My next eating adventure was a very special one.
It was mine and Carlos's ten-year wedding anniversary and with both of us having the day off, we planned our day with first a movie (we watched and enjoyed "Looper") and then lunch. We decided to stay close to home and have lunch at a neighborhood restaurant. Always open to trying new spots to eat, one place came to our minds pretty quickly, the restaurant tavern, Tiger! Tiger!. Located near 30th Street on El Cajon Boulevard, Tiger! Tiger! is the sister restaurant to the Blind Lady Ale House, a local favorite of ours. We have been wanting to dine at Tiger! Tiger! since it first opened in 2011 and happily, now we have!
First off, I absolutely love the name Tiger! Tiger! Of course, Carlos, being the literature genius that he is, pointed me to William Blake's poem "The Tiger". I can only assume the name of this establishment was inspired by Blake's poem. In addition, their restaurant logo features a tiger in a tuxedo. I have an odd fondness for animals dressed up like human beings and more so for the well-dressed fauna. A tiger in a tuxedo is exceptional, a tiger in overalls not so much!
Outside Tiger! Tiger! - The tiger in a tuxedo sign.
The inside and outside of Tiger! Tiger! is no stranger to communal style dining. Long picnic style tables are found outside for sidewalk dining as well as throughout the very open inside. Its interior decor has a dimly-lit vibe with a lot of wood everywhere which makes the place feel very comfortable and intimate. There was even a tandem bicycle hanging right above us from the ceiling, a neat feature to see being a "bubble gum" couple and all. Moreover, the people who work at Tiger! Tiger! were pretty laid back and very friendly.
Tandem bicycle hanging from the ceiling.
Their menu was simple with quite the selection of craft beer and craft sandwiches all at reasonable prices. Although I am not a fan of beer in general, Carlos is definitely one who enjoys a good beer. He opted for the Drake 1500 which is described as a "piney, hoppy pale ale". He really liked the Drake 1500 and thought it was sweet and tart yet very light and refreshing.
Drinks for the many.
Close-up shot of the Drake 1500; Carlos enjoying his beer.
For our lunches, we picked a couple of their craft sandwiches which were simply served on a tray with waxed paper that had a stamp of their tux wearing tiger icon. I love stamps and thought that this fun little detail was the icing on the cake to the overall presentation of the food.
The Tiger! Tiger! stamp.
Carlos decided on their house-made bratwurst with braised cabbage, pickled Serrano chilis, whole grain mustard on a baguette. It also came with a side of pickled vegetables. He thought the bread was delicious and the bratwurst was savory, tangy, and just flavorful. The Serrano chilis gave it a good kick. Overall, an excellent sandwich.
Carlos enjoying and eating his bratwurst sandwich. I had the best view in house.
For me, I chose their Vegetarian Bánh Mi sandwich, the tofu version of their wood-fired chinese barbecue pork belly sandwich. My tofu sandwich included pickled vegetables, cilantro, cucumber, chili aioli, and served on a baguette. It also came with a side of slaw. I found the tofu extremely good especially combined with the tasty sauce, delicious bread, and the melodic crunchiness of all the fillings. Overall, I thought their Vegetarian Bánh Mi sandwich was mouth-watering delicious!
Vegetarian Bánh Mi.
I really enjoyed Tiger! Tiger!...their ambiance, their service, and especially their food...and I couldn't recommend it enough! Luckily for me, I live oh so close!!!