Welcome to the first installment of the Monkey’s Choice category, where I write about some of my favorite things about Sacramento, and there are many, my friends.
I’ve been feeling under the weather lately, so after work I thought a nice, leisurely ride to V. Miller Meats in East Sac for some healing bone broth was just the thing. On the way out of the office my co-worker informed me they had been broken into recently and might not be open. At that exact second I decided the only thing I wanted in life was some V. Miller bone broth, so I made a panicked call on the way to the elevator. Some scumbag had indeed broken in, did some damage, but he assured me they were in fact open. Phew!
Spirits renewed, I hopped on my bike and headed for M Street. Monkey Street. Mmmmmeat Street. (a.k.a. Capitol Avenue, a.k.a. Folsom Blvd…M Street has an identity problem for real.) I passed by the newly (or maybe nearly) finished Sophia Tsakopoulos Center for the Arts, aka The Sofia, home of B Street Theater, and might I say she is a gorgeous modern gal, all cement blocks, black corrugated metal, and steel plates. Meow! They already had some colorful show posters up, and I’m excited for the chance to check it out soon. Excellent new addition to the Midtown scene for sure.
Pressing on, I got 3 of the 4 raindrops that fell in town today into my eye, prompting an “eyelash incident” that necessitated some side-of-the-road triage. A look in the compact mirror confirmed that, yes, I did look like Alice Cooper on the left side of my face. But fortunately no more rain poked at my eyes that trip (yes, I know we need it…I also know you can’t mention rain in Sacramento without quickly adding “we need it” or risk being thought of as a selfish-drought-lover). As I pedaled on towards 48th Street I marveled at just how incredibly dangerous M Street is for bicyclists. There’s a half-assed “bike lane,” sure, but it’s liberally dotted with cars, recycling bins, and landscaping piles, forcing cyclists to swing wildly out into traffic at random intervals…traffic zipping steadily past at about 60 miles per hour. Super sketchy, but (despite a huge king cab truck swinging a right two feet from my front tire) I arrived intact.
V. Miller is a shop I might describe as meat Nirvana, though Nirvana is likely vegan so never mind. It’s like…a meat Valhalla. Yes, Vikings most certainly eat meat in heaven. And at V. Miller they got tha meat: firm, gelatinous bone broths, hearty homemade soups and stews, an excellent Sunday sauce, and SO much more. You’ll really want to check it out for yourself, because they’re always cooking up something different there. I keep thinking of going vegetarian, but after a V. Miller run I’m firmly back in the Paleo zone (sorry, animals 🙁 ).
One cool thing they offer is a prepackaged dinner for two on Thursdays. I didn’t even ask about it since they are almost always sold out (you need to call ahead if you want one) but SCORE they had one left and I snagged it. Add some homemade soup, some broth, and I was back on my bike and off towards Midtown, racing to beat the sunset.
Usually I take this trip on a weekend or during the day on a day off, but at rush hour it’s pretty brutal. Cars were whipping by me so fast, and I was just considering charting a new course down a side street when a beastly Acura MDX cut me off at 34th street, bringing me within a monkey’s breath of becoming a ghost bike. Now I can somewhat understand when people swing open a car door or pull away from the curb without looking (DON’T DO IT), but to actually pass me and then immediately swing a sharp right and almost mow me down? Come on, now. A girl walking in the opposite direction shouted, “I saw that! I’ll be your witness!” But thankfully there was no need of a witness that time. If there was I would be spraying silver paint on my mouth and screaming “WITNESS ME!” because that’s how I plan to go out.
Slightly rattled (maybe the M in M Street is for Murder, not Monkey, boo), I continued on. Once I crossed under the freeway into Midtown I felt a weight lifting. Traffic thinned, a truck let me turn left in front of him, a natty gent in a tweed tam o’ shanter gave me a somber nod, a spring robin alighted on my shoulder and we whistled a merry duet…I had made it. I was home. Breathlessly back at my apartment, I remembered the bounty in my bike basket: grass-fed beef bone broth, chicken and Andouille gumbo, and a still-warm beef tamale pie, which hadn’t fared too well, but some of the juice that had leaked out onto the foil made its way (via finger, of course, I’m not an animal, sheesh) to my mouth and DAMN it was delicious! (There’s the Meatgasm!) I tucked that away to heat up for Tiger later, gave my senior kitties some of the bone broth, squirreled the frozen soup away for future work lunches, and sat down to tell my Midtown Monkey friends all about this great local shop.
Thanks for reading. I hope you stay tuned. I’m working on another great post about Sacramento. (What?! Procrastinating is one of the 5 Pillars of Work: planning the work, thinking about the work, not doing the work—a.k.a. “procrastinating” if you must—doing a minimal amount of the work, and celebrating your hard work with a bottle of wine.) Make sure you follow this blog so you will get a notification when I post since it’s entirely random and at my whim.