Archive for the ‘Eating Out’ Category

Yes, I’m on a Si Food Diet….

I was still having major latin food cravings so I hopped on yelp and searched by most popular Mexican food and ended up seeing Dia De Pesca (yelp.) met up with Amit to go check out Dia De Pesca since I still haven’t been able to satiate my latin food craving.

The place is extremely cute and cool looking.  Strangely, it reminded me a bit of a trailer park in New Mexico or Southern California, but to me that was a bit of an appeal. It is a bit confusing at first since when you walk in, it’s an open space with a few trailers/trucks and a standalone building.  Do you order at the truck or do you order at the building.  Everyone there was really nice and helpful and explained the process to us, so we went into small building to order which had a few tables set up inside there as well.

There are quite a few items on the menu and we wanted to try a few different things.  Once you order they give you a number and you find a table and they bring the food out to you.  The numbers themselves are also pretty cute. They’re old playing cards.

They have a few drinks as well like horchata, some strawberry fruit drink and a lime cucumber drink.  I ended up getting the cucumber drink, which was really refreshing.

The food came out pretty quickly from the taco truck.  They deliver it to your table and the food was pretty fresh.  The ceviche came out more like a crispy torta type dish.  I ended up getting the mixed seafood ceviche, which was pretty good. This was probably my most favorite dish, but lately I’ve been into simple things.  It was pretty simple with little extra sauce, just the lime juice and the seafood, but all the items were fresh.


We also got a variety of tacos as well. We pretty much tried all the tacos on the menu and I think once again, my favorite was the shrimp taco.

As we sat there on the patio, I really enjoyed the weather and the atmosphere.  The food was good and fresh and while I know there are better mexican food places, but with a mix of the atmosphere and novelty of the place, I know I’ll be back here for sure.  I don’t even know why, but I also started thinking that this would be a great place for a party especially if the fruit drinks were spiked. =P Perhaps for my birthday next year…

Free Haagen-Dazs Cone Day 2011

This Tuesday, May 10, 2011 is Free Haagen-Dazs Cone Day; receive a free scoop of your favorite flavor. Yippee!

From 4:00 pm to 8:00 pm at participating Haagen-Dazs Shops:

Oakridge Mall
925 Blossom Hill Road
San Jose, 95123

Valley Fair
2855 Stevens Creek Blvd
Santa Clara, 95050-6709

Stanford Shopping Center
230 Stanford Shopping Center
Palo Alto, 94304

Stoneridge Mall
1144 Stoneridge Mall Rd
Pleasanton, 94588

San Francisco Centre
865 Market Street
San Francisco, 94103

Stonestown Center
3251 20th Avenue
San Francisco, 94132

Walnut Creek
625 Capwell Lane
Walnut Creek, 94596

Sun Valley Mall
1 Sun Valley Mall
Concord, 94520

Solano Mall
1530 Travis Blvd
Fairfield, 94533

Haagen-Dazs on Facebook

Ben & Jerry’s Free Cone Day 2011

Ben & Jerry’s celebrating 33 years is thanking its customers for their support by offering a free scoop of ice cream Tuesday, April 12, 2011.

Get in line as many times as you would like between noon and 8:00 pm. As we know about free offerings, the line will be long.

This is an opportunity to try new flavors:

Late Night Snack: Inspired by Late Night with Jimmy Fallon – Vanilla Bean Ice Cream with a Salty Caramel Swirl & Fudge Covered Potato Chip Clusters.

Bonnaroo Buzz: – Light Coffee & Malt ice creams with Whiskey Caramel swirls & English Toffee pieces.

Stephen Colbert’s AmeriCone Dream: Vanilla ice cream with fudge covered waffle cone pieces & a caramel swirl.

Clusterfluff: Peanut Butter Ice Cream with Caramel Cluster Pieces, Peanut Butter & Marshmallow Swirls.

Ben & Jerry’s have a new iPhone & Droid app that will guide you to the closest free cone location – iPhone and Droid App Market.

Ben & Jerry’s Free Cone Day
Tuesday, April 12, 2011
12:00 pm – 8:00 pm

Bay Area Locations:

Ben & Jerry’s San Jose
115 East San Carlos,
San Jose, CA 95112

Ben & Jerry’s Santana Row
377 Santana Row, Suite 1120
San Jose, CA 95128

Ben & Jerry’s Berkeley – Center Street
2130 Center Street, Suite 102
Berkeley, CA 94704

Ben & Jerry’s Bon Air Center
290 Bon Air Center,
Greenbrae, CA 94904

Ben & Jerry’s Jack London
505 Embarcadero,
Oakland, CA 94607

Ben & Jerry’s Fisherman’s Wharf
Pier 41, c/o Chatzka’s Inc.
San Francisco, CA 94133

Ben & Jerry’s Argonaut
475 Jeffersont Street,
San Francisco, CA 94109

Ben & Jerry’s Macy’s
Macy’s Department Store,
San Francisco, CA 94102

Ben & Jerry’s Haight Ashbury
1480 Haight Street,
San Francisco, CA 94117

Dishcrawl San Jose: Exotic San Pedro Square

UPDATED! – See the final list below!
Want the scoop on next week’s San Jose Dishcrawl?

