Oct
24

Sac Burger Battle 2017

Burger. Battle. Burger. Battle (Sing this to the tune of “Jaws”). Do you ever have that dream where you’re surrounded by battling burgers? No? Oh well. Either way, a very real and non-dream Burger Battle took place at Sacramento’s Cesar Chavez Park this September, and SacFoodies were on the scene to report back.

Nixtaco’s burger

The most incredible part about Sac Burger Battle 2017 (besides the burgers, obviously) was the camaraderie and overall joyous atmosphere. Everyone working the booths was laughing, slinging jaw-dropping burgers and taking the time to chat with attendees. The booths were set up so that there was plenty of room to maneuver, grab drinks and chat with your friends. ALSO, the plates provided came with a built-in drink holder! We had never seen a plate like this before and were dumbfounded – it meant you could hold your plate and drink in one hand while grabbing as many burgers as possible with the other – but we digress. Read on for our top choices from the throw down:

Laurel:

My absolute favorite burger (which comes as no surprise to anyone that knows me) was from South. It managed to be both soft and crunchy and ended with a nice pickle-y tang.

The burger from South featuring fried chicken skin

Cheyenne:

It was seriously hard to pick a favorite, but the way that the flavors of the Nixtaco burger mingled together, helped it step about in front the of the rest! The meat was cooked to perfection, the bun held up with all of the delicious ingredients.

Jessi:

My favorite burger was from Bacon and Butter! Their burger had bacon two ways, blended into the patty, and on top! Paired with crispy shallot rings and black garlic aioli, it was a 10/10 from me. I even went back for seconds!

Between the craft beer, cider and cocktail selection, Sac Burger Battle boasted an impressive array of local beverages to choose from. And between the three of us we have a cider, beer and cocktail enthusiast, so it was the perfect mix of drinks!

The proceeds from this event went to the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation, which dedicates itself to finding cures to Crohn’s Disease and ulcerative colitis. As much as we love food and drinks, we especially love eating and drinking for a cause. It was moving to see the community come together for such a worthy cause and showed the power of the food and beverage community in Sacramento. Over the past 6 years, Sac Burger Battle has raised over $200,000 for the foundation! If you’re inspired to contribute, you can still buy the official Sac Burger Battle t-shirt, with all proceeds being donated to the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation.

Hands down, Sac Burger Battle 2017 was one of our favorite events of the year to date. We got to eat delicious burgers, try craft drinks of every type of drink and commune with our fabulous foodie friends. Our only complaint? We got too full to try every burger! Guess we’ll have to keep trying burgers all over Sacramento . . . we really are dedicated to our work :).

The Mile High burger from Dawson’s

We hope you all get the chance to attend Sac Burger Battle next year, but for now, make your very own Burger Tour around Sacramento! All restaurants who participated are listed below – let us know what your favorite is!

To learn more about the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation, click here.

To learn more about Sac Burger Battle, click here.

To check out @BurgerJunkies (Sac Burger Battle Founder and burger enthusiast extraordinaire), click here.

SacFoodies and fellow Sacramento blogger Ashley Newell with Rodney from Burger Junkies!

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Oct
17

Bogi? Beer-ga? Beer Yoga!

by Laurel Harrison

Personally, I’m a big fan of mash-ups. Ramen burritos, that one mash-up episode of Glee, you name it. I think that a lot of fun can come out of combining two already-great things and making them into one GIANT fantastic thing – please see macaroni and cheese or breakfast burritos for reference.

For this reason, the yoga and beer trend intrigued me when it came on the scene. I like yoga. You already know that I like beer. So what’s not to like about the combination of the two? I wasn’t sure how it would feel to have a pint in that “super-clean-just-finished-stretching” afterglow, but I was 100% ready to give it a shot.

 

The Beer Yogis, led by the fabulous Mikki and Melissa, are currently traveling the West Coast on their 2017 Road Trip, bringing beer and yoga to the masses. I had the chance to take their class this weekend at Yolo Brewing in West Sac during their Sacramento stop of the tour.

The yoga class itself was held before the brewery opened in the production space behind the taproom. Surrounded by the hum of equipment and oddly comforting smell of brewing beer, we got onto our mats for a one-hour yoga party. Mikki and Melissa clearly know the ropes – they had a microphone (for talking over the equipment), perfectly chosen music and an awesome flow. I’ve taken yoga on and off throughout the years, and it felt so good to get back on the mat with two pros leading the group. Read more »

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Oct
12

You’re Gonna Want a Pizza This!

