Hey, on the other hand (see previous post for the other other hand), if you are in Visalia, for goodness' sakes go eat at Brewbaker's. Rob and I went in because it was clean, charming, and busy even during off-hours -- a sure sign that there are good eats inside -- and because the signboard outside had some delicious looking specials (none of which we ate.)
Since I am trying to eat my "Daily Dozen", I begged to share an order of sweet potato fries with chipotle dipping sauce, um, you know, for vitamins or something. Robert liked the idea. I also begged to share some Buffalo beer wings because, um, I needed to eat protein or something. He liked that idea, too.
Hey, yeah, I know they're evil fried foods and all and it's a mayo-based sauce, but they are sweet potatoes. Sweeeet potaaaatoes. The holy grail of mother-to-be nutrition. And I was on a road trip where wholegrain rye pretzels and carrots were my other nutriment... so I was sorta being good. And I had had a mango smoothie with flaxseeds for breakfast. Cut me some slack.
And both of us decided on salads for our main course -- him, a chef salad (probably his favorite food), and me, a "Cobb" salad bearing only partial resemblance to any Cobb salad I'd ever seen elsewhere (jack cheese instead of bleu? Tossed instead of composed?), but hey, it sounded great. I had a half portion because I knew I'd be stuffing my face with wings and fries too.
The sweet potato fries were the best I've had anywhere, and were an enormous portion served with a cup of the spiciest, chunkiest chipotle dipping sauce I've had anywhere but home. Soooooo good -- crisp, creamy sweet inside, and nicely foiled against the garlicky chiles.
The wings were perfect -- fiery, tender, and salty. (Yeah, I know -- but when I'm sick, my idea of comfort food is kimchi soup, so morning sickness cannot daunt me from wings.)
And the salads were FREAKIN BOTTOMLESS and just delicious. Robert said, "This is the chef's salad I woke up this morning dreaming about." And they made their thousand island dressing (an abomination in my eyes, but Rob loves it) from scratch the old fashioned way, with hard cooked eggs and paprika, not ketchup-mustard-mayo-picklerelish like most restaurants do nowadays (and by nowadays I mean "after the 60s.") I had the tomato basil vinaigrette, which was, as the server opined, very good indeed -- nicely balanced and tart.
And we had DELICIOUS home-brewed orange cream sodas -- fizzy water with just enough orange and vanilla to be refreshing, and the clean sparkling sweetness of fructose, I think. With free refills. For cheaper than a plain ol' Diet Coke at Chili's (a.k.a. The Winchester even though it's big business and eew so many calories and yadda yadda... we are there a lot.)
We agreed that we would drive an hour out of the way to eat at Brewbaker's. Maybe not 6+ again, but if we ever had to be in Visalia again...
Yum. If you're ever in Visalia wondering where to eat, please check 'em out.