Archive for June, 2010

Authentic Japanese Noodle – Ramen House Ryowa

Thursday, June 10th, 2010

Happened to be in Mountain View at lunch time; remembered the ramen at Ramen House Ryowa on Villa Street. It was already 1:30pm and the place with about 30 seats was still full with a couple of people waiting in line.

The lunch menu was pretty simple. You could choose one of four flavors of ramen: Ryowa (sesame base), Shoyu (soy sauce base), Butter Corn (salt base), or Miso (soy bean paste base), each at $7.50 per bowl. Add a couple of dollars and you get some pot-stickers and fried rice.

I had the Miso Ramen which tasted the same as what I used to have at small noodle shops in Nihonbashi 日本橋 about a quarter century ago. Decoration was simple and service was fast and courteous – just like in Japan.

Will I take a special 20-minute trip to have the noodle here? Probably not. It is a decent place for a simple meal in case you happen to be in the neighborhood.

Ramen House Ryowa
859 Villa St
Mountain View, CA 94041
Tel: (650)965-8829

Crêpe and Beer – Crêpes Café in Menlo Park

Tuesday, June 8th, 2010

It was lunch time again. Today we wanted to try something new and headed out to Cedro Ristorante Italiano in Menlo Park. We got cold feet when we saw the place almost empty while Cafe Borrone near door was fully packed. Crêpes Café on the next block was still half full at 1pm; we decided to give it a try. It was a nice cool day but a little bit windy on the patio. We found a table inside right next to the window.

I never had crêpe for lunch and just took their Savory Crêpe Special of Grilled Salmon with Bérnaise Sauce – not know what “Savory” meant. According to the manu, this dish had marinated fresh salmon fillet grilled with garlic and topped with a light shallot tarragon sauce. Of course, I had no idea what “shallot tarragon sauce” was either. When the dish arrived, I did not see “fillet” of salmon, instead there were small pieces of over-cooked salmon crumbs. The buckwheat crêpe was too crunchy for my liking. The salad was good though.

The Mrs. had Savory Galette with Creamy Mushrooms and was not impressed either.

Enough said. I won’t even complain about the slow service.

Crêpes Café
1195 Merrill St
Menlo Park, CA 94025
Tel: (650)473-0506

東京肉食之旅 Part 2 (by Jill Deng)

Tuesday, June 8th, 2010

叙々苑 東京オペラシティ53 —敘敘苑燒肉店
(Yakiniku  Jojoen Tokyo Opera City 53)
2010年3月16日 Lunch
Jill Deng

高空中的觀景餐廳

被Judy知道Jill吃不來生魚片類的海產料理後,來到東京的第二天中午,Judy決定帶著我去吃燒肉料理。

這家位於東京新宿附近的敘敘苑Opera City53分店由於位於東京Opera City的第53樓,所以這家店的英文名稱就很直接的叫做「Jojoen Tokyo Opera City 53」。在這裏能從高230公尺的地方展望窗外做廣角的眺望,不管是 白日的景觀或是黑夜的夜景,新宿副都心周邊的景色盡在眼前。

我們是在weekday的中午前往用餐,顧客顯 然以在該棟大樓辦公的上班族為主(*此棟大樓樓高54層,樓下有商業辦公室,也有商店,當然最重 要的就是有間Opera House的藝術表演廳*)。

商業午餐的簡餐價位從平價的850日圓起跳,最高的 則是2500日圓,在這間知名的燒肉店要點正式套餐也絕對沒問題,菜單寫了很文雅漢字的高貴套餐—「昼御膳—彩(Irodori)」以及「昼御膳—雅(Miyabi)」便是。這對當初就是衝著日文有著平假名、片假名搭配漢字充滿美感而開始學習日文的我來說,真 的是優美又好聽的名稱。

一進門,窗邊第一排的位置都坐滿了人,跟Judy只能做在第二層的座位 上,不過店內座位是經過設計,所以第一層與第二層有高度的位差,視覺上其實並不會受到影響。只是人就是很奇怪與搞怪,能坐 在最棒的第一排當然就不願屈居於一點點「遠」的第二排。也算是非常的幸運,在還沒上菜前剛好前面有人結帳,就請服務小姐幫我們換到前 排去。

以下是從我們原先的位置上看到的新宿街景

以下則是從之後的位置上看到的新宿空景 (近多了吧)

Judy跟我所坐的位置,就在角落邊,不會受到人來人往的打擾

即使有懼高症的我,還是很享受這種居高臨下眺望而產生的感 動。

平價的簡餐不說,這是菜單上”樸實”的套 餐—
Yakiniku lunch(國產牛燒肉午餐)
常規的內容:泡菜  沙拉 杯湯 白飯  以及燒肉片

以下是菜單上較豪華的—牛小排簡餐 カルビランチ(Karubi Lunch)
韓式泡菜、混合醬菜、野菜沙拉、海帶杯 湯、白飯、飲料
以及重頭戲的牛小排燒肉+鮮蝦
(*燒肉醃製有不同口味的選擇)

而這是當天直接端到我們桌上的—牛小 排燒肉餐,光是擺到桌上,在拍照的當下還沒吃呢,就覺得很幸福!

