A fairly large collection for a SoCal winter Wednesday.
Pho DaKao and Grill Closes:
I drove by and noticed the parking lot was totally empty so I drove in. The Eviction Restoration Notice was posted on the door. Man, this place didn't last very long. I think I visited soon after they opened....so they pulled the plug pretty fast.
I'd driven past a couple of times and the place looked closed so I stopped by earlier in the week.
This former Balboa Avenue institution moved to this location back in the summer of 2013. It's too bad that the renovation and creation of chain restaurant hell drove them from their old location and it seems that they barely made it past a year here. Though never a destination for me, I'd eaten at the old location a couple of times and thought it decent.......
So hopefully I'm mistaken? But it sure looks like they've shut down....
4344 Convoy St San Diego, CA 92111
So here comes the "New" Dumpling Inn and Shanghai Saloon:
While never great shakes, the place really "jumped the shark" in my opinion after the owner got involved with The Dragon's Den and Del Mar Rendezvous, both of which have been sold. So now we get this........ I'm told he has a taste for "fusion", which is great, remember, I'm from the home of Pacific Rim Cuisine, so I love fusion.....but it's a thin line between fusion and "con-fusion".
In the old First Korean Market location.
4625 Convoy St San Diego, CA 92111
We had some much needed rain over the last two weeks........and we're kind of enjoying the nice sleeping weather, which would be great if I wasn't working so many long hours.
Still, I actually saw a double rainbow while driving to Target on the way home yesterday. Pardon the bad photos.
Seeing a rainbow in San Diego is rare enough....a double rainbow, well I don't ever recall seeing one here.
So I took a photo....then took photos of other folks taking photos of the double rainbow.....like I said, this is like an event.
Or maybe a celebrity? This guy is having his picture taken "with" the rainbow! No selfies here....though I did pass two couple taking selfies with the rainbow.
mmm-yoso!!! is a simple blog, with each post eventually concentrating on food consumed. Today, Cathy is showing what was consumed and where it was prepared. Kirk is way busy at work and Ed(from Yuma) is doing his own consuming out there.
In 2009, I wrote about Wongs Golden Palace, then a 42 year La Mesa icon. I mentioned our favorite food selection, chicken liver chow mein and had a few photos of the ever so classic faux marble with gold vein tabletops.
Near the end of that now five year old post, I mentioned the bar area and their 'specials', telling you I just can't take photos in the darkened area. Five years later, the photos are still coming out dark. Be forewarned. The food is great, so I am sharing.
The now 47 year La Mesa restaurant and attached bar, the Dragon Room, (there, to the far right) has a classic exterior (as well as interior) design, from the signage to the facade.Once inside, there are four televisions above the bar, lots of signage about specials and a large selection of beer, and liquor...(the pint beer on tap is $3.75).There's a modern juke box, foosball, pinball and of course, a pool table.Here are the best photos I can acquire of the 1/2 lb angus burger. As you can (sort of) see, it is served on a toasted bun (sesame seeded), hand formed, can be ordered with cheese, comes with crinkle cut fries or battered whole onion rings or half and half. $5.50, available only Monday-Friday from 11:30-2:30. It's really good. Taco Tuesdays are particularly good, if you like tacos like Mom used to make, with ground meat and packaged seasoning. The shells can be soft or fresh-fried (my favorite) and the toppings are fresh and plentiful. Three for $3.25 is a usual order; the five for $4.75 is a great deal, and way too much for the two of us to share. The Fish Fry Friday ($7.50) Plate is a particularly good, large, filling meal. On this day, we received eight smaller batter fried (perfectly fried I might add) pieces of a solid white fish, along with a lot of crinkle cut fries, cole slaw and similarly sized bowl of tartar sauce. Excellent. This plus the 1/2 lb angus burger make a very filling meal.