On March 23rd food lovers will gather once again to roam about downtown tasting food with exotic twists.

For just $26 (or $27 for ‘latebirds’) you will get to try delicious food from:

Tikka Bytes Food Truck – known for their authentic Indian street food dishes like pani purr.
— I saw them at Edgewood Eats the other day but only glanced at their menu since I knew they’d be at Dishcrawl. I can’t wait to try their food, it looked and smelled so good.
Tikka Bytes Web // Facebook // @TikkaBytesTruck

Satori Tea – Who knew there was a tea bar in San Pedro square? It is totally hidden. Looking forward to trying something new. I’m not a big tea drinker but that’s only because I don’t know what I’d like! Anyone else feel the same way? This is yet another great reason for an event like Dishcrawl.
Satori Tea: Web // Facebook // @SatoriTea

Morocco’s Restaurant – fresh culinary delights of Moroccan cuisine.
Morocco’s Restataurant: Web // Facebook // @Moroccos – Gourmet marshmallows! They come in six flavors: Strawberry Raspberry, Mango, Passion Fruit, Pineapple and Chocolate. I’m crossing my fingers that we get to try the pineapple one. Someone from LP will be handing out fluffy delicious marshmallows to the Dishcrawl crowd.
LilPuffs: Web // Facebook // @Lil_Puffs

** Announcing one more stop: La Pinata! **

La Pinata Restaurant – Great portions of tasty mexican dishes. Also they serve only 100% blue agave tequilas and have a TON to choose from. They’re known for their Tequila Bars! I’ve been there a few times (the one in Alameda as well as San Pedro Square) and I have to say, their margaritas are tasty! A fave of mine – the Desert Rose.
La Pinata: Web // Facebook // @LasPinata

If you were at one of the previous Dishcrawls the crowd started at one of location. Food and/or drinks are served as the crowd mingles with each other. The owners of the establishment (or chefs) talk to the crowd about the culture of the food. It’s a really great experience for people who want to learn just a little bit more about different cuisines (or uniquely crafted food.) After the first location, it’s time to move on to the next!

There’s a twist to next week’s Dishcrawl that will change it up a bit.

“We’re making one big change this month.” says Dishcrawl Founder Tracy Lee. “Our last two Dishcrawls have been massive, but this time Dishcrawlers can expect more intimate groups for a more relaxed time. Besides that, folks can expect just as great of a time and the same fabulous food experience!”

So there you go San Jose – what are you waiting for? Go get your tickets now before it’s too late!

What: Dishcrawl San Jose: Discovering San Pedro Square’s Exotic Food Side
When: March 23rd, 7pm-9:45pm
Where: Misc locations, San Pedro Square area

Dishcrawl: Web // Facebook // @Dishcrawl // Tickets

San Jose Pizza

IMG_6227 IMG_6221

Our chef neighbor recommended that we try San Jose Pizza (“The House of Desi Pizza”). Tonight, three of us ate an excellent dinner there. The location is confusing (look deep between the yogurt shop and the nail place) but worth the hunt. My husband and I were adventurous and discovered that Indian spices and tandoori chicken go very well on pizza. Our teenage son ordered a more basic combination but was just as pleased. The TV was loud, the decorations modest, and the room was cold but the food is delicious and staff are very friendly.

San Jose Pizza
480 Blossom Hill Rd
San Jose, CA 95123
Phone: 408-22-PIZZA (74992) or 408-629-PIZZA (7499)


Images Copyright 2010 by Katy Dickinson

Moo-Chu’s in the Parking Lot

One of the more unlikely diner locations is in the middle of the Nvidia parking lot in Santa Clara. That is where you will find

Moo-Chu’s American / Asian Restaurant
2772 San Tomas Expressway, Santa Clara, CA, 95050
(408) 919-2879

The food is good and the coffee is Peet’s! Moo-Chu’s started out for Nvidia staff but has doubled their business since opening to the public. At lunchtime, you can see employees from a variety of nearby high-tech companies cutting through the parking lots near San Tomas Expressway (Between Central and Walsh), headed for Moo-Chu’s.  Look for the big sign of the cow wearing an Asian hat.

