Tonight my husband and went to Mill Valley Beerworks for dinner. We’ve been to Beerworks brewery a few times for beer and a few bar bites, but they’ve remodeled, and expanded and now have a full dining menu. Most of the tables are long and communal for sharing and gathering with friends. We opted instead for seats at the bar. At first I was disturbed not to see my favorite pork sliders and soft pretzels on the menu. However I was pleasantly surprised by the new menu and food. It was bright and fresh and simple, yet sophisticated. I’m not a big beer drinker but I had a nice Hogan Dry Apple Cider, which went well with the food. We shared a few small plates such as peas with mint, fava toast (fava bean paste on a baguette with a citrusy salad of herbs), cucumber and beets with creme fraiche, and 23 minute roasted potatoes (not sure on the name, luckily we didn’t wait that long). Only one dish missed for us – a tuna pappardelle on the large plate section. Pasta was a bit heavy and rubbery and heavily seasoned with parsley. After one bite it went untouched, and the waiter credited our bill. We finished with a lovely fig and ricotta dessert with a drizzle of honey. There was a small tea cake on the side (really just a bite), that I could’ve eaten a dozen of at least.
According to the bartender, Beerworks is planning to open for lunch soon and bring back some of the former bar bites, such as sandwiches and salads. I’m happy to have another lunch and dinner dining option in Marin county and especially in Mill Valley that creates and supports local, seasonal food. All in all it was a really nice, local date night. A surprise from the beer pub we were expecting, but more interesting and sophisticated than prior. Beerworks is noted for it’s handcrafted beer and other hundreds of international beer choices. However we saw more wine being served with the new fare than beer. Certainly a new destination for both beer snobs and foodies….
Speaking of which we saw Alice Waters dining at one of the communal tables. I just had to share that. Hope we’ll be able to get a table again soon.
So my family explained to Katie, the sitter about the hunger challenge. She saw all the unhappy faces in the fridge and cupboard. I was glad I made the vegetable parmesean as sometimes she’s eats a gluten free diet. So I didn’t want our restrictions to impact her diet and health.
My husband and I ate the pizza and veggies. I must say they were both really good. A nice salad would’ve gone well too, but we need to preserve. We’re only half way there. So we headed to back to school night and saw all the kids artwork, and listened to the teacher presentations. It actually ran late so we only had about an hour to ourselves. We headed to a beer pub, Mill Valley Beerworks. Was this cheating? I suppose. But my husband had a gift certificate, so that’s why we chose it and technically we didn’t spend any money. We each had a drink. But I couldn’t help ordering a mini pork slider for myself. (I actually would’ve liked about a dozen). I cannot tell a lie. I was really hungry from eating early and not much, since I wanted to be sure there was enough for the kids and sitter. Yes, I cheated. Again I didn’t pay, but it was $4 and thus almost my entire day’s allowance. Technically I could subtract the $4 from my left over money, which brings me to $21 for the next few days. This is where I’m getting stressed (we need bread, cereal, fruit) and would go to the Food Bank to see what they had for me to suplement and make it through to the next food stamp allotment.
The kids and sitter ate later. When we got home it was all gone. Good thing I wasn’t banking on eating that. Kids were in bed. However I learned this morning the kids had dessert. I wondered what they had, thinking the sitter wouldn’t have gone behind the unhappy faces. They had mango sorbet which was in the freezer. They knew that wasn’t part of the challenge, but there’s no unhappy faces because the tape doesn’t stick in the freezer (and there’s not much that is part of the challenge). Oh well. I couldn’t get mad. Everyone cheated a bit. This has been hard for them and they’re getting a bit agggravated by me and the challenge. Actually everyone is a bit on edge. I think it comes from lack of choice and freedom.