I've been meaning to visit Gyu-Kaku Japanese BBQ with Dennis and we finally made it there this week. Our friend David joined us for dinner to check out the Monday all day happy hour. It was busy at 8pm and I provided my cell to be texted when a table opened up (estimated 45 minutes). To pass time we strolled through the nearby Trader Joe's. I’ve been thinking of late... wouldn't it be awesome if Oh-SoYummy had our own minion (similar to This Tasty Life) I looked at our friend David curiously… but no, he preferred “consultant”!
20-25 minutes later, we checked back at the restaurant and a table was available within a few minutes. After sitting down, I pointed everyone toward the containers of dipping sauces, consisting of sweet soy, spicy, and ponzu. We prepared our sauces but noted the thicker sweet soy required more *shakes* to get it out! The sign behind the sauces showed that a membership card costs $1, and each $250 you spent earned $25 off your next bill – essentially a 10% 'earnings' ... not too bad of an investment.
The grills here were round and a little smaller than some of the other restaurants I've been to. The grates are smaller too so food wouldn’t drop through the holes as easily! We were hungry and ready to order meat! In fact, there was a whole menu dedicated to the happy hour items, 4 pages worth!
The first item to arrive was our order of Harami Skirt Steak ($8.50), accompanied by the instructions of "30-45 seconds per side." They told us cooking times for all the meats, which was very helpful! They definitely did not do that at Tsuruhashi!
We were recently invited to dine at the new Richard Walker's Pancake House in La Jolla. Instead of our usual sleep-in weekend mornings, we were out of bed early to beat the crowds. Hello 8AM breakfast! And as they say, the early bird gets the worm - we scored parking right around the corner and didn't have to wait to be seated. The outdoor patio area was uncrowded and perfect for us to enjoy a breath of fresh and early morning air.
There were plenty of options including omelettes and pancakes but I wanted an eggs benedict. The menu here offered two versions but the canadian bacon won over the turkey patty version. Sometimes I'm left hungry after this dish but the English muffins were generous (used to be smaller from what I heard) with toppings sized to match!
A couple of years ago, Dennis and I ate at Saigon on Fifth with some friends and enjoyed not one, but THREE delicious sea bass dishes, all differently prepared! We had been meaning to revisit and after a tasty sample during Taste of Hillcrest 2014 and some birthday celebrations, we finally made it back!
The first birthday was for Dennis (a few months ago). The first entree was the 360 Beef, moist morsels of cubed beef. It reminded me of the beef dish we had at Pho Ban Mai, but less oily and at a slightly higher price. They were accented with crispy fried onions and plated on lettuce with rice on the side. The meat was all gone before long.
The second entree was the Creamy Basil Fish, which is the full size dish of the sampler from Taste of Hillcrest. We chose the sea bass version over the salmon when given the choice by our waiter. The fish was fall apart tender and satisfying with the flavorful curry sauce. The rice was put to good use to soak up every last bite of the yummy sauce!
Dennis and I were invited to try out Solare Ristorante for a taste of Southern Italy. We rarely dine in Point Loma area so thought it was the perfect opportunity to do so!
For starters, we were brought Focaccia bread which was fluffy and adorned with tasty heirloom tomatoes. Olive oil with oregano and sea salt was served on the side. If you're a big dipper like Dennis, you'll pick up a heavier dose of salt if you hit the bottom. We loved this!
We selected the Pere & Gorgonzola Salad which was split in two (one half is pictured). The salad had slightly crisp bartlett pears, candied walnuts, stronger gorgonzola cheese and a sweeter balsalmic reduction glaze. I appreciated the balanced composition of this salad and would totally order it again.
I picked out a newer place called Santo Sushi for a post-workout dinner. Santo Sushi is located east of I-15 off Clairemont Mesa Blvd on the left side of a plaza that also housed a Vons grocery store. The place isn't too big and has approximately 9 or 12 tables/booths. The woman who was our server was very friendly and helped answer our questions on the different rolls available. She beamed that they used real crab meat mixed with imitation crab meat in their rolls. We finally decided on two of the special rolls and one off the regular menu.
The first roll we received was the menu special Del Mar House Roll. Inside was their advertised crab meat mix which we thought was nice and tasty, speared through with asparagus for a bit of texture. What was different about the roll was the seared beef on top. We thought the beef itself was soft and easy to chew but still not quite the same effect as fish in a sushi roll. It was decent but I'll always prefer fish sushi over beef sushi.
Our next roll was one of the house recommendations, the Santo Roll...
The lunch crew goes to Sunrise Buffet multiple times a year but since I generally avoid buffets (except vegas or souplantation), I searched for an alternative Chinese restaurant. Golden City was reviewed on mmm-yoso multiple times so I requested to go there one week. We arrived before noon and were only the second/third party to arrive for lunch. And as typical with Chinese restaurants, the menu was very diverse. I told the guys about the crazy $3.99 lunch specials for certain items, but the price was "suspiciously low" to them so we ordered off the regular lunch menu!
I was killing time before a late evening swing dance lesson and decided to join the writer of Convoy Recon (found through Convoy Conquest) for one of his open invitation meals. This week it was Tsuruhashi Japanese BBQ of which I’d never heard of! The Japanese BBQ was similar to the cook your own meat Korean bbq places but without the banchan. When I arrived, the group had already ordered some kimchi-type appetizer to start. I wasn't feeling too picky so I let them choose the food for the evening.
We went all out and ordered the Steak Cut Kobe Beef ($13.95) which were beautifully marbled and in little squares. These were placed on the grill with enthusiasm and when cooked a perfect medium rare made me smile.
Dennis and I headed out to lunch with a friend to the shopping plaza off Mira Mesa Blvd and I-15. After deliberation between the two new restaurants, Nok Thai and Gyu-Kaku Japanese BBQ, our friend picked japanese bbq. We headed toward the door, only to find that it wasn't open for lunch on weekdays! We defaulted to the Thai restaurant, which also meant I could continue my thai quest!
As usual, I ordered the Pad See Ew with chicken and decided to go with the heat level of 2 out of 10. The dish was not spicy initially but I began to see a few red pepper flakes pop up as I continued eating. Thus, a little bit of heat was slowly building, but not anything I couldn't handle...