Sunday, 13 September 2009

Fall Classic

On Saturday JK and I made the 7am drive out to Fairfax for a rolling 40-miles through West Marin with the local club. Sometimes we like a friendly paceline, and our attempts to roust the Berkeley Ironworks guys were unsuccessful.

The crew was nice enough, albeit with the usual bike club oddballs. The ride leader, an older British gent, was perhaps a bit too focused on keeping us together, and kept harping on this 20-something kid for surging on the hills and ditching the group. If he wants to ride hard, let the guy for god's sake. He's not your draft horse.

This was the wettest ride I've done in ages. Very fun. I eat up that Roubaix romance of mud on the shins, grit on the glasses, rain on the cycling cap. It was a warm rain, and the legs felt fine.

Washing the bike was more epic than the ride itself. After a hose and scrub, I slid out the seatpost and turned the frame over to drain it. I'd never done this before, and I swear like half a cup of water came out of that thing. Gah! This is the stuff that keeps steel frame owners up at night.

On Sunday, J-Lou and I did a gastro-architecture tour of San Francisco via bike, stopping at several homes on the American Institute for Architecture home tour and some eateries we've been meaning to try for a while.

Tartine - Goddamn. Delicious. Pastries. The ham and cheese criossant is worth waiting in that line. Suck it up, and do not settle for Craig's Place across the street. To the left is my foot at the threshold of a brunch flavor explosion.

Blue Bottle Coffee at the Mint Plaza - Brewed and served in a space age siphon pot. See the photo below. To operate this machine, you need to have taken AP chemistry. Hells yeah, the coffee was good.

Flour + Water - Perfectly adequate thin-crust pizza and pasta, but not worth a special trip to the Mission. The couple next to us debated whether to get the pasta with goat for like 15 minutes, then each whipped out camera phones when the food arrived and flashed away. The diners next to them looked as if they just got a whiff of something awful.

Humphrey Slocombe - This place has taken the bizarro ice cream craze to the furthest reaches of taste. See if you can identify the fake flavor from the following list:
(a) Cornflakes and bourbon
(b) Salt and pepper
(c) Peanut butter curry
(d) Foie gras
(e) Government cheese

Trick question. They are all real flavors at Humphrey Slocombe. I fear this trend's natural conclusion is Lobster and Butter-flavored ice cream. It's not good when they have to put up a sign clarifying, "Ancho chocolate has no anchovies." Because, you know, it's possible.

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