Sunday, July 26, 2009

My Favorite Restaurant

Thanks to the generosity of my parents, I've had the privilege of eating at some of the best restaurants around the world. One of my all time favorite restaurants is Bocadillos. It's located in the Financial District in San Francisco. Chef Gerard Hirigoyen creates some of the most delicious tapas I've had. It's "San Sebastian meets Barcelona."
It's one of my favorite restaurants because it's so much fun to eat there, it's comfort food, and it's affordable. And, of course, it's amazingly delicious.

The Lighted Wall

La Montessa Tempranillo, 2005
When you eat tapas, you have to pair it with a Rioja or Tempranillo. The food brings out the complexity of the wine, and the wine brings out the depth of the food.

Charred Corn Salad
Includes jicama, romaine, pimientos. Nice and refreshing!

Monterey Bay Sardines
Eating this dish was as though I was swimming in the Monterey Bay and took a bite of a live sardine. It was that fresh! This was so tasty!

Prawns with Garlic
Gambas ala Plancha. This is one of my favorite plates on the menu. You have to get this! The shrimp is cooked so perfectly. Every single bit is succulent. You HAVE to eat the innards of the head. It's the best part!

Halibut Fish Sticks
Well fried! All of their seafood is so deliciously fresh.

Warm Octopus
With confit potatoes and piquillos. Another successful dish!

Calamari with Romesco Sauce
Lightly battered and perfectly fried! The best calamari is here.

Braised Tripe
This is another one of my favorite dishes. I love tripe! This braised tripe is so delicious. Bread crumbs provide a nice contrasting texture.

House-Made Chorizo
Nicely spiced and fresh tasting.

Lamb Albondigas (Meatballs)
With white beans and fava beans. A new addition to the menu and it should stay on the menu. Yum!

Pork Axoa
Another new dish. The pork was deliciously stewed.

Lamb Burger
And another new dish. This should definitely stay on the menu. It's so perfectly good and well seasoned!

If you dine out in the city, you have to consider this restaurant. It's one of the best.

Friday, July 24, 2009

More Pizza!!

Pizzeria Delfina, Mission District, SF
I've been reading the raves about this place since it first opened. It is consistently on food critics and food bloggers top list for the best pizza. It's now officially on my list, too. It's some of the best pizza I've had. Thin, crispy, with a lightly chewy crust. I fell in love with the fact that the bottom of the pizza never got greasy. If you don't mind a long wait, you have to try this place out!
On a side note, I would highly recommend Delfina, right next door. They have amazing pastas.

The Wait List
We were the first name on the chalkboard. We waited a good 45 minutes for our table. There are about 12 seats inside and 16-20 outside.

Our Wine
A great bottle of red that paired well with the pizzas and the entire meal.

Little Clams
Little, indeed. The sauce is delicious, but I wouldn't recommend this dish. The clams are super tiny for $16.

Yum! I recommend this if it's on the menu. The ricotta filling is light and creamy.

House Cured Pepperoni
Get this. The taste of the pepperoni is the real deal. The taste lingers in your mouth as the peppery taste slowly explodes with deliciousness.

Margherita Pizza
The true test of a great pizza is when it's simplest - the margherita pizza. This passed the test with flying colors.

Prosciutto Pie
Another hit. The prosciutto was nice and delicate. So tasty!

And another hit! The pizza had nice bursts from the bits of anchovy and olive. The spice from the tomato sauce gave it a great kick, too.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Pizza Antica

Pizza Antica, Santana Row, San Jose
This is one of my family's favorite local restaurants. The pizza here is always delicious. The pizza is thin and the crust is crispy. Yum!

Antipasti of Young Vegetables and Housemade Mozzarella
Sweet Corn, Balsamic Onions, Green Beans, Sliced Potatoes, Roasted Red Bell Peppers, and deliciously fresh Mozzarella. Topped with croutons and a lemon aioli.

Sweet Red Peppers, Kalamata Olives, and Roasted Fennel Pizza
This is one of our usual pizzas. Great contrast of flavors from the sweet red peppers and sweet fennel against the savory olives.

Sweet Corn, Arugula, Bacon, and Basil Pizza
This is one of my favorite pizzas. I love sweet corn.

Warm Cornmeal Shortcake with Strawberries and Cream
The cake is deliciously warm, light, and crispy on the edges. Such a great ending!

More Izakaya!

