Taste of Downtown San Diego 2007 Part1/2
One of our favorite annual San Diego events: The Taste of Downtown. This year, it was held on September 13, from 5-9. A whooping 56 restaurants were participating, in comparison to the 46 from last year. A few restaurants did not participate again this year but there were plenty more that came to replace them! We started our taste by trying the restaurants in Horton Plaza.
This was the first place we hit up after picking up our tickets. The service here was freakishly slow in the beginning because of the overly meticulous waiter who carefully scooped and plated each food. It was only when the manager came out that the line picked up. We wasted 25 minutes waiting in a line of merely 20 people! Was the food even worth it? Half of us liked it. The other half said that their pieces of meat were too chewy and salty. Boo hoo...
We hit the other place in Horton Mall that was on our list. At Currito, we each picked up a free mini burrito, which was almost a complete meal in itself! We decided to save the burrito for another day but unfortunately had to carry the bag around with us the rest of the night. We headed south down 4th street to continue our tastes.
The sandwiches here were really plain. The insides barely had any content in it.
It seems like there is always one place to try wine and Shorelines Gallery was the place this year. Last year there were four different wines (red, white, dessert) to try but this year, there was only a white wine. We tried it, thought nothing in particular about it, and sampled some various cheese samples. Alongside the wine were some fabulous hazelnut candies that delighted our sweet spot!
The Shrimp ceviche had a nice citrus zest to it. It was quite interesting and refreshing, possibly one of better few things we tried last night. This was much better than the strange dessert sampler that they had last year.
Dublin Square Irish Pub
Lynn liked the Shepard's pie here. But I think she may be a little biased... According to her, "It's hard to mess up so I like most of them" As for the beef stew, it was tender but had no distinct flavor. Lynn thought it was a tad tough though. The beef pastry on the other hand was good. Might be a tad oily for some though.
Lynn likes the curry flavor in the yellow curry sample but she thought it was also boring. It was just rice with a couple of vegetables mixed in. As for me, I liked the more spicier red curry sample. Just the right amount of spice to it! Oh, and everybody in the group liked the metal-like plastic forks they were giving out with the samples. It was strangely noteworthy...
The garlic bread was soggy and gross. The spaghetti pasta barely had any sauce on it and the noodles tasted like store-bought alfredo sauce poured on noodles. The few shreds of chicken in there were slightly overcooked. Overall, quite a disappointment over last year's selection here.
Dick's Last Resort
We really liked the tangy marinara with a kick of spice in it. The shrimp weren't too special in themselves but with the sauce, it was darn good!
Acqua Al 2
Another one of our favorite tastes came from this restaurant. The bow tie pasta had an excellent flavor which I couldn't stop eating! The salad had some great sweet dressing on top which also pleased us. The only part of the sample we didn't like was the dull pasta with tomato sauce.
Dussini Mediterranean Bistro
As a favorite from last year, this place did not disappoint! Once again they served their marvelous lobster macaroni and added a duck empanada with cranberry sauce. To review the new item, we took a nice chunk out of the middle, which contained duck, mushroom, lavender and cilantro. The cranberry sauce was a little bit strong on the sweet side but the inside of the pastry was decent, to say at least. To make the night even better, they were offering $1 sangrias, which had a bit of a yummy wine cooler taste yet was accented with various fruit.
Trattoria La Bocca
The sauce was definitely interesting but the overabundant cheesiness of it took away from the taste.
Fred's Mexican Cafe
This deep-fried chicken chingadera was very delicious with the tomato and guacamole drizzled on top! Inside, there was chicken, beans and tortilla, and some other goodness that we can't name. Give Lynn the recipe! She'd love to make something like this at home!
Oh, sweet gelato, you were one of the highlights of the night! We just loved to look into the mesmerizing display of delectable desserts but sadly could only choose one per person... good thing there were two of us! This dessert was fabulous! Who wouldn't want to miss out on a nice scoop of scrumptious gelato! The two flavors we picked were mango and blood red orange. Even though the orange flavor was grand, the mango was absolutely divine and we finished that one first!
This is the restaurant's model of the full-sized shepherd's pie. The sample tasted okay in the little aluminum server tins but I thought the meat could have been less greasy. It kept its hot temperature very well. Even though it wasn't the best sample, Lynn couldn't stop eating it. She just loves shephard's pie.
To be continued...