On every day except Tuesday, you can order from the Wongs menu and have it brought over from the kitchen (Wongs Golden Dragon is closed for lunch on Tuesday). I did not photograph the WingsWednesday nor the weekend menu items (Steak and eggs for $8 Saturday from 9-noon is a deal; the pork chop and chicken fried steak and eggs meals, $7 each are also really good diner-type meals). Hopefully, I'll post about those before the 50th anniversary.
Again, apologies for the dark photography. We come here to eat and don't want to interfere with other patrons.
Wongs Dragon Room 7126 University Avenue La Mesa, CA 91942 (619)464-9772
mmm-yoso!!! strives to show the various styles, ethnicities, preparation and just food consumed by Kirk, Ed(from Yuma) and Cathy, as well as a few other contributors to this food blog. Today, Cathy is showing and sharing another food adventure.
Driving through Mira Mesa one early morning, on the East end of the parking lot anchored by Seafood City, there is a McDonald's as well as this small storefront, which was open and buzzing before 9 a.m..
It has apparently been open for a few years and has a steady clientele, though an internet search shows only one blog post, ours, during a brief visit on a day of banh mi comparisons. ( The 2011 visit wasn't favorable)(New management began in 2012).
Not only will you notice the small-ish menu boards behind the cash register and along the adjacent wall (along with California Lottery Keno screens and a quite large Lotto Scratcher vending machine) but there is also a television (showing soccer games) as well as indoor and outdoor seating.
This additional set of menu addons, dated 2012, are still in effect.
Glasses filled halfway with hot tea were brought out to The Mister and I and the nice lady working brought a paper menu to the table. Everything was $5. Since I had no idea of the sizes of items, I asked for just one that we could share, pointing at the menu. She asked if we wanted a hot coffee or other beverage, but the tea was quite nice.
This was one of the best breakfast banh mi sandwiches I have ever had! The softly cooked, folded egg and warm pate-like meat, topped with fresh pickled radish, carrot, cucumber slices and cilantro, along with a few jalapeno slices, all on very fresh, soft warm and crunchy crusted bread was a perfect size and had wonderfully perfect, fresh flavors.
You can see some of the tea-filled glasses in this photo, along with some of the many people here, most of whom were sitting outside...
So glad we stopped here. Really a pretty unknown and wonderful place.
Corner Sandwich and Cafe 9005 Mira Mesa Blvd San Diego 92126 (858) 695-9566
mmm-yoso!!! is a food blog. Sometimes we aren't writing about specific foods. This is one of those times. (Cathy is writing today's post).
The 2013 San Diego County Fair opens on Saturday (June 8). I happened to be at the Del Mar Fairgrounds two weeks ago and again this week and have noted the progression of construction and installation preparing the Fairgrounds to host the largest County Fair in California and the fourth largest County Fair in the USA.
The statue of Don Diego was 'normal' and the front gate was being constructed...
The entrance is an ode to the theme of "Game's On", the theme of the Fair. You can see Don Diego is dressed as a video game character, Super Mario.
On my initial visit, the Midway was barely set... the Ferris Wheel wasn't even up.
This week, the Souvenier Booths to the right were more sturdily decorated and were being filled with inventory. The Ferris Wheel was still a skeleton, and only 3/4 of that skeleton was constructed.
In the Home and Hobby section two weeks ago, entries of Preserved Foods were waiting to be judged...
as were crafts
Home and Hobby entries have been judged and are set on display.
As have the collections, coins, spinning and weaving, crocheting, models and miniatures and the 20 or so other categories of competition in the 2013 Fair.
However, I've digressed...most people don't realize the purpose of the County Fair- a place for farmers to gather and show, display and compete the (literal) fruits of their labor after the harvest.
Instead, most of us come here for the food. Two weeks ago, some booths were being dropped off.
Chicken Charlie's is at the San Diego County Fair first (when the Fair ends, it moves North to other California County Fairs) and was able to be set up two weeks ago.
The rest of the booths have filled in the empty spaces surrounding Chicken Charlie's.
