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Help please - for tomorrow need a cafe or bar or something on california ave in palo alto that has comfy couches....

Ha- at Joani's Cafe since the location was convenient. no couches but it worked out ok (wish i could say the same for the meetup... :)

Feb 21, 2014
laterible in San Francisco Bay Area

Help please - for tomorrow need a cafe or bar or something on california ave in palo alto that has comfy couches....

thanks, looked at that too- it closes very early. I forgot to mention it needs to be open minimum til 9pm preferably later... too many constrictions I know...
i am toying with the idea of cafe brioche and just order coffee...

Feb 19, 2014
laterible in San Francisco Bay Area

Help please - for tomorrow need a cafe or bar or something on california ave in palo alto that has comfy couches....

thanks i had looked at that and am a bit afraid the cigar smoke might bother them- i dont mind cafe or bar or wine bar or lounge, just comfy seating- not about the food or drink at all...

Feb 19, 2014
laterible in San Francisco Bay Area

Help please - for tomorrow need a cafe or bar or something on california ave in palo alto that has comfy couches....

sorry for the long title- meeting up near california in palo alto and i have been looking at pictures of cafes etc and cannot find one with couches. i see Coupa cafe looks really nice but its downtown

Appreciate any suggestions ASAP!
thanks!

Feb 18, 2014
laterible in San Francisco Bay Area

Zarzuela or Lolinda (or other) for great Argentinian steaks and authentic tapas? [San Francisco]

So the Lolinda choice was a great one and everyone was happy (though my gourmand hulking boys might have enjoyed larger portions). The ribeye lived up to its reputation and I had an amazing Argentinian red that I forget the name of that was a bit spicy? went great with meats. also had the pork belly - yum and the palm salad, short ribs, fish ceviche and empanadas... then desserts... and they were still on the verge of hungry. Still, it was a lovely atmosphere and would recommend.
Now I just saw ESPERPENTO and want to check that out asap! thanks to all for your input

Feb 07, 2014
laterible in San Francisco Bay Area

Zarzuela or Lolinda (or other) for great Argentinian steaks and authentic tapas? [San Francisco]

Whoops- sorry for the mix up- re Zarzuela being Spanish and not Argentinian. I was thinking tapas and ... never mind. So it sounds like the consensus is Lolinda unless I want to provide an opportunity for massive amounts of meat (which they can easily consume), in which case I should go for Espetus.

My preference would of course be Zarzuela, but it's not my birthday (though I am the meal ticket).
if anyone has suggestions beyond these options, please feel free (until next Thursday) and they are located in Potrero Hill
thanks to all

Jan 24, 2014
laterible in San Francisco Bay Area

Zarzuela or Lolinda (or other) for great Argentinian steaks and authentic tapas? [San Francisco]

Hi there, taking my boys out for their birthday dinners up in the city - weeknight and I was thinking of House of Prime Rib for the special occasion, but they are booked up. Both are meat lovers and I am a seafood- exotic- etc lover so I thought tapas/steak would be a good solution with a little flair. So which is more recommended>? they both sound pretty good... It is an occasion but the food is what counts the most, second is ambiance and fun atmosphere.
Appreciate any and all recs
p.s. they are turning 23 and 25... so just 'boys' to me....
thanks!

Jan 24, 2014
laterible in San Francisco Bay Area

Potrero Hill Eats [San Francisco]

My two gorgeous young sons just moved to the neighborhood and I am looking for good dinner places around 22nt st caltrain station (could branch out in a 10 block radius or so) during subsequent visits. I see a bunch of places around 18th St, Chez Papa Chez Maman Gilberth's, Poquito in Dogpatch- any must try's or warnings...?
thanks!

Nov 11, 2013
laterible in San Francisco Bay Area

La Costena is moving- where? (Mountain View)

yea saw that. Isn't it a bit odd that they're shutting down without a new transition ready? And if the whole building is being razed, does that mean la Bamba is moving as well?

