Thursday, May 22, 2008

Uncle Frank's BBQ

2135 Old Middlefield Way (at N Rengstorff)
(650) 964-4476

BBQ in Mountain View

Went here for my brother-in-law's birthday dinner since he's a Texan and wanted some meat. I was really confused at first because the building is shared with a Mexican bar which is where the entrance is... but once I got to the back, I felt like I had walked into what I imagine the South to be like! (I wouldn't know though). It almost feels like you're at picnic tables, just indoors.

The food was pretty decent - cheap and large portions. We had ribs, chicken, sausage links, creamed corn, collard greens, black eyed peas, baked beans, cornbread, potato salad, and cole slaw. The corn got a lot of kick from jalapenos, and the baked beans tasted like they were cooked in pork fat (that's a good thing). The ribs were pretty decent (but like most - dry without ladling the sauce on), and I ate like five pieces of cornbread (very moist and right out of the oven). Everything else was forgettable. I felt bad for the one vegetarian there. Hopefully he ate beforehand!

The staff is friendly - they were stressed out at first and it showed (we had a party of 25 that kept asking for more and more water... it was a hot day!), but towards the end they warmed up to us and even initiated the Happy Birthday song. I was particularly enlisted to cut and serve the pie by one of the women who said I needed to eat more (even though I had already been stuffing my face).

Fun and cheap! You will get full.


Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Much 'I Do' About Nothing

Monday was the end of Gossip Girl's awesomely trashy first season, and Grace & Co. threw a party that I couldn't make! Sadness. Their menu was quite fabulous! I especially love the Waldorf Salad. Hopefully they didn't add poached chicken a la Ryan Scott (who, btw, was apparently at Bay to Breakers last weekend).

Chuck Full of Nuts
Waldorf Salad
Dan-ish Meatballs
Archi-bowl of Grilled Vegetables
Apple-Woodsen Bacon Roasted Potatoes
Georgina Peach Cobbler

LOVE IT. Pics from Grace after the jump (don't judge me).


Serena-approved potatoes, Humphrey meatballs

Waldorf salad, THANK THE STARS that Georgina is gone!!


Sunday, May 18, 2008

DATC Mtg #1

So awhile back, bsze, Jake and I started DATC - Dine Around Town Club. On Facebook,

Group Info
Not to be mistaken for "Dine ABOUT Town," the DATC's mission is to cultivate stimulating discussions and thought-provoking diagnoses of the world around us over culinary delicacies like spam soup and anything fried.

After months and months of reservations fallen through, we finally had our very first meal as an official club: San Tung. It was their first time, too! To the right, you'll see a picture of Jake eyeing the last chicken wing, which did end up on his plate only to go to waste. Travesty.


Sunday, May 11, 2008

I got it from my mama

I was super late to my family lunch at La Note because I was making brioche bread pudding for Mother's Day! I started the brioche yesterday and didn't realize that it took forever to rise (I used a Dorie Greenspan recipe) so I didn't bake the bread until this morning. I didn't have time to let it cool and I thought it would be ok to skip that part since it would be in bread pudding anyway. I used the Tartine custard recipe, and didn't follow the no-crowding rule. Thus, unlike Tartine's, mine turned out more brioche-y than custard-y, but I actually preferred it since Tartine's can get really soggy (Alice once commented that theirs looks like vomit). Ideally it should fall somewhere in between the two.

I just topped it with some strawberries macerated in sugar and balsamic. Oh yeah, and I had to use a springform again because I left my bread pans in Fremont. Doh!

My mom also brought her very very old yogurt maker for me to play with. Hopefully I'll get a yogurt post up one of these days!

More pictures after the jump.

Toasting slices of brioche, pre-custard crowding, ready to bake!



Saturday, May 10, 2008


3212 Clement St (& 32nd Ave)
(415) 379-3604

Traditional Japanese in the Richmond

I've heard good things about this place awhile ago from my Japanese friend who knows his food. Near the Legion of Honor, this restaurant is within walking distance from my apartment, and isn't anything too trendy or pretentious. Our waiter (Matt) was really friendly and made us feel like we were welcome to become regulars =)

This restaurant is small plates style, but the sizes of each dish depends on what you're getting (e.g. for the yakitori, or grilled meats, were only 2 skewers per order). For 2 people, we got 6 dishes initially, then added one more later because Mike was still hungry.

- grilled cod: a delicious, buttery fish
- fried tofu & vegetable dumpling: large, cut into 4 pieces. The sauce was good.
- oyaji beef: beef & onions - how can you go wrong??
- spicy hamachi roll: this would have been better as sashimi (i.e. just the fish, which was very fresh)
- mountain yam & tuna: I really liked the yam the first time I had it, and this time around, it was nice having the tuna accompaniment, because it's all about the texture, and lacks flavor which the fish provides
- boiled burdock: Mike didn't like this, but I thought it was fine. The texture reminds me of chard/kale, which not everyone is a fan of.
- cabbage rolls: this is supposed to be bar (or "tavern") food, and it was definitely not what we expected. Instead of the anticipated lightly steamed and soupy rolls, it was smothered in a heavy gravy reminiscent of Stroganoff (which I love, even at places like Lalime). Not what you expect from Japanese food (i.e. not light), but it was yummy.

No need to get dessert afterwards, either, because they gave us each a frozen strawberry filled with white chocolate. This place is great, and definitely one to take a group of friends and chill over a nice meal and sake.

*** Update #1: I went here again this weekend and we sat at the sushi bar this time. Everything was fresh (toro, hamachi... I think I could eat raw fish all day if I had access), and some of our friends even dared to try the sea snails (raw. They weren't fans, but it looked really neat haha). However, I was kind of offended by the sushi chef when we ordered uni for everyone, and he immediately singled me out and said I wouldn't get any because it was only for men. WTF? I said whatever and laughed it off, but was really trying to shoot daggers at him with my eyes.

We also tried some of the other bar food, including the crab croquettes (eh. Couldn't taste the crab), asparagus wrapped in beef (eh. Not that flavorful), and then the cod again. It's dangerous sitting at the bar because it's so easy to order more and more fish = $$. We ended up spending around $50 this time! Holy moly.

*** Update #2: I've been here quite a few times since my initial experience, and here are some other things we've tried.
- grilled skewered chicken meatballs: pretty amazing, very juicy
- pork belly: good but really fatty, as expected
- steamed monkfish liver: creamy goodness
- marinated squid: nasty mcnasty... overpowering fishy taste and vomit-like appearance, which doesn't help
- fried tofu: good
- cold tofu: ok
- chicken wings: nice char taste on them
- burdock: prepared differently this time in this creamy sesame sauce
- ramen: decent