(You can click onto any of the thumbnails to enlarge a photo.)
So much work is left to be done before the 10 a.m. opening Saturday morning. Make your plans now. It's going to be a good one!
mmm-yoso!!! is a blog about food. Everybody has to eat. Kirk and His Missus are eating, safely, in another part of the world. ed(from Yuma) is eating mostly in Yuma. Cathy is writing about where she has eaten.
Some people have asked me how I 'find' the restaurants where I eat. Basically, it is drive and stop, looking for where somebody who lives or works nearby would chose for a convenient meal.
The County of San Diego is about 4200 square miles and is home to eight airports in addition to the three airports in San Diego City limits: Lindbergh Field, Brown Field and Montgomery Field.
In El Cajon, Gillespie Field is conveniently located between Highway 67 and a Trolley station. (it's the Northernmost station which has both green and orange lines). It is the oldest and largest of the eight county airports, and the land includes many airport related businesses (flight schools, aircraft storage, repair and maintenance shops, avionics and instrument shops) as well as two Business Parks. About 2000 people are employed nearby. People need to eat.
In the far corner of the automobile parking lot, conveniently located next to the airfield, where private plane owners can also park and walk ...
right next to the Control Tower is the Gillespie Field Cafe. It serves breakfast and lunch on weekdays (and is applying for a liquor license and is open from 4 p.m. until about 9 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.)
It is open at 6:30 a.m., Monday thru Friday and 7 a.m. on Saturday and Sunday. The Cafe closes about 2 p.m. on weekdays. On March 1, 2011, Roxanne and Peter, took over the running of the cafe. Roxanne is the waitress, Peter is the chef. There are both an indoor and an outdoor eating area, with an unobstructed view of the airfield. They serve good, diner food. Not gimicky pseudo-diner food. This is the real thing.
I was fascinated by the description of '4-5 eggs' being used to make an omelet (in addition to the 'comes with two' part of the menu).
A "Build Your Own" Omelet ($9.75) made with 4-5 eggs, bacon,sausage, mushrooms and avocado. Fresh mushrooms, crispy bacon, really good breakfast sausage. Sides of cottage cheese and a biscuit with gravy. Good biscuit- fluffy and soft, but almost underdone. I didn't mind not having a crispy crust, because I was mostly using the biscuit as a device to eat the gravy. Great gravy- smooth, with sausage bits and a nice, pleasant combination of Peter's special seasoning including black pepper. Then there was Breakfast Combo #2 ($7.75) (not the weekday specials; the Breakfast menu is four pages, including waffles ). Six wedges ( 3 slices) of French toast, 2 eggs and two bacon. Properly cooked French Toast made with a thicker white bread. Crispy on the outside and soft on the inside. Not quite creamy soft as an egg bread would be, but very good and egg soaked and cooked through. I did not need the syrup. The bacon was crispy and not thin but also not really thick. It had a good flavor and just enough saltiness.
Perfect poached eggs. Fresh eggs. Creamy eggs. My kind of breakfast.
Of course, Farmer John's coffee ($1.95)...always fresh and hot pot, since everyone here seems to order it.
One weekday, The Mister was home and we came here for lunch. We had to have a side order of onion rings which are lightly battered and perfectly fried to go with our lunch selections, in this case, hamburger based.
All the burgers are 1/3 pound coarse ground beef, hand formed. The menu says Angus beef. The Patty Melt ($8.29), cooked medium (we were not asked the level of doneness) and topped with a lot of sliced fresh grilled, unburned onions and Swiss cheese, on a very good rye bread, which was not greasy, but lightly grilled. There were almost too many onions, even for me...but I managed. The side of potato salad I chose was good, made with skin on red potatoes, finely chopped carrots and celery. I think it was made with a 'Light" mayonnaise, which I don't crave. The Mister ordered a chili burger on this visit ($9.29) The same 1/3 pound burger, topped with Cheddar and the Cafe Chili on a toasted sesame seeded bun. The chili, made with beans, is really good and I will order it as a meal on another cold day. The cole slaw was fresh and crispy and lightly dressed with a vinegary mayo mix. I added salt and pepper to it.
