Friday, December 29, 2006

A Completely Biased Review of 2006, Part II: Things Et

2006 was a good year, gastronomically speaking, even though we live in a state that is very fond of the standard American fare, meaning fried, cholesterol-bomb food.
  • Best New Restaurant in Squarebanks: Taco King. The food is better than any of the other Mexi joints in town, the prices are very reasonable, and I spent more lunch dollars there than at any other location... even if the pozole is kind of bland. All hail Taco King!

  • Best Existing Restaurant Rumored to Be Closing, Maybe. Sort of: Cafe Alex. I finally got downtown and had a really good meal there. "High end" food (at least by FBX standards), but not as pricey as Lavelle's Bistro. Nice atmosphere, good service, really good wine list.
  • Best Place to Eat Half a Cow, On a Bun, With Fries: Ivory Jacks, out in my neck of the woods. $9.00 gets you a pretty damned fine cheeseburger and fries. The menu is pretty much the usual American fried affair, but we all need a little grease in our lives. Moderation in moderation, too.
  • Best Pizza in the Entire Freaking State: Magpye's in Sterling. We stopped off here this summer on the way back from halibut fishing and clamming. Wow. With apologies to my local fave, College Town, as well as the Moose's Tooth in Skanchorage and that one place in Unalalakleet, this is the pie to beat -- tasty, and the extra large is HUGE.
  • Best Way Reduce the Amount of Petroleum Used in the Production/Transportation of That Tomato or Cow: Support local agriculture! Buy a share, or split one with a friend, at either Calypso Farms or Rosie Creek Farms and get fantastic, organic local produce all season. For the omnivorously inclined, BY Farms out in North Pole sells a whole lot of locally produced meat.
In the CabinDwelling Kitchen, 2006 was a bit of a challenge, due to the fact that for six months of the year, I was living in a cabin that had only a two-burner hot plate ... which allows one the option of either scorching or completely burning the crap out of something. Thankfully, summer allowed for use of the trusty Coleman stove and grill. Fave new recipes from 2006:
  • Citrus Grilled Goose
  • Lime and Cilantro Halibut
  • Favorite Carnivorous Cooking Tip, courtesy of the M.I.A. Flic the Bic: When you get some moose meat with some fat on it, cut off the fat, cook it in the pan a bit until it releases enough oil and then fry the moose meat in it.