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Restaurant Suggestions in Walnut Creek

I am not from WC, but used the board to find this Turkish place last month. It was a very memorable meal, salmon and chicken kabobs-perfectly spiced and prepared, the meze platter presented in person was double yum, best of the bunch were a roasted eggplant salad, bulgar (oh, that bulgar made my mouth sing) lettuce wraps, a white bean salad, and their layered borek. Service was knowledgeable without being hovering, it's a low key white table cloth place, casual and friendly.

Ephesus Kebab Lounge
1321 Locust Street
Walnut Creek


my Hilo list, please critique

Here is what I have gleaned from my research for my upcoming 9 day stay. I am concentrating on grilled fish, sushi, and poke, island specialities, and fresh produce. Located in Puna, I will venture to Hilo and Pahoa, as far as Waimea on one side. Will travel to Naalehu on the other side, anything memorable to eat or gather over there? Is there one restaurant in Pahoa that is good? Please no Kona or Capt. Cook recs!

In Hilo, Farmers Market, Ocean Sushi and Deli, Tsunami, Ken’s House of Pancakes
Nori's Saimin & Snacks, Miyo’s, Miwa, Hilo Homemade, Sombat's Thai, Suisan Fish Market, Supermarket in Pahoa for poke

On the north road, What’s Shakin’, Merriman’s
Volcano food, golf course, Keawe Kitchen

Aug 21, 2007
deelish in Hawaii

Hong Kong Seafood mini review (SF)

sauteed scallops in xo sauce
filet of rock cod in black bean sauce
chinese broccoli with garlic

All were excellent, fresh and well prepared, The scallops had the right amount of heat for me and were not rubbery, the dish had plenty of crunchy celery, a terrific complement. The cod tasted like it had just been pulled from the tank with enough salty black beans to give it flavor but not overpower. Broccoli was crisp with a lot of garlic but not too much oil, my favorite vegie preparation. Competant, efficient service was provided, with rice and tea, $35. Excellent! Thank you hounds for previous reviews.

Noriega at 33rd

Pre-theatre dinner 48th/8th Ave.

Just went to Victors Cafe on 52nd near Broadway Friday night and it was amazing. I don't know Cuban food very well, and this was my first experience at Victors, but the service, quality, and ambiance were perfect for a pre-theater bite.

We had mojitos (the best!), plantains, yuca, ceviche, black beans, a tamal, and a couple other appetizers. All were tasty, and the yuca drenched in garlic was outstanding.

May 16, 2007
deelish in Manhattan

looking for UWS lunch, carib or mid-east

Thanks for all the suggestions, I will report back after the event. You are all super!

May 10, 2007
deelish in Manhattan

looking for UWS lunch, carib or mid-east

Terrific suggestions, thanks so much. Yes, Turkish and Morrocan could certainly work. I will check them out.

May 10, 2007
deelish in Manhattan

looking for UWS lunch, carib or mid-east

Thanks for this tip, the menu looks fab, but the hours are dinner only.... so not good for this time.

May 10, 2007
deelish in Manhattan

looking for UWS lunch, carib or mid-east

My research did not reveal your best choice, all the posts were old, complaining or about dinner. Please, please, please help this SF hound find the place to take her NY relatives that will wow them! Looking for a slightly "ladies lunch" kind of atmosphere, but not stuffy or formal. Went to Byblos a couple days ago and that kind of place would be perfect, great food, mid price, nice courteous service.

May 09, 2007
deelish in Manhattan

gefilte fish prep problem @ fish counter [moved from General Topics]

So I went to my local (SF) fish market to pick up my fish and when I asked the butcher to grind the fish and throw in an onion and a carrot (like I have done for years), he said he couldn't do it anymore. It seems that there are new health dept regulations that no food, other than the fish can be mixed in the grinder. He said it had to do with bacterial contamination. OY!

Has anyone else heard of this? Is it just SF, CA, or the whole country? It is not a kosher market, so that is not the issue.

Apr 03, 2007
deelish in Not About Food

Airline special meals?