Even if you are seated indoors, there is a view of the airfield and runway.
Not fancy, not a large place. Good food and lots of "regulars" who eat here. A true diner.
Gillespie Field Cafe 2015 N. Marshall (at Bradley) El Cajon, 92020 (619) 448-0415
mmm-yoso!!! is a blog. Just an online diary. Today Cathy is tying up loose ends. Kirk and ed(from Yuma) are being constructive. Elsewhere.
Hi. I was Cleaning Out my Memory Card (COMC) as one of my Resolutions and decided to put together a post of things I thought I would someday mention. That day is here.
One day, The Mister and I decided to go to Food 4 Less, (a bag-it-yourself grocery store, same company as Ralphs and Krogers). Within the cold cuts/hot dog section of the store (I am always looking for skin-on wieners) was this: A one pound package of bacon wrapped hot dogs, as seen served from many taco trucks. The package was marked down to $1.98, and had an expiration date in ten days. I took this photo in the store and sent it to Kirk. Immediately. He said it was a post waiting to happen.
Five of those hot dogs were a pound. Most of the 'better' hot dogs are packaged seven to a pound. We needed large bread to hold these dogs. Costco. Less than $2.50 for 12 gourmet buns. (We used the extra ones for sandwiches and turned some into garlic bread). I just cooked the hot dogs in a large teflon coated pan on the stove top, turning until the bacon was crisp.
These are giant dogs (five filled that 12 inch pan) and needed that larger than normal Costco roll. Topped with mustard and pickles, one was filling and two were too much to eat. Our good dogs (and cats) got some treats that day.
I could not figure how to make a whole post about this machine. We saw it at Parkway Plaza, on the edge of the Food Court, near the Sbarro. I do sometimes crave spun sugar... You put in $2 in coins, a stick slides over, then down... The machine spins the candy floss around the stick.
Viola! A fresh made cotton candy treat! This machine disperses heated almonds and peanuts. It was located in the Paddock Bar at the Del Mar Race Track. I saw it when we were taking a lunch break at the Del Mar Fair. Really brings out the flavor. Now I heat up nuts in the fry pan before we eat them at home. This past summer, San Diego was a "Test Market" for two Starbucks iced beverages. Each was made with green coffee- raw- beans. Caffeine was in each beverage, which was juice based, but no taste of coffee (and no tea flavor). The one on the left was made with lime juice and had fresh mint in it, the one on the right had fresh blackberries and was made with pomegranate juice. They were refreshing and different and really good on hot days. I hope the testing went well and we can see these beverages as a regular item in the stores in the future.
Here is a photo of our Christmas Dessert plate...International this year. From 6:00: The apple strudel (German) was an experiment which turned out well. The espresso (Italian) was just perfect that day and the pink item is called Vatkattu Marjapuuro. It is Finnish. I call it cranberry whip. Made with fresh cranberries and farina. It could be a dessert or breakfast. It ended up being both. Again, it just wasn't enough to do a whole post.
The Costco on Morena Avenue. Only. Gelato.
Made daily. $1.50 for three scoops- mixed berry, pistachio and stracciatella (torn apart/ less chunky chocolate chips in plain (not vanilla flavored) ice cream). Gelato is more dense than ice cream, is lower in sugar and lower in butterfat. It is made at this Costco location daily and a quart for $5 is a wonderful deal. I like the pistachio the best...fresh crispy nuts. The Vons at Liberty Station (not the standard footprint Vons)(when you walk in the center/cart area, go to the building on your left) has a 'make your own nut butter' bar. Between $5 and $7 a pound, these bins were just about to be refilled with fresh nuts. You turn the crank and fill the containers provided. Right next to it were fill your own honey containers, two types of honey.
