Albany’s Sam’s Log Cabin Is Ick

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I’m pretty sure my friend K who writes about food told me that Sam’s Log Cabin on San Pablo Avenue in Albany has good food. I’m probably wrong about that because they do not. I tried to have Sunday brunch there a few weeks ago and there were roughly 25 people on the list before me 45 minutes until closing time. My friend P and I easily got a table today at 8 am.

It’s cute, especially the back patio area. Everyone working there is very friendly. The portions are big. The blueberry lemon scone, sourdough toast, and potatoes were very good. They are not too fancy to serve Diet Coke. The important stuff, eggs, pancakes, and sausages were not good at all. If it’s possible for all three of these foods to be dry, that’s what they were.

The most important part of breakfast is the egg. If a place overcooks my scrambled eggs, I never go there again. I probably like them more runny than most but if they look and taste like I’m at a breakfast buffet in a London hotel or at Whole Foods for that matter, then I’m out. Sam’s Log Cabin served dry ass eggs.

I ordered the Hardly Working breakfast consisting of a pancake and egg and added sausage because I like to make my own McDonald’s McGriddle type messy roll up thing. The pancake was dry, even with the whole shot glass of syrup. Finally, the sausage was dry, like crumbling in its little casing dry.

I’d say the food was on par with Au Coquelet in Downtown Berkeley. That is a super dis.

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Albany’s Sam’s Log Cabin Is Ick

Purple Rain Cocktail At Albany’s Eugene Is Not So Good

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I like Albany’s Eugene. I don’t like it because of the food, drinks, or ambience. I like it because they named it after the city in Oregon (not the man’s name) where my beloved Oregon Ducks play. I have mad Oregon pride. Oregonians are some of the best people in the world.

I had an awkward brunch date at Eugene (shout out to my friend S who was randomly there and tried to save me). We only ate there because there were about 25 people on the list waiting for a table at Sam’s Log Cabin on San Pablo Avenue and it was about to close. I don’t like fancy breakfast unless you count silver dollar pancakes. Brunch at Eugene is fancy. There may have been a lot of polenta and kale on the menu but I forget.

My second visit to Eugene was to have a drink while waiting for a table at Little Star. I don’t like the chunky tomato stuff that they put on deep-dish pizzas but that’s another post. I ordered the Purple Rain cocktail, duh. It has gin, crème de violet, maraschino, chartreuse, lemon, and sparkling wine. It does look kind of like polluted (purple) rain water. All I tasted was lemon.

Poor Prince. First he has to die and then he has to have shitty cocktails named after him. Real charmers we Oregonians are, I know.

Purple Rain Cocktail At Albany’s Eugene Is Not So Good

Revisit The Trappist

FullSizeRender (61)Is The Trappist the original specialty spot to open during Oakland’s decade long beer boom? It’s so old that it’s Belgian focused. I hate Belgian beer. It tastes like cloves. Consequently, I haven’t been to The Trappist much over the years. I definitely took my beer snob brother-in-law there when he visited a while ago, before there were a million great options for craft beer in Albany, Berkeley, El Cerrito, and Oakland.

My friend H from Books and Beer Club and I went there last Wednesday before eating at B-Dama in Swan’s Marketplace. The weather was hot! Did you know that The Trappist has a nice little beer garden in the back? I did not. H did not. I was really pleased to see Founders All Day IPA on tap, a session ale with 4.7% ABV, perfect for the warm weather.

Old Oakland is so lively on weekdays after work. I’m finding any excuse to hang out there these days. Downtown Berkeley’s drinking establishments have dwindled lately. I did hear that a new restaurant is moving into the Perdition space and that they inherited Perdition’s great beer selection. I don’t know how that works but I’m very happy about it.

Revisit The Trappist

What To Do In Albany On A Saturday Night

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Ivy Room’s grand reopening is tonight starting at 9. Ivy Room is one of the many wonders of San Pablo Avenue and the oldest Albany neighborhood bars. It’s been a dive bar, a lounge, upscale cocktail bar and now in its latest incarnation a locals bar/club/music venue. San Francisco’s Face the Giant us headlining.

I’ve always loved Ivy Room’s neon sign. It’s beckoned to me since I first moved to the Bay Area and yet I’ve never been inside. I hear there will be cozy booths, a good stage and sound system, and prohibition era fixtures. It’s less than a 10 minute walk away from Plan B-ing it at Albany Bowl with its new and improved glow in the dark light show.

See you there.

What To Do In Albany On A Saturday Night

Fun! Date Ideas

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I’m the worst bowler ever!

What do you do when a man asks you out and says, “Let’s do something fun?”

  1. Tell him that you look forward to finding out what fun plans he comes up with.
  2. Assume he’s talking about sex and head to the family planning section of your nearest drugstore.
  3. Research and poll all your friends. You are #1 fun date planner.

I’m the #1 fun date planner type. The date would have been tonight so my first step was to research various sites (Berkeleyside, Fun Cheap SF, etc.) to find out if there were any fun events happening tonight. A “fun” event might be an art party or when Romper Room in San Francisco turned the bar into a giant ball pit.

In this case I couldn’t really find anything. I very briefly thought about the Dirty Old Women Literary Salon at Octopus in Oakland but decided that would be weird. On St. Patrick’s Day I polled my friends who were with me drinking green beer. Lucky for me, one of my friends is the Nosh writer for Berkeleyside (that’s two mentions in one post K!).

I typically think fun dates involve some type of alcohol and play. Kink Studios tour, Thursday night at Exploritorium, and Playland Japan all in SF are examples. I wasn’t sure if he meant going into the city when he asked for fun. My friend K said that: 1. The East Bay is the best (agreed). 2. Usually people who are visiting have their own idea of what’s fun to do in San Francisco. 3. She’d ask her BF to create a Tenderloin Tour for me (stay tuned for that blog post). It’s challenging getting into the city for a weeknight date IMO.

K and I started talking about how much we love San Pablo Avenue. There are many wonders to behold from Oakland to El Cerrito on San Pablo Avenue. Here’s a short list (all great date locations as well): Albany Aquarium, Tap Plastics, Missouri Lounge, Tokyo Fish Market, and Albany Bowl is one of the most fun places in the whole world. I love taking dates to Albany Bowl with a Hotsy Totsy Club and parking lot El Autlense taco truck chaser.

Albany Bowl is the best. It’s not at all for hipsters. There are a lot of sheet cake type birthday parties going on there on any given night. There’s arcade games and skeeball. There’s a dive bar attached with darts where you can get pitchers of good beer (Lagunitas) to bring back to your lane. There’s also a diner for feasting.

Bowling is so fun even though I get worse when I drink and everyone else seems to get better. Circumstances prevented me from showing the guy that I am the #1 fun date planner. I wonder if he would have had fun? Actually, scratch that. I KNOW he would have had a blast.

Fun! Date Ideas