In November, I flew to London (BA) and ordered the Asian Vegie meal. The saag paneer, rice, naan and little crispy snacks were yummy, and well spiced, not greasy... way better than what other passengers were eating. That said, the special meals came early and so we were uncomfortable having to manuever trays when no one else was, and then they left the trays on us until all in the row were done. Ugh!

Mar 20, 2007
deelish in General Topics

Thai House Express. new pork leg dish-yum

yes, sorry for the abbreviation. It is open noon to midnight.

Thai House Express. new pork leg dish-yum

Just had a great dish at the Tenderloin branch. It was on the specials board, but looked pretty permanent. Their wonderful pork leg (stew) was served in a noodle soup. The broth was incredibly flavorful, thin rice noodles still toothsome, and the pork was the same as in their now infamous stew, a bit fatty but terrific overall. The waiter said we could get fat or thin noodles.

Also tried the mango sticky rice for the first time, what a dish! I am in love with the little crunchy, mung bean seeds roasted and sprinkled on top.

Going to Pacific Cafe for dinner. Any recommendations??? or should I miss it all together.

If they have mussels and you like them, they are not to be missed, very well prepared in a garlicy, shallot, wine broth. I do not reccommend the salad that has the bay shrimp.

Top of th Mark Brunch....

In addition, when I was there in November with a group of 6, I believe the champagne was included in the price and was a bottomless glass that was quite tasty! Also, we never felt rushed even though we were among the first reservation group and stayed close to 2 hours.

Good Sushi in the Castro...?

Diamaru on the NW corner of Sanchez and 16th is good. I have only had their combo sashimi plates and a couple special apps (Tako, GomaAe, Seaweed salad), but all has been fresh, well priced, and served artfully. Very friendly staff, good easy atmosphere.

superb tacos @ Pacheco/Soledad

Hungry on 101 last night, driving north, stopped at this wonderful Mexican market and taqueria for a snack. It is open on Sunday when not much else was. I had not searched the CH archives, but see that there are recs on this place from the past. It is still great!

I had a taco with lengua, which was soft and juicy without being greasy, totally scrumptious and one with carnitas. The meat had proper crispy ends but the rest was not dried out, good but the lengua was better. The tacos came with onions, cilantro and a very good (hot) salsa. The to-go bag was packed with a radish and lemon. The tortillas were fresh, pillowy and lightly grilled. $1.75 each.

Feb 19, 2007
deelish in California

Half Moon Bay Inn & Kitchen - Recent Experience?

If you are not married to eating in HMB, or if Cetrella is open (which is realy good) drive a few miles down Highway 1 to Pescadero and eat at Duartes. They have a great artichoke omelet!

Meal on Card/Tip in cash. Do you do this?

I try to tip in cash, CC or not. I always go under the assumption that cash is more valuable to the staff, because of instant availability and no taxes taken out. But this thread about the IRS is troublesome, I may have to rethink my habits.

Feb 01, 2007
deelish in Not About Food

Organic breakfast restaurants/diners in San Francisco?

While not exclusively organic, Toast Eatery on Church x Day Street has fair trade organic coffee and uses Niman meats, some organic produce, etc. I was there once and it was good, very American diner-ish with a little upscale twist. The only complaint I had was that they went to all this trouble to use high quality ingredients and served silly institutional single portion ordinary jam (a major pet peeve).

Do you tip for take out?

O.K., Thanks for your thoughts. I really like the idea that a standard order requires no tip, and a special one does. I have more trouble with the concept of standard tipping (10% or more for minimal service) for take-out, but do agree that it would promote a good relationship, whether one returns or not.

I may go back and slip the waiter a little tip, just to ease my mind and so I can return easily. The food was good, the preparation and packing was fine, and they did do a little extra with the order.

Do you tend to think that a higher end place would require a tip and a more casual one not?

Feb 01, 2007
deelish in Not About Food

Do you tip for take out?

I picked up some pizzas and starters tonight at a new, fairly high end place. Since the bill was $85. I paid with a CC. The waiter hovered over me like he was waiting for a tip. I did not include one, then when I went home and discussed this at the dinner table, got a mixed response. What do you think?

Jan 31, 2007
deelish in Not About Food

Jasmine Tea House - would like to hear your faves, please.

