Columnist Dinner and a Movie Grover Beach

Dinner and a Movie

The Spoon Trade — Care and Heart in Every Morsel

By Teri Bayus

Like a fine wine, some restaurants age impeccably with time. The beautiful minds behind The Spoon Trade, seek to make the eating experience enhanced each time we visit, as it is their passion.

They put care and heart into every morsel and every interaction. After three years open, Jacob and Brooke Town have successfully given us one of the unsurpassed eateries anywhere.

Even though they started out durable, they listened; they bobbed and weaved with the needs of their customers, whom they refer to as their “guests.”

They are now open 7-nights a week, and for brunch on Saturdays and Sundays. They don’t just make food; they give you a dining experience that will stick with you like a dreamscape.

The Spoon Trade offers what I call, “gourmet comfort food.” Chef Jacob obtains the finest local ingredients, sourced almost every day and then like a culinary wizard, he and his happy team of chefs combine the components to bring us mouth-watering delicacies.

The menu changes with what’s available, but the heart that goes into dishes like handmade fettuccine with baby broccoli, Calabrian chile, and toasted almonds is recognizable in every bite.

This is my favorite dish here, for it is miraculous and straightforward. When it is on the menu, I am often seen sitting at the bar at 4 p.m., devouring a bowl with a delicious glass of Blanc De Blanc “Goat Bubbles” By Flying Goat.

I always start with the Castelvetrano Olives. This simple, immaculate way to prepare the olives contains roasted garlic and orange zest. I’ve tried to duplicate it at home but failed.

It’s a flawless, savory, salty, sweet start to any meal. Then I have the Humboldt Fog Goat Cheese with savory carrot cake, orange oil, and honeycomb; and this dense cake with the tasty cheese it astounding.

The other wonderful new addition is Grover Beach Sourdough, opened by Chef Jacob, across the street from The Spoon Trade. They make mind-blowing sourdough loaves served at the restaurant and sold to the public everyday. They have also added Brioche buns, biscuits, crostinis and more.

I go to the beach every morning to exercise in the waves and then stop here for my daily bread.

Grover Beach Sourdough offers light lunches including tuna salad sandwiches, sourdough waffles or a mixed green salad. My favorite is the biscuits and gravy.

The Spoon Trade gravy is chocked full of bacon and is an aromatic delight.

They are open daily from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. You can pop in, have lunch and take home your fresh bread for the day.

They also make those delectable butter cookies, a sweet accomplishment in a half dollar sized dollop.

When friends or family are visiting, we always visit The Spoon Trade. The tri tip tartare has become our family’s religion. Tri tip is grounded, kept exceptionally chilled and topped with a tonnato sauce, then served on a crostini that is cut paper thin and toasted. Even the vegetarians love this dish.

Here is how I suggest you order: Start with the Castelvetrano Olives and a loaf of bread for all to share. Also try the savory cheese bread pudding with crème fraîche, sourdough, and Rosemary.

They always provide a sample of their soup with crostinis to start.

Have everyone at the table order an appetizer and a different entrée as this food is meant to be shared. Our picks (besides the tri tip tartare), are the crispy octopus with tzatziki, heirloom tomatoes, micro onions, the Little Gem Caesar with house Caesar dressing, grilled sourdough croutons, burrata, and white anchovy.

My favorite part of them now being open 7-nights a week, is the nightly repeating specials. Sunday is prime rib, where the chef takes the best cut of meat, and sous vides it for hours until it is perfectly cooked. It is then crisped on the outside and cut into impeccable slices and finished on the grill, giving you the best damn prime rib you have ever tasted. It is usually served with Rutiz Farms potatoes, arugula, blue butter, and a bordelaise sauce.

Meatloaf Monday has rocked my family’s world, as no one has ASKED for meatloaf, but at The Spoon Trade, they do and love me for it. Jump ahead to the delectable Ramen Thursday.

They hand cut noodles that sit in a 36-hour broth that has so many layers, and it will save your soul.

It also has duck confit, smoked onions, scallions and a soft egg. They have a duckless version at brunch on Saturdays and Sundays.

The Spoon Trade makes all the sauces, breads, spice blends and dressings in-house. The smiley chefs are creating while the excellent staff is friendly and seamless with service and warmth. This is my favorite restaurant, hands down.

Give them a try or try them again. Open 7-nights a week from 4-9 p.m., and Saturdays and Sundays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. They are located at 295 West Grand Ave., in Grover Beach. Call (805) 904-6773 and tell them Teri sent you!

Grover Beach Sourdough is at 236 West Grand Ave., and open daily from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Call them at (805) 668-2256.

‘The Spy Who Dumped Me’ — a Warm, Hilarious Romp

The Spy Who Dumped Me is a new vehicle for women comics and the changing tide of buddy movies that include women. And I laughed so hard throughout this movie.

It was hilarious in its satire, and warmth of the relationship. I adored every minute, but I have heard that the men don’t “get” the humor of this female-centric film.

I hope this is the new wave and they continue to make female movies, not worrying about what the boys want. We are not all into romantic comedies.

The plot is about a CIA operative, Drew Thayer (played by Justin Theroux), who struggles to evade a gang of assassins from a crime syndicate called “Highland.”

Meanwhile, in Los Angeles, Morgan Freeman (Kate McKinnon) commiserates with her best friend, Audrey Stockman (Mila Kunis) on her 30th birthday over a breakup with her boyfriend, who happens to be Drew.

He didn’t want to draw Audrey into his deadly world, but she’s under the impression that he runs a jazz-and-economy podcast and can’t handle commitment. Plus, he didn’t let her down easily; opting to call it quits over a text message.

The girls are thrust unexpectedly into an international conspiracy when Audrey’s ex shows up at their apartment with a team of deadly assassins on his trail. Surprising even themselves, the duo jump into action, on the run throughout Europe from assassins and a suspicious-but-charming British agent, as they hatch a plan to save the world.

Right from the start, it is a violent, slapstick, portrayal of reluctant spy and bad guys wanting to get what her ex-beau left behind. The women are tested in strength, stamina, and smarts, but never in loyalty.

I thought this a proper summer movie, as it was a fun, popcorn romp that never left me anything but giggling.

Those who take this too serious or compare it to male buddy movies should open a bottle of chardonnay and watch it again.

Teri Bayus is the Host of Taste Buds, shown on KSBY and the CW and on YouTube on the Taste Buds Channel. Teri’s Culinary Erotic Book, Consumed is available at: http://www.amazon.com/Consumed-Teri-Bayus-ebook/dp/B016DW85PA.

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