not that funny. Funny if you think Two and Half Men is funny. You know, good for a mindless chuckle but absolutely lacking in any actual depth. Plays on cliches and stereotypes rather than any inventive humor. As usual, I digress. I should rename this blog "Mel rambles about inconsequential shit, also, she drinks too much". ANYWAY, to get back to the anecdote, recently, when I was temping in the Communications Department of the Office of the Privacy Commissioner, the Director took us out for a fancy-schmancy lunch at Play Food and Wine. I am not accustomed to fine dining (being an endless die hard junkie for a certain St. Hubert), so it was with some trepidation that I entered the sleek dining room. (Side note: I was mistaken for a waitress on my way to the washroom, seeing as I had inadvertently worn the requisite Play uniform of white top and grey skirt). For those of you who haven't been to Play Food and Wine, on the corner of York and Sussex, it is a small plate restaurant with an extensive wine list. The idea is that each small course is to be paired with a different, complimentary wine to bring out the full flavor (yes Mel we know what a wine pairing is, some of us don't subscribe to the "everything smothered in gravy" gastronomy school). Everyone at the table ordered a glass of wine. Not me. When I asked the server if they made Caesars, the condescension was palpable as he begrudgingly stated that yes, they did. The bottles of wine were delivered by a sommelier, who would announce each wine individually before pouring it "And we have here a Gelber Muskateller from Austria", with a sort of ritualistic fervor. All around the table. Some minutes later, my Caesar was plonked down unceremoniously in front of me. Small, ungarnised, bland, unremarkable. Guess now I now not to order a Caesar in a pretentious WINE bar!!

Recommended: No. But if, unlike me, you can actually taste a difference between Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon, go check this place out.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

In which I shy away from humor as it was done for me this night

Went to Absolute Comedy on Preston Street for Simon's Birthday. I admit that I wasn't expecting much from the Caesar, expecting it to be something thrown together haphazardly in the assumption that partons would be too entranced by the show to really notice flavor (either that or too drunk). I was pleasantly surprised! Tasty, flavorful, yet nothing special. (I've decided from now on to only use my patented "rating" system on Caesars that stick out in some way, whether for better or worse). This one was passable, it's enjoyment heightened by hilarious stand up and good company. Go check it out!

Friday, August 6, 2010

This is Freaking Fantastic

CLick on the "Move with Clamato" link to enjoy a Mexican Music Video about Clamato. I know what you're thinking, and, yes, this is the greatest thing ever.

Eating Edmonton Part 2: In which my hopes were dashed a little

My cousin Rebecca works at Chili's in Edmonton. She told me that the restaurant boasts not one but FOUR different kinds of Ceasars! Imagine my excitment! Caesar-topia! Clamato Heaven! Clam-halla! (OK that last one was atrocious, I apologize to any vikings reading this blog. Please don't gore me with your helmet). Unfortuately, It really only turned out to be 2 caesars, as:

tasted like
"Great Canadian" ( horse radish added & a jalepeno slice )
which in turn tasted remarkably like
"Top Shelf Caeser" ( made with grey goose, horseradish added and olives in addition to the jalepeno slice and a pickled asparagus)
the only one that stood out was the
"Southwest" ( cajun spice rim and chipotle tobasco instead of regular tobasco )
The latter tasted a bit like BBQ sauce. Truly an Alberta original

So you see, aside from garnishes and brand of vodka used, the top 3 were basically the same. The horseradish in the Great Canadian and the Top Shelf was barely discernable, not enough to add any real variety. THEY WERE, however, all very scrumptious, though the southwest may be a bit of an acquired taste. Nice try Chili's, but if you really want to be unique how about mixing it up a little? Maybe some chili infused vodka? An Asian inspired Caesar with Kimchi as a garnish? A "hangover buster", featuring pickle juice?? Want to hire me as a Caesar mixologist?? If so my phone number is 613.....

Friday, July 16, 2010

Eating Edmonton Part 1: I Drank a Casear

Left: The beautiful bride holding a Caesar at Chianti's. Right: Taken at 11 pm...I know, weird.

When the Dumont Clan gets together there's always a tremendous amount of food involved. And off colour jokes. Also, it's a bit disconcerting to see so many freckles in one room. A recent trip to Edmonton for my cousin Colleen's wedding was no exception. Before the big day, we gathered (in the evening of a perplexingly long Edmonton summer day, see above photo) at Chianti's, a quaint Italian restaurant, for pasta and some good-humoured torturing of the groom-to-be. The Caesar was just ok, but the company more than made up for it.

Spice Level: 3/5 a nice kick but not overwhelming
Garnishes: Celery and a lime wedge...ho hum...also, it's recently been brought to my attention that you're supposed to SQUEEZE the lime wedge into the drink. How could I, a bonified Caesar connoiseur not know this?? Well, see, I'm someone who thought getting an Arts Degree would benefit me in the career world...catch my drift?? Not the sharpest tool in the proverbial shed.
Originality: 0/5...but then again this wasn't the kind of restaurant you went to to experience culinary surprises, but to eat big plates of classic italian yumminess.
Overall Yum Factor: 2.5/5...just in case anyone actually takes this blog seriously, DO NOT fly to Alberta to sample this. If you already live in the North End of Edmonton, go right ahead!

Friday, June 25, 2010

East Side Story

This post is about East Side Mario's! The title is a play on that famous broadway musical! You knew that already! My attempt at humor is as subtle as a grand piano falling on your head! Why am I using so many exclamation points! What is this, an Archie comic??!!!!

...Ok, I've composed myself. East Side Mario's in Bells Corners, Friday night. On the Patio, surrounded by friends. The sun setting on a beautiful summer evening. What more could a girl hope for??? I'll tell you what: A better Caesar. At first glance, the Casear was a thing of mouthwatering beauty. HUGE, glistening, tarted up with all kinds of stuff. The taste, however, left much to be desired:

Spice Level: 1.5/5 - ????
Garnishes: 3/5 - Cherry Tomatoes, a pickled pepper and finally! A celery Stalk! (You'd be surprised how delicious a Caesar soaked piece of vegetable can be when you've eaten nothing all day except a bag of chips for lunch. I hope my parents don't actually read this blog).
Originality: I'll give it a 2.5. It was sooo very pretty. The tomatoes were an odd choice in my opinion but god does East Side Mario's serve tasty peppers!
Overall yum Factor: 1.5...just really really bland. The Caesar is supposed to be a bold drink! If you can't take the heat, order a freaking Bloody Mary! Or else buy a bottle of Original (not Extra Spicy) Clamato and save yourself the $7!!

Recommended: No. But East Side's Patio on a Summer night, most definitely.