So there. I got another thing off of my "To Do" list! I hope everyone is taking some time to tie loose ends.
mmm-yoso!!! is a blog about food. This episode will be hosted by Cathy. Because Kirk and ed(from Yuma) are not available to host.
Hi again. The Mister and I eat and cook at home, we don't always go out. I thought I would show you a few ways we work around the kitchen. The humble pomegranate. In season now. You can purchase for about a dollar everywhere. It has a thick shell-like skin, membranes inside, which host a maze of juicy, flavorful seeds, called arils. The fruit/its juice is said to be a powerful antioxidant. However, the juice directly from the fruit stains clothes, furniture and your hands. To prevent this from happening, get a large bowl or pot and fill it with water at least 3/4 of the way. So that you can put your hands in the water with the fruit and water won't overflow. Start to break the shell underwater(you can score it with a knife). Break the fruit up, without disturbing the arils/seeds. Start to peel the membrane away from the seeds, keeping the fruit-and your hands- underwater the whole time. The seeds fall to the bottom. The membrane floats. It's physics. Remove shell/skin and membranes, drain and you have perfect pomegranate seeds! You eat the arils raw this way or make juice and strain the seed pulp out. Straining the fine seeds is much more work, and why you pay dearly for pomegranate juice items.
Bacon seems to be difficult for some people to cook. Really, it is simple and not messy. Line a cookie sheet-the kind with all sides raised- with a piece of foil and place pieces of raw bacon, not touching, on the foil. Bake in a 350° oven. If the bacon is thick, turn it after 20 minutes and bake about ten minutes more. If it is thin bacon, bake without turning for about 25 minutes.
You can see the bacon shrinks, but there is no spatter in the oven (or even onto the cookie sheet). Easy cleanup. (It is this foamy when you first take it out of the hot oven. Our parents told us that's how you know it is done cooking.) (These are the same pieces, which have been turned during cooking, in both photos)
The Farmer's Market Bag from Specialty Produce a few weeks ago was interesting. That yellow thing in the second photo is a citron, commonly called a Buddha's Hand. Yes, the bottom right corner of the second photo are purple potatoes. Everything in this bag was something we liked and could use to supplement our meals at home. Except it had been really hot and the kale (at the top in the 2nd photo) which I would normally use in a soup, was not going to happen, since we had had three days of temperatures hitting 100° out here. Kale is said to be an antioxidant and highly nutritious also, like the pomegranate. I decided to make kale chips.
I tore the kale into bite size pieces and placed in a bowl, topping it with olive oil,salt and pepper and tossing until all the kale was coated (that bunch in the photo made two batches- both for the bowl and for the cookie sheet). Place the pieces not touching on the cookie sheet. I baked at 350° for 15-20 minutes, checking that the kale is crispy before removing.
I hope everyone is having a good day.
Oh. The Buddha's Hand was sliced (you can eat the pith and there is no juicy center) in about 1/4 inch pieces and boiled, on low heat, in 2 cups of water with 2 cups of sugar for about 2 hours until the liquid was almost gone. The pieces placed in a pan of sugar, coating on both sides and placed in the refrigerator. A tart and sweet snack treat!
mmm-yoso!!! is a blog about food. It's written by a few friends, all who have different backgrounds, cravings and locations. Today, Kirk, ed (from Yuma) and Vicky are discovering things to write about and Cathy is writing.
Hi. I hope the year is going well for you. I'm trying to stick to one of my resolutions from last year and slowing down to savor life for a short time every single day. It isn't as easy to do as you may think. Incorporating food along with slowing down. Daily.
