Thursday, April 2, 2009

The White Dog's Whiskey Bread Pudding

So, I’ve lived in Richmond for about 7 years now and had always been intrigued by the White Dog, although I’d never stopped in. About two weeks ago, I finally had the opportunity to try it with a group of friends. My meal was pretty good. I got the Black Angus New York strip with roasted garlic glaze, which was cooked perfectly and tasted great with the accompanying mashed potatoes and spicy collard greens. I also tried a bite of my friends’ positively mouthwatering wilted spinach with walnut-and-brown-sugar-crusted chevre topped with bacon vinaigrette. I mean, bacon vinaigrette makes anything better, especially a sweet-savory goat cheese and spinach combo.

While the meal was all good, the true star of the night was the creamy bread pudding topped with whisky hard sauce and hot caramel glaze. I didn’t even order it: a friend did and generously offered me a few bites. After a taste, I couldn’t put the spoon down. The pudding itself was perfectly cooked and it was topped with the just the right amount of gooey, sweet sauce and glaze. The dish was finished with a crunchy piece of brittle that perfectly contrasted the softness of the pudding. This was a dynamite combo, and I can certainly understand why it’s a standard on the White Dog’s menu. I’ll certainly return for it again.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Brunch at Kuba Kuba: The Best Ever?

Last Saturday I found myself at Kuba Kuba for brunch. I seriously forgot just how good this place was. Every aspect of the meal was worth the 20-minute wait. My friend and I started our meal with lightly sweetend cafe con leches and an order of tostones. My friend, who was in from out of town commented on the cafe con leche: "I could drink an entire bucket of this."

We loved that the tostones, which cost only about $2.95 for an order, arrived in maybe 2 minutes, making two hungry diners who'd been waiting quite happy. We dipped our friend plantains in Sriracha as we munched and the mild sweetness of the plantains combined perfectly with the hot sauce for a sweet, spicy, crispy treat. We pretty much plowed these in about 5 minutes.

Next came our entrees. We both ordered the California Huevos, and oh my gosh was it good. I think this might just be my favorite brunch dish I've eaten in the past year. Two eggs were served over cuban bread and red beans then topped with Monterey Jack cheese, enchilado sauce that was packed with tomato and pepper flavors, lime sour cream and sliced avocado. As I ate, the egg yolks ran into the bread and beans, making for a wonderful, slightly soggy concoction. I dolloped some more Sriracha on my dish, because I love the stuff. Each bite was spicy, creamy, tomato-y and delicious. Accompanied by a Negro Modelo, it was heaven.

This was a special occasion: my friend was in from out of town. So we finished our meal with a slice of the tres leches cake, which as always, was simple and tasty. While all was good, I continue to crave that California Huevos dish every time I recall the perfect flavor blend.