有些店則是標榜炭火的火烤滋味,敘敘苑燒肉則是用瓦斯爐小火加熱

燒肉不管是喜歡鮮嫩或是喜歡烤的熟一點,敘敘苑的肉即使烤的久一點,入 口的感覺還是很嫩,不會硬硬老老,真是蠻特別的。

由於套餐當中的野菜沙拉的dressing非常好吃,Judy最後還特 別外帶了兩瓶敘敘苑特製的芝麻沙拉dressing(叙々苑野菜サラダのたれ),一瓶送給我,一瓶準備帶回台北自享呢!

這是Tokyo Opera House 53 敘敘苑的門口

這是敘敘苑不管哪家分店都一樣的入門招牌 及菜單看板

這是這家店在觀景窗之外的另外一面(*這是網站 上的截圖*)

吃東西也能長知識
由「吃」,這件人的基本需求中,可以了解一地一國的飲食文化,也讓饕餮 客擁有「博識」的附加樂趣,畢竟要推薦別人食用也比較有話題。這家敘敘苑燒肉店是以六本木本店為出發,在日本本土共有42個店面,大部份分布在東京都內。燒肉店能夠開成如此多連鎖店,也代表打出了店家的口碑與字號,目前還開設另一個走更高級路線 的「游玄亭」系列店,在店面裝璜與價格上皆高過敘敘苑。不過走高級路線的同時,在總店六本木地區的麻布十番,也開設一家takeout的燒肉便當簡餐店。算是顧及到大小通通都要「吃」的需求吧。近日敘敘苑似乎還發展出網路郵購的商 機,以「敘敘苑米漢堡」為名,大作廣告呢。

日本有本漫畫系列很有名,台灣譯名叫「蠟筆小新(ク レヨンしんちゃん)」,在漫畫中常提到敘敘苑燒肉店呢(不曉得這算不算得上是置 入式行銷)

總之,對觀光客來說到東京真的可以到敘敘苑燒肉店走一走,散布各地的分 店可在Homepage先查詢再出發囉!
http://www.jojoen.co.jp/index.html

Jojoen Tokyo OperaHouse53 住址:
東京都新宿区西新宿 3-20-2
東京Opera City Building  53F
TEL: 03-5353-0089

交通:
京王新線初台站走路一分鐘

営業時間:
Mon~Thu  11:30~22:45 (last order)
Fri  11:30~22:45 (last order)
Sat  11:30~22:45 (last order)
Sun/Holiday 11:30~22:45 (last order)

Lunch time
Mon~Fri 11:30~16:00
Sat/Sun/Holiday  11:30~16:00

Floor guide:

觀景席: 10組20席(2人為一組的座位安排)
方桌席: 12桌48席
和風特別套房(4~6名): 4室

最後介紹的是這家Tokyo Opera House 53分店的另一賣點:夜景
相信邊吃烤肉邊賞夜景,也很羅曼蒂克。
不然吃烤肉,給人的感覺就是比較豪放熱情充滿庶民風情呢

下一回有空再來介紹,位於世界各精品名牌旗艦店林立的表參道後巷,充 滿日本大正時代風情的日本豬排店囉……

Tandoori Oven in Palo Alto

Sunday, June 6th, 2010

Had to do some shopping in mid-town  Palo Alto and decided to have lunch there too. There was some kind of street fair going on and California Avenue was pretty lively. Tandoori Oven is a fast-food style restaurant; you place your order at the counter and a server will bring the dish to your table. I asked whether the curries were spicy; the answer was affirmative. The order-taker suggested korma and I took the lamb. Being a naan-lover, I ordered naan instead of rice to go with the korma.

It didn’t take long for the dish to arrive – about 5 minutes. Since I seldom had Indian food, I was in no position to judge whether the dish was authentic Indian. It tasted pretty good though, just spicy enough to make me sweat but not enough to make me burn. The naan was good, soft and thick. Not a bad meal for $10.

Tandoori Oven
365 S California Ave
Palo Alto, CA 94309
Tel: (650)324-2111