Food Observations

A blog for eaters

Pailin Thai Cafe

One of the best Thai places in SoCal for generous lunch specials is Pailin (no relation to Sarah).  Back in the day it was called Spices Thai.  In fact their paper placemats still have the Spices logo which seems odd.  Here’s a lunch special order of really good Pad Thai.  One of my favorite Thai places in SoCal, and definitely the best in Rancho Bernardo.  



I recently ordered a Crispy Chicken Sandwich from Wendy’s dollar menu (or as they say “right price right size menu”).  Surprised to see it come with cheese and pickles!  Not a bad meal, if coupled with some fries and a frosty.  



A SoCal institution for generations, the few remaining Pernicano’s in existence still pump out some great pasta and pizza.  


Karl Strauss

Still one of my favorite dishes here, just wish they’d be more consistent.  The Piggy Bank mac & cheese is sometimes good, sometimes just average.  Definitely a stand out, creative dish made with andouille sausage, Tasso ham and bacon.  



So is this really better for you without the bun?  I honestly don’t get it.  I do know it makes it such a hot mess to eat.  And these fries they call “animal style” I think.  Talk about hot mess, this is it!  It’s okay for the first few bites but the fries quickly go all limp. ๐Ÿ˜–


Wings & Things

Well I think this one is from the “Things” section of the menu.  Has to be the best thing there because to be honest, their wings aren’t that big.  This is a single order of what they call “Buffalo Chicken Pizza Sticks”.  You know pizza is my middle name and this was just excellent!  They top their hand rolled breadsticks with signature buffalo sauce, melting cheese and boneless buffalo chicken.  Comes with a side of really good and thick ranch dressing.  I think I could eat this every day, but I probably shouldn’t.  


Boto Sushi

Here’s a roll Boto calls Row-Sham-Bow.  It’s topped with baked spicy lobster and a spicy aioli.  Inside is snow crab, cucumber, avocado and masago.  I know it looks like a hot mess and it tasted about the same.  Probably won’t order this roll again.  


Boll Weevil

Tried the Pastrami Burger at The Weev recently and it was excellent! Made with a 1/4 lb patty, a mound of thick sliced, lean hot pastrami, and two slices of melty swiss cheese. Includes fries (I subbed rings) for only $9.79…

The Cork and Craftย 

Back to the Abnormal Beer Company in Rancho Bernardo.  This time tried their calamari.  Not the best I’ve had, but a beautiful presentation nonetheless.  You can never go wrong with fresh, deep fried tater tots!


O’s American Kitchen

I’ve written about O’s before and their lineage of name changes so I won’t rehash all that.  They bill themselves as a unique casual dining experience, bringing the SoCal community hand crafted flavor and quality ingredients.  The standouts here are definitely the amazing breadsticks and great salads.  Here’s a Cobb salad for lunch recently that was more satisfying than any greasy burger!


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