IMG_4997 IMG_4998

Images by Katy Dickinson, Copyright 2010

Ruffled Feathers Eatery

This Monday we decided to try someplace really new downtown, and Ruffled Feathers sounded great.

Located at 200 South 1st Street where the old Askew Grill used to be, Ruffled Feathers is in a prime place to draw a lot of customers.  With the promise of fresh, locally grown produce whenever possible, the draw should be an easy one.

Eatery Pitza

Sadly, there were no other customers in sight the entire time we were there.  Happily, we did have great service and pretty good food as well.

Free range and hormone free!

We ordered our food at the counter and were given a number.  We found a nice table next to a window and enjoyed our drinks (soda bar, lemonade and ice tea) and it wasn’t long before our appetizer of pita chips and hummus arrived.

We were won over right away with this dish.  The hummus had just the right hint of garlic, and the baked pita chips were perfectly baked without being too brown.  We could have happily eaten our entire dinner of just pita and hummus.

Our dinners arrived soon after.  My guest had the Taco Salad:  Grilled, smoked BBQ chicken, fresh chopped Romaine lettuce, green onions, kidney beans, fresh house-made guacamole, crunchy pita chips and a taco dressing.  The dressing was a little too sugary for my guest, but the salad was fresh and she devoured it.

Asian Pita

I had the Basic Pita: A wrap containing grilled chicken breast, chopped tomato, herbed Jack and Mozzarella cheese, and topped with their signature garlic tomatillo sauce.  I had my choice of whole wheat or white pita and I chose wheat.  It was fresh, the sauce was delicious, and I ate the whole thing.  It also came with a couple baked chips and a dollop of that delicious hummus.

Besides rotisserie chicken, they serve a variety of salads, pitas, pita pizzas, pasta and side dishes, and have a separate dessert bar as well.  On September 15 the country band Steel Magnolia entertained customers, and I think the place just needs some time and more events like that to introduce people to this new eatery.

Recommendation:  3 out of 5 stars.  We had a very pleasant time and would definitely head back there for lunch or a light dinner, and it will be a very handy place to have around when Cinequest arrives again in March.  The average meal price is $6.99 so it is very easy to order some extra sides and/or dessert without breaking the bank.

Gordon Biersch: A sad disappointment last night

I have a standing dinner date with a friend every Monday night, so I was thinking about having a new thing at Metblogs where we cover a different restaurant in downtown San Jose every week.  We already have many favorites downtown and thought it would be a great way to let more people know about them.

Unfortunately, last night did not go as expected.

We chose San Jose’s beloved Gordon Biersch last night because my friend was dying for their French fries.  Gordon Biersch serves delicious fries which you can order standard or garlicky.  They are always delicious!

When our server took our order, my friend asked for a chicken sandwich and fries, and requested extra French fries.  We told her we had come specifically for the fries that night, and that my friend would rather have more fries and less sandwich, if anything.  She also asked for a side salad with oil and vinegar, and I ordered my favorite dish, the Cedar Plank Pecan Crusted Salmon.

The first problem arose when the salad was served with no dressing at all.  A different server had brought the salad, and when we pointed out there was no dressing she quickly brought the oil and vinegar bottles over.  No big deal.

The second problem arose when our dinner was served and my friend received her chicken sandwich not with extra fries, but with what looked like less fries than usual.  The waitress apologized and said she had requested extra fries, but that was all she was given.

The third problem arose after the waitress left and I looked down at my own plate.  My salmon was still sitting on the cedar plank; usually it is removed at serving, but no biggie.  I took the piece of wood off the plate but then stared at my salmon…  something was missing.  It had a pile of pecans on top as usual but there was no dill cream sauce!!  We flagged another server down and pointed it out.  She again apologized and offered to have the chef put the sauce on or just bring me out some sauce on the side.  Same result so I didn’t care; she brought me a little tin of sauce.

Before we go to problem four, let me state that Gordon Biersch’s Cedar Plank Pecan Crusted Salmon is one of my very favorite dishes in the whole world, and I rarely order anything else at GB because I can’t stand to go to GB and NOT get it.  I know the dish, I know it’s delicious (heaven, usually), and every other time I’ve ordered it has been perfection.

But not this time.  I put the sauce on the fish and tried to cut into it with my fork.  And I mean TRIED.  This piece of salmon was so overcooked and dried out it was almost inedible.  I could tap my fork on top of it and it was just solid salmon crust.  I would expect better salmon served at Denny’s.