By Cheyenne Cameron-Pruitt and Laurel Harrison

October is National Pizza Month! We stopped by Pizza Rock for a pizza feast to kick off the month, and what a feast it was!

Laurel:
Even though I’ve lived in/near Sacramento since childhood, I had never been to Pizza Rock on K Street before last Friday. Because I’m a strict thin-crust pizza aficionado and I’ve found that many large pizza places don’t get them right, I tend to stay away from larger pizza joints on the whole. However, my friends and coworkers raved about Pizza Rock, so when SacFoodies was invited to sample some menu items, I was very excited especially since Pizza Rock’s Executive Chef, Laura Meyer, was at the dinner to talk about the different offerings.

Burratina di Margherita

The food at Pizza Rock exceeded my expectations by 1 gazillion percent. I was so incredibly surprised and pleased at the quality of the pizza, the inventiveness, and the culinary knowledge displayed by Chef Meyer.

We tried everything from classic Neapolitan pizza to Detroit “Blue-Steel Pan” pizza, with lots of happy dances in-between. Chef Meyer said it best when she told us that the ideal pizza should be light enough that you can eat, have a drink and go out dancing without feeling tired or bloated. And guess what, Foodie Friends? I ate the pizza, had a drink, and went out dancing – and it was awesome.

Cracker Thin Chicago Michigan Avenue

Personally, my favorite pizza of the night was the “Cracker-Thin Chicago Michigan Avenue,” a super-thin crust pizza with spicy pepperoni and crispy, bubbly cheese. Like I said – thin-crust pizza all the way, baby. I will definitely be returning to Pizza Rock in the future, and, thanks to Chef Meyer, have a great sense of the range Pizza Rock has to offer.

Cheyenne:
When SacFoodies got the invite to sample some of Pizza Rock’s menu to kick off National Pizza Month I was thrilled! I had only been to Pizza Rock once before, but the vibe and great food made the experience a memorable one. I am a pizza connoisseur, I like thin crust, hand-tossed, deep dish and wood-fire. If it is pizza, I will try it.

Read more »

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Sep
06

SacFoodies and the Beanstalk

This week, we were asked by Slow Food Sacramento to create a recipe using Elegant Beans Jacob’s Cattle Beans. Jacob’s Cattle Beans are an heirloom variety and a part of Ark of Taste, which serves as a living catalog of foods facing extinction. We had a blast creating this recipe (and eating it), and we hope you try it out, too! These beans were remarkably easy to cook with and have a nutty, rich flavor that pairs perfectly with bacon and sage (but, to be fair, what doesn’t?).

 

Jacob’s Cattle Beans with Bacon & Sage

Ingredients:

1/2 lb. Jacob’s Cattle Beans

2 large yellow onions

4 cloves garlic

5 pieces thick-cut bacon

2 carrots

2 stalks celery

1/4 cup chopped fresh sage

1 tsp. red chili flakes

1 tsp. black pepper

Salt to taste

Instructions:

Soak the beans overnight with enough water to cover them by 1 inch. After soaking, bring beans to a boil on medium-high heat, then reduce to a low simmer for about 30 minutes, or until the beans begin to soften. While the beans simmer, cut your bacon into chunks and cook in a large skillet. Remove bacon when finished. Chop onions and sauté in the same skillet used to cook bacon. Peel and chop garlic and add to onions. Cook until caramelized, on low heat, stirring slowly to ensure the onions and garlic don’t burn. Add 1/8 cup chopped sage. Chop celery and carrots and set aside.

Once the beans have simmered for 30 minutes and the bacon and onions are done, add the bacon, onions, garlic, and chopped vegetables to the pot with the beans. Make sure there is enough liquid to just cover the top – it’s fine to add a little more.

Partially cover with the lid and set on a low simmer for 1 hour and 15 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes to keep from sticking. Cook until liquid thickens and flavors come together. Serve with remaining fresh sage sprinkled on top, and salt to taste. Enjoy!

For more about Jacob’s Cattle Beans, click here!

Sep
05

“Nacho” Average Afternoon at the SacTown Nachos Festival

By Jessica Gunn

Two Saturdays ago, a few of the SacFoodies attended the inaugural SacTown Nachos Festival, held at Downtown’s Cesar Chavez Park. We were intrigued by all of the buzz surrounding the festival and by the promise of nacho-mania, so we sunscreened-up and ventured into the Sacramento heat!

