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I Tried All the Meal Delivery Services So You Don't Have To

(plus Restaurant Delivery Services Too!) [Updated 2/2017]
The proliferation and competition of meal delivery services has really made it a golden age for savvy consumers.  It's a simple idea - deliver ingredients and seasonings, all perfectly portioned, and pair them with easy-to-make recipes -- that has taken fire in recent years.

It's easy to understand why.  With most families strapped for time, the idea of an affordable and convenient way to solve the meal time problem is something that appeals to almost everyone.

But which meal service is the best?  Which offers the most value?  Which are the easiest to make? Most importantly, which ones taste the best?

To answer these questions for my own family, I signed up for the most popular meal delivery services out there and attempted to find which we liked best.

A few caveats: One, my opinions are obviously subjective but after trying more than a handful of meal services, I quickly learned what I liked....and what I didn't lik…

The Ultimate Steak: Dry-Aging 21, 30, and 45 Day Steaks

After reading Serious Eats The Food Lab's Complete Guide to Dry-Aging Beef at Home (by J. Kenji Alt-Lopez), I felt confident enough in the safety and the ease to try dry-aging at home.

Over the years, I had grown to love that dry-aged steak flavor you find at all the top steakhouses.  I often purchased dry-aged steak from the grocery (most butchers, many online steak purveyors such as the famous Lobel's of New York, and even Whole Foods offer dry-aged meat) and had long contemplated attempting it at home, even following several popular Kickstarterprojects about devices that let you dry-age your own steaks at home.

The Food Lab's guide speaks briefly about such products (summary: they do work) but had an even more welcome message: it's VERY simple to do it at home and you don't necessarily need a fancy setup.

All you need is refrigerator space, a source of salt (to absorb moisture), a rack to place the beef that you would like to dry age, a fan (for ai…

Discovery: Alexander's Steakhouse, Wakuriya, and Sushi Yoshizumi

People often ask me why I write so many reviews and try so many restaurants. 
One reason is that I like variety.  Trying different cuisines is a fun way to keep things interesting and novel. A more important reason may be the idea of discovery. 
Akin to a child tasting ice cream for the first time or a young adult hearing their very first concert, the discovery of something new and special is always thrilling and exciting. What's perhaps as important is that these discoveries are most usually fortuitous happenstance - lucky finds that have become some of my most memorable meals - and that without all the sampling of restaurants they would never have been found. 
In my short time chronicling my restaurant adventures (whether writing or taking photographs), I've only been lucky enough to feel like I've stumbled upon something truly special three times and each has been memorable.
The first was Alexander's Steakhouse (Cupertino).  My parents took me soon after it opened …

The Ultimate Steak: My Costco A5 Japanese Wagyu Boneless Ribeye Dream

My Costco A5 Wagyu Dream has become reality!

Thanks to all who joined in to help make this dream a reality! Will be spending the weekend slicing thinly and preparing and hope that I don't mess up my portion of this beautiful cut of beef! I LOVE Costco!

"Costco has acquired the Kuroge Wagyu beef — also known as Japanese Black — of an A-5 grade, the highest possible ranking within the Japanese scoring system." [The Daily Meal, Dec 14,2014]

"This is the real deal: exceedingly rare Wagyu beef from Japan. More specifically, it is the Kuroge breed of Wagyu and is A-5 grade; literally the top grade of Japanese beef available in the world. There is a limited supply of this extremely rare beef secured exclusively for Costco members!

It is legendary stuff: beef marbled beyond belief, intensely satisfying and graded A-5, the highest possible ranking in the strict Japanese scoring system. There is nothing that can touch this beef for flavor and tenderness." []