Surf Fishing in San Diego!

My one and only fishing excursion was a half-day trip during which I spent an hour feeling seasick, so imagine my excitement when my friend, Kaus, said I could fish from the comfort of solid ground! Imagine my further excitement when he said he’d cook what I catch! Okay, maybe he was voluntold, but a minor details!

Kaus and I left for for Del Mar Beach, Calif. with our friend Dean, our photographer and videographer (oh yes, there’s video), to begin our adventure. Once there, Kaus taught me how to set-up my fishing rod.

Down the MiddleStep #1: construct your rod, ensuring all the rings are lined up. I’m pretty proud of this picture, actually. =)

Fact #1: “Surf fishing” is a general term for all types of shore fishing, which includes casting from piers and jetties, and is almost exclusively done in saltwater. More specifically, I went “surfcasting” or “beachcasting” where the casting is done from the beach.

 

 

 

I don't know what I'm doing...Step #2: thread the fishing line through the rings of the rod.

That look right there is either of sheer concentration or utter confusion. You decide.

Don’t know why though, as it’s the easiest step… threading a needle. Must be because I’m tall and awkward and still learning how to use my limbs, haha.

Fact #2: Your success hinges on the time of day you go and the state of the tide.

 

 

Hooks, lines, and sinkersStep #3: attach your terminal tackle. For this day, we used a “caroliina rig.”

If you don’t know what a terminal tackle and carolina rig are, don’t worry, I didn’t either.

Fact #3: In Southern California, you can catch surfperch, croaker, corbina, and halibut, and if you’re lucky, a leopard shark.

 

A Different Kind of PoleStep #4: Smile and look like you accomplished something!

Fact #4: This government guide gives you the official skinny, while SC Surf Fishing is a more comprehensive source that includes forums, pictures, tips and tricks.

 

 

 

Now that I look the part, can I play the part? Watch this video (my first Youtube upload AND my first time editing video) and see what transpires. =)

Water, water, everywhere...And yes, I did eventually go into the water, haha.

 

 

 

 

Isn't he cute?!Finally, this begs the question: after all this, did I catch anything? Why, yes, yes I did! Isn’t it just adorable? Oh, and the fish is cute too. =D

Anyway, I threw the little guy back because he was so little, but a catch is a catch! That’s all from me today. Hope you enjoyed my little adventure!

9 Cool Facts About St. Paddy’s Day!

Yes Drinking!

Today is about learning, folks! Don’t worry… I made sure to pick the more interesting tidbits for you. Enjoy!

Image1. March 17th is the day of Saint Patrick’s death, not his birth date.

His birthday is actually… well, we don’t know that one. It was the year 387 AD, though.

2. Saint Patrick was not Irish.

He was born in Scotland, but is celebrated in Ireland because he was successful in bringing Christianity there.

3. It’s spelled “St. Paddy’s,” not “St. Patty’s.”

Yup, I learned that myself recently. Some easy ways to remember:

* “Patty” is for Patricia, while “Paddy” is for Patrick.

* Or “Paddy” rhymes with “daddy”–yes, this is how my mind works, sometimes.

* Patrick is derived from the Irish name Pádraig (pronounced paw-drig), which is spelled with a “d” so… yeah…

Speaking of dying things green and not-so-subtle transitions, Chicago is the first and only city to dye their river green each year, but here is another interesting fact:

4. It takes 40 lbs. of a dye that begins as orange before turning into the vibrant green you’ve come to know.

They’re so proud of this tradition, there’s even a website dedicated to the whole event.

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Now, after speaking about dying things green, let’s talk about why it should be blue:

5. Saint Patrick’s color was actually blue.

It is believed the transition to green came later to associate with Ireland’s beautiful countryside, or its nickname, the “Emerald Isle.”

Now, this wouldn’t be a food post without some mention of Irish cuisine, right? I cant say I’ve ever made any Irish food myself, so I’m pretty green in that arena, so I tend to like the more festive, less traditional recipes that just require added food coloring.

6. Corned beef is not a traditional Irish dish.

Beef wasn’t cheap then, so this dish was for the wealthy British who made it a mainstay after they conquered most of Ireland.

And celebration wouldn’t be complete without some beer and spirits to raise our spirits, right? Now I can move onto our last, but definitely not least, facts for the day:

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7. St. Patrick’s Day was a dry holiday in Ireland until 1970.

Irish law prohibited drinking on religious holidays, so St. Patrick’s Day celebrations were dry from 1903-1970.

Pubs were closed this day each year, until the law was overturned, a wise choice as it became apparent that the boost in commerce and tourism was the much-welcomed aftermath.

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8. You may break from Lent on this day to fully celebrate with food and drink.

When I first learned of this tidbit, I got all giddy, haha. Have fun with this one, folks.

9. The Irish cheers by saying, “Sláinte!”

It is likened to toasting to another’s health.

And now, please cue the star and rainbow… the more you know!

Happy St. Paddy’s Day, ye goats!

