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by Janet Ross
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Each year now my Christmas card list diminishes a little, along with the number of gifts I give. Just part of the ageing process, but a bit sad all the same. Two good friends died this year, one in January, the other in June. I miss both, for our shared interest in reading and, for one Yoga classes, the other bridge games.
Leaving these sad thoughts aside, I'd like two share a pair of restaurant “discoveries”. Each might be a special place to celebrate the holiday season. Kaffe Crepe is a tiny enterprise in the sprawling Costco Reno center. Look for it on the East side of the complex, in a strip, Suite C4. As its name implies, this is the place for crepes in town.
You can choose from several savory or sweet selections, but only the largest appetite will have room for one of each at the same sitting. Some of the savory selections include the Monsieur with cheese and ham, a Cowgirl with brie cheese, fig jam and arugula or the Turkey Pesto with cheeses, turkey, diced tomato and pesto. (Prices ranges from $5.95 to $9.95.) Sweet crepes include the Classic with Vanilla sugar and tangy Lemon or Cinnamon butter, or such stunners as the Opera with Nutella, crushed hazelnuts and vanilla sugar … or why not the Neapolitan with white and dark chocolates, raspberry jam and vanilla sugar? Your choice of a beverage to add to the experience could be as simple as a cup of tea, several varieties of coffee, a frappe, root beer float, or Italian soda. This delightful spot is tiny, seating is limited but all share a view of your crepes being prepared.
Kaffe Crepe is open Monday through Sunday, from 8 a.m. for breakfast to a late afternoon treat, closing at 5 p.m., Sunday at 3 p.m. (Details and photos at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 775-683-9338.)
We found a new, favorite Chinese restaurant a few months ago. Located just off Oddie Blvd. at 1825 Silverada Blvd., The Wok is housed in a former Wendy's building, part of a small shopping center.
The menu is huge and, while you can expect to find all the usual Chinese favorites, there's an additional section of “Authentic Chinese Food” that includes choices like a Garlic Cucumber appetizer or Beef Tripe in Spicy Sauce. Under Chong King Flavor dishes there is Braised Intestine with Baby Bamboo, or Cumin Lamb (how often do you find lamb on a Chinese menu?). Boiled Flavor dishes include a Spicy Boiled Pickle Fish … all totaled, there are 51 choices for this special menu. Back to the familiar, you'll find lunch and dinner combinations, chef's specials like Walnut Shrimp, Orange Beef and Roast Duck. Sizzling Iron Platters with beef, chicken, shrimp or assorted seafood are a treat. And, yes, if your idea of Chinese cuisine is Chow Mein, you'll have a choice of six favors. Be warned, portions are generous; I've taken home leftovers every time.
The former Wendy's interior hasn't changed much; it's casual but comfortable. Service is pleasant and efficient. You'll find The Wok – Chinese Cuisine open daily from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. (Friday and Saturday until 9:30 p.m.). They do a large take-out business – call 775-355-5835.
Changing direction, have you seen the snazzy, new booklet produced by the Washoe County Library system? The cover features a shot from space and the intriguing title “Steam +”. Inside you'll find a list of Winter programs from November though January for all the Library locations and information about the Tech Exhibit, hosted by the Northwest Reno branch.
If you were not aware, STEM stands for science, technology, engineering and math. Only 42 Libraries nationwide were selected to host this special exhibit and you can view it, plus participate in hands-on projects until January 11th. The number of ongoing programs throughout the system is staggering – from seasonal storytimes to coding classes and Radon Awareness sessions in the new year.
You can pick up your own copy of this great resource at any of the Washoe County Library locations; there are ten to choose from: Downtown Reno, Incline Village, North Valleys, Northwest Reno, Sierra View, South Valleys, Spanish Springs, and my personal favorite, Sparks Library.