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What's the best Thai (or any SE Asian) in Santa Rosa? In Sonoma County?

Nice report!

Datapoint about lettuce upcharging.

I noticed that Vung Tau in Newark charges $1 extra for lettuce & herbs with their Banh Khot while the mothership in San Jose does not (Not sure if they do this for Cha Gio)

Anyway, I asked about this and the waiter said that most people at the Newark location didn't touch the lettuce so it was thrown out. They now charge a lower base price and have the $1 charge for people who want the lettuce / herbs.

Banh Khot at the Newark location is $7.50 vs. $8.95 at the San Jose location.

Seoul Gom Tang review (Oakland)

I found this part of the SFGate article humorous:

"Bowls of a slightly milky looking beef broth come in several varieties. One, suk uh gom tang, is made substantial with a variety of beef cuts. It’s likely the most accessible for people who don’t eat a lot of Korean food."

Suk Uh Gom Tang is like the Pho Dac Biet of Gom Tang. The menu calls the proteins "Thoroughly Cooked Mixed Beef" but it comes with tripe, tendon, and small intestine along with thin slices of beef tongue to go with more standard brisket.

For a better introduction, I'd recommend the straight Brisket version, Chadolbaegi Gom Tang.

Seoul Gom Tang review (Oakland)

"jjin" refers to the cooking technique.

jjin mandu - steamed dumpling
gun mandu - fried (pan or deep fried)
mul mandu - boiled

i didn't know they had a compact version there. i only recall seeing the large steamed mandu which are on the menu in Korean (iirc) as "wang mandu" ("king" for the large size) which come out in a big steamer tray. those are jjin-mandu.

the ones you had were in the bean sprout soup? if so, you'd call them mul-mandu. sounds like they may have had some kimchi in them adding the sourness?

Dim Sum Club -- XLB worth seeking out? [San Francisco]

got it. i'll just go back to bemused lurking now . . .

Dim Sum Club -- XLB worth seeking out? [San Francisco]

i think folks are picking nits . . .

group hug? and an XLB Chowdown? :)

Sungari Dumpling house -- Northeastern chinese in Excelsior (SF)

the "multicolor lift" looks like a vegetarian take on Liang Zhang Pi / Yang Jiang Pi

Dim Sum Club (Russian Hill, San Francisco)

gotta be ShanghaiKid

Chowdown Report: SF Excelsior Food Crawl Part I (Aug 2014)

the pupusa with "regional spice" could be Loroco? it's a small green flower bud.

Jack's Oyster Bar & Fish House-Jack London [Oakland]

Stopped by for brunch. Cool mural of the Bay Bridge, SF, & Oakland along the dining room wall to the bathrooms.

Had half a dozen of the $1.50 oysters, squid ink "carbonara", and soft shell crab with black garlic sauce & kimchi.

The oysters were small, sweet & lightly briney. I can't remember the type, but wasn't one of the ones on the menu. Maybe the "Reach Island" that ShanghaiKid got.

The server didn't provide any sauce descriptions so the first oyster got way too much of habanero sauce (upper left sauce) The cocktail sauce was good, but the mignonette was kinda bland.

The "carbonara" was ordered with no bacon and looked interesting with the unbroken, slow cooked egg yolk on top. Mixing it in found an unexpected briney broth which completely diluted the rich egg yolk. It had thick squares of pasta which seemed odd. The dish, as a whole, was a little underseasoned, maybe accentuated / caused by the omission of the bacon.

The soft shell crab dish was the winner with two lightly battered and crisp crabs sliced in half. Both crabs had the tomalley. Nice umami from the black garlic sauce.

The kimchi was made from scallions and while looking like it might have a kick was completely tame in flavor.

Service was so-so which is hopefully because it was day 4 of operations.

Real Doner in Petaluma going veggie?

I can't comment on the signs / menu changes, but eggs in hummus sounds odd to me.

Okonomiyaki: SFBA Dish of the Month August 2014

Izakaya Restaurant in San Jose has four variations on the menu
-Okonomiyaki - Japanese pancake w/ octopus $10.75
-Okra okonomiyaki - pancake w/ okra $10.75
-Buta okonomiyaki - pancake w/ porkbelly $13.75
-Mochi okonomi - pancake /w rice cake, cod fish roe $13.75
+2.75 add tako/mochi/okra

I got the basic one. It's Osaka style, ~8" and 1/2" thick pancake on a cast iron pan and topped with sauce, mayo, shaved bonito, pickled ginger, and nori powder.

I liked their version. The moist inside of the pancake had a decent amount of octopus and also had some of the red pickled ginger. Not too much of the tart sauce. I ate about half and the bottom stayed reasonably crisp while I was eating it.

1335 N. 1st St.
San Jose, CA

Sujebi, Korean torn noodles?

I tried their version earlier this year. The Korean on the menu is Gamja (Potato) Sujebi.

There is a variety of interpretations of "Gamja Sujebi" ranging from regular wheat based noodles with potato chunks in the soup, to noodle dough with potato added, to more dumpling like dough balls vaguely similar to Italian gnocchi which is what I was expecting from the English translation.

This version was a hybrid of the first and second options with noodles made with potato flour along with potato chunks and while the noodles were nice and chewy and soaking in a tasty, thick egg-drop-y broth. I liked the noodles, but they did not fit the "gnocchi" description.