Sometimes, this involves stopping in at Starbucks. Where you can order a 3 cup French Press of any coffee they sell for $3.50. It is brewed and brought out to you. I noticed in the refrigerator section these Macarons, made in France exclusively for Starbucks. $10 for 12 of them and so *very* good. Flavored in pistachio, coffee, lemon, raspberry, vanilla and chocolate...light, airy with a crunchy crust, chewy cake like piece surrounding the creamy fondant-like fillings, all rich in flavor. Decadent and delightful. (Trader Joe's is selling a pack of 6 vanilla and 6 chocolate in their freezer section - the package does not indicate where they are made, but I suspect not in the USA.) One of the Starbucks Baristas said she thought the macarons may be seasonal, so if you see them in the refrigerator, grab a box...or something else to have with your coffee.
The other day, The Mister and I ventured into Tender Greens again, and noticed they were offering a charcuterie plate for $10, so we ordered it. (The three slices at 12 o'clock are tuna, the one at 3 o'clock is a ham and the other two are some sort of wonderful house made salamis, one of them Fra'Mani- neither were too spicy) The house made meats were wonderful. We also shared a grilled vegetable salad ($10)-Lettuces topped with grilled mushrooms, cauliflower, zucchini, brussels sprouts, baby parsnips and baby carrots, red pepper and topped with Parmesan and a tomato vinaigrette. Refreshing and making a light meal.
The cheese plate ($6) was an excellent dessert. There were four cheeses, two cheddars and two Jacks. One of the Jacks was a smoked cheese, which I usually do not like, but the texture and pairing it with the apple made it pleasantly tasty. That's a spicy apple puree on the plate, served with more slices of grilled bread brushed with olive oil. We even shared a glass of Spanish white wine ($7). A nice, light, healthy-ish meal. Something we don't always enjoy. One day, we stopped at Cafe Venti, in the same mall as the Original Tajima and ordered dessert (they also make panini sandwiches here). To share. The Waffle-Yo: a fresh made waffle, topped with (choice of two) plain and mango yogurt, fresh kiwi, strawberries and mango as well as small mochi. (~$7). A lot of food here and we needed to share it. Very good, very fresh. The yogurt is tangy, the way I like it.A latte ($3.75) and water accompanied our snack.
We sat down and talked for each of these small interludes. We didn't take anything "to go" and did not rush. So far, I have stuck to one of my 2009 Resolutions and have added a few for 2010. It isn't easy some days, but it has been so enjoyable on other days. I hope you are finding your resolutions enjoyable and not a burden.
mmm-yoso!!! is a blog about meals where Kirk, ed (from Yuma), Cathy and a few others record memories. You are reading the blog. Today, it's Cathy doing the writing (or talking if you'd like to think of it that way).
Hi. If you didn't already know it, The Mister and I have birthdays exactly seven days apart. It is our tradition to have Him choose what and/or where to eat the first three days (and I can't say "no") and then we have to mutually agree on the middle two days and then I get to choose the last three days. This year, our birthdays fell on Saturday. Difficult to go out to dinner that night of the week. So we did lunch.
As you can see, a sunny day. Indoors.
The Mister ordered a Modelo Negro ($3.50) and we were served the standard chips, bowl of limes and fresh salsa.
Oh, this is El Titanic, I know I just posted on it not long ago. It is part of our "rotation" and The Mister wanted lobster...
And he got it- half a grilled Mexican spiny lobster, filled with shrimp sauce and served with three breaded (standard, from the freezer, butterflied) shrimp, rice, beans and salad ($16).
The lobster was a bit overcooked and dry, but still had flavor. Butter would have helped. The shrimp in the buttery sauce were excellent as were the rice and beans.
We shared the fish ceviche tostada ($3.50) We really like the fish ceviche rather than shrimp. It tastes so fresh. Topped with fresh slices of avocado. Just perfect.
I got exactly what I craved- the marlin chile relleños plate ($9). Yes, they are this large. I apologize for the photos which do not show the abundance of this fish. Two anaheim chiles stuffed with wonderful, flaky, smoked marlin then egg batter dipped and fried and topped with cheese, served with rice, beans and salad. Excellent. Perfect. Wonderful.