Saturday, March 31, 2007


If you know us, you likely know Napa Valley Grille in Westwood and that we've continued to eat there through ownership changes and a few new chefs. The latest chef to take over at NVG lured us back for lunch with sandwich that just sounded too good to pass up. We each ordered the same sandwich: a half lunch portion for Andrea with soup and a full sandwich for me.

Mushroom Bisque and Truffle Infused Maitake Mushrooms
Organic Baby Lettuce Salad with Walnut Vinaigrette
Half Grilled Cheese and Lobster “Knuckle Sandwich”

Grilled Cheese and Lobster “Knuckle Sandwich”
brioche, lobster and fontina cheese, Sweet pea tendril salad

Be sure to click on the picture above to experience just how good this sandwich was - and enjoying it on a sunny spring day out on the patio was a perfect start to the day.

While we don't have any photographic evidence of our remaining meals, it's definitely worth mentioning the rest of our Saturday adventure. After keeping full with a half bag of Harry & David's chocolate "Moose Munch" during a movie, we went back to West Hollywood. There, at the original Barney's Beanery (link at left) the pain of watching UCLA lose to Florida (again) was dampened somewhat by some killer chicken fingers and plenty of good beer. Not to mention the fact that the couple we allowed to share our table on this impossibly crowded Final Four day surprised us by generously paying our entire tab to return the favor!

We capped off the evening by stopping by Il Buco Ristorante in Beverly Hills. In this cozy little Italian eatery, Andrea continued the mushroom/truffle theme of the weekend with a an order of Gnocchi with mushroom, truffled fondue while I (surprisingly) ordered pumpkin ravioli. While the food wasn't aesthetically "blogworthy," it was incredibly good and Il Buco definitely deserves a return visit.

The evening WOULD have finished with a dessert sample at Upstairs 2, but unfortunately we failed to realize that the restaurant had been booked for a private event! Next time, we'll call first. So that was it for this very indulgent Saturday. I'll post Sunday's addition as soon as I can.

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