But I wasn’t at Denny’s, I was at Gordon Biersch and had ordered a dish that cost almost $21.  If this was the first time I had ordered this dish I never would have ordered it again.  Under normal circumstances I would have sent the dish back, but we are on a tight schedule for our Monday dinners so it just wasn’t an option at that point.

I’m not being sarcastic when I say the sweet ginger rice was delicious, and my friend loved her chicken sandwich and fries.  She was just disappointed that there were not a few more fries.  And it’s not like we expected GB to serve her bottomless fries for no charge, but do potatoes really cost so much that they couldn’t throw a few extra on the plate for a happy customer?

Any ONE of these problems would have been silly to complain about (well, except for the overcooked salmon).  Any TWO of them could have been overlooked.  But when you have FOUR issues with dinner, and one of them results in a very sad $21 meal, it’s just not right.

To be fair, I can’t remember another time when we have had a bad experience at Gordon Biersch, and we chose it last night because it is one of our favorite restaurants to go to downtown.  Metblogs has been chided before for putting up bad reviews of restaurants that are normally fantastic, but is it right to let this go?  Gordon Biersch is not a cheap restaurant, and if we’re going to have a $50 tab we shouldn’t have to ask for each specific ingredient to be included on our plates, and no one should be served a dried up piece of $21 salmon at any time.  It was my prerogative to send or not send the fish back, but it is my right as a paying customer to not have been served an obviously unacceptable piece of fish in the first place.

And seriously, how much do potatoes cost?  She couldn’t have been given just a couple extra?

An unhappy customer is an unhappy customer, and restaurants should strive to make every customer happy, not just customers with the power of the review pen.  Because every customer has access to Yelp reviews.  So I stand by our right to post the honest review of our experience last night.  I expected to be writing a great one this morning, but one bad dinner changed everything.

Recommendation: Normally it’s priced a bit on the high side but the food is delicious and the service is always friendly and quick.  The beer of course is outstanding.  But based on last night’s dinner:  2 stars out of 5.

Gordon Biersch
Dining inside or on patio
33 East San Fernando Street
San Jose, CA 95113
phone: 408-294-6785

No lunch plans on Tuesday? Let me fix that!

The trend of food trucks continue and thankfully there are a few more available to us in the South Bay. Two somewhat new trucks are the Louisiana Territory and No Way Jose. Both trucks were started by the well known local catering company, Parsley Sage Rosemary and Thyme. I’m officially warning you now – this post is long and filled with photos of food. You might end up having to get a snack after reading this post!

Louisiana Territory

After checking out the calendar on the LT site, I picked a Tuesday to try out the food. The closest location near my job (I work near downtown San Jose) was up at the Netgear campus around Montague Expwy and First St. Easy to get to and plenty of parking was available.

As my coworker and I drove up we noticed the truck right away – a large banner on top of their truck had a picture of a alligator declaring they were “Back!” You see, Louisiana Territory used to be a restaurant located in Mountain View. After eight years in that location the owners moved it to the Pavilion in downtown San Jose.. and well.. it failed. (Stories I’ve heard about the Pavilion have never seemed too positive, unfortunately.) Just recently they decided to give it another go – this time as a gourmet food truck. Brilliant idea, I say!

So what does the LT truck serve it’s oh-so-hungry patrons? Cajun food of course! They list their entire menu on their website but the truck offers a different mix each time. I think that’s a great way to keep it fresh for repeat customers.

There was a small line already formed outside of the truck. Actually it was a few feet AWAY from the truck which honestly I haven’t seen before. I’ve been around a lot of food trucks in the last few months (Downtown San Jose, SF’s Off The Grid, and Oakland’s Eat Real Festival) and this was the first time I didn’t stroll right up to the window. There was a woman ready with a clipboard standing near the end of the truck near the menu to take our order. It’s a little mix of servers at a restaurant and food truck dining. There were also three standing tables nearby. My favorite bit about the truck – the jazzy music they pumped out for patrons. They really were able to give the small space a nice atmosphere for customers to eat.

My coworker and I looked through the menu and for the sake of being able to do a decent review, we opted for two different meals. While my personal diet frowns upon eating rice (long story, you can read my personal blog if you’re that curious) I decided to get the Chicken and Sausage Gumbo. I had originally asked if there was a dish that could be without the rice – and it was suggested that I try the Shrimp & Sausage Creole (and hold the rice that it is usually poured over) OR the Bend Bowl (Beans & Rice, garlic hummus, cheddar cheese, scallions, avocado, cilantro, fage yogurt, & Srirachi chili sauce) again, without the rice. However, I’m a sissypants to most things “spicy” and decided I’d battle it out with the Chicken and Sausage Gumbo. My coworker picked the Blackened Chicken Po Boy. In addition to our meal, we were graciously offered a beverage to try. One of their homemade drinks; either their Ginger Ale or their Tropical Storm Punch. Again, because of my personal situation I could not try their Ginger Ale (though I hear it’s quite tasty) and opted for the TSP.

