Food Observations

A blog for eaters

Archive for the month “August, 2015”

Chef Chin

It’s been a long time since I’ve been here and I’m reminded why.  I ordered my go-to Chinese favorite, Kung Pao Chicken.  Unfortunately it was loaded down with huge, hideous mushrooms.  Most were broken down to the point where they were hard to discern in the overall dish to pick out.  That and chunks of water chestnut just about did it for me.  Not a fan of either ingredient.  I usually consider the water chestnuts to be cheap fillers in Chinese food.  I need to find a place that just uses the basics.  The fried rice and egg roll were decent at least.  

  
  

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Pizza Nova

This is a great restaurant right on San Diego Bay, just across from the airport.  One of the best calamari appetizers I’ve had.  Complete with two flavorful dipping sauces.  A nice marinara and what seemed like a creamy, garlic, peppercorn type number.  Usually I get one of their signature pizzas, but this time tried an excellent pasta dish.  This was a wide fettuccine with pancetta and some big fatty, succulent shrimps in a delicate cream sauce.  It was outstanding!  Can’t wait to go back 😊

  
  

On the Border

I’m not the biggest fan of chain Mexican restaurants, but OTB has it going on with their twist on TexMex favorites.  One of my favorite things to get there are enchiladas.  Especially when it’s Endless Enchiladas!   I always appreciate how they adorn them with a fresh jalapeño slice.  

  

BJ’s Brewhouse

BJ’s has a really good lunch menu it turns out!   Smaller size burgers that are creative and pack a punch.  Whenever there’s blue cheese and bacon on the menu I can’t resist!  They also have a really good selection of house beers on tap…

  
  
  

Pei Wei Asian Diner

Sometimes at Pei Wei I like to get their Pad Thai.  Pretty good, I just need to remember to tell them to hold the tofu.  😱  Not sure why they feel the need to add that substance when it already comes with a choice of protein.  I can’t speak to the authenticity, but I’ve never had my Pad Thai made with tofu in a Thai restaurant.  

  

Cotija’s Taco Shop

Cotija is a fairly middle of the road chain of taco shops here in SoCal.  The food and service are not outstanding, yet their prices continue to increase.  Not sure why I still go there!  They also depart from the normal recipes on some items, like the carne asada quesadilla.  They put beans in it and wrap it like an open ended burrito.  Es no Bueno!  Anyway, here’s some decent fish tacos and a tolerable chile relleno. 

  
  
  

Homemade Pizza

Sometimes we like to make pizza at home!  Lady FoodObs makes a bangin’ scratch crust and we go from there.  This time just a simple pepperoni.  Always turns out so yummy!  I think I could eat pizza everyday…

  

Up the Hill Grill

Probably one of the most beautifully (and skillfully) constructed sandwiches I’ve had in a long time. This is the “Clubzilla” at Up the Hill Grill. Made with bacon, avo, swiss and stacks of turkey & ham on grilled sourdough. Only $9.95 and includes your choice of sides. I got the beer-battered fries which are just outstanding.  The sammich comes undressed, but the even layer of thinly sliced avocado adds a creamy texture that easily replaces any mayonnaise or aioli.

I had their Bulldog back in the day and it was a hot mess (but still tasty). This one held together quite well for being so large. I had to articulate my jaw considerably just to get the first few bites in.

Also tried one of their signature appetizers.  House made bacon wrapped jalapeño poppers.  Just outstanding!

Highly recommended.

  
  

Miguel’s Cocina

Excellent flautas at Miguel’s.  These are basically big rolled tacos made with flour tortillas instead of corn.  There’s a lot going on with the toppings and garnish which makes it hard to eat cleanly without a fork!

  

Pizza Studio

Back again to one of my favorite new pizza shops around.  Super thin crust, it bakes in only two minutes!  I could easily polish off the whole thing, but as usual split it with my son.  As you might expect, I have the grown up half with maters and onion… So good and highly customizable. 

  

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