This past year turned out to be more of an armchair dining year for us, with fewer meals out and more cooked at home. The list of restaurants I ate at grew smaller, while the To Do list expanded by leaps and bounds. We also managed to accomplish way more on the road than when in Los Angeles.
Here are personal eat and drink highlights from 2007.
We treated bunch of friends to dinners at our house, and hosted more parties than I remember throwing over the course of a year. I've really learned to embrace partial catering.
All'Angelo needs to address the menu's seasonal needs. Yet I'm still thankful for the several delicious, hearty meals we loved, and I'd eat a plate of the octopus carpaccio (pictured at right) anytime.
A healthy amount of child-friendly (a phrase I NEVER thought I'd use) meals at local favorites Campanile, Sushi Ike, and to a certain extent, Hungry Cat.
Surprisingly tasty crab salad with avocados and mangoes at the Governor's Ball following the Emmys. How they ever manage to pull off that dinner for 6,000 people astounds me. Sadly, so few of those people actually eat anyway.
New flavors and textures at Jitlada, along with the bonus of remarkably generous childcare from charismatic owner Jazz.
It took me almost eight months to get it together, but girls' night out at the historiclicious Edison was just what the shrink ordered.
Georgia and Anthony's New Orleans food night with gumbo and fried cat fish made me covet a home deep fryer (at left).
A couple stops at Golden Deli, which isn't nearly enough. Same goes for Clementine.
Succulent, crisp duck at Lu Din Gee.
Making good on maintaining our Christmas Eve tradition of drinks at the lobby of Shutters on the Beach, followed by Persian food gluttony at Javan. I've lost count of how many years we've done this for.
Squeezing in as much great food during trips to New York as possible.
Two lunches at Lupa. Not new or groundbreaking, but you certainly can't go wrong there. The flash-fried Brussels sprouts with lemon (at left) is reason #2 to have a deep fryer at home.
Stomach-expanding mofongo and roasty chicken from La Nueva EspaÃ±a on 207th Street. It's also one of the only places that delivers to my sister's building.
Hanging with my cousin David, an old school Collective member, at the Moosewood Cafe in Ithaca.
Eating organic and sustainable lunch foods at the cleverly designed Olivia (above), located in Ezra Cornell's train depot on East Hill. Perfect for making my Ithaca-reared, Dwell-reading spouse and our architect friend right at home again.
Finding superb coffee outside of our kitchen or thank-god-it-finally-opened-in-Silver-Lake Intelligentsia: Gimme! Coffee cappuccino (above), and sampling the goods at Northampton and the even more charming Amherst Coffee (plus wine bar!).
Perfect service, extreme comfort, and much-better-than-average hotel food at the politico-infested Hay-Adams in D.C., where they're lucky I didn't abscond with some pieces of their Wedgewood china (pictured left).
Lots of heavy food in Nashville, as well as a more "refined" meal at the elegant Capitol Grille in the Hermitage Hotel. Many Tennessean deals -- presumably both sneaky and legit -- have gone down beneath the vaulted ceiling and in the incredible black and aqua-tiled Art Deco men's room. I've since cribbed their method of adding roasted butternut squash chunks to arugula salad.
Most importantly, here's hoping for a swift end and satisfactory resolution to The Strike. People have careers to get on with, bills to pay, and eating out to do. In the meantime, our first dinner out in '08 will be Campanile on a Wednesday.