The foods!

Chicken and Sausage Gumbo: $5
Fully of spicy flavors but not super hot
GIANT chunks of chicken and sausage. I was pleasantly surprised by this.

Blackened Chicken Po Boy: $6
The bread was soft yet crunchy in all right right spots and to our surprise, the bread didn’t seem to have any additional openings. It seemed like it was cut at the top and stuffed full of chicken, tomatoes, lettuce and “special sauce.”

The chicken was seasoned and the veggies were very tasty – overall a great mix. It was a really great sandwich and the next time I hit up the LT I will try either their Shrimp Po Boy or their catfish one.

Tropical Storm Punch: $2
I expected it to be super sweet but it wasn’t. It had a mellow sweetness to it and didn’t bite back with it’s mix of passionfruit, guava, orange and lemonade.

No Way Jose

No Way Jose

After my yummy adventures with the Louisiana Territory truck, two other coworkers were eager to join me in my next food truck excursion – this time PSRT’s other truck, No Way Jose. NWJ’s theme is mexican cuisine. Before leaving, I let my fiance know where/when to find the truck and he got some of his coworkers to come along as well.

The truck is painted in flashy colors and featured some of the same tables that the LT truck had. Unfortunately, there was no music (aww bummer.) **UPDATE A stereo has been installed!** I ordered the Monterey Quesadilla and my coworkers bought the Mission salad and the Santa Maria burrito. The overall consensus was that we enjoyed them! DEEELISH. Lots of meat and full of flavor. Plus the prices were pretty good for the portion.

Monterey Quesadilla $3

Chile verde chicken – saucy, flavorful, and plenty of meat. I don’t like over-packed messy quesadillas, and even though I knew that the chile verde would be saucy it didn’t overpower the tortilla at all. Delicious and I’d totally order it again.

The Mission Salad $6

Huge chicken salad in a crispy shell. My coworker added a little bit of pico de gallo for extra flavor (they had a little salsa bar available for customers to add what they liked) and totally enjoyed her meal.

Santa Maria Burrito $6
Large chunks of chicken packed this burrito. My coworker is a typical male that can pack away hefty burritos and sandwiches and the only thing he mentioned to me was he wished it was bigger – yet it was still a very decent size. I didn’t get a picture of it because he devoured it so fast!

Because my fiance and his coworkers were there as well – there were a few more opinions available on different menu choices:

The Nuevo Mexico Tamale Pie $5
Tamale Pie
I took several bites, I couldn’t help it – it was pretty good. Here’s their description: Tamale pie with fresh masa, roasted corn, shredded pork and earthy, flavorful red chile sauce.

The LA Fish Taco $1.50

The fiance says “It was good. Fish was cooked well. Tasty. It wasn’t fried!”

And last but not least…

Cajun Chimichanga $6

“Red beans & rice, jambalaya, blackened chicken, wrapped in a warmed flour tortilla and deep fried!” It’s a mix of their two trucks – which I thought was a pretty cool idea. I didn’t get to taste it myself but was told that the person who ate it did comment that he felt it needed a bit more meat inside, but overal it tasted good.

Man I’m hungry just going through this list.

Where can you find these truck?

Louisiana Territory
Tomorrow Tuesday, September 28th
Netgear parking lot!
350 E Plumeria Drive
11:30a – 1:30p
LT FacebookLT Twitter

No Way Jose
Tomorrow Tuesday, September 28th
3101 Park Blvd, Palo Alto
12:00a – 1:30p
NWJ Facebook

Free Ice Cream Social 2010

In honor of the Make-A-Wish Foundation, Cold Stone Creamery is hosting its Ninth Annual World’s Largest Ice Cream Social.

Throughout September, you can show your support for the Make-A-Wish Foundation by purchasing a Make-A-Wish paper star for just a dollar at any Cold Stone Creamery location.

On Thursday, September 30 from 5:00 pm to 8:00 pm, you will be able to get a free 3 oz. portion of “Kate’s Creation” – Caramel Apple ice cream mixed with Chocolate Shavings, Graham Cracker Pie Crust and Apple Pie Filling.

Kate, 11, is the Junior Tastemaster behind this year’s Make-A-Wish Creation. Kate’s wish was to create the exclusive Creation for the World’s Largest Ice Cream Social.

Cold Stone Creamery locations

Make-A-Wish Foundation

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