At this point, the SacFoodies have attended our fair share of food festivals, fetes, and fairs. One of the top things a festival can do right (in our opinion) is have a location with shade – and this one had it! If the food is good but you’re too hot and have nowhere to sit, it puts a pretty significant damper on the day. It was a really good call on the part of the Nacho Festival to the have the event in a park. Not only was there shade, there was plenty of grass to sit on and space to stretch out. Also, being in the center of downtown made this event convenient and easy to get to! We love it when we can attend central events because they completely open up the possibilities of the day – you can walk to your favorite bar after, catch a movie, or just stroll around, rather than having to drive from a remote location.

Now for what we came here for…….the NACHOS. Being dairy-free and attending a nacho festival usually wouldn’t mix but I decided to try it out anyway. No surprise, Chando’s nachos didn’t disappoint. They happily made my nachos without cheese or sour cream and they were so good. Spicy adobada with fresh onions, tons of cilantro, and guacamole, all served over fresh tortilla chips. The combination of spicy meat and fresh salsas was really unbeatable, especially paired with a cold Modelo! I don’t venture out into 110 degree heat often, but from now on I expect delicious dairy free nachos every time I do.

Overall I would declare the first SacTown Nacho Fest a success. Besides the nachos we tried, we also got a peek at some of the other delicious treats from The Roaming Spoon, Gameday Grill, and OMG! Yogurt! They looked amazing and I wish I had room in my stomach to sample each one. ‘Til next time, Foodies!

Gameday Grill Tri-Tip Nachos

OMG! Yogurt! Ice cream nachos

Roaming Spoon Vegan Nachos

 

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Jul
19

We 100% love 85°C Café

By: Jessica Gunn

Last week the SacFoodies crew was invited to try out 85°C, a Taiwanese-style bakery specializing in delectable and affordable pastries and cakes. 85°C, nicknamed “The Starbucks of Taiwan,” has 1,000 locations all over the world and boasts a cult-like following. When we arrived, the line was out the door for the grand opening of their first Sacramento location at 5591 Sky Pkwy. Thanks to General Manager, Stacey, the SacFoodies were invited inside for delicious food and refreshing iced tea.

We tried a range of items, from Taiwanese-style cheese bread to Japanese coffee bread filled with red bean and mochi. After bringing our goodies back to the office, the entire SacFoodies crew dug in for a mid-afternoon snack. We then conducted a comprehensive taste test (meaning each of us tried everything at least 3 times). How else could we pick a favorite? After all was said eaten and done, we had some clear winners.

  • Japanese-style Squid Ink with Corn, Chicken, and Cheese

This pastry was unlike anything we had seen before! The flavorless squid ink made the round bread a dark black color. The corn and chicken rested in the middle of the bread, and all was topped with melted cheese and breadcrumbs. Everyone that tried this treat loved it. We’ll definitely be back for more of this unique bread.

Read more »

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Jul
14

Farm-to-Fork Fun This Weekend

By Jessica Gunn

California State Fair

Celebrate the California State Fair’s 164th anniversary with a ton of foodie fun. The fair has FREE (yes, you read that right…free) samples of honey from Sola Bee Farms, cheese tastings from Point Reyes Farmstead, cornbread and bbq sauce from Burgess Brothers and ice cream samples from Gunther’s Ice Cream. The CA State Fair has everything your fair-going heart could desire, including the highly-anticipated wiener dog races. End your State Fair experience with a cooking demo from official fair chef, Keith Breedlove. He will be showcasing all the best farm-to-fork ingredients available. Nothing says summer like the State Fair!

July 14-20, 2017

1600 Exposition Blvd                                                                                            Sacramento, CA, 95815

Tickets are $10.00 for adults and $6.00 for children if you purchase in advance.

Off the Grid @ The Barn

Do food trucks, live music, interactive art and dancing pique your interest? If so, you should head over to West Sac for this week’s Off the Grid at The Barn, where food trucks from Sacramento and San Francisco gather to share their delicious bites. This Saturday, the Drake’s Brewing Co. crew will be in attendance to host an interactive beer brewing (and tasting) experience. This event is held every Saturday through the end of August, so you have plenty of time to get your foodie groove on!

July 15, 2017
5:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m.

The Barn                                                                                                             985 Riverfront St.
West Sacramento, CA, 95691

More information here.

Read more »

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Jul
13

YOLO! So Taste Everything?

