Bay Area Eats Series & Vegan Ice Cream Recommendation

El Salvadorian Food – El Chalateco

955 Saratoga Ave San Jose, CA 95129

I was incredibly happy to discover an El Salvadorian restaurant in the Bay Area. I highly recommend El Chalateco, the restaurant, and open kitchen are exceptionally clean and up to COVID protocol. They also have outdoor dining. The flavor of the food was fantastic and authentic. I grew up eating El Salvadorian food thanks to my step-dad so I’m picky about flavor. We ordered two pupusas de chicharrón y queso, pupusa de queso, chicken tamales, and tamal de elote (plain sweet corn).

Korean BBQ Truck – BBQ Kalbi Food Truck

305 El Camino Real, Santa Clara, CA 95051

This is a new BBQ truck run independently by one woman. She makes simple Korean BBQ dishes like pork with rice or kimchi fried rice. Her portions are big enough to share and her prices are incredibly low. She also adds plenty of vegetables like zucchini!

Upscale Korean Dinning – Chungdam Restaurant

My dining experience at Chungdam was whimsical and memorable. We ordered spicy octopus, short ribs with pumpkin, and the pork belly appetizer. The short ribs with pumpkin had roasted chestnuts and veggies it was sweet and fall-off-the-bone. The pumpkin tasted addicting. They offer outdoor dining under umbrella-covered tables and cell phone scanned menus.

Bubble tea, Red Velvet to Tiramisu – Toco Tea

3074 El Camino Real, Santa Clara, CA 95051

The bubble tea at Toco Tea is next level liquid dessert. I loved the tiramisu boba with cream cheese foam and the red velvet flavored boba. Both were as satisfying as eating a bowl of ice cream.

Vegan Ice Cream recommendation: Valsoia Gelato Cones

I picked up these cones on a whim from the supermarket. I had to list them here as a recommendation because they are delicious and dairy-free. I’ve struggled to find dairy-free ice-cream that tastes rich rather than like ice chunks, but this is it. This dairy-free milk ice cream tastes just as velvety as regular ice cream. The bottom of the cone has chocolate too! ❤

See you in the next installment!

Bay Area Eats Series

Takeout & Outdoor Dining Edition

Boiling Crab San Jose – 71 Curtner Ave Suite 20, San Jose, CA 95125 – I prefer the Boiling Crab seafood boil to Kickin’ Crab. We ordered takeout seafood boil in whole-shebang (all sauces mixed) spicy sauce. We got shrimp, sausage, potatoes, corn, and crab. The freshness of the seafood and flavor surpassed our expectations. It was a beautiful meal to have on my patio on a summer evening!

The Sandwich Spot – 5126 Stevens Creek Blvd, San Jose, CA 95129 – I ordered two takeout sandwiches: the Crab sandwich and the Spartan Special sandwich. The Crab Sandwich uses imitation crab and has a fresh cold summer-like taste while the Spartan Special is the standard turkey bacon sandwich. I preferred the Spartan Special. Still, both sandwiches tasted appetizing. They often have coupons on Grub Hub.

Pizz’A Chicago – 1576 Halford Ave, Santa Clara, CA 95051 – This pizza place does pizza best. I’ve ordered other things on the menu like stuffed mushrooms and I was extremely disappointed. However, their pizzas are super tasty and flavorful. Though they are named after Chicago pizza they do not seem to make deep dish pizza. I’ve ordered two pizzas from here and the best one is pictured above The Southsider pizza. This restaurant has two small tables outside for outdoor dining.

Pacific Catch – 19399 Stevens Creek Blvd Ste 5, Cupertino, CA 95014 – A pleasant outdoor eating restaurant is Pacific Catch. The food is a fusion of different cuisines. They have super tasty cocktails as well. Their food is simple flavor-wise but their service and presentation are excellent. Our waiter was super kind and happy and the restaurant generally has positive vibes. Makes for a nice quick bite!

La Chilanguita Taco Truck – 4179 Moorpark Ave #4167, San Jose, CA 95117 – This authentic taco truck has no frills but still offers a cheap and delicious eating experience. I liked the carne asada tacos most. I think their horchata tastes addicting and tasty as well.

I was going to recommend San Mateo restaurants for outdoor dining because the area had entire streets closed off or set up to cater to outdoor customers however it seems the area may close down again. Pictured above is a quick bite bento box lunch from NI-MO Japanese Cuisine – 73 E 3rd Ave, San Mateo, CA 94401 – The food tasted fresh and simple, nothing noteworthy, its a nice place to eat outside.

Do you like hot waffles and cold ice-cream? If you do then you’ll love takeout from Cocohodo Sunnyvale – 1082 E El Camino Real, Sunnyvale, CA 94087. They have two small tables and chairs right by the entrance, so we were able to eat outside of the restaurant. I ordered the Green Tea waffle with bananas and green tea ice-cream. We also got shaved mango ice and both dishes tasted delightful!

If you crave a Korean BBQ “feast style” meal the best place to go in the South Bay is Tobang – 1052 Kiely Blvd, Santa Clara, CA 95051 – They make grilled meat and serve other popular Korean dishes like seafood pancakes. What makes them stand out is their welcoming customer service and large portions with extra sides if you have a large order.

Somi Somi – 19540 Vallco Pkwy #160, Cupertino, CA 95014 – I’ve been here twice and both experiences were perfect. They offer soft serve and fish shaped waffle cones. I love the black sesame ice-cream and crunchy topping options! ❤

Recommendation ~ Black Girl Magic Wine

I recently came across Black Girl Magic wine at the wine store and fell in love with the owners’ story. The McBrides winery is majority women employed and the owners are two bi-racial sisters who did not know of each other and lived across the world from one another. They eventually found each other and opened a wine business, this is one of few women-owned wine businesses that exist! Read more and see their online store here – https://www.mcbridesisters.com/Sisters-Story

Wine link https://www.mcbridesisters.com/Black-Girl-Magic

Bay Area Eats Series – Takeaway Edition

Fashion Wok

We ordered the Spices Satay Beef Wok at the Fashion Wok restaurant for takeout. The prices are incredibly reasonable with a range of about $12-20 total for two people. The ingredients tasted fresh and the flavors were balanced. Additionally, all of the spices and sauces were packed separately from the food so that we could add as much or at little as we wanted.

Konjoe Burger

I’ve ordered from Konjoe twice and both experiences were amazing. I recommend trying the Galbi burger or Spicy Chicken sandwich with seasoned fries. I like eating here on a cheat day and it’s also a great idea to split a burger to taste something different without over-indulging. The other burger we tried here is the Konjoe Burger but, Galbi beats the Konjoe burger by a landslide flavor-wise in my opinion and the Spicy Chicken Sandwich is a close second!

Grub Burger Bar

This restaurant offers to-go cocktails in addition to food. The customer service is always excellent and the chicken sandwiches we ordered tasted very satisfying and flavorful with varied ingredients and dipping sauces! They offer a chickpea vegetarian burger as well.