San Diego Runs On Dunkin’… FINALLY!

FINALLY, the elusive East Coast chain has graced San Diego with its presence, publicly anyway. There IS a Dunkin’ Donuts in SD, but is inaccessible to most, being located inside the Camp Pendleton base and all.

Well, loosen your belts and knock back some donuts and brew. Tucked inside the Embassy Suites and paired with a Baskin-Robbins, doors opened Monday morning to receive hundreds of people awaiting their tasty treats. I do wonder how many people will actually go to Baskin-Robbins instead, but we’ll see.

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The last time a donut shop caused this much of a stir was in April 2001 when Krispy Kreme opened its first San Diego location in Clairemont. I remember I resisted ditching school to wait hours in line. Instead, I just had my delinquent friends bring some back for me. #NotTooCoolForSchool =)

My first Dunkin’ experience was with Danny, Guang, Chris, and Jackie (HI!) at the Lambert-St. Louis International Airport in February 2011. It was also a DD/BR combo (maybe it’s a thing?), and I remember their coffee really hit the spot.

Fun fact: the previous tenant was a Starbucks that chose not to renew its lease. Seems like Dunkin’ Donuts and Baskin-Robbins didn’t take their sweet time in scooping up this location. ;)

H/T to Jen B. for letting me know about the opening. <3

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Dunkin’ Donuts/Baskin-Robbins

601 Pacific Highway

San Diego, CA  92101

5,000 Views: Numbers for Nommers!

Hello everyone!

I surpassed 5,000 views this past Sunday, and the 85°C Bakery post was my chef in shining hat! As of today, that alone broke pretty much all of my previous “records”:

* 2,984: most views for a single post vs. 262 from the San Diego Public Market post)

* 2,011: views from all my other posts combined

* 842: most views per day vs. 368 from the San Diego Night Market post

* 91: its Google search rank for “85 Degrees”

* 27: its Google search rank for “85 Degrees Bakery”

* 7: its Google search rank for “85 Degrees San Diego” vs. 132 from “Public Market” or 20 for “Night Market” (which I’m sure were given boosts because of such

What can I say? I like numbers… and nommers. =)

Either way, thank you everyone for helping to make this happen! Keep an eye out for more posts from me!

Pliny the Younger: The Hunt Is On!

Hello my beer dears! I’m going hunting! No, not for you (though some new beer friends would be fun). I’m gonna get me my first taste of some Pliny the Younger, the second in a series to one of the few IPAs I actually like.

As many of you may know, Russian River Brewing, in Santa Rosa, Calif., has a notable flagship brew, Pliny the Elder, a double IPA that’ll kick you kindly in the face. Who are Pliny the Elder and Younger? Yes, they were real people. Check out their respective Wiki pages here and here.

Anyway, every first Friday of February, RR does a limited release of PTY, a triple IPA that kicks you a little less kindly in the face, but supposedly well worth the wait.

RR Pliny the Younger

Fortunately, RR likes to share and sends small (and I mean SMALL) amounts to select locations! You’ll get a few days, a few hours, or sometimes no notice at all, of when it’s tapped, and fortunately for you, I also like to share (my research).

Lines can get Black Friday-esque, so good luck and get on it; otherwise, you’re not getting any Younger. #seewhatididthere

Confirmed Dates:

Churchill’s Pub & Grille (San Marcos), March 1, 11:00am: it will be included in their Renaissance Anniversary and Finest Hour release. I’ve heard some wait overnight for this.

Encinitas Ale House, February 24, 4:00pm: confirmed on their event page, which coincides with their Rare Beer Mondays, but I see pictures on their Facebook page of people enjoying it yesterday. No one picked up on my call, so it’s a dice roll here, folks.

The Neighborhood (Downtown SD), February 24, 5:oopm: yup… that’s TODAY! I just called and there is currently no line, sooo… GO… GO NOW!

SD Tap Room (Pacific Beach), February 26, 5:00pm: their second tapping is the same as their first: first come, first served for the first 100 people in line.

Hopefuls:

Blind Lady Ale House: BLAH already sold out for their charity event, but who knows if they’ll have a separate keg for the public.

Breakwater Brewing: they tapped it last year and said to keep an eye on their FB page if they get one this year.

Live Wire: they did a tapping last year, I believe, but no word on it this year. PS. Their answering machine greeting is… unique…

O’Brien’s Pub: yes, they, too, already tapped a keg this past weekend, and the second tap is Wednesday for a sold-out charity event. Keep a close eye on their enews or social media updates!

Pizza Port, Ocean Beach: I called them personally to find out that they have the keg and the tapping will likely be tomorrow or Wednesday! They’ll announce it on their Facebook page!

Stone Brewery: they’re the distributors for RR here in SD, so they should have the most to give. They did sell out next month’s Beer & Cigar Dinner, which includes a PTY pairing, so I would guess a public release sometime around there.

TigerTiger!: the sister location to BLAH, also sold out their charity event, but they did have a clue on FB and Twitter to join their mailing list… so… here you go.

