Duluth, MN – The Peppercheese Burger Shootout!

My brother is on a personal quest to find the best peppercheese burger in Duluth, MN.   Today, the “old-timer” Pickwick (open since 1914), was paired against the new kid on the block (around for a mere thirty years),  Grandmas’s Saloon & Grill.  Hands down, he says the “Wick” rules.  I wonder if he was influenced by the side of the world’s greatest onion rings?   Eager to hear of your continued exploits, bro, what’s next, Guppy’s?  (BTW, beautiful shots!)

Interior Shot – Grandma’s / Grandma’s Peppercheese Burger /  Pickwick Peppercheese Burger

Grandmas interiorjpg

grandmas pepper cheesejpg

Pickwick Pepper Cheeseburgerjpg


Beans & Greens

Back to “Eat – An Oyster Bar” today, in PDX on North Williams. Second visit, and every bit as nice as first time. Catfish po-boy with “spot on” collard greens and red beans. This guy knows his stuff!



Portland – AJs on the Rails

We were walking up Morrison and stumbled upon this place, which is apparently a coffee roaster w/ multiple locations locally, but offers a full food menu here. Of course what caught my eye was the sign in the window, these folksknow their priorities! (And mine). In the mood for just a light bite, we had the fried calamari, and a parmesan-cream cheese-roasted red pepper dip with pita chips. Everything on the menu appears to be prepared on the spot, this place is obviously not a Sysco (or similar) customer. The food was great, the service great. I’ll be back (to check out the window item!). 1022 Morrison, beside the Max route, thus the name.



Attack of the Three Inch Burger

This just in from my pal Kayoumin in Taipei, the street burger cart…..with “3 inch burgers” (wide? tall?) for $19 New Taiwan Dollars, about 57 cents in USD. Kayoumin was probably more interested in the clerk than the burger!taiwan burger

Lawmakers Gobble Dogs

More than 1100 lawmakers, lobbyists, staffers and members of the media gathered yday in DC for the annual Hot Dog Lunch, one of the more popular events of the summer in the district. Put on by the National Hot Dog & Sausage Council (you didn’t even know there WAS such a thing, LOL), the council also unveiled their new interactive “Hot Dog Map” of the United States, so you can find the nearest dog. Can an iphone app be far behind?  Play with the map by clicking  here.

Hot Dog Map

It’s Stuffin’ Time

With the advent of harvest time nearly upon us, I start to plan out my canning strategy, which will be tomatoes, beans, and peppers this year.  It’s also the time I cure olives, as the fresh ones startsausage cookbook getting harvested in September, and I have to remember to place my order!  I forgot last year, but we still have a couple jars left from two years ago.   And of course, it’s time to make wieners and sausage, so just ordered casings and cure from Lem Products.   They have stuffers, smokers, grinders, seasonings, anything you could possibly want if you are going to try making sausage at home.   They also have some basic cookbooks and primers (pictured)  as well as DVDs to help you out.    I have a free compilation of 50+ sausage recipes I picked up somewhere, I’ll send you if you email me.

Portland – Otto’s Sausage Kitchen

“Been there, done that, got a t-shirt,”  as they say.  I love Otto’s, and what better place to celebrate National Hot Dog day?!?!?    You pick your meat and they flop it on the grill outside.  I opted for two of Otto’s “old-fashioned” wieners, which are nicely spiced, and I’d call them medium-sized (maybe 5 to a pound).   Decorated ’em with mustard and onion, they had a few other condiments, but only sweet relish, not dill (my preference).

They were incredible.    And yes, I got a t-shirt (pictured below).     Happy NHD Day!