fig-grilled-cheese-24Fresh figs drizzled with honey and melted brie cheese. This is a great way to enjoy figs.

I love fig season and I wish it wasn’t so short. I actually never ate a fresh fig until I was an adult. My only experience with figs was in fig newton form. But when I tasted my first fig, I fell in love with them at first bite. I love the bright red center and the honey-like sweet flesh. This year, my fig tree finally produced enough figs for me to eat my fill and cook with a couple of them.fig-grilled-cheese-19

gyu-kaku-16Gyu-Kaku is a Japanese-style BBQ restaurant chain, with many locations throughout the US and other countries. We’ve passed by the one in San Diego many times, always seeing the crowd gathered outside, but had never been. We finally visited for lunch recently.
gyu-kaku
I was pleasantly surprised to find that they offer a lunch set menu along with happy hour prices every day until 5pm. So when we went in around lunchtime, we were able to take advantage of both the happy hour prices and the lunch specials.

Spicy Tuna Volcano
gyu-kaku-4

Levain Bakery

levain-bakery-12During our recent trip to New York City, I finally got to try the famous chocolate chip cookies from Levain Bakery. The bakery is known for their chocolate chip walnut cookie, with each one weighing a whopping 6 ounces. These thick, decadent cookies with barely set soft centers are so popular that there is almost a constant long line of customers.

When we arrived at the original location, we could barely see the signage for the tiny store, though we immediately saw the line. It’s a very cramped space, with only one entrance and exit. The actual bakery is located on a lower level, so you also need to go down a set of stairs. We waited in line for 30 minutes and there were moments where I considered leaving the line, convinced the cookies couldn’t be that good.
levain-bakery-10
Finally, it was our turn to order. They offer four flavors of cookies, along with some other baked goods, including a popular banana bread.
levain-bakery-16