Tanto, Sunnyvale
After being told the wait at Sumiya would take one hour, my family and I ventured to Tanto, a Japanese izakaya (small plates) restaurant. I've been reading the raves about this restaurant for awhile now and was excited to finally try it out.

Buta Kimchi
I love ordering buta kimchi whenever it's on the menu. The addition of Japanese mayonnaise made this dish unique. I love Japanese mayo.

Yaki Udon
The noodles were nice and chewy. I loved that it tasted nice and smoky from the hot wok.

Crab Croquette
Light, creamy, and nicely fried! Just like Japanese croquettes straight from Japan.

Agedashi Tofu
Another well fried dish. Some agedashi tofus tend to be bland. This was not.

Grilled Pike Mackerel
Well seasoned and nicely grilled. A great fish dish.

Kurobuta Kakuni
Braised Pork. Delicious! I recommend getting this dish if you come here.

Grilled Quail
Well cooked and still tender and juicy.

Tempura Moriawase
A decent plate of assorted tempura. I have yet to find the best tempura in the Bay Area. My standards are in line with the tempura bars in Tokyo. I miss those places. They would freshly fry the vegetables and seafood right in front of you as you order.

Fried Rice with Unagi (Eel)
We were expecting fried rice, but it's really steamed rice with a poached egg. It's still a nice rice dish, though.

A solid order of potstickers. It still does not come close to Ryowa Ramen's gyozas.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Mexican Bistro

Consuelo's Mexican Bistro, Santana Row, San Jose
Mojito with tequila instead of rum. They add their own twist by adding pomegranite juice. It was ok. A bit too sweet for my liking and a bit too watered down.

Ensalada de Jicama
Great presentation. Jicama is always nice and refreshing when served chilled like this.

Tacos de Salmon
Nicely grilled salmon wrapped with fresh flour tortillas

Tostadas de Tinga
Delicious stewed chicken on a crispy tortilla. Best dish of the night.

Tres Leches
Americanized tres leches with whipped cream and chocolate syrup. It was ok, but I wouldn't order it again. The tres leches tasted more like un leche, just the milk and not the evaporated and condensed milk.

Overall a decent meal. If I'm in Santana Row and I feel like Mexican food, I would come here again.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Eating In

Spaghetti ala Yum
I love cooking with whatever is in the pantry and fridge. It makes me more creative and makes me think of putting meals together with my palette.
I cooked onions, garlic, tomatoes, pork bits, and red wine together, plus seasonings and spice, to create this last minute pasta dish.

Lemon Tart
My mom is in town, which means yummy desserts! She has been experimenting with lemon tarts. This is her latest batch. The crust was so delicious! Light, buttery, and flaky. It held up the lemon curd well. The lemon curd was very tart, just how I like it. Mmm!

Thursday, July 16, 2009


In an earlier blog, I wrote about how I can eat Japanese food every day. I've had Japanese cuisine for majority of my week -- sashimi and soba dinner, ramen, yakitori, and now shabu-shabu. Shabu-shabu translates to "swish-swish." That's the action you make when you swish the thin raw slice of beef in the pot of boiling water.

Shabuway, Mountain View
The Setup
The pot of water soon to be boiled. On the left is the sesame seed sauce which I spice up with hot oil. On the right is the ponzu sauce, which is basically soy sauce with lemon and vinegar. I like to add scallions and spicy radish.

Cabbage, Tofu, Enoki Mushrooms, Spinach, Carrots


Late Night Yakitori

After the movies, my mom and I were researching places around Santa Clara to have dinner past 10pm. On my Yelp search I came across Sumiya Yakitori. It's open until 11:30pm every night.

Grilled Beef Tongue

Grilled Green Onions

Shio Ramen
I don't recommend this. The broth and noodles were bland. It tasted processed and store bought. Stick to the yakitori.

Grilled Squid

Grilled Chicken Wings

Grilled Shitake Mushrooms

Grilled Eggplant

Unfortunately, not all my photos came out. We also ordered Bacon Wrapped Asparagus (It was okay, but the bacon was too much. Yes, I believe in such a thing as too much bacon.), Bacon Wrapped Okra (A nice single layer of bacon, delicious.), Smelt, and Pork Belly.

Overall, dinner was enjoyable. The yakitori was delicious and authentic. The chefs had great timing of how to cook the meat, seafood and vegetables. This is definitely a repeatable place to dine.