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Archive for the ‘chocolate’ Tag

Food Bowling   Leave a comment

May in LA usually means gray days (the prelude to June Gloom) and the Los Angeles Times Food Bowl. So far, the skies have been clear and blue and my first Bowl experience more than expected.

This annual event highlights food in the City of Angels (and environs) through special events including panel discussions, restaurant deals, film and more.  Casita del Campo’s participation entitled “Dinner Dessert and a Movie” promised chocolate margaritas, Mexican chocolate ice cream and a screening of “Like Water for Chocolate.” We didn’t expect such an attentive the staff, nor such flavorful, well-prepared food.

The margarita is something I never imagined. Tequila and chocolate, really? It works. The secret was the addition of Abuelita Mexican chocolate  and Godiva chocolate  liqueur. The rim of the glass was coated with chocolate sugar. In addition  to chips and salsa, our meal included a plate of sliced avocado and three more salsas, a choice of albondigas soup or a salad, and chicken mole or chile en Nogada. All of the food was featured in the film.

It’s been years since I last saw the film; it was as equally captivating as my first viewing.  The restaurant was packed but only a few of us in the dining area for the dinner/movie event.

As if we didn’t have enough to appeal to our palates, we had a choice of flan or ice cream for dessert. The chocolate ice cream was overshadowed by the fried, cinnamon-coated tortilla accompanying it.

More bowling to come …

Casita Del Campo

1920 Hyperion Ave.

Los Angeles

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Fondue Fun   Leave a comment

A cellar may conjure something dark and musty; fortunately, neither describes the Mona Lisa Wine Cellar. This offspring of The Mona Lisa Fondue Restaurant in the space above features an extensive wine list along with cheese and chocolate fondue.

cheesesign

The super-friendly one-person staff oversees the 10 or 12 tables. Even though the menu is limited, diners still have decisions to make. For example, it’s not just cheese fondue. It’s possibly Old World, New World, South of the Border, Creamy Fontina, Greek Isle, or Brie. We opted for two fondue pots: Old World and Brie. These not only complemented one another, but also were the right amount for our group of four. The Old World is a blend of Emmental and Gruyere cheeses in a white wine base; the Brie, too, was in a white wine base and accented with almonds slivers. Both  were gooey with nutty undertones; the Brie was slightly creamier. Bite-size pieces of bread, fresh fruit and raw vegies are served for dipping.

cheesedrip

Even if one of my friends was not celebrating a birthday, we were primed for chocolate fondue. Again, a number of choices are available including dark, milk and white. Further flavor profiles are created with the addition of liqueurs. We chose dark chocolate and chocolate with raspberry. Fresh fruit, cookies, marshmallows, pound cake, Angel food cake and brownies are served for dipping.

fonduedessert

The beauty of fondue is that it’s communal and requires a slow pace. Add a bottle of wine and the meal is rich in taste and camaraderie.

Mona Lisa Wine Cellar
Four Plates
733 Manitou Ave.
Manitou Springs, CO