By Laurel Harrison and Cheyenne Cameron-Pruitt

 

Laurel:

On June 10th, I had the opportunity to represent SacFoodies at this year’s Taste of Yolo. Taste of Yolo is an event dedicated to celebrating the agricultural bounty available in Yolo County. This year, it was hosted in Davis’ Central Park (same location as the weekly Davis Farmer’s Market) and hosted a myriad of restaurants, breweries, wineries, and local agricultural businesses. The booths were divided up by town of origin, making the event feel like a miniature map of the county.

 

As a born & bred Woodland gal, I was happy to see a strong showing from Woodland. I would argue that the star of the whole show was Las Brasas Taqueria, which had a constant line throughout the day. Of course, Las Brasas is already a Woodland Main St. staple, but it was great to see the rest of the county get to try them out. Because TOY was held on the grass, there were lots of places to sit, rest, and enjoy my wine and snacks.

Read more »

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Jul
06

Food and Fun in the Sun this Saturday

By Jessica Gunn

Summer is in full swing and I can’t think of a better way to celebrate than by having some fun in the sun and good food! Because is fun really fun without food? Check out these fun food events all happening this Saturday.

THIS is Midtown
This is not your average block party. Local artists like the LA Riots, Mike Diamond and My Cousin Vinny will be performing throughout the day rounded out by a beer garden and lots of vendors. The best part? This event is sponsored by Saint Archer Brewing Company, Pizzeria Urbano, LowBrau, and Azul Mexican food and Tequila Bar making it a FREE event! You can’t go wrong with THIS is Midtown.

July 8, 2017                                                                                                       4:30 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.

20th St. between K and J streets                                                                 Sacramento, CA

More information here.

The Midtown Bizarre July
Identity Coffee is hosting their monthly pop-up shop on Saturday July 8. Vendors and artisans from around the area will be there selling goods and answering questions regarding their crafts. Bring the whole family and enjoy a cup of amazing, fresh brewed coffee while you shop.

July 8, 2017
10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

1430 28th Street                                                                                 Sacramento, CA 95816

More information here.

Punk Rock Pizza Party 
If you love punk rock as much as you love pizza, this is the event for you. Bottle and Barlow is hosting their second annual foodie concert for the 21 and over crowd, featuring music from Setting Sons, and food from Pizza Supreme Being. Pizza and music? I’m there.

July 8, 2017
3:00 p.m.

Bottle and Barlow                                                                                           1120 R Street                                                                                                       Sacramento, CA 95811

More information here.

The Cocktail Academy
Have you ever wanted to learn how to bartend, but without the pressures of working in an actual bar? Here is your chance. Join Hook & Ladder Manufacturing Company this Saturday July 8 for a master class in all things bubbly. Learn how to make sangria, sherry, and champagne cocktails while enjoying snacks and cocktail tastings. The best part…this is the first in a series of seven masterclasses covering all your favorite liquors! Tickets are $55, but save some money by buying more than one class.

July 8, 2017
2 p.m. – 4 p.m.

Hook & Ladder Manufacturing Company
1630 S Street                                                                                                         Sacramento, CA 95811

Buy tickets and see more information here.

Jun
21

Pasta La Vista + Giveaway

There are a few things that foodies can’t say no to, and pasta is one of them! When Romano’s Macaroni Grill asked us if we would like to try some of their signature menu items AND have it delivered to the office, our answer was a resounding YES.

Cheyenne: Pasta the Chicken Parm my way! We were so excited to have the Macaroni Grill cater our lunch meeting last week. When they sent over the menu we were impressed by the variety available to us. “Create Your Own Pasta,” a multitude of signature entrees, sides and even dessert, made it really hard to pick exactly what we wanted to enjoy. We settled on two versions of the “Create Your Own Pasta”: Penne with Pomodoro and Penne with Pesto, pine nuts, sundried tomatoes and spinach (per the recommendation of the catering manager), Chicken Parmesan, salad, roasted veggies and, of course, rosemary peasant bread. The delivery was a breeze and Macaroni Grill set everything up, labeled each dish and provided us with all of the necessary essentials for us to enjoy our meal with the greatest of ease. The food was delicious! The pasta was cooked to perfection and the sauce tasted so authentic it was as if someone’s grandma was in the kitchen stirring the pot. The roasted veggies were still crisp and flavorful. I think the Chicken Parmesan was the real winner for the office. As soon as we sat down to eat, everyone raved over the dish. It was breaded perfectly, had just enough sauce and the most important part (to me at least) the CHEESE!  Overall the meal was delicious, the process was easy and the foodies were full and happy!

Read more »

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