Holiday Merriment at Paul Martin’s


Recently SacFoodies was invited to try the holiday menu at Paul Martin’s American Grill in Roseville. Never having dined there, I quickly raised my hand!

From now until January 3, plan a night out to try their holiday selections of Southern Fried Game Hen, Linguine and Clams and Grilled Lamb Sirloin. If those dishes don’t tempt you, their traditional dinner menu offers many delectable choices for every craving, anytime of year.

My top three menu items ran the gamut from sweet to savory. To start, a must try is the Jack Martin, a classic 1920s inspired cocktail, muddled with Italian Amaretto, sweet cherries, lemon juice and shaken with a smooth blended brandy. Next were the Salt and Pepper Prawns, buttermilk battered and paired with a zesty pesto aioli dipping sauce. Following my entrée, I rounded out the meal with a decadent piece of Devil’s Food Cake with rich ganache, cherries and fresh whipped cream.


Besides the ambiance and great service, the best part of Paul Martin’s American Grill is their motto to bring fresh, seasonal, and local selections to the menu, making each dish from scratch every day. Pressing even further with our server, Eric, this philosophy also means they pride themselves on not using pre-made sauces or frozen ingredients, and they select only the freshest raw ingredients to start, which includes 100% natural meats, sustainable seafood, and seasonal produce in every dish. This is a mantra close to our hearts and worth sharing.

Jack Martin

Next time, I’ll plan to pop over for happy hour or to try their Monday Wine Dinner, a great deal for two at $49 including a bottle of wine.

Paul Martin’s American Grill
1455 Eureka Road
Roseville, CA 95661 
(916) 783-3600

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12 Beers of Christmas at zpizza


If you don’t already have plans for this Friday evening (or feel like skipping the seventh holiday party on your calendar), consider heading over to zpizza in the Pocket area to sample the “12 Beers of Christmas” during their Lagunitas tap takeover event.


Beers on tap will include some Lagunitas Brewing Company favorites including IPA, Hop Stoopid Imperial IPA, Pilsner, Dogtown Pale Ale, Lil Sumpin Sumpin Ale, Lil Sumpin Wild Ale, Censored Rich Copper Ale, Brown Shugga, Imperial Red Ale, Maximus Double IPA and Imperial Stout. (For those who are counting, the twelfth will be a special Lagunitas mystery beer that will be revealed during the event.)

They’ll be offering up free zpizza appetizers and a Lagunitas pint glass, while supplies last. Plus, they have a self-pour keg room – customers can scan wristbands at the kegs to monitor the amount they drink and the kegs include tablets displaying information about each brew. How fun is that?

Friday, December 19th – 6-8 pm

zpizza Tap Room
7600 Greenhaven Drive
Sacramento, CA 95831

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Soft Amish Sugar Cookies


I love baking any time of the year, but there is something about baking around the holidays that is extra special. My 4-year-old has been begging to make Christmas cookies for weeks, so I wanted to find a recipe that would be simple enough for him to really help. I found this recipe on the Cookies and Cups blog and it was the perfect mom/toddler cookie to tackle. I loved the soft, fluffy texture of the cookies and even though there are 2 cups of sugar in it, oddly they weren’t too sweet.


1 cup butter, room temperature

1 cup vegetable oil

1 cup granulated sugar

1 cup powdered sugar

2 eggs

2 teaspoons vanilla

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon cream of tartar

½ teaspoon salt

4½ cups flour

Sprinkles and or candies for decoration



Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or Silpat. Set aside.

In your mixing bowl cream together butter, oil and both sugars until smooth. Beat in eggs and vanilla. Add in baking soda, cream of tartar and salt and mix together. Turn mixer to low and add in flour, mixing until combined. Using a cookie scoop or tablespoon drop dough onto lined baking sheet. Add sprinkles now if desired. Bake for 10-12 minutes until edges just start to golden. Allow to cool for 3 minutes on baking sheet and transfer to wire rack to finish cooling.

Recipe from Cookies & Cups

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Wordless Wednesday: Magpie Café


The Natural Pulled Pork Sandwich, a Winter Squash Panini and the Duck Confit Salad at Magpie, one of my favorite restaurants in Sacramento.

Magpie Café
1409 R Street
Sacramento, CA
(916) 452-7594

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Seasonal Sippers from Café Bernardo


When it comes to holiday beverages of the non-alcoholic variety, one might automatically think of a Pumpkin Spiced Latte or a Peppermint Mocha. However, thanks to the folks at Café Bernardo, you can broaden your holiday pick-me-up horizons and try two of their new seasonal creations available at all five of their locations throughout the month of December. Happy sipping!

The Eggnog Latte is made with eggnog that is prepared daily, using local ingredients at the Paragary Bakery. Then, the latte is made at the cafes using local Clover Milk and Vaneli’s Espresso.

Using local Barsotti apple juice and housemade chai tea, the Apple Chai Tea is a flavor combination not to be missed.

Cafe Bernardo Davis
3rd & D St.

Cafe Bernardo Midtown
28th & Capitol
Sacramento, CA

Cafe Bernardo R15
15th & R St.
Sacramento, CA

Cafe Bernardo on K Street
10th & K St.
Sacramento, CA

Cafe Bernardo at Pavilions
Pavilions Ln & Fair Oaks Blvd.
Sacramento, CA

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Blackberry Cheesecake Squares


I have to admit, before making these blackberry beauties, I was very intimidated at the idea of making cheesecake. The Springform pans, the homemade crusts, those dreaded crevasses and cracks down your cake! So much could go wrong! I had resigned to eat store bought cheesecake for life – until I found the recipe for these simple Blackberry Cheesecake Squares.

