DIN TAI FUNG 鼎泰豐 – SANTA CLARA, CA (BAY AREA – WESTFIELD VALLEY FAIR)

Needless do I to say – when Din Tai Fung arrived in the Bay Area, it was a crazy hit! We didn’t come during the grand opening month.

We visited this place probably sometime last year, my sister-in-law made a reservation for all of us. Thank goodness for the reservation, otherwise would be 2 hours wait. Like most other Din Tai Fung, they have a window outside you can see the XLB making process.

Ding Tai Fung 鼎泰豐 – Santa Clara, CA

Start off with Cucumber Salad:

Cucumber Salad

We knew what we wanted already, of course the soup dumplings! One thing is the portion here is SMALLER than LA, and more EXPENSIVE than LA. Kind of crazy, but considering they are in Valley Fair … what can I say!?
Pork and Crab Soup Dumplings
Pork Dumplings

Pork and Crab Soup Dumplings
Pork Dumplings

Vegetable and Pork Wontons with spicy sauce – I recall this dish was so-so, the sauce was a little too sweet for my liking.
Noodles with sesame sauce – it was okay.

Vegetable & Pork Wontons with Spicy Sauce
Noodles with Sesame Sauce

Sauteed Kale with Garlic – this was pretty good, kale was very tender!

Sauteed Kale with Garlic

Braised Beef Noodle Soup

Braised Beef Noodle Soup

Pork Fried Noodles – i like this type of thicker noodles.

Pork Fried Noodles

Shrimp Fried Rice – love this too, rice was stir fried to perfect dryness.

Shrimp Fried Rice

Sesame Bun – probably my favorite bun, it was lightly sweet, creamy and runny!

Sesame Buns

A good place to try it out if you haven’t yet.

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PIZZA ANTICA – SAN JOSE, CA (BAY AREA)

One of my favorite pizza place, Pizza Antica on Santana Row. This place is always pack, always busy, always have to wait and no reservation. I was here on a weekend with a friend from out of town. We had to wait about 30mins.

We ordered a Kale Salad, the waiter was nice to split the salad for us.

Kale Salad

Clams in tomato wine sauce – perfect with bread!!

Clams in tomato wine sauce

Potato & Ricotta Gnocchi – big fluffy gnocchi in a pesto sun-dried tomato sauce, it was good, but kind of heavy to my liking.

Potato & Ricotta Gnocchi

Lastly, of course we had to order pizza – Fennel Sausage, mushrooms and onion.
The pizza is like a personal size, but can be share with 2 person. Love the good thin crispy crust and chewy dough.

Fennel Sausage, mushrooms and onion

Busy place

Bar area

FAT WONG’S KITCHEN 靚粥一世 – SAN BRUNO, CA (BAY AREA)

One of my favorite restaurant for porridge and rice noodle wrapped Chinese donut. There is always a wait, but not terribly bad.

Salty pork bone porridge 咸豬骨粥 – mildly salty pork meat, perfect with the smooth porridge.

Salty pork bone porridge 咸豬骨粥

Rice Noodle wrapped Chinese Donut / Ja Leung 炸兩 – one of my favorite in the bay area, crispy Chinese donut and thin rice noodle … love the sesame and hoisin sauce!

Rice Noodle wrapped Chinese Donut / Ja Leung 炸兩

Beef Brisket Tossed Noodle 牛腩撈麵 – the beef brisket were very soft and tender, egg noodle were crunchy, love it. The soup on the side is for you to toss the noodle if the noodle becomes too dry.

Beef Brisket Tossed Noodle 牛腩撈麵

I do come here once a while for my porridge and noodle craving fix.

YAYOI JAPANESE TEISHOKU RESTAURANT – PALO ALTO, CA (BAY AREA)

I really love this place: you order from the iPad, even water. No Tipping policy, you don’t have to worry about calculating the tips at end of the meal. Service was good, love the food too!

Teishoku 定食- literally means “meal set”, a type of Japanese meal set serve with all dishes together (with soup, side or salad). Presentation is nice and clean!

Order from iPad

Mix Toji Teishoku – pork cutlet, fried shrimp, sukiyaki beef cooked in Japanese sauce and egg. Served with pickled veggie and tofu, paid $2 extra with clams miso soup … so much clams!

Mix Toji Teishoku

Add $2 to get clams miso soup (original is plain miso soup)

Nasu Miso & Saba Teishoku – Eggplant, pork belly and veggies cook in miso sauce, grilled mackerel served with pickled veggie, spinach, and clams miso soup.

Nasu Miso & Saba Teishoku

 

Yayoi – Palo Alto, CA

I love this place.

SUMIYA YAKITORI 燒烤居酒屋 (Japanese Charcoal Grill) – SANTA CLARA, CA (BAY AREA)

Always love Sumiya, it’s probably one of the best yakitori place in the bay area. It was super busy on weekends, we had to wait 30mins to be seated at the counter area, which was fine.

We always get the combo and some extra skewers, never failed us.

Combo Yakitori + Kalbi Don with Soft Boil Egg – Kalbi was very soft and tender, the soft boil was perfect! Just yummy!

Combo Yakitori + Kalbi Don with Soft Boil Egg

Perfect Soft Boil Egg

Soup and Salad

I don’t remember each names of the skewers we ordered, they were all great!

Assorted extra skewers we ordered

They are busy on weekends!

Busy weekends