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Trip Report yk ate her way through Bay Area & Sonoma County; July 2012

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I was in the Bay Area for a full week at end of July 2012. It was a 3-prong trip: I began with a 3-day stay in San Jose w/my mother. Then DH flew out and the 2 of us drove up to Sonoma County for a wedding weekend. Finally, DH & I spent 2 days in San Francisco.

The main goal of the trip was to attend the wedding, and to see relatives and friends. All of these include eating. :) As a result, we didn't have much time for sightseeing.

Day 1
I stayed with my mom (who flew in from TX) at her friends' home in South San Jose. Our first day was all about driving and visiting relatives. After picking up my mom's cousin in San Jose, I drove us up to San Francisco and ate lunch at a restaurant that features Hakka cuisine.

Hakka Restaurant
4401 Cabrillo St
San Francisco, CA 94121
http://hakkarestaurantsanfrancisco.com/

We had their house steamed chicken (great chicken flavor), and a whole fish cooked in clay pot. We also got a vegetable dish. Everything tasted really good.

We then spent about 90 minutes walking around Golden Gate Park near the Conservatory of Flowers. We especially enjoyed seeing the huge variety of dahlias in