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Thursday, October 23, 2008

Sometimes I lose track of where I've been

Thanks to Gary for reminding me of my recent trip to Northern California, Yuba City/Marysville in particular. Driving from Sacramento north to Yuba City was sort of like driving from Grand Island to Kearney on Highway 30 except if you squinted really hard to the east you could sort of make out the Sierra Nevadas through the smog.

The main thing I wanted to do was return to In-n-Out Burger for the first time in about 7 years. I've heard so much hype since my last visit that I figured I must have missed something the last time.

Luckily for me, there was one across the parking lot from my hotel which meant I didn't need to waste time driving around to find one. Which was too bad since I'd been upgraded to a V-8 Mustang by Avis and I really enjoyed driving it although too much extra driving around could have resulted in a speeding ticket so in the end the closeness of this burger joint was a good thing.

I forgot how small the menu was - burgers, fries, sodas, shakes. I ordered a Double Double (a double cheeseburger) with mustard, pickles and onions and fries. The burger was pretty good, definitely better than the usual fast food. I'd put it on par with the double cheeseburger at Don and Millie's although Don and Millie's has better fries. The In-N-Out fries were soggy and flavorless, possibly undercooked or cooked in oil that was too cool.

The next day I was reminded of the secret menu including the popular "animal style." I'm not sure this would have improved my opinion of the burger since this style includes extra secret sauce and I'm not a fan of secret sauces on burgers at all. The mustard-cooked beef patties sound good though.

Yuba City also has one of the largest Sikh communities in the United States so there are plenty of choices for Indian food. Several people recommended Taste of India which turned out to be a few blocks from my hotel. This was seriously some of the best Indian food I've ever had. Two words: Paneer Pakoras. Fried cheese, Indian-style. The Lamb saag (lamb with spinach) was also amazing. The lamb was falling apart in the creamy, buttery spinach sauce.

Finally, when you order calamari in California they don't serve you those rubbery little rings but give you big chunks of tender, breaded squid. I'm developing an obsession with tentacled sea creatures and this only made it stronger.

I'm hoping to post on a couple more things (The peculiarly Nebraskan love of cinnamon rolls with chili and dinner tonight at Sakura Bana (formerly Sushi Ichiban) in Omaha) before Monday when I leave for Knoxville which will include a 3-hour layover in Cincinnati so a real Cincinnati chili 5-way is probably on the agenda.


Anonymous Gary said...

I wish we had an In-n-Out Burger here. My arteries are thankful we don't have one.

I'd be a 2x3 guy with extra toast, and well-done fries. My mouth is watering!

10:07 AM  

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