Sunday, July 13, 2008

Saturday on the Westside

Julie's high school friend and her daughter were visiting from Hong Kong so we drove out to Westwood to pick them up from their hotel, then proceeded to Restaurant 2117 in the Sawtelle district for lunch. That's Lilian and Angela in the middle in the picture. You can guess who the others are.

Here's some pictures of the food:

Caesar salad: They make this the authentic way, with anchovies. I've gotten so used to versions with no anchovies or else very toned-down anchovies that this was actually kind of yuk, because I don't like anchovies. I didn't even remember that they are an ingredient in a caesar salad and thought they were pieces of mushrooms at first. Except for the anchovies, the salad was fine.

Julie had Kurobata pork loin in a sherry vinaigrette sauce. She really liked it. I tried a small piece and it was good, though I preferred what I had.

This is what Lilian ordered, penne with smoked salmon, capers and parmesan in a white cream sauce.

Above is my choice, grilled flat-iron steak in a garlic sauce. Mmm, this was really tender, juicy and tasty. I asked for it medium and that's how it came - actually a bit to the left of medium, but that was fine. The veggies are all organic, by the way.

And this is what Angela ordered, Kobe-style wagyu beef hamburger with bleu cheese. Yummy.

The service was fine and the food was obviously of high quality and tasted great. It was a nice lunch and I would love to return. In fact, this was where Julie and I had our first date.

I don't care how silly it may look, I bought this at the Japanese store in the same center as the restaurant:

Julie asked, "are you really going to use that??" I said of course, why not? For $7.99, how could I pass that up? (It's a tote bag, in case you can't figure out what it is)

After lunch we went to the Promenade in Santa Monica. The traffic was horrible out that way and the parking lots were filled but we managed to find meter parking several blocks away.

Then we walked westward to the beach. The pictures in this post were taken with a Panasonic Lumix DMC-TZ4K I just got, and today was the first time I tried it. I liked the 10x optical zoom feature and the pictures below demonstrate how well it works. The top picture is without zoom (and no, I was not trying to take a picture of those two girls in the bikinis, I was aiming at the ferris wheel on the pier!).

Now take a look at the picture below, again aiming at the ferris wheel that you can only faintly see in the background in the above picture. This time I used the 10x zoom:

Quite a difference, eh? We trudged back to the car, drove back to Westwood and took a driving tour of the UCLA campus (and of course I pointed out how far superior it was to the much smaller USC campus), and then we dropped the out of towners off at their hotel.

The weather was so much cooler and nicer out by the beach than in the SGV! But the traffic is nuts. Anyway, that was our Saturday outing.

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