QUICK BITES [Monterey County Weekly (CA)]
(Monterey County Weekly (CA) Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) *4 Pacific Grove's Crema Espresso and Wine Bar (375-1300) has more than the coziest coffee lounge/wine-sipping spot in town happening in the sweet converted Victorian on Lighthouse in the old Pasta Mia. It has dynamic food and a new dinner menu going Thursday through Sunday until 9pm. The slow-roasted prime rib ($19) and salmon-artichoke pasta ($15) I had were knockouts; the short-rib picadillo empanadas ($6) and honey-thyme baked chicken ($17) look yum.
-4 Pastry powerhouse Ben Spungln has left Bernardus and the decorated Cal Stamenov-led team at Marinus to take up with the big idea, big project, big festival group at Coastal Luxury Management. More on the blog. Bernardus itself, meanwhile, is in escrow. The Noble House hotel group-which has holdings from Napa to Telluride to the Keys-is coming to Carmel Valley.
-4 Small, brand new, family-owned Kal Lee Creamery (402-0627) is open llam-6pm daily in the American Tin Cannery. What it lacks in ambiance it makes up for with superior ice cream. My favorite five flavors among the rotating small-batch tastes are hard to pick but here they are: 5. Chai; 4. Caramel fudge; 3. Triple vanilla bean; 2. ACME Road Dog; 1. Ginger-honey.
Scheid Vineyards (656-WINE) fills the vacuum created by Monterey County Vintners and Growers with its own Holiday Party in the Ffangar Dec. 6 at the airport.
*4 Coming off a marathon swim through the area's best burgers should have me ready for "The Ship Sinker" challenge at new Bay of Pines (920-3564). Folks who sink a 20ounce double bacon, doublepatty burger in 5 minutes qualify for a contest to win $250 for the fastest time taking it down a second time. Only I'm floating the Master Cleanse boat instead.
*4 Because of ABC permit cycles running as long as six months, Bill Lee's Lucky's Roadside near the Auto Mall in Seaside won't sit customers until 2014.
-4 Relentless Alberto Bonacelll of Alberto's Ristorante (373-3993) hosts a public access TV talk show called "Alberto's La Bella Cucina" 1pm live Comcast on channel 19. Guests have included Bert Cutlno, Wendy Brodle and Kurt Graslng.
-* Cantinetta Luca (625-6500) introduces a new "back room" series with a Cioppino Night Nov. 13 ($23.95 in advance). Expect authentic excellence from Exec Chef Jason Balestrlerl. plus salad and garlic bread.
-> Every Tuesday or Wednesday at Lugano Swiss Bistro (626-3779), locals can do one of their five appetizers, soups or salads for $5, any of entrees for $10 and desserts for $3.
-* The latest Independent Marketplace pop-up ($25, 649-0220)-which will tuck in next to where new Post No Bills bathrooms are being built-enjoys an "Indyan summer" theme and treats like grilled Local Catch Monterey Bay oysters, Companion sourdoughs, Garden Variety cheeses, cider pressing, Foodsmlth pork pozole, Wild Plum baked squash polenta, apple cobbler cupcakes and a pie contest.
-» Beach House at Lovers Point hosts a breast cancer awareness night Tuesday, Nov. 12, with 10 percent of gross going to The Breast Cancer Assistance Group of Monterey Peninsula.
-» "If it be knowledge or wisdom one is seeking, then one had better go direct to the source," Henry Miller writes in Big Sur and the Oranges of Hieronymus Bosch. "And the source is not the scholar or philosopher, not the master, saint, or teacher, but lifo itself-direct experience of life."
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Local food eating * challenges and why *L we love them.
(c) 2013 Monterey County Coast Weekly
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