Urge Gastropub: they are confirmed to have it, but is giving away nothing as to when. They will definitely post to their social media feeds, so look out there! Their Twitter page has a picture of The Elder. Cute. =)

All Tapped Out:

* Downtown Johnny Brown’s * Hamilton’s Tavern * Pizza Port, all other locations * San Diego Brewing Co.Toronado *

Please comment if you know of any I missed!

85 Degrees Bakery in San Diego!

85 Degrees Bakery

85 Degrees Bakery

The rumors are true! There will be an 85°C Bakery opening up off the corner of Balboa Avenue and Genesee Avenue!*

I am not ashamed to admit that I had never heard of such bakeries until I watched the first season of “Hajime no Ippo” and Ippo’s love interest worked at one.

You can say it’s… crumby (thanks Da-leh) that San Diego fans of the Taiwanese chain must currently make the tedious drive to Irvine, our nearest location, for their popular pastries and drinks.

They’re expanding swiftly with 10 other locations, including a solo store in Northern California, and their most recent grand opening in Cerritos on January 24th of this year.

Asian bakeries are common in San Diego, so let’s give them a shout out before they’re overshadowed by the hype from the many 85° suitors out there:

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Pangea Bakery Cafe (Kearny Mesa): this Taiwanese store has pastries, coffee, tea, sandwiches, and entrees, and it’s a great place to get work done.

Paris Baguette: this Korean chain is nestled inside, of course, H Mart and Zion Market. They even offer their own version of the cronut, which sells out pretty quickly if you’re not an early bird.

Paris Baguette

Huy Ky Bakery (City Heights): any Vietnamese kid remembers those hideously frosted cakes with sides of almond slivers, and delicious fruit filling. This is the bakery that fed my birthdays growing up. I still love green coconut to this day.

Cali Baguette (Kearny Mesa, Mira Mesa, El Cajon (a drive-thru), and a sit-down in Chula Vista): : this relatively new local chain offers plenty of banh mi selections, or you can buy baguettes baked fresh daily. My personal favorite though is the Pate Chaud a.k.a. MEAT PIE! Ahem… I mean, delicious steamed pork in a flaky puff pastry shell.

Cristy’s Bakery (Mira Mesa) and Filipino Food Bakery (Barrio Logan) are popular with the latter offering macarons (see this previous post regarding macarons vs. macaroons) from a pal of mine. Check ‘em out–The Macaron Studio!

On a separate note, 85° (or 85°C, 85C Bakery, whatever you wish to call it) is accepting applications. Just make sure you don’t give them back your entire paycheck or that’s several extra trips to the gym. As for me, maybe this is my year to run my first half-marathon with so many carbo-load options. =)

* Source: Clairemont Central

Holiday How-To: Be a Good Guest

Thanksgiving is on the horizon, and Christmas is already upon us for some (ahem: retailers). Here are some tips on how to be a good house guest to help ensure a coveted spot on the re-invite list for next year’s gatherings:

1. Prep/cook off-site as much as possible.

The host is usually in charge of the turkey, ham, or a slew of other dishes so asking them an hour before the party to use their counter space or oven can be stressful. That’s just poor planning or decision-making. Start earlier, choose a different dish, or clear it with the host ahead of time.

If you tinkle...

2. Clean up after yourself.

The rule of thumb is to leave a place as good or better as you had found it.

If you can see the crumb you dropped, so can everyone else. Leave it and karma will make sure you step in something fierce if its doing its job. Also, don’t forget the bathrooms.

3. Top it off, drop it off.

Don’t be that person who pushes all the trash down to make room for your own out of laziness. Chances are, three others have already tried before you, and you’ll end up tearing the bag, creating an even bigger mess.

4. Take home your leftovers.

Don’t be offended. Some people just don’t do leftovers, and there is such a thing as too much food. Respect the host’s wishes and take your dish home. Share it with others, or get creative with your next few meals.

5. Respect the no-shoes rule.

No shoes...

When asked to take off their shoes, the resistant responses are endless:

“Really??”

“Do I have to?”

*rolls eyes* “Sigh, fine…”

Not every household does this, but it isn’t just for Asian households, folks. Imagine walking through late autumn/early winter rains and snowfalls, then trudging all of that water and muck through someone’s pristine home. Sure, it’s not your home, but… it’s not your home. Play by their rules.

6. Be sensitive to others’ dietary needs.

By all means, make the dish you want, but if you can help it, why not put the bacon bits on the side if you know a vegetarian is attending? If you can’t help it, make a sign that says, “This dish contains peanuts.” Don’t put yourself out too much, but people will note your thoughtfulness.

Also, if you have an allergy, let it be known or you’ll have little reason to complain about your limited food options the day of.

7. Have fun!

It’s a gathering. Enjoy good food and drinks surrounded by good friends. If you are down about something, use the party as an opportunity to focus on the good in your life. Smiling can make a big difference, and causing others to smile makes an even bigger one. =)

Have Fun!