3 Weeks Down

Today is the last day of filming (for the first 3-week stretch) my new show, Good Food America.

So far, we’ve been to Austin, Dallas, Seattle, Portland, Santa Rosa, Berkeley and are now in San Francisco. (Add the to that the small diversion of heading to NYC for the Today Show  – wow – did that really happen?!)

Tomorrow, super-sous  and I go back to sunny and warm L.A. for a week of recouping and resting before heading out again on the road (for another 3 weeks of shooting). (Here’s a photo of super-sous and I in a colder, wetter moment of this trip!)

As it often does, time has flown by – like the blink of an eye  – and there’s a few people that I MUST introduce you to before we all disperse tomorrow because they won’t be traveling with us on the next leg of shooting for various reasons.

First, our fabulous San Francisco support team which consists of George (He’s kind of a bad ass superstar and professional photographer. He’s the kind of person that before you even know to ask for something, it’s already right there – set up and ready to go. George has made the San Francisco leg a “smooth sailing” experience):

and our intern Kai (who is pictured here with the amazing Carrie from the production team – more about her in a minute):

Kai was brought on the team a few days ago when we were shooting in Berkeley. He was outside the restaurant where we were filming, selling candy for a fundraiser for his school, and one of the camera guys on the team, Kevin (who I will introduce to you in a blog post at a later date) asked him if he wanted to come in and help out for the day since he wasn’t really selling much candy. Kai is 12 years old and although he lives in Berkeley and has school, he came out to San Francisco and helped us out for an additional day of filming. (Thanks Kai’s Mom!). He has been a fantastic help and yesterday he tried his first oyster ever – with some reservations at first – but he ended up loving it.

Thank you George and Kai for all your help. You’re the best.

And, of course, the one and only, Carrie, who has been with us these 3 weeks, but who will, unfortunately, not be with us for the next 3 week leg as she will be holding up the fort at the production offices of the awesome Two River Pictures which is located in New Jersey.

Carrie is thoughtful, kind, friendly, helpful, organized, smart, and tireless. Her job never stops. She’s the first one up and the last one to sleep and she does it all with a great attitude.  She’s funny and she’s game for anything. Thank goodness we will be stopping by New Jersey on the next leg of shooting so we can see her then! Thanks, Carrie.

Okay, San Francisco. It’s a sunny day. You’re looking beautiful. Let’s have a great last day. Latte, let’s do it up!

Pokpok – Notnot

Yesterday, we said goodbye to beautiful, sunny (yes, sunny) Seattle.

After a trip to Vashon island (a 10 minute ferry ride from Seattle) to film at a very special food purveyor, we made our way to Portland, Oregon.

My sous and I were recommended a place to eat in Portland from several different sources (2 of them being chefs) called pokpok – which serves Thai street/pub food. So, we headed to the restaurant for dinner last night with our Executive Producer, Garrett, and the lovely Carrie who is part of the production team on Good Food America.

The interior of the restaurant was very hip and well-designed and their sister lounge across the street was a fantastic dive”ish” bar – so we were off to a good start. Well, perhaps it was because the executive chef was not present, but the food was, unfortunately, underwhelming. Flavors masked by extreme spice (I’ve never consumed so many thai chiles), fish stock mixed with fruit, flabby eggplant – again, underwhelming and actually, unpleasant. Out of 10 dishes, we liked 3 (their famous chicken wings, a noodle dish with shrimp and pork belly, and a Brussels sprouts dish). If you have eaten at pokpok, please let me know what we missed!

We’re here for another 2 days and I can’t wait to try out Portland’s most delicious spots and, of course, there is Latte. Latte, when have you ever let me down? Answer: never. Thank Latte for Latte!

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Sunny in Seattle

Despite waking up at 2am on Thursday for a flight from Dallas to Seattle, the Good Food America crew arrived in good spirits (special thanks to Jackson, our sound guy (second from right), who supplied us with some entertainment).

After loading our gear and dropping things off at our hotel, we dashed off to our first Seattle restaurant to film.

The food scene here in Pacific Northwest is the epitome of delicious, farm-to-table, innovative cuisine. And did I mention the Latte scene?

That, plus the surprisingly sunny weather (I’m talking not a cloud in the sky) has made this trip fantastic. We also got to meet up with my friend Corky of Ballard Bee Company who is an urban bee keeper with hives all around the city. And I got to catch up with my buddy, Seth Caswell, of Emmer & Rye (whom I met at the Cooking for Solutions event last year at the Monterey Bay Aquarium) and enjoyed a delicious dinner at his restaurant (you MUST order the octopus salad if you go).

Seattle… you’re alright in my book.

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