Nov 11, 2013
laterible in San Francisco Bay Area

La Costena is moving- where? (Mountain View)

Just drove by La Costena (Middlefield) and the place is cleared out with a sign that they are moving but no new address. Has anyone heard about this? Change is disturbing... been going there for 15 years

Nov 11, 2013
laterible in San Francisco Bay Area

Reasonably priced (very) Mexican-Latin Am around Mission with good atmosphere, preferably outdoor seating... for tonite :) [San Francisco]

thanks, decided on Chico's Grill- right near my son on mission and richland and it gets rave reviews (chef worked at tadich). plus they answered the phone and took a reservation
will let you know how it was....

Sep 13, 2013
laterible in San Francisco Bay Area

Reasonably priced (very) Mexican-Latin Am around Mission with good atmosphere, preferably outdoor seating... for tonite :) [San Francisco]

Thanks, Robert. has to be in SF. Outdoors was just a suggestion- sit down with room for a group and cheap good food is what I'm looking for. Looking at La Corneta or Chavas or El Zocalo - or other recs.
thanks

Sep 13, 2013
laterible in San Francisco Bay Area

Reasonably priced (very) Mexican-Latin Am around Mission with good atmosphere, preferably outdoor seating... for tonite :) [San Francisco]

So this is the LAST night with the picky relatives and since we are all broke from too many meals and drinks, looking for cheap but nice ambiance, mexican is great or something like it, in the mission or thereabouts- i.e. authentic, local, cheap, but can house a group of 9...
looked at el farolito but saw something about it being filthy- but looking for sit-down experience, outdoors is good too
I swear this is my last request.... thanks so much for all suggestions

Sep 13, 2013
laterible in San Francisco Bay Area

Reasonable, fun dinner spot in SF (preferably between haight and downtown) for tonight...?

Hi there, me and my picky pain in the butt relatives are meeting up in SF for a late dinner (so a large group of 14) and I would really appreciate recs for a casual, reasonably priced, nice atmopsphere place. food quality is secondary .... much appreciate all suggestions within the next few hours :)
thanks!

Sep 10, 2013
laterible in San Francisco Bay Area

In search of restaurant recs for relatives arriving - 3 nights in peninsula please...

thanks, yea i was looking at that and now i am wavering again... leaning back towards joya. i just want them to have a great dining experience with fun and lively atmosphere and impress them with peninsula eats (and drinks.. :)

Sep 03, 2013
laterible in San Francisco Bay Area

Has anyone ever made 'Lamb Barbacoa' (Lamb wrapped in banana leaves)?

there should be fresh banana leaves at mi pueblo nearby (at least that's what I'm counting on..) so you think it works as a dish, and to eat w corn tortillas? I am planning to use around 12 lbs (15 people)

Sep 03, 2013
laterible in Home Cooking

In search of restaurant recs for relatives arriving - 3 nights in peninsula please...

Hi Bbulkow, sorry to pester you again- but I was just looking at Terrone reviews and their little video and it sounds like a nice authentic place with good ambiance (out on the patio) and good food and drinks. Someone said the owner even serenades with guitar... so do you think it might work for the birthday dinner event instead of Joya? (I promise no more questions after tomorrow as it will be too late :)

thanks again for your help

Sep 03, 2013
laterible in San Francisco Bay Area

Rangoon Ruby in palo alto?

I was wondering if anyone's been and if they liked it (I am very partial to Mingalaba in Burlingame, especially the Mango salad...)

and just thought i'd ask again before I book Joya (obviously not terribly enthusiastically) for party of 10 on sunday night...

Sep 03, 2013
laterible in San Francisco Bay Area

Last pesky request, I promise... Peninsula Birthday dinner re-evaluation

thanks for the report- I would consider it except that we are already going for mexican (vive sol) on the first night they arrive, so i was trying to expose them to different cuisine. i am leaning towards Joya, though granted tapas isnt much of a contrast... i just want somewhere fun, lively, good food, good drinks. good on sunday. ...

Sep 03, 2013
laterible in San Francisco Bay Area

Has anyone ever made 'Lamb Barbacoa' (Lamb wrapped in banana leaves)?

