A Reviewer’s Cravings


As a busy restaurant reviewer, I eat out a great deal. That means visiting lots of different establishments on a weekly basis, always with an eye towards the next week’s (or month’s) list. And while it is a marvelous experience to try new menu items all the time, I have a few, insistent food cravings that arise from time to time that demand to be satisfied – regardless of my review schedule. Last night, I indulged my craving for a Waterboy salad, eschewing a review in favor of one of chef Rick Mahan’s leafy masterpieces. His gorgeous bitter greens salad was just what I needed: a jumbled, colorful pile of tiny endive leaves and radicchio, tossed in a sharply sweet balsamic vinaigrette with toasted walnuts, blue cheese and big chunks of chewy pancetta. The interplay of bitter and sweet; crunchy and soft was utterly satisfying. On another night, I might order Mahan’s fabulous Caesar salad, which has just the right amount of garlic and anchovy in his brightly flavored, velvety dressing; or the popular, jewel-like baby beet salad, served up any number of ways, depending on the season.

Other cravings I cannot ignore include:

•  Thai pumpkin and tofu green curry at Chada Thai Cuisine

•  The enormous falafel at Sunflower Natural Food restaurant (Fair Oaks)

•  Pozole verde at Zócalo

•  Warm apple tarte tatin at La Provence (Roseville)

•  Free-range chicken tacos with bacon and collard greens at Tucos Wine Market and 
   Café (Davis)

•  Saag chana masala at Kathmandu Kitchen (Sacramento, Auburn and Davis)

•  Salmon BLT at Café Bernardo (multiple locations)

•  Pikilia platter at The Greek Village Inn Restaurant.

•  Paella Valenciana at Aioli Bodega Española

•  Kiku manju at Osaka-Ya

What menu items do you crave in the Sacramento region? Please let us know.