Pork belly – Chambers Eat + Drink

Pork belly - Chambers Eat + Drink
Two soft boiled eggs, smoked grits, caramelized onion, spaghetti squash, pork candy. $13
Chambers Eat and Drink, San Francisco CA

I liked the pork belly, the fried grits balls, and even the pieces of pork sugar candy but I really couldn’t get over the spaghetti squash mixed with the caramelized onion. What?! This is another dish where everything just didn’t taste right together…

Mixed lichen centerpiece - Chambers Eat + Drink
Mixed lichen centerpiece.

Shrimp and grits – Matchbox Palm Springs

Shrimp and grits - Matchbox Palm Springs
Tillamook cheddar grits, chorizo butter. $12
Matchbox Palm Springs, Palm Springs CA

Having eaten many versions of shrimp and grits in the South, I was NOT impressed by this at all. The grits were too congealed, the shrimp were overcooked (burnt actually), and the chorizo sauce was WAY too salty. Ugh, I couldn’t even finish it. 😦

Mixed conifers
Mixed conifers, Mt. San Jacinto hike.

Smoked duck – 17 North Roadside Kitchen

Smoked duck - 17 North Roadside Kitchen
Cherry wood smoked duck breast, white stone grits, spinach, peach gastrique. Three course dinner $30
17 North Roadside Kitchen, Mount Pleasant SC

Mmm, this dish was SO delicious! The duck was cooked perfectly and had a yummy smoked flavor. And how can you resist peaches when you’re in South Carolina? I don’t think it’s possible. This plate had some of my favorites things so it was definitely a success!

Fort Moultrie
Fort Moultrie. I thought that the signal tower (on the right) was pretty cool!

Carolina shrimp and grits – The Glass Onion

Carolina shrimp and grits - The Glass Onion
With andouille sausage and braised tomatoes. $17
The Glass Onion, Charleston SC

This dish was pretty good with great flavor. I loved the texture of the grits, but the shrimp may have been a little overcooked. Not too much, but they were definitely not as tender as I would have liked. Also, I did want to mention that the service was a bit awkward.

Cornbread and honey - The Glass Onion
Cornbread drizzled with honey. These were delicious and I wish I had requested another round!

Doubletree Guest Suites Charleston-Historic District

Lobby of the Doubletree Guest Suites Charleston-Historic District. Sat here several times waiting for my friend to get ready before heading out to dinner, hehe!

Flying fish and cou cou – Waterfront Cafe

Flying fish and cou cou Waterfront Cafe
Three fillets of fish steamed in a Caribbean fish broth. Served with cornmeal cou cou, fried plantain, and pickled cucumber. $48 (Barbados dollar)
Waterfront Cafe, Bridgetown, BARBADOS

The extras were better than the fish, lol! But you really can’t complain about pickled cucumbers and fried plantains. The flying fish, on the other hand, had a really strong fishy taste – not my thing. Great presentation though.

Independence Arch
Independence Arch at the end of the historic Chamberlain Bridge in Bridgetown. At the base of this colorful arch, there is The Pledge which reads, “I pledge allegiance to my country Barbados and to my flag to uphold and defend their honour and by my living to do credit to my nation wherever I go.” Pretty cool stuff.

Cornmeal cou cou – Waterfront Cafe

Cornmeal cou cou Waterfront Cafe
Scoop of ground cornmeal with sliced okra mixed inside and topped with a Caribbean fish broth with tomatoes, carrots, celery, onions, peppers, and herbs.
Waterfront Cafe, Bridgetown, BARBADOS

Angela, our cab driver, suggested we try this local dish “cou cou”. It’s ground cornmeal cooked with what I’m sure is a LOT of butter, broth, and spices. This version also had slices of okra in it. It was pretty good, but the okra pieces were a bit slimey for my taste. The broth/sauce was very comforting.

Turnera ulmifolia
The first part of the day was off-and-on rain, but it didn’t detract from the beauty of the island and it’s lush greenery. This yellow alder or buttercup bush (Turnera ulmifolia) was prevalently planted, I’m sure for its vibrant yellow blooms. I was surprised to find out that it belongs to the Passifloraceae family.