Monday, October 31, 2011

Boo! Beware of Witches and Monsters

As Halloween falls upon the last Monday of October, there will be lots of little ghosts, goblins, witches and monsters walking around the Gold Coast and Fernside areas.  Regardless of what age you are, we are all seeking decent candy from trick or treating.  Decent candy is anything chocolate in a pre-packaged wrapper. I would be hesitant in taking or eating candy that was packaged from the home owner unless you directly know the person.  You never know what people do in their kitchens or their food handling practices.

Halloween in Alameda is such a wonderful family experience.  It's a riot seeing all of the adults get into costumes and character when passing out candy.  The grave yards and haunted houses in the Gold Coast are also spectacular and uplifts the children's imaginations.  Please be careful when driving around high traffic areas of little ones.  We want safe and enjoyable activities for all.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

What is the Attraction?

I have failed to understand what the attraction is to Sushi House Restaurant in the mall.  The dining room is a large scaled cafeteria and the lighting in the space is less than pleasant or romantic.  I then decided to give this restaurant another chance because I was hungry and it was late.  My friend and I ordered a wide variety of rolls and sushi.  

From the get go, the hostess placed us at at a dirty table.  There was spilled soy sauce all other the table, which was not acceptable to me. Strike #1. I then moved over to another table and sat down.  The waitress then came over to our table and took our order.  When she gave us our plates, there was food remnants on the plate from the previous customer.  Of course we returned the plate and asked for a new and clean plate.  Strike #2.

When the food was delivered to the table, the food came out of order.   The sushi came out before the appetizer.  The gyoza tasted alright, but I had to double check to see if the pork meat inside the dumpling was properly cooked.  The color of the won ton skin was very light and the temperature inside the dumpling wasn't exactly hot.  Strike #3.  My friend and I took our chances and hoped for the best. The sushi of unagi and the hamachi was palatable and it tasted okay.  The rolls however, were another story.  The rolls were quite difficult to eat. You could not bite into the roll and have a clean break.  You literally had to eat the entire piece and shove the food into your mouth.  Otherwise the rolls would crumble apart since they were not rolled properly. The flavors of the rolls were also somewhat bland which was a disappointment since the cost of the rolls ranged from $8 to $11.  Strike #4.

With four strikes into the meal, we decided to end our dining experience at the Sushi House and move on.  Even though both of us were still hunger, we were agitated enough with the service and the quality of the food.  I have to wonder why the large groups of Asians always keep on coming back for more.  The prices are not cheap and the noise inside the restaurant can be quite loud during peak times.   What am I missing? 

Sunday, October 23, 2011

East Buffet Closed on Webster

The Days Inn hotel on Webster Street is now called The Rodeway Inn.  I am hoping the new owner will do a complete renovation since the hotel was tired and sad looking.  The all you can eat buffet restaurant is also closed.  I was wondering how long the East Buffet could stay in business because who was going to that place?  I had a meal there and the food was horrible.  I understand that the buffet was all you can, which implies that if you are on a tight budget than one is loading up in that meal.  The food however, was not exactly healthy, most of the food was deep fried.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Style at Last...Spice I Am

Walking around Park Street on a warm evening, I stumbled over to the new Spice I Am Restaurant in the former Rolling Pin Donuts space.  The new space was gorgeous with modern lines and fixtures.  The restaurant can hold up to 47 people.  The art work was abstract Asian calligraphy with wide brush strokes.  The original canvas was one large piece that was cut into five works and spread out along one long wall.  The flooring was dark gray rectangular stones.  The lighting fixtures were large scaled hanging circular fixtures that balanced the room with the high ceilings.  There was a small bar with four chairs towards the back of the room.  The kitchen was closed when I had my visit, but the manager gave me free drink coupons for the next time I have a meal.  The restaurant has a wonderful vibe to the room with panache.  This place is the most sexy establishment going.

I will definitely be back. 

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Hot Dawg for Hot Dogs

I can't resist eating hot dogs.  In the long run, consuming hot dogs over a lifetime, may not be healthy, but there is something magical about them.  A delicious hot dog will bring smiles.  That said, I finally went over to Doggy Style and had a hot dog.
The space was clean, neat and with a new coat of paint.  As I looked over the menu, my first gut reaction was that the menu was similar to a hot dog place in Hawaii. I was experiencing deja vu from an episode of Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives. The menu had a decent selection of Asian inspired hot dogs of nori, kim chi and banh mi.  The hot dog I really wanted was the chili cheese dog with grilled onions.  The hot dog came with raw onions and the cook wouldn't grill the onions.  Grilled onions is something they just won't do.  I then opted for the plain beef hot dog. 

I went for the plain hot dog because I wanted to be able to taste a delicious hot dog instead of consuming a large pile of condiments that is all fluff.  The hot dog came in a warm french roll and I only added mustard and ketchup.   The hot dog was tasty on its own.  I was pleasantly surprised.  I know the owners ate several dozens of varied hot dogs before they chose the dogs they are now selling.  They made a good choice.

I would definitely come back to have another hot dog.  I am not sure if I am adventurous enough to have the Dogzilla with bratwurst, asian slaw, wasabi mayo, teriyaki sauce and nori.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Autumn is Here

Even though the weather may say Indian Summer, Autumn is here.  The leaves are changing color and the days are getting shorter. Halloween is coming in a few weeks, which means lots of bite sized chocolates. Yummy.  I love Halloween, so I am hoping lots of restaurant get into the spirit and show us the mischievous side of food.  Am I asking for too much? 

I am still looking for inspiration from Alameda establishments.