Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Noodleospophy--San Mateo, CA

As soon as you enter Noodleosophy, you'll see someone making a loud, snappy show out of pulling noodle dough. You'll then order and pay on your own, guided by a monitor above showing the menu. About 10 minutes later, you pick up your order.

Spicy (it's actually pretty mild) Cumin Lamb with Biang Biang Noodles

In other words, there's almost no human interaction. But then, you forget about all that as soon as you try your first bite of Biang Biang Noodles. Damn if those aren't the best noodles in the Bay Area.

Simple yet spot on, what hits most is the chewiness--just the right elasticity--of those wide ribbons. The flavor was fine. In terms of how sheer quantity, the value isn't bad, either. I got full on $13 before tax and tip. But, what will pull me back is the texture of those noodles. That alone was worth the half hour drive and struggle for parking in downtown San Mateo. Be aware there isn't much table space, especially if your party has four or more.

Saturday, February 9, 2019

Chocolate croissants by Trader Joe's

What impresses me most about the chocolate croissants from TJ's is their transformation from slender little bars (with a cross-section with the same size and shape of a fig newton) to these big fluffy pastries. Let them rise overnight at room temperature, then pop 'em into the oven. We enjoyed the croissants--and they definitely have ample chocolate--but compared to croissants fresh from the bakery they deflate and flatten out a bit too readily.

Monday, February 4, 2019

Teriyaki Stir-Fry Udon by Pulmuone

This item is becoming a Costco mainstay. You'll get much better results taking the time to stir-fry the contents rather than using the microwave, which will result in hard, dry noodles. Having tried both methods, the peas always came out gummy for us. Although I'd get this again, my wife and kid wouldn't because of the texture of the toppings.

Image result for pulmuone teriyaki stir-fry udon

Saturday, February 2, 2019

Stevens Creek vs Great America: A tale of two IHOPs

This morning Dylan and I took advantage of the all-you-can-eat promotion at International House of Pancakes. In January we went twice to the one on Stevens Creek (on the Santa Clara-Cupertino border); today we went to the one on Great America (in Santa Clara). With the exception of one serving today (which was room temperature), both IHOPs serve delicious buttermilk pancakes. The similarities end there.

Round 1 of the all-you-can-eat pancakes at IHOP  on Stevens Creek (Santa Clara)

At the Great America IHOP today, each round of pancakes (the first round is a stack of five, each subsequent is a round of two) took between 15 and 20 minutes from request, which is inexcusable. So, for us it took nearly an hour and a half to eat breakfast. We never got our glasses of water refilled.

At Stevens Creek, we had an excellent experience both times. There was a bug in one of our glasses, but we didn't complain because the staff was so damn nice--Dylan I ended up sharing a glass. During the last visit, the manager even went from table to table to ask how we were doing. We never had to wait more than 10 minutes for any round--each of was a sure-fire hot, fresh, fluffy stack. Bravo!