Bacon Bloody Mary

Deceptive Name and Exterior: Francesca’s Mountain View, CA

My quest to find a better than average Bloody Mary in the Bay Area continued last weekend and brought me to a deceiving lil neighborhood bar. One that I had passed by for 10 years while working in Palo Alto. Francesca’s looks like and sounds like an Italian joint, right? Wrong. It is smack dab in between a couple of auto repair shops and is classified as a dive bar. Clearly, I am confused. It is also self proclaimed as the oldest bar in Mountain View. I had heard of folks referring to this place as a bar but never paid much attention until I found chatter online about their Bloody Mary. Then I knew that I had to find out what this place was all about.

It was the first day of Daylight Savings Time and you can imagine the aches to pain I had to suffer as I am sure some of you did as well. I ended up at this joint later in the day as I may have been over served the night before and this change in time was not assisting my debut of the day. When I arrived I did notice there was an awful lot of cars in the lot and loud music and voices. Certainly not typical of Silicon Valley bars and on a Sunday.

http://www.francescasbar.com/

As I walked into this dark place there was quite a crowd gathered that was rather loud and I would dare say  over served at an early point of the day. The Juke Box was loud and so was the band of older women. There are pool tables, dart boards etc are found in the back part which is lit with fluorescent lighting. It’s a small interior and, again, deceiving for sure.

I belly up to the only bar-stool left. Barkeep seemed like a friendly fella that everyone knew and vice versa. There weren’t any of the normal dot.com crowd in here. Local Mountain View natives. I ordered up the Bloody Mary and was asked if I were a Vegetarian. Oh, of course…oink oink is coming in the glass for sure. B-b-bacon. The Bloody Mary was delivered with a fresh piece of Bacon, two pieces of Pickled Green Beans, Olives, Celery and Pickled Asparagus. Who needs lunch, by golly! I could tell it was a house made mix and had a far amount of spice and went light on the Horseradish served in a Mason Jar. I would order another for sure. It wasn’t bland but not over done. The other cast members that came with were delightful as well.

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I started to soak in the scenery and smirked at the loud group of ladies who were obviously enjoying a Sunday out and about and the other folks were glued to Nascar. Quite eclectic. The atmosphere turned rowdier and it wasn’t even 3pm with the time change. As I was enjoying my Bloody I was taken aback by my snarky inner monologue as I was snapped back like a rubber band when the music that the loud group of “older” women consisted of Alanis Morissette (which they sang at the top of their lungs), Local H, Green Day and Filter. It was in that moment I realized that group of older women were likely the same age as I. Oh, the horror. Oh, the laugh I got when I realized that. I AM THAT AGE!

Then this Bloody Mary event turned into a drop a shot drinks. Flaming Dr. Pepper, Lunchbox and something I cannot recall and that could be the number of shots these patrons do. Oh, you thought I ordered these? No, I made new friends and was roped in as usual. Great people actually. I found out the place is being sold as the parents have passed and Mike is the son of Francesca. They intend to keep most of it the same but the oldest bar in Mountain View may have a change. I just asked that they do not change the Bloody Mary. Totally worth finding this place and finally trying it. It was not a bad Bloody Mary to have experienced nor it’s additional friends that followed! Should you find yourself wandering Mountain View on Old Middlefield and you find a few Auto Body Shops you better be sure to look for a lil place called Francesca’s and stop in and say hello to Mike et al.

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Oh, Boca! It’s Kapow!

As a newbie to the blogging world I am always thrilled when I have folks like what I have posted, like my tweets and like me period. Yes, my narcissistic side is stroked indeed. So, I was headed to Boca Raton for a work trip and I was interested in learning if there were any great spots to pop into for a great Bloody Mary. Shocking, I Know! So I was stuck on an awful flight from Dallas to Ft. Lauderdale on Spirit Airlines. Can I just warn you…NEVER EVER go on this. Oh, I cannot believe what I experienced. I really thought chickens would run down the aisle at one point and we would have to get out and push. For which I am sure I would have to pay for as everything is charged for. I bet if we went down in a crash there would be a request to slide my credit card for the Oxygen Mask and the Flotation Device.

I was pleasantly surprised to have gotten multiple Tweets when I landed from folks I have never meet! @VaughanLazar @JenninBoca @KapowNoodleBar each reached out to me and recommended Kapow Noodle Bar in Mizner Park. This isn’t just a Noodle Bar for sure. It is Asian Fusion with a Southern flair. Now, I cannot tell you about the food as I had a client meeting at Rack’s (Which was epic…Hamachi Heaven) but I couldn’t pass up the new friend recommendations for the Kapow Bloody Mary.

It was a very humid day and about 80 something outside. Which was fine by me as I had just left Dallas which was 20 something at 5am. I welcomed the warmth. Kapow offered outdoor seating for which I took advantage of. A nice blanket of  warmth fell upon me as I sat down. Music was good and it was early enough in the afternoon that it wasn’t crazy busy but not dead either. As I imagine folks have lunch various times of the day here.

It was a hip Asian fusion decor kind of joint and all of the food looked great. It actually had an LA vibe to it. Something I would find in Santa Monica. There is a HUGE mural on the wall that captures my attention across the way as I bellied up to the bar that immediately catches my eye as the giant Geisha gal is staring at me.

Kapow Bloody Mary and Geisha Drinking It

Kapow Bloody Mary and Geisha Drinking It

I order up the Bloody Mary and was quickly asked if I was a vegetarian. Ahh, that means Bacon is on the way. Now, this place was voted best BYOBMB on Sunday’s and many folks have recognized it for this. So, I will miss out on this but try their house Bloody Mary. Which is not disappointing. First of all, it has Bacon. Second it is simple flavors. They use Zing Zang to build on. Which is becoming a favorite of mine. Siracha is used to build the spice (shocking I know at an Asian place), Parsley was added, Cucumber, a slice of Jalapeno and an Olive. This was a simple straightforward and great end to the day. The sun was shining, the music was good, it was outdoors and I made new cyber-friends. I cannot complain. (PS: Their Tequila Mockingbird looked really great, too.)  Friendly vibe, great service, good atmosphere. If I lived here I know that I would be a regular for sure. I love Asian Fusion, love a good Bloody Mary Bar and love the warmth of the Sun. Thumbs up all around.

The next stop was the beaches of Deerfield which is where this entry will stop. I cannot report back what I was witness to there. It is my own viewpoint and one I will keep to myself. Let’s just say that it is nothing like any beach I have EVER been to in the US.  Every cliche is found here. It was fabulous.

Deerfield Beach

Deerfield Beach