Food for Thought
Escaping old dad to get sushi and sips for summer — plus a cocktail fit for FlagDay
My 80-year-old dad was back in town again. He allegedly came to look at some senior apartments near where I live, he’s thinking of moving here from Florida.
But really, I think he came back to eat.
First stop was Goode's Armadillo Palace for chips and queso, big, juicy burgers and fries and a heavy dose of Texacana décor. Then it was Maria Selma (more queso) and enchiladas verdes. Than it was his favorite new hangout Blanco’s for more burgers (which really are awesome, probably because the grill has 40 years worth of grease on it) along with cold longnecks and curly fries.
And Molina’s Cantina again for fajitas and some of that great cheesy, spicy Jose’s Dip. As much as I love chili con queso, the national food of Texas, I think I had queso coming out of my ears after a couple of days and I know I gained five pounds.
Finally, I’d had enough and whipped up some grilled Copper River sockeye with a light lemon butter sauce topped with mango salsa. Threw down a Caesar salad with homemade dressing and croutons (thank very much) and called it dinner.
After four bites dad said it was good, but he didn’t like fish.
What the …?
The man lives in Florida where the only decent restaurants are seafood joints. Turns out the only seafood he likes is deep fried fish. And you know I wasn’t making that.
Thank goodness work beckoned and I got a respite from the heavy burgers and Tex-Mex with a tasting at RA Sushi. (No dad will not eat raw fish, nor Thai, nor Indian, nor …)
Anyway, with temps hovering in the nineties I, for one, was delighted to partake of some chilled raw fish and cocktails.
The sleek, second-floor eatery in Highland Village was cool and quiet in the afternoon heat. General manager Kory Hinton whipped out some new sushi and sips that are great for the summer.
First, an Asian take on chips and salsa that was a real winner. RA serves up fried wonton wedges with a spicy tuna tartar mixed with cucumber, avocado and fresh salsa that packs a punch. Filling, but in a light, refreshing way. There’s also a garlic citrus yellowtail swimming in ponzu sauce topped with organic micro greens and a Kaisen ceviche with cooked shrimp, scallops and squid that still seems summery dressed with tomatoes and avocado wedges.
Beating the summer heat with sushi is a good way to go, but you still need a refreshing cocktail and RA has a new one in honor of July 4th. The Stars and Stripes Martini ($7) is a light and crisp blend of summer fruit, including lemon, raspberries and blueberries and SKYY Citrus Vodka, Blue Curacao and Chambord.
Made right, this Independence Day salute is a beauty of red, white and blue layers that should be served with a little waving American flag in it.
It’s so pretty and fun and … so very, very sweet.
“I know,” manager Mark Hodges says. “It’s not my favorite. It’s pretty, though and blueberries are antioxidants, they’re good for you.”
RA provides the recipe and instructions below. You can dazzle your summer party guests with this patriotic cocktail, although you might want to dial back some on the Blue Curacao or maybe leave out the simple syrup. Personally, I’ve never been a fan of blue foods or drinks.
But that’s just me. And probably dad, too, come to think of it.
Stars and Stripes Martini Recipe (1 serving)
1.5 oz. SKYY Citrus Vodka
¼ oz. Blue Curacao
¼ oz. Chambord raspberry liqueur
½ oz. simple syrup
1 oz. lemonade
Splash lemon-lime soda
2 juiced lemons
Muddle blueberries with the Blue Curacao in a martini glass. Place a lemon wheel slice over mixture. Pour vodka, simple syrup, a splash of lemon-lime soda, and lemon juice in a martini shaker. Shake and strain over the lemon in a martini glass. The mixture will layer. Drizzle Chambord down the side of the glass. It will layer in between the vodka and blueberry mixture creating a striped appearance; garnish will float to top.