Updates for the Hungry

Flush with success and proud of a job well done, we turn the page on another award winning year here at the ‘Rag, and what better way to start anew than to revisit some old mentions that never quite got their full due.  In the spirit of “everything old is new again” here are a few updates on restaurants, events, chefs, coffee shops, etc. that got brief mentions previously and really need some more ink. 

Boudin SF-  We were looking forward to this place for so long, we forgot to ask if it was any good.  It is pretty good, but not great–ok, some of the dishes are not even good.  But the bread is as advertised, sour and fantastic.  The soups, on the other loaf, are dismal.  I’ve tried the clam chowder (in a bread bowl) and the tomato (in a bread bowl) and found them both lifeless and dull (in a bread bowl).  The chowder was like a bowl of cream into which a clam had been dipped ever so briefly, and the tomato had so little flavor, it was merely a suggestion of soup without being soup itself.  Go for the bread, don’t stay for the soup (in a bread bowl). 

Cheffrey’s– The new bistro on Arden and Eastern is still working on getting their liquor license, but the food is in full swing…well, almost.  Lunch, brunch, and coffee & pastries breakfast are going in full force, but the dinner menu is still undergoing some tweaking.  The interior is adorable (I think this is the first time I’ve used this word in a written piece, must have something to do with the “fabulousness” of Mark and Jeffrey, the owners), well-lit and well-adorned with art.  If you want throw back a few with a meal, you can always stop in at Cheffrey’s nextdoor neighbor, The Long Shot.

Pronto– I’ve been told that the “Farmer’s Market Salad” at Pronto, is very similar (and to some tastes slightly inferior) to a salad at Bandera (NOTE: not “Bandera’s”).  I leave it up to you to decide, o faithful reader.  However, if I’m going to Bandera, I’m getting the cheeseburger.

Texas West BBQ– Surprisingly, Texas West still sucks marmot rectum.

La Rosa Blanca– The fine, fine Mexican establishment has completed its move to a new location on Fulton Avenue between Marconi and El Camino.  However, unbeknownst to me, the owners have kept their previous Auburn Boulevard storefront and turned it into a more casual taqueria.  What could be better than La Rosa Blanca?  Two La Rosa Blancas!

Plaza Hof BrauAccording to Mike Dunne, the ‘Brau was recently purchased by the same group that owns the Mikuni group of restaurants.  There are no plans, however, to start serving turkey sashimi on a dipped roll.  All clues point to the Mikuni group leaving well enough alone.  When you have a business model that still works fifty years later, odds are it’s a winner. 

Tex Wasabi’s– Celebrity chef Guy Fieri’s restaurant has taken some fire from diners since it first opened for lack of service and lack of good food.  To set the record straight, here’s what’s going on.  I’ve been to Tex Wasabi’s several times and found two things that they really do well there, drinks and appetizers.  The drinks are good, well mixed, unique, good mix of beers on tap, decent wine selection.  The appetizers are great, from spring rolls to onion rings to pot stickers to “Vegas fries” (which are perhaps the world’s finest dish of crazily seasoned fries), the place knows how feed the happy hour palate.  Unfortunately there are two things that the sushi/barbecue restaurant does poorly, sushi and barbecue.  Go for happy hour, move on when real eating needs to be done.   Maybe you’ll see Guy, with whom I have a bone to pick for telling the world about-

Squeeze Inn– So, it used to be moderately difficult to find an open seat at the tiny burger paradise, but a few weeks ago, Fieri featured The Squeeze Inn on his Food Network show, “Diners, Drive-Thrus and Places I Should Keep My Mouth Shut About.”  Now it’s impossible to get a seat, or a burger, or a parking spot.  People are flying in from Poughkipsee to sample the cheese halo.  Everyone from the Bee, News & Review, “Yachting Monthly,” and “Juggs” are doing feature articles on the formerly hidden gem.  Aw well, I guess it was bound to happen.  Who knows, maybe the kids will start liking it better than McDonald’s.

4 thoughts on “Updates for the Hungry”

  1. I was over by Squeeze Inn one day..and thought, “I’ll drive by and see if there is a line”. There was a very, very long line. Damn. I drove on by. I don’t do lines…not anymore, either kind.


  2. In terms of the Brau and the sashimi, the last time I went there that was practically what I got. If they’d have called it sashimi I might have believed that the rawness was on purpose. Needless to say, heatlamped/uncooked food is not my idea of a good meal so I moved on and haven’t come back. I do appreciate the heads up on La Rosa Blanca, however, because it’s right down the street now and I’ve been meaning to swing on by, I will for sure now.


  3. Two more updates that I forgot to mention:
    Giovanni’s Pizza at Loehmann’s Plaza is now closed. For your thin crusted floppy pizza goodness, youll have to travel to South Land Park or Folsom Blvd.
    Go here for the original info: https://sacrag.com/2005/11/support-your-local-pizza/

    True Love Coffee House https://sacrag.com/2006/11/true-love-never-dies-2/ is not nearly as unwelcoming once you’ve had a chance to sit down with proprietor Kevin Seconds and chat for a while. He’s a kind, genuine, talented guy, and his place is much more cozy these days.


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