Monday, October 26, 2009

I meet strangers from the internet.

A few months ago I discovered a wonderful group called OC Blogcrush. Its a group of Orange County bloggers and they meet up once a month. Its an odd, interesting and wonderful thing to meet people from the great interwebs... don't you think?

I think its hard for some to wrap their minds around meeting strangers from the internet. I kinda like it.

I have to admit I was just a bit nervous walking in but I felt right at home immediately. As soon as I walked up ladies were exchanging business cards... for their blogs?! Do you have a blog business card? I don't have a blog business card. I thought it would be better to say I don't have one than to write on the post-it pad I had in my bag. Mental note to self: Get business cards made.

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This months Blogcrush meet-up was at Matador Cantina in Historic Downtown Fullerton. It really is a fantastic restaurant. Its more than just your typical Mexican place in that not only is the food delicious, the ambiance swanky and sophisticated but there is also a wine list.

I was impressed by the selections of wines and the cocktails. Don't miss out on the Jalapeno Martini or the Mango Dulce. I was hearing raves about them. I had the sangria... several.

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Co-owner Rob Hallstrom greeted us and told us a bit about the restaurant. They had set aside the lounge area for us and went to great lengths to be accomodating. Shortly after they sent out a sampling of food. You know how much I love sampling food.

Here you see the Cantina Rolls. They are basically a Mexican beef egg roll with 2 sauces on the side. Do you notice the guacamole on the right hand side? Huge chunks of avocado. Thats all I have to say about that.

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Oh Fundido, my love. Where have you been all my life? Chef Dave Dennis was kind enough to deliver our appetizers. That in itself was impressive. I love it when the chefs come out of the kitchen. I'm impressed every time.

He explained how he made the Queso Fundido Dip and it was something like this. Cheese, cheese, bechamel (kill me now), chorizo, beans, chiles and cheese. I died on that first bite. Eat it with chips, eat it with a spoon, pick it up and eat it straight out of the bowl.

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The Chile Relleno. This is not your traditional relleno. In fact, if you are a relleno purist just completely forget I said it was Chile Relleno. What you should have heard is that it is a stuffed chile sent from heaven.

Instead of the normal eggy outside you see the tri-color torilla crust. Inside is a mixture of Oaxaca cheese, cream cheese, chiles and chicken. I love this addition of chicken because I always miss the meat when I get relleno for dinner.

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Can you see how soft and creamy the center was. I'm salivating just thinking about it.

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Somehow the left overs gravitated towards our end of the table. Either that or I pulled them over. None of this food was wasted. Don't you worry your pretty little head about wasting food around me.

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Pumpkin cake with cream cheese frosting. The frosting was really light and the dish was so fragrant. Moist and delicious.

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We ended the night with the Cookie Fundido (I think) which is basically a chocolate chip cookie topped with Dulche de leche ice cream and served with cinnamon sugar coated chips.

I don't even think I need to comment on whether or not I liked this. Also, may I just say that our server remembered which drinks each lady had and then printed a separate drink tab. Its sort of a servers nightmare having a complete table of split checks and he didn't even bat an eye.

Is there a dish you normally get when you eat Mexican or do you switch it up?

I'll take notes and be sure to go back to Matador to try all your favorites :)

21 comments:

  1. Oh my gosh I am hungry now. And blog business cards? I have never heard of such a thing but I think I need them.

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  2. Wow, great company, great pictures, great food!

    Hello Dandy, I visited from Yelena's.

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  3. What a great idea to get together with other bloggers! I bet you had a lot to talk about ... And then you went to a place with fantastic food! It was a win-win situation! Love the food pic, Dawn. Even in a restaurant, loks professionally done!

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  4. I cannot wait to get back to Texas and get back to Mexican food now more than ever, you are torturing me. Looks like the food and company were great! What a fun idea to meet up with bloggers... I did not know people had blog business cards.

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  5. You kill me when I read this stuff in the morning! It looks so good. I've heard of blogging meetups, but I don't think there are any in Nowhere, USA. I have MET bloggy friends before, though. As they're passing through Nowhere on their way to Somewhere. That's always been fun!

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  6. There you go, making me hungry again....but its OK :)

    Oh and blog business cards? Wow, that sounds really cool!

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  7. They all look so pretty and normal. You weren't abducted or anything...so bloggers are just average folks huh?? I was so glad to meet some of my blogging friends recently. It's really cool. You look great in that picture by the way. I don't have a blog business card, but my husband just got some made for his tax blog. I better get on the ball:)

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  8. I'm with longhorns...miss Texas and the Mex-food. Looks like it was a very fun time.

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  9. Did you watch "Top Chef Masters" where the winner was Southwestern/Mexican style chef Rick Bayless? I would love to eat at one of his restaurants - I love love love the flavors of Mexican food. I think I'll go have some tacos for lunch right now. It's the best I can do at home!

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  10. What a fun way to get together! I would love to know when you all meet again and I could drive down! Who knows perhaps we can stop and get cupcakes somewhere!

    Love and Hugs ~ Kat

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  11. YUM. Yum. Seriously. So hungry now.

    I'm a margaritas and something-with-cheese-and-hot-sauce kinda girl, but that leaves my Mexican food choices pretty open so there ya go. :)

    Glad you had fun!

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  12. it was so good to meet you, dawn! it really was a great restaurant. i love the picture of all the empty plates - perfect! :) hope to see you at the next meetup.

    and don't forget - just get moo cards from flickr. way more fun than typical business cards. great to just have stuck in your purse when you need to get your info to someone, and you get to share your photography! i love those little things.

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  13. Great idea about this business card thing! And anytime you post photos of food, I cheer. For real.

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  14. awwww blogger meet up sounds like fun.. i havn't been to one yet as i dont know too many bloggers in my area! and wow, blog business card? I have business cards for my shirt business with my blog on it? does that count? haha!

    *mMmm* that chile relleno... *yummmmmmmmmmm*

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  15. I am so drooling all over the place... that guacamole...mmmm. I tend to look for about anything with a green chile sauce. Makes my mouth pucker - in a good way.

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  16. Blog business cards??? That is such a creative idea! I think I'll make some up and then just leave them in random places, get some new readers.

    How cool that you met up with other bloggers. If my bloggers lived closer, I'd meet up with them for drinks in the city. I don't think there's anything weird about it. Then again, I did meet my love online... who's to say I wouldn't meet my friends that way too?

    That last dessert with the chocolate chip, ice cream, cinnamon, droooooolllll.

    I'm in a huge food rut when it comes to Mexican food. My go to dish is chicken flautas. YUM!

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  17. It was great fun to meet you. I wish we were sitting closer...NEXT TIME? :)

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  18. Oh, I wish I didn't live on the other side of the country...this sounded like a lot of fun. Unfortunately, blogging is considered a "newfangled contraption" where I'm from (the middle of nowhere, NC).

    I have wondered about blog business cards. But didn't know if regular bloggers did those or not.

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  19. Im freakin out a little, I am....wow...the tricolor...ah the cheese fundi-di-dido...and blogger friends? ugh I need to eat and find some peeps now....what a cool deal! I love when the chef comes out! but I always get shy and freak out a little...haha. CA has everything!

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  20. Thanks for not mentioning me being the one who polished off most of the Queso Fundido Dip. That is just another reason to like you so much!
    It was great to meet you IRL (in real life) and get on those business cards pronto! I give my out to every hapless person I meet. So sad :(
    Suz

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  21. You're so funny re-telling stories. I smile or laugh the whole time I'm reading (the majority of) your posts. I'm so blah that I don't even try.
    ~ingrid

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