My current favorite haunt in San Diego is Cafe Chloe on the corner of 9th and G in Downtown SD. Pal G has the good fortune of living across the street, so we pop in every once in awhile for the Fromage Plate (to share). Anyone who knows me knows I love cheese. I don't discriminate. The stinky, the rindy, the rolled-in-who-knows-what; I love them all. Last night was no exception. The blue cheese we munched on was from Wisconsin. It was crumbly, tangy, and looked like lapis lazuli. Mixed with the tupelo honey that was part of the whole fromage package and Holy Swiss Monkeys it was good.
But doesn't Cafe Chloe offer anything other than cheese? Well, yes, actually, they offer plenty more. I just get carried away sometimes... Anyhoo. What makes Cafe Chloe so special is its attention to detail. The brown and white palate could feel boring, but instead, it's bright and fresh without being cold and minimalist. Touches of marble and dark wood next to chalkboards and fresh cut flowers gives the atmosphere a charm that doesn't feel like it's trying too hard. Even your check arrives on a nice silver tray, weighted down by a heavy silver paper weight. Funsies! (sorry...)
Think classy and French, without the pompousness (is that a word?) or conflicting foreign policies. Dress to the nines, or wears jeans and a t-shirt; you'll fit in either way. The staff could be uppity and all we-only-cater-to-the-Gaslamp-Shiny-Shirt-Brigade, but they are incredibly friendly and welcoming. S ordered a specialty beer last night and our waitress said "oh...don't get that one, it's gross...everyone who orders it hates it!" She kindly directed S towards a much tastier selection. I love that kind of honesty from a restaurant.
The food's delicious too, don't get me wrong. Button mushroom soup that's smooth and creamy with a vein of something sweet running through it? Mmmmm... Something called a "tartiflette" (come on, people, you made that word up) that just involved putting potatoes, bacon, and onion together, and then cooking it with a huge hunk of brie-like cheese on top. Scrumptious.
Enough fawning, I have to go get my cholesterol checked.