All my fears were finally put to rest. The crust turned out to be just a few easy ingredients, the cake batter was a breeze to blend, and the topping simmered to perfection (Fun fact – the leftover topping is amazing with ice cream, too). Honestly, the hardest part was waiting two hours for the squares to cool. In the end, my Blackberry Cheesecake Squares turned out smooth, sweet, and get this – crack free!

Blackberry Cheesecake Squares


10 ounces (2 Sleeves) graham crackers
1/2 cup walnuts
1/2 cup butter, melted
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

3 packages (8 ounces each) cream cheese, softened
1 – 1/2 cups sugar
1 – 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
4 whole eggs
1/2 cup sour cream

4 cups blackberries
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup water
2 tablespoons cornstarch
4 tablespoons water

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Place a 9 x 13 inch pan (or other ovenproof pan) of hot water into the bottom rack.

For the crust, line a separate 9 x 13 inch baking pan with foil. Spray with cooking spray. In the bowl of a food processor, add the graham crackers and walnuts and pulse until they’re fine crumbs. Drizzle in melted butter, pulsing until it’s all incorporated. Pulse in the vanilla. Pour the crumbs into the prepared pan and press the crumbs firmly into an even layer. Set aside.

Beat cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla together until smooth. Add eggs one at a time, beating after each addition. Add sour cream and beat until incorporated. Pour the filling into the crust and smooth the surface. Bake for 45 minutes, then turn off the oven and leave the door closed for an additional 10 minutes. Finally, open the door halfway and leave it in the oven for an additional 10 minutes. Remove the cheesecake and let it cool completely.

For the topping, add blackberries, sugar, and 1/4 cup water to a saucepan. Bring it to a boil and cook until the juices thicken slightly, about 4-5 minutes. In a small bowl, mix the cornstarch with 4 tablespoons water, then add it to the berries. Let it boil for another 1 to 2 minutes, then turn off the heat and allow to cool. Pour the blackberries over the cheesecake and place the pan into the fridge to chill and set for at least 2 hours. When ready to serve, remove the cheesecake from the pan by lifting the edges of the foil. Peel back the foil and use a long serrated knife to cut cheesecake into squares.

Note: Put a pan of water in the oven with your cheesecake. The humidity helps avoid cracks. Recipe adapted from The Pioneer Woman.

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Shoki Ramen House


“A bowl of dreams” is what the folks at Shoki Ramen House call their noodles, and after my first experience there, I can honestly say a bowl of dreams it was.

Nestled on the corner of 12th and R Street in Downtown Sacramento, the location I visited was quaint and intimate. The whole restaurant was as big as my own kitchen and every seat in the house was taken. It’s that good. Tables were turning, servers were bustling and guests were smiling…yet a calming mood veiled the whole restaurant – it was a cozy atmosphere in a room full of happy, relaxed customers.

If you know me, you know that I love ramen. It’s my weakness and the one food item I can never turn down. Seriously – even when I’m not hungry – a bowl of ramen always hits the spot. And this particular ramen from Shoki was just another story. I ordered a small bowl of their most popular, Tan Tan Men entrée, and Oh. My. Goodness.

Served with a heaping mound of thick noodles, even the “small” size was a hearty serving. The mild spicy soy-sauce was spectacular – the flavor was bursting, but the saltiness was under control. My one critique of ramen is always the extreme saltiness. I don’t really like salt, so the fact that their broth was so flavorful but not overly salty, really impressed me.

Within the bowl, the Tan Tan Men came standard with freshly ground white sesame seeds, fresh organic baby spinach and grass-fed seasoned minced beef. And of course, no ramen is complete without the addition of egg, so I added Tamago (also known as Organic Seasoned Half-Boiled Egg) to my bowl. My protein-packed, flavorful bowl of ramen was more than satisfying. After slurping every last bit of broth, my heart was warmed and my stomach content.

Restaurant owner and chef, Yasushi Ueyama, has committed to making his ramen pure, all-natural, and healthy. Nothing on his menu contains MSG or preservatives to enhance the flavor of the broth. In fact, upon ordering, you can customize your bowl to whatever your heart or dietary restrictions desire. Mild, medium or spicy? Check. Gluten-free, carb-free, low-sodium? Check. Vegan options? Check. If you can’t eat it, Shoki Ramen House can accommodate. Just check out their online menu and see for yourself. While you’re there, check out their entire website – it’s simple, clean and inviting. They make the process of ordering ramen so easy, even for first-timers.

Shoki Ramen House
1201 R St
Sacramento, CA 95818
(916) 441-0011

2675 24th St
Sacramento, CA 95811
(916) 454-2411

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The Flavors of Levi’s Stadium


I’ll be the first to admit I am not into football. I know nothing about the sport and instantly fall asleep when Sunday games are switched on (I do love my Sunday naps). So when I was recently asked to attend a game at the new Levi’s Stadium, I only said “yes” based on the fact that the stadium serves great food and that Wi-Fi and wine are available on the Amtrak ride to the game. With those two promises, I couldn’t say no.

Read more »

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Did that headline get your attention? We thought it might.

The fast casual restaurant chain, zpizza, will be serving up free pizza samples at both of their Sacramento-area locations to hungry pizza-lovers this Saturday, November 22 from 1-3pm.


As a part of their “Pop Up City Tour,” zpizza will be sampling their most popular pies and giving those who stop by a chance to win coupons and gift certificates. So we’d advise getting there while it’s hot!

When: Saturday, November 22
Where: Two zpizza Sacramento-area locations:

Sacramento (Greenhaven Pocket)
7600 Greenhaven Drive
Sacramento, CA 95831
(916) 424-4222

Roseville (Granite Bay)
3984 Douglas Blvd
Roseville, CA 95661
(916) 786-9797


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Wordless Wednesday: SacFoodies Breakfast


sacfoodies photo

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