Absinthe Brasserie & Bar

Just like desk surfers the world over, my mother uses her work Internet access to troll the web. However, she now uses it to watch Check, Please! Bay Area. In a matter of a week, my Minnesotan mother had watched all of season one and got caught up with season two. I got an email from her announcing, “I am addicted to Check, Please!” which is a pretty powerful sentiment, considering she won’t be able to visit any of the featured restaurants on a regular basis.

However, she and my dad are coming out here next week, and I have a feeling I’m going to need to fast a full three weeks after they leave our fair city. Ironically, when we started planning their trip, they had two main desires, The Slanted Door and Aziza. Once I secured those choice reservations and reported back, my mother said the immortal words that she says before every trip, “We don’t need to eat out every night.”

As long as I can remember, my mother has said every time they came out to visit me in Ann Arbor, Boston, and San Francisco. She said it when our mini-van hit the road for the annual five-day, five-night trek across most of the western United States. (We had a mammoth red Coleman cooler stuffed with bricks of cheese, summer sausage, crackers, and other such tidbits to fend off the need to eat out every night.) She said it when the entire family descended on Friday Harbor and learned about a whole host of new restaurants that had sprung up during our year’s absence — Duck Soup Inn, The Driftwood, and the sadly-closed Gollywobbler always, always topping the list.

We don’t need to eat out every night.” Those words were still ringing in my ears when we talked to my parents last weekend. Funny thing: it would now seem that after watching the highly influential Check, Please! Bay Area, my mother has developed an appetite for quite a few more nights. “Where’s that deli? It sounds so good — is it easy to get to?” “How about that Mexican restaurant in Berkeley? It’s been a long time since I’ve had good Mexican food.” “Ooh, I really liked the sound of that Absinthe — maybe we can go there for a light meal.”

You know what? I have this odd feeling we will actually be eating out every night.

A Mother Obsessed 12 October,2006Stephanie Lucianovic

  • Anonymous

    I love your stories about your parents! They always make me giggle!

  • Mother Obsessed

    And what about Isa, you know how your father is about oysters and dungeness crab? Then there is 1550 Hyde Cafe and Wine Bar. We mustn’t forget our old favorite, Alamo Square Seafood Grill. I think we may also be eating out for every lunch too!

  • shuna fish lydon

    and don’t forget about the east bay. we have some treasures on this side as well. maybe they haven’t had a slice of good caramel cake in a while?

    but most important– that you all report back about where you did eat, and what you did have!


Stephanie Lucianovic

A former picky eater, Stephanie V.W. Lucianovic is a writer, editor, and lapsed cheesemonger in the San Francisco Bay Area. A culinary school grad with an English lit degree, she has written for CNN.com, MSNBC.com, Popular Science, The New York Times, The Washington Post, and The Boston Globe. Additionally, she has been writing for KQED’s Bay Area Bites since its inception and is the website editor for KQED’s Emmy-award winning show “Check, Please! Bay Area.”

Stephanie was an original recapper at Television Without Pity and worked on a line of cookbooks for William-Sonoma as well as in the back kitchen of a Jacques Pépin cooking show. Her first book, SUFFERING SUCCOTASH: A Picky Eater’s Quest To Understand Why We Hate the Foods We Hate (Perigee Books, 2012) is a non-fiction narrative and a heartfelt and humorous exposé on the inner lives of picky eaters that Scientific American called “hilarious” and “the perfect popular science book for a reader that doesn’t think he or she wants to read a popular science book.”

Stephanie lives in Menlo Park with her husband, three-year-old son, assorted cats, and has been blogging at The Grub Report for over a decade.

Follow her on Twitter at @grubreport

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