Wednesday, June 10, 2009
BERKELEY LUNCH WITH FRIENDS
I had the pleasure of joining three emeritus law professors for lunch today at Eccolo in Berkeley's bustling Fourth Street district.
Mort and Dick arrived by Amtrak train, which makes a stop right behind the Fourth Street shopping area. George and I, who live closer than the other two, drove from our respective areas.
It was Mort, whose wife is from Italy, who originally told me that Eccolo's Roman-Style Fried Artichokes are the "real thing." Since then, I always order them when I dine at Eccolo. We started with them.
Then, I mentioned that I've been tempted by the Tuscan French Fries but have never tried them. Mort said they are not necessarily the "real thing." Real thing or not, the guys were game to try them. We ordered them for more munching before and during lunch. They were excellent and worth the indulgence.
George and Dick both ordered the warm Grilled Steak Salad, but wound up with one Steak Sandwich and one Steak Salad.
Rather, that sending the sandwich back, they agreed to share, after negotiating to also share the housemade potato chips that accompanied the sandwich.
Mort order the Pan-Fried Halibut with Sautéed Zucchini.
His serving looked a little small for the plate size and he agreed that it was not the best thing he's eaten here.
My choice was the Grilled Squid Salad with White Beans and a Pesto Dressing. You can't see them, but the White Beans are under the Frisée Greens.
Lots of interesting and lively conversation, especially between the other three who were longtime colleagues. And, good food as well.
After lunch, Mort and I went to the Café Rouge Meat Market, at the back of the restaurant, where he bought some meat to carry home.
Then we browsed in the Pasta Shop Food Market adjacent to Café Rouge, where Mort purchased some Tuscan cheeses and some Italian Chocolate.
We also looked through CB2 and stopped at Peet's for Jasmine Lime Ice Tea. Meanwhile, Dick headed over to The Gardener where he bought some rocks.
A lovely, leisurely afternoon all around.