Friday, July 29, 2011

Summer Snapshot of the Day :: Pie Shake

A few weeks back, our family was in the San Francisco area to attend a family reunion. As with any trip, we researched a few of the neighborhoods in the city and pleasantly discovered a corner cafe that combined two of my favorite food items, but with a unique twist ... We've all had pie à la mode, but have you ever had a pie shake?

Located in the NOPA neighborhood of San Francisco,
Chile Pies (& ice cream) has been serving up their frozen dessert since it opened in March 2010. The general concept? You get to choose your pie from a wide variety of selections -- peach, lemon, blueberry, country apple, or whatever is in season -- and then it gets blended with a little bit of milk and whole lot of ice cream. Although a good portion of it was able to get through the straw, I had to bust out a spoon to get to the sweet and buttery goodness at the bottom of the glass.

Now, there were a few skeptics at the table, including my wife who was unsure about combination. But she soon "ate her words." Before I was able to take a second sip, the pie shake suddenly disappeared.

Chile Pies (& ice cream)
601 Baker Street
San Francisco, CA 94117-1407

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Sacramento Zoo | Ice Cream Safari

For the last twenty-seven years (and counting), the Sacramento Zoo has opened its doors for one special night in the mid-summer months to host their Ice Cream Safari, an all-you-can-eat extravaganza that is easily one of the city's premiere showcases that promises hours of family fun. This year was no exception, but to be honest, we almost didn't make it after we already put in a full day of activities that drained most of our energy.

With a little cheerleading from our kids, however, we mustered up just enough motivation to include a date with zebras, giraffes, flamingos, gibbons, and great hornbills. Sorry folks, no lions, tigers, or bears on this trip. Many of them were still hiding out in their pens, but as one visitor aptly put it, "We're not here to see the animals. We're here for the ICE CREAM!" Can't say that I was arguing with her, and the many volunteers, staff, donors, and supporters did not disappoint. They rolled out the flavors by the truckload:

- Reese's Peanut Butter Cup
- Pink Lemonade
- Oreo Cookies and Cream
- Vanilla
- Chocolate
- Very Berry Strawberry
- Rainbow Sherbet
- Mint Chocolate Chip
- Pralines n' Cream
- Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough
- Golden Oreo

And to ensure that no one was left out, they also threw in free popsicles for those whose diets couldn't include dairy.

It didn't just stop there either. The price of admission also included complimentary bottled water and sodas, face painting, an ice cream dance party, live music, and of course, access to all zoo exhibits.

Generally speaking, the Sacramento Zoo's Ice Cream Safari is held in the month of July. Discounted tickets are available prior to the day of the event, but door admission is $20.00 dollars for adults and $15.00 for children ages two to eleven. All proceeds benefit the general maintenance and animal care at the
Sacramento Zoo.

So, take it from us. We were certainly impressed, and after having visited for the first time, we would encourage anyone, with kids or not, to add the Ice Cream Safari to your list of summer plans.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Summer Snapshot of the Day: Baby Back Ribs

What: Full-rack of baby back ribs with sauce on the side
Where: Luck BBQ, 2502 J Street, Sacramento, CA

Our son who is a huge fan of barbecue had a smile from ear-to-ear when he found out that we were going out to dine at Luck BBQ in Sacramento. What was formerly known as the BBQ Spot, Luck's meats are all smoked for at least an hour and all menu items are prepared from scratch. Talk about fall-off-the-bone goodness!!

Friday, July 8, 2011

Summer Snapshot of the Day: Pineapple Banana Shortcake with Saffron

What: Pineapple Banana Shortcake with Saffron
Where: The Eatery West Sacramento Farmer's Market

We decided to check out the Farmer's Market in West Sacramento and came across "The Eatery." Their spin on the traditional shortcake was inventive and extraordinary. The hint of saffron mixed into the fresh dollop of whip cream brought out the freshness of the fruit and rounded out the flavors of this very original dessert.

The Eatery is a bistro that will be opening at the end of July in the Southport Area in West Sacramento. They have been fixtures at the West Sac Farmer's Market since it opened just a few months ago. And now, they have a legion of fans who are chomping at the bit to taste the rest of their fare and can't wait for the actual restaurant to open. Yours truly included!!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Summer Snapshot of the Day: Bowl of Soul

What: Bowl of Soul
Where: Naked Lounge 1500 Q Street, Sacramento

A chamomile infused drink mixed with steamed vanilla soy milk, a squeeze of honey, and a sprinkling of cinnamon sugar. All of this served in a huge latte bowl. We snuggled up to quite a few of these concoctions during the many cold spring and early summer days in Sacramento.