Most Scenic Grocery Shopping Yet

Dang, if I could shop weekly at a Safeway like this Canmore Safeway
getting my groceries would be just that much more therapeutic, among other things. In case you’re wondering, the interior of this Safeway in Canmore, Alberta is much like pretty much every other Safeway I’ve been in, including the only one I’ve visited that rivals this one in terms of scenic surroundings: the Banff Safeway.

The Safeway in Pollock Pines, California is also pretty great.

Things to do while waiting in line for Cheese Board pizza

  • look at the fruits in the windows of the Produce Center (if the line is that long, which it very well could be)
  • eavesdrop on the conversations of modern hipsters 
  • if they are in view, wonder if the numbers of the “1504” denoting the street address of The Cheese Board are actually made out of bread 
  • catch up on email 
  • contemplate the tasty items you could be already eating in the Epicurious Garden across the street 
  • wonder what the pizza toppings of the day will be and wether they will be worth the wait and $2.50 per slice (but then remember that they always are)
  • check what the pizza toppings of the day are

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Late Adopter Chronicles: Ketchup-Flavored Chips

IMG_5850 Wow, in the US (“the States” as some might say) we’ve been missing out on some great potato chip flaves. In addition to the delicious variety of Lay’s shown here, I also got to try out the grilled-steak-flavored Ruffles and longingly eyed a bag of bacon mac & cheese chips at Safeway. Dang…

But chip flavors have certainly come a long way in the US. There are more choice-fatiguing flavors than ever before, and among them are gems like Kettle Brand’s cheddar beer, which is great with pickles.

tsukemen: best way to eat ramen?

Maybe not the best but really good if the dipping soup(? broth?) is tasty and the noodles have a substantive chew. The downside: it’s really rough trying to drink the soup, or whatever it is, so, unless you like your soup really saline, if you want some deliciously gulpable or sippable liquid during your meal, you’ll have to order a side of miso soup.
The bowl on the left here contains white-sesame-flavored soup with sprouts, green onion and slices of pork.

Blackest Food I’ve Ever Eaten: squid ink curry

When I saw this on the menu as one of two lunch options (the second being some pasta dish I can no longer recall the details of), I had to give it a try. I’m glad I did. Despite being a little salty, this dish was pleasantly unique with its palate-piquing combo of Japanese curry and squid-ink pasta sauce flavors. The calamari strips in it were tender with just enough chew. Just wish it had come with a little more rice to more fully tame the slightly high sodium content of this entree.

Early Adopter Chronicles: Blue Hill Farm Yogurt

IMG_5525 This foray into “savory” yogurt is not what I expected. Thinking that the flavor of butternut squash would be more prominent, I was surprised to find that this offering from Blue Hill Farm was more like plain yogurt, tart with a hint of butternut squash. It’s not as sour as I find skyr tends to be and has a smooth, flowy creaminess to it. The sweet potato version was similar, mostly tasting of plain yogurt with hints of sweet potato. I’m curious if the carrot and beet versions taste any sweeter, but given the two I’ve tried, I’m expecting the carrot and beet flavors to be anywhere from subtle to nuanced as plain yogurt flavors are predominant on my palate.

And that works for me, because these yogurts go well with berries because of their overwhelming similarity to plain yogurt; you don’t have to worry about whether blueberries will pair well with butternut squash to enjoy this yogurt, if you like yogurt that’s more toward the plain & tart end of the spectrum.

Bagelsaurus: for the serious bagelvore

Onion bagel with scallion cream cheese.

Onion bagel with scallion cream cheese.

Everyone I know who has been to Bagelsaurus loves it. And for good reason. The bagels, when toasted, have a nice crisp outside you’ll crunch through to a dense, chewy interior; the texture is fantastic as is the taste. Dang, it’s so wonderful. I’ve been there 3 times this week, and I tend not to repeat patronize food spots within a week, typically (to get variety).

If you like bagels and have no picky food preferences or dietary restrictions, you really can’t go wrong with anything on the menu, but there are just a few things I’d suggest:

  1. Don’t go there on a first date, or more specifically, don’t go there on a first date and order a bagel with cream cheese; awkward attempts at biting followed by the distracting, unbecoming oozing out of massively slathered cream cheese may ensue as you try to sever a morsel from the kind of carb-dairy-carb layered delectable shown below. Regardless of whether you’re on a date or not, you might want to have some napkins handy (or maybe I just haven’t figured out the trick to eating these things more gracefully).
  2. If you order a bagel with cream cheese, eat it there or soon after getting it to go; it’s just not nearly as good once it starts losing that crisp and warmth it got from the toasting.
  3. The times I’ve tried the pretzel bagel, it’s been seriously salty. Maybe that works for you, but just know what you’re getting into.

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