My favs are Emmy's (585-9880) and Joe's (585-1919) on Ocean. They both have brown rice, lots of veg and tofu options and free delivery w/choice of mein or fun. Emmy's soups are good, Joe's is a little cheaper.

But I think the best by far in the nabe is Hong Sing on Diamond. But they do not deliver (you have to pick it up) and they have no brown rice. Their war won ton is fantastic, plus they have greens w/garlic that is my idea of perfect. I also like their filet of fish (snapper type or tilapia) in ginger sauce.

Jasmine Tea House - would like to hear your faves, please.

We order from them 2 or 3 times a year, they have good delivery service. The salads are all sweet, so don't get any unless you like it sweet. Their food is passable in flavor and a little higher quality that most, but not the best Chinese delivery in the area. They have brown rice, if you care. Here is what we get:

veg mu shu
sunflower chicken
prawns black bean
dry string beans
basil tofu (top notch)
pea sprout w/ garlic (top notch)
bbq pork chow fun (free w/ order)

Doña Tomas - Recent Reviews?

Just went Friday night and had an excellent meal and experience. We had a terrific huitaloche (corn fungus) quesadilla appetizer that I could eat at every meal, every day! The ceviche is indeed stellar for a Mex version and that was the only critter we had.

Their version of chile rellanos are amazing, not breaded or deep fried, just green chile goodness, stuffed with smooth, meltingly yummy goat cheese, served with very flavorful creamy black beans. We also had a veg enchilada that was filled with squash blossoms, came with well prepared mixed greens, garlicy and perfectly balanced.

Their masa products are all fresh and taste of corn, their salsa is a lovely puree of smoky chilies served with housemade chips. And don't miss the margaritas, especially if you are splurging, the $17. Paradiso is without a doubt the best cocktail I ever had, even though I hate to admit I paid that much for a drink. Service was friendly, efficient and welcoming.

Go, he will love it!

Cabbage Soup

I was in the same situation last week and ended up making a terrific Hungarian Cabbage Soup.
Veg stock-onions, garlic, carrots, celery, S&P
Flavorings-caraway, paprika, dill
Additions-tomato paste (or sauce), red wine vinegar

I blended the stock and the flavorings with a stick blender after they were fully cooked in a bit of olive oil. Then added the chopped cabbage and simmered for about 10 minutes. When the cabbage was cooked, I added the tomato and vinegar, heated it all up and served with a bit of yogurt, garnished with parsley.

Jan 20, 2007
deelish in Home Cooking

Ma Pinkie's closing

Oh no, this is really a shame! I never thought they had the best food, but the owners couldn't have been nicer and I must admit I was addicted to their fried catfish lunch with okra and coleslaw. The catfish had a good sandy crunch and the okra was always plump and not slimy. I hope they relocate somewhere.

Some recs (early non-hotel bkfst, maybe tasty lunch) in area around M. Hopkins?

Two breakfast places near the hotel are Dotties True Blue Cafe on Jones, and Sears Fine Foods on Powell. Both are crowded, but that early will be fine. For lunches, search the board for Chinatown recs, you are only a few blocks away.

mushrooms galore!

My favorite thing to cook with a mushroom surplus is soup, especially this time of year. You can eliminate the cream or use a low fat sub (just no fat free) if you want to cut calories. You might use a miso broth with tofu, julienned carrot and daikon for a Japanese soup, or make a mushroom stock and add what ever appeals. I find Deborah Madison's mushroom stock in her "Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone" highly adaptable.

Jan 13, 2007
deelish in Home Cooking

Help finish off my French Laundry weekend

Sounds like fine dining overload to me, especially on Saturday. If you want to explore Yountville, stop in at Gordons for lunch. It is a casual place with high quality food and lovely wine country atmosphere.

Embarcadero Theater vicinity?

Where would you go for an early dinner before a movie if it was mid-week and you wanted casual atmosphere, walk-in easy for under $20pp, alcohol not important? My default would be Out the Door or Hog Island. Are there other places (not in the Ferry Building) in any of the Embarc buildings (or within two or three blocks) that have dinner service?