Yongewa Kitchen - Tibetan and Chinese in Cotati [Sonoma County]

If you liked the torn noodles you should keep an eye out for Korean Sujebi

Michael Warring- on I-80 corridor in Vallejo

Sounds interesting, but pricey for the area? Hopefully will get the business needed to keep that up.

Only set menu or can you do ala carte?

Tamashii ramen pacific east mall,richmond

Can't speak for Melanie (or to Ramen Underground, which I haven't tried), but with Bear's Ramen House in Berkeley's Asian Ghetto at the bottom (instant noodle blocks. powdered broth), it would be hard not to make the cut . . .

Ramen Street Festival part of J-Pop Summit, SF Japantown July 19-20, 2014!

LOL! really?

there are many types of ramen. different strokes for different folks ;-)

My Hunt for a California Burrito in the Bay Area.

Couldn't find it on y*lp. Google found it's Angelou's

I guess their search engine isn't that great and couldn't handle the missing 'u'


Angelou's Mexican Grill
21 N 2nd St
San Jose, CA 95113

you go away for a week, and the food you miss most is....

any specific restaurants?

Grand Lake Kwik Way reopened: drive-thru burgers and fries [Oakland]

Picture of the note left on the front of the building:

I like the reference to "unsubstantiated rumors" of the building owner's ties to organized crime

Okonomiyaki: SFBA Dish of the Month August 2014

Grated mountain yam is gooey and bland and very different from the sweet potatoes commonly eaten in the US


Biscuits and Gravy: SFBA Dish of the Month July 2014

Adobe's San Jose Cafeteria has biscuits & gravy for breakfast every Wednesday. The buttermilk biscuits are just OK, but the gravy is really nice with lot's of sausage pieces and a liberal dose of pepper. Comes with 2 Glaum Ranch eggs for just $3.75 (company subsidized)

Biscuits and Gravy: SFBA Dish of the Month July 2014

Full House Cafe on MacArthur in Oakland.

Choice of chicken or sausage gravy. I went with the sausage.

Two halved biscuits on a plate filled to the rim with gravy. The biscuits are not large, maybe 1.5-2" squares. They were light and flakey and have some chives inside. I really liked the biscuits.

The gravy was thin and just a little lumpy with minimal sausage. It wasn't that heavy and had some herby flavor I couldn't place. Much better with a couple dashes of Tabasco.

Full House Cafe
3719 MacArthur Blvd
Oakland, CA

Kotetsu Ramen in Santa Clara

Kotteri gut bomb. There is also a "Kotetsu Light" version on the menu which comes with thin noodles.

I started with some gyoza ($4 for 6). The gyoza are made in house and are pan-fried which I prefer over deep fried versions. These were meaty and flavorful with a straightforward filling of pork, chives, and spices in a nice thin wrapper. Some of the best gyoza I've had in awhile.

The Kotetsu Ramen (kuro/shoyu) came out quickly as I was eating my 2nd gyoza. It had a decent presentation highlighting the two chashu slices (draped over the edge of the bowl) along with some spinach, woodear mushrooms, seasoned egg, nori sheet, green onions and a sprinkle of sesame seeds. I still don't get the nori sheet which is already sogging up during delivery.

As Kirk mentions, the broth is now pretty thick with plenty of bits of fat floating around to help you envision your arteries clogging with each slurp. For me, at least, it was too much of a good thing; I didn't finish the broth.

The noodles were good; thick and wavy with a nice chew to them. The thin slices of draped chashu were fatty and tender and were served cold; a dunking in the broth helped with that and probably made the soup a little fattier as well!

The egg was slightly overcooked with the yolk gelatinous and fully set vs. the runny goodness I crave. Still much better than Santouka's consistently chalky, over-boiled egg.

Biscuits and Gravy: SFBA Dish of the Month July 2014

I had the B&G + Sausage at Aunt Mary's and came away disappointed.

The biscuits were pretty dense and the sage gravy much too sweet (for my tastes). Don't know if it was a mid-week anomaly. I would have liked it better with the Pot Likker gravy that comes with the Bubble & Squeak.

I added the chicken apple sausage instead of the pork one, which may have been a bad choice. You can choose to have it cooked and then crumbled into the gravy, which I did, and I could taste it had been overcooked and dry.

My go-to at AMC is their shrimp & grits + Benton's bacon

you go away for a week, and the food you miss most is....

look at the post that grayelf responded to ;-)

Good Eats near the Sofitel in Redwood City?

Holly St is San Carlos.

there was a korean joint serving not the usual korean bbq but very interesting dishes maybe on N Judah street ? [San Francisco]

I thought the most unique were two braised dishes, the Dwaeji Galbi Jjim or braised Pork Ribs and So Kori Jjim or braised Ox-tails.

The beef short rib with sweet sauce dish you mentioned is the more typical braised meat dish you find.

there was a korean joint serving not the usual korean bbq but very interesting dishes maybe on N Judah street ? [San Francisco]

Those dishes aren't that unusual.

A whole grilled fish is probably yellow croaker or Jogi Gui

Short ribs in braised a sweet sauce is Galbi Jjim

Both are pretty common.

Anything else to set this place apart?

Falafel: SFBA Dish of the Month June 2014

Pita @ Amba has varied. Started fluffy when they opened, moved to thin and bleh, currently thickish whole wheat and fluffy.

best ramen in the bay area

Too bad. I haven't been to Orenchi in a couple of years and the broth used to be rich and flavorful with the added gut bomb of fat bits floating around.