The weather in Toronto has been horrendous for what seems like the entire month. Cloudy, humid, random showers throughout the day, and a severe thunder storm to top it off... The last couple of days seem like the only days I've seen sunlight. Given this weather, I'm not loving Toronto so much at the moment. So let us leave Toronto temporarily, and go to sunny San Diego!
I went to San Diego last February for a conference... on you-don't-want-to-know... Yep, let's not go further into the content of the conference, and let's have a discussion on what I ate instead. There were two restaurants that my friend and I ate at multiple times. They are Richard Walker's Pankcake House (post in progress) and Craft and Commerce.
Craft and Commerce is a bar/restaurant/gastropub? I think this was the first time I've ever been to a "gastropub", which according to Wikipedia, and I quote, is
"a bar and restaurant that serves high-end beer and food."
According to that definition, Craft and Commerce is... well, exactly that, a gastropub. I love the ambiance and decor of Craft and Commerce. Its walls are lined with book shelves... as well as mounted animal heads (bear & zebra) and a lion skin rug (on the ceiling, not the floor). It's truly lovely, really.
Craft and Commerce interior
Book shelves, mounted animal heads, animal skin rugs, and of course, fresh cut flowers
We loved this place so much we ate here twice, once for lunch and once for dinner. For lunch I had the BBQ Pork Banh Mi, with a side of fries. This ain't your Chinatown Banh Mi, actually it is so far away from the real thing, we should probably just call it a sandwich. You can't put pickled veggies and cilantro on a baguette-based sandwich and call it a Banh Mi... Ranting aside, this was a super yummy sandwich. The egg on top was cooked perfectly, with a lovely runny yolk that breaks open and covers the sandwich. It is super messy to eat, with sauce/yolk running down your hands. This is no time to act like a lady. And don't get me started on the fries. These are by far the BEST fries I have ever had in my life. It still haunts my dreams. They are everything you want your fries to be and more. Throughout the pile of fries you can find bits and pieces of minced raw garlic and fresh rosemary, making the fries super flavourful and incredibly fragrant. I will try and reproduce these fries at home... I have to!
BBQ Pork Banh Mi
pickled vegetables, cilantro, fried egg, toasted baguette
My friend had the following salad for both lunch and dinner. She clearly loved it. Salads are not my cup of tea. It looks pretty though.
Now for my dinner... I had the fried chicken. Anytime that I see fried chicken on the menu, I will order it, so expect to see more fried chicken pictures in the future. The portion was huge. They literally give you half of a chicken. Unfortunately it wasn't memorable for me. It was okay.... just okay. Possibly worse than okay? It's a bummer, I know...
Buttermilk Slam, mashed potatoes,
Seasonal Vegetable, spicy vinegar
My friend could not help but steal a pen from the restaurant, which bears the message "This pen was stolen from Craft and Commerce". I thought that was cute.
I quite like this place. If I ever go to San Diego again, I will definitely go back to Craft and Commerce, for the fries at least.
Now to end this post, I give you the gorgeous San Diego Bay...
I really wish I was there right now...
Until next time,