Thursday, January 23, 2014


Michelle Wang seems to be unstoppable.  And I'm not complaining.  I've been a fan of her restaurants dating way back to the original Miyo's on S. Main St. Her newest restaurant, M.Grille, is open in the Vista.  Funny thing is that it's about one block from M.Vista. I knew before walking in there that this was a continuation of her fresh, healthy, "now" concept that is found at M.Fresh. As you enter, you're greeted with the similar clean, hip, sharp interior as M.Fresh.  The tables are all attractively set and busy chefs are working away behind the sushi bar. I love the look of the place, all the way down to the square plates on the tables.

I went with my mom and dad for lunch.  My dad opted for a salad topped with a grilled flounder filet.  It was very attractive and he was quite pleased with his choice. Mom went with the "Cobb" salad. She's a fan of any Cobb salad and is always eager to try new variations of the classic. Again, she was happy with her selection.  I chose the grilled sweet and sour chicken with pineapple. It was actually two thin chicken cutlets (which I prefer over big, thick chicken breasts) in a light sauce with diced pineapple over the top.  It was served with brown rice and steamed broccoli.  The chicken was awesome, but my broccoli was undercooked and completely unseasoned.  Personally, I think brown rice sucks. I know we all make ourselves eat it because it's good for us, but it's just a flavorless scoop of mush. I am a huge broccoli fan, but I like it cooked.  This was practically raw. And, as I've said before and am continually backed up here by the "Chopped" judges, food needs to be seasoned. With something. So, I pretty much just ate my chicken.

Complimentary Asian slaw for the table to share.  Nice touch.
Dad's salad with flounder

Mom's Asian cobb salad
My sweet and sour pineapple chicken

Overall, I like this place.  But, I have to tell you one thing that's been bugging the crud out of me ever since we went there last week. We had a very pleasant and accommodating waitress.  She was knowledgeable about the menu and asked if we'd ever been here before, any questions, etc.  We all ordered unsweet tea, as usual.  My mom asked her for some sweetener.  Her response was "Oh, all we have is natural sugar."  This prompted me to say "You don't have Splenda?" and she replied "We try to stay on the healthy side." 

First, sugar is natural.  Always.  It's like saying natural cotton.  All cotton is natural.  Second, when I was pregnant, I was told I could only use sugar (but in super moderation because pregnant women are at risk of gestational diabetes) or Splenda.  No Sweet 'n Low, no Equal, just Splenda.  Third, to what planet did these people go to have someone tell them that sugar is "healthy?" Sugar may be natural but that doesn't make it healthy.  For instance, for a diabetic person, sugar is most assuredly NOT healthy.  Not healthy for a Type 2 diabetic like the man sitting across the table from me (Dad).  

I love the concept of fresh and natural but I hate it whan any business that I'm patronizing trying to B.S. me.  For years my mom has ordered her food with no onions.  Countless times, it's arrived with onions, like the cook is trying to convince her that she's going to like them.  Well, what if onions cause her to break out in a rash?  If a person with a peanut allergy orders fried chicken, you can't deliberately cook it in peanut oil because you think they're exaggerating.  Same thing here.  I have a friend whose 2nd child is a juvenile diabetic.  If the kid wants to come your restaurant and drink tea, have some damn sweetener available that won't kill her.  It would be a shame for someone to go into a coma because you served them something "natural." And, maybe, just maybe there are people like me who just can't stand the sappy, syrupy nature of sugar and just prefer something else.  All I can say to the M.Group on this subject is go buy some stevia and quit telling people you only have sugar because you "tend to lean toward the healthy side."


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