I am interested in this recipe (and wondering if I could add in a chuck or brisket into the mix as well- feedin 18 people..)

roughly along the lines of:

http://www.patismexicantable.com/2012...
LAMB BARBACOA IN ADOBO
Serves 12

INGREDIENTS
For the Marinade
10 dried guajillo chile peppers, stemmed and seeded
10 dried ancho chile peppers, stemmed and seeded
5 cups water
1/3 cups apple cider vinegar
1 medium Roma tomato, cut into quarters
1/2 medium white onion, coarsely chopped (1/2 cup
)3 medium cloves garlic
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
5 whole cloves, stems removed
2 1/2 teaspoons kosher or sea salt
3 tablespoons safflower or vegetable oil

For the vegetable base
2 medium white onions, coarsely chopped (about 2 1/2 cups)
1 1/2 pounds carrots, peeled and cut crosswise into chunks
1 1/2 pounds red potatoes, peeler and cut into large cubes
8 ounces dried garbanzo bean, soaked overnight in 3 cups of very hot water, then drained
12 ounces (1 bottle) light colored beer, such as Corona
3 cups water
bay leaves
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher or sea salt

For the meat
8 pounds bone-in leg and shoulder of lamb (or a leg or a shoulder)
1 pound banana leaves
5 to 6 fresh or dried avocado leaves (optional)

Sep 01, 2013
laterible in Home Cooking

Cochinita Pibil --- with Beef, is it doable or am I delusional?

interesting recipe and thanks for the response. the most important element to me is the banana leaves (exotic presentation) and as i thought, the sour orange doesnt really work with beef and certainly not lamb. in reading the recipe, it calls for achiote paste after the meat is done, to mix with the plantains? i have anatto seeds and i love the color and subtle flavor but wasnt sure it works with beef or lamb. do i just add in whole plantains into the banana leaf bundle and cook all together low and slow?
what cut of beef do you recommend using that would be comparable to pork shoulder? i was thinking either short ribs or 7 bone chuck. i may just go nuts and mix it together with leg of lamb...

Aug 31, 2013
laterible in Home Cooking

Cochinita Pibil --- with Beef, is it doable or am I delusional?

So I had my heart set on making cochinita pibil for a holiday dinner for 15 people (Jewish new Year) and foolishly thought I could just sub in a different meat. But now that I am looking at it, it doesnt sound like the best idea. The reason I am fixated is that I want to impress relatives with the exotic banana leaves... even plantains... I looked around for beef or lamb in banana leaves and there are 2 options that come up:
Lamb Barbacoa http://www.patismexicantable.com/2012/02/lamb_barbacoa_in_adobo/ OR
Beef with Guajillo saucehttp://www.food.com/recipe/beef-with-guajill...
oh yeah- and I even found an Omani lamb option...

I am now finding myself getting confused with the flavors and the cuisine (Mex vs ME) especially as the Barbacoa includes garbanzos which immed takes me to the ME.... I was going to use a rub of chiles and achiote and then have corn tortillas, but now that doesnt seem like it would work very well.
I need some clarity, some good advice and a dose of reality...
Thanks for all replies and suggestions (asap)!

Aug 31, 2013
laterible in Home Cooking

Last pesky request, I promise... Peninsula Birthday dinner re-evaluation

Thanks for all replies. (bbulkow: my profuse apologies for making you endure this)

keep in mind its a mixed group of 10 with ages ranging from 22 to 80 (only one 80- 4 under 30, 1 over 40, 4 over 50...:)

Xanh- asian and last time I was there it wasnt impressive. Tamarine- too stuffy and not great for a large (hopefully animated) group. Reposado, never been but they will have had mexican on their first (informal) night- Agave. Cascal i would go to but afraid of the food, but perhaps its more about the drinks and nothing will matter from there... Joya, from your comments I am now afraid... Sunday night is the killer too. price wise I;m trying to stay moderate but will consider something exceptional.

This is way too hard and taking too much brain activity especially as I have to put together a meal for all on top of it all... now that's another discussion :)

Aug 28, 2013
laterible in San Francisco Bay Area

Last pesky request, I promise... Peninsula Birthday dinner re-evaluation

So I had thought I had it all planned out for the relatives arrival (Napoletano, Amber India, Agave, HK Saigon on weekend lunch) and was going with Asian for the birthday dinner but have since been informed that they want a fun drinking lively place for the dinner (never mind that the bday gal likes Asian...). SO I am looking for the perfect place- lively, good drinks, good food, not dead on a Sunday night...
anywhere in Palo Alto/Mtn View/Los Altos/Menlo Park areas.

I was thinking of la Bodegita del Medeo but not thrilled about the reviews and havent been in years. Joya? Scratch? (have not been to either) Coconuts? Something like Nola's but better food... (and they were there last time ) any cuisine that has cocktails- mojitos...

I welcome all suggestions and I promise this is the last time I bother y'all...

Thanks so much for all recommendations and advice

Aug 27, 2013
laterible in San Francisco Bay Area

In search of restaurant recs for relatives arriving - 3 nights in peninsula please...

Believe it or not, after finally settling on Flemings as the best option they are closed the exact week my relatives are in town... what a shame. back to the drawing board.

Aug 26, 2013
laterible in San Francisco Bay Area

Best Pizza in Peninsula...? Back up plans for arriving relatives...

OK, perhaps I am being too judgmental and emotional in my choice of words.. i should replace it with snobby and picky, i.e. i am petrified they will pooh pooh whatever i choose as not impressive. yes more hipster-ish and just generally critical. also doesnt help that there are 5 of them each with different ideas... i want to wow and impress them and on the one hand, the authentic italian might but on the other, they might be looking for the 'american experience'. so i think i will stick with napoletana or terrone (both close by so i can get away with saying its just a neighborhood place in case it backfires..but have not been to either).

i hate to sound so negative and stressed, but since the decisions are left entirely up to me, the responsibility weighs heavily to show them a good time and have good food experiences... Lord knows I have better things to worry about :)

Aug 26, 2013
laterible in San Francisco Bay Area

Best Pizza in Peninsula...? Back up plans for arriving relatives...

Sorry to be such a bother, but I am forming a contingency plan for the aforementioned picky foodie relatives arriving soon and just realized that they may want "American Pizza' too... havent had pizza myself in years and am drawin a blank. Suggestions for great pizza welcome- my preference is for more authentic italian but am open to anything that will satisfy and impress

thanks again to all

Aug 25, 2013
laterible in San Francisco Bay Area

SuDam let down... (Mountainvew/Los Altos)

Yes, I had the mushroom soon doo boo. extremely bland, had to add soy sauce which i have never, ever done.

yes. they have ramen and a large selection of noodle dishes. the difference between the noodles beef and the ramen noodles w beef and veg was only the noodle. duplicate everything else including the dearth of beef and using what i suspect is the liquid from the kimchi for the broth. really poor.

Aug 25, 2013
laterible in San Francisco Bay Area

SuDam let down... (Mountainvew/Los Altos)

I thought i would try out SuDam Korean in anticipation of taking my relatives there and was pretty disappointed. From the non-existent ambiance to the overpriced bland (tofu mushroom) greasy (seafood pancake) and non existent beef in beef ramen (3 bowls worth), and the straw was the discussion with the waitress about whether we could have the "free appetizers". There was one other table occupied and the service was way slow, replenishing the small bowls and water only once upon request.
All in all, I was expecting a step up from Tofu House and it was definitely not. Too bad. Next up in my pre-relatives testing, back-a-yard...

Aug 24, 2013
laterible in San Francisco Bay Area

In search of restaurant recs for relatives arriving - 3 nights in peninsula please...

Definitely not :) can't beat what can be gotten there for any ME food, which is a shame because I miss it myself...

So I just have to get consensus on cuisine types when they arrive and make a plan (mexican, thai, chinese, indian, korean, burmese- and possibly cambodian (tommy thai). I have been to tommy twice for lunch and liked it, just not ultra blown away.

As far as steaks, I am revisiting Sundance as an option that could combine the bday dinner, i was only there once, years ago- I have a recollection of dark stuffy and oh so predictable sides (spinach, mash potato etc). But perhaps that works for them if there are large slabs of USDA prime... is there any place to get prime rib besides HOPR? Barring that, I guess its Coconuts since back-a yard sounds too small for 10...

Aug 24, 2013
laterible in San Francisco Bay Area