Carmel Corn Connection, Depoe Bay, OR., 6/25/20

IMG_5613The original caramel corn shop in Depoe Bay, Oregon has been also named “J’s Caramel Corn” and the building has had various paint jobs, but all say it was established in 1940.  It’s a tiny shop that also sold salt water taffy, a few other candies, books and toys.  It’s a one woman shop that uses Kettle corn for their product.  They also sell plain and cheese corns but no mix.  This corn was well coated with caramel and very sweet.  It pops into really large pieces and I found very few hard, unpopped kernels in our bag.  It’s not greasy and your fingers will have more of a stickiness rather than glisten after eating.  The owner used to make the cheese caramel mix but found it too messy and didn’t sell as well.  Either way, it was a really good caramel corn and she was very friendly and offered samples.  Do note, it’s not a mis-spelling in the title here – it’s spelled without an ‘a’ in the middle. Continue reading

Gran Caffe Gambrinus, Naples, Italy, 12/20/19


Gran Caffe Gambrinus is a huge ornate place that is mostly a coffee and pastry restaurant.  They do serve heavier food but most people seemed to be enjoying a pastry, coffee and the surroundings.  The place has been around for 150 years and was restored in 1890 when they brought in many of the paintings and statues. It has been visited by many celebrities over the years, like Ernest Hemingway, Sigmund Freud, Angela Merkel, and Luciano Pavarotti.  They are ready for lots of tourists as the menu is in about 6 languages.  The tables are small but there were a lot of them and a good sized bakery at one entrance where you could come and get pastries to go.  We tried coffee and a Sfogliatella riccia which is a shell shaped Neapolitian classic pastry that has tons of layers of buttery pastry.  It was fabulous but looking around the place was just as good.  It is eye candy. Continue reading

Friterie, Brussels, 4/26/19


Friterie is a small sliver of a shop tucked away but they are worth mentioning because they do serve some of the better fresh hand cooked fries.  They are double cooked to get a good crisp outside the soft potato.  There is always a line and this trip I found they were selling snacks in addition to well done fries.  Orders of fries are in 3 sizes that come in the usual paper cone.  An assortment of toppings are also available but my favorite is to just get the fries with a little extra salt.  They do have the little forks to keep it a bit less messy if you want toppings.  On the largest order it looked like they put some topping in the middle as well as on the top.  There are a few tables to eat at out front or you can just munch on them as you walk or stand around with all the other people eating fries.  They also have added a cool payment machine that takes cards.  It’s a snack you have to try when in Brussels but one that the quality varies greatly on, so start small and don’t be afraid to toss. Continue reading

L’avant Comptoir De La Mer, Paris, 12/1/16

L’avant Comptoir De La Mer is a small stand room only place next to Relais Saint-Germain. It is the newest addition to the series of restaurants that he has opened and this one serves only seafood snacks. Always full of friendly people, nice staff and tasty food it is a perfect place to pass a little time and enjoy good wine and snacks. We were there to try their oysters and the manager fixed us a tray of many different varieties.   All very fresh there were different textures but a similar brininess to all. If you want meatier snacks just pop next door. Continue reading