The Endless Road Trip: Salt and Straw

We’re no strangers to crazy ice cream flavors here at ES, and let’s be real—in this brave new dessert world where salted caramel sundaes and olive oil ice cream have become the norm, a chef putting something insane inside your cone is not really newsworthy. HOWEVER, when I heard there is an ice cream shop in meat-mad Portland serving bone marrow ice cream, clearly I was there in a New York minute.

The bad news: Salt and Straw did not have the bone marrow flavor in stock on the day I visited, but really for the very best reason possible: they were waiting for cherry season to start, so that they could make a bone marrow-black cherry ice cream. Obvi.

The good news: I had enough friends with me to order up a smorgasbord of outrageous flavors: honey balsamic strawberry with cracked pepper, sea salt with caramel ribbons, coffee-bourbon, blue cheese and pear (!), honey-lavender, blood orange, and blueberry with key lime marmalade. All head-over-heels amazing. the sweet-and-savory balsamic-strawberry-pepper took top honors for me.

The better news:

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ISO: Avocado Orchard

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When I was planning my trip out to Southern California the number one item on my to-do list was to see an avocado tree. I receive press releases from the California Avocado Commission regularly—and once even was mailed a shipment of the fruit—so I decided to re-engage to see if I could schedule a trip out to an avocado orchard. At first they said yes, and that I could even interview a grower, but then they returned saying no, not at this time, and they were planning a “blogger” event next year. Heartbreak ensued.

So with one day left in Long Beach I’m really trying to make it happen. Although I will be in San Diego over Labor Day, I was hoping to knock that off my list during this trip.

While I am patiently waiting for an avocado tree sighting, I have laid my eyes on some pretty other cool food stuffs out here.


This citrus tree (at top) grows on my friend Thresher’s balcony in Santa Monica. My friend Jon has a Meyer lemon tree and a blood orange tree growing in his back yard. Are you fucking kidding me? That’s all I have to say.

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Sea Vegetables.

I’ve only seen sea vegetables called for in Alicia Silverstone’s The Kind Diet. Even in Japan I couldn’t identify them. But that was the least of our communication problems. I tried them at Real Food Daily, a vegan restaurant open since 1993. My dining partner, Thresher, a PETA employee, warned me that they’re funky. I was determined to try because it’s something I just couldn’t easily find in DC. And the shit was weird. Slimy. Bland. Blah. But cool looking. (Next to the sea vegetables: mashed potatoes with a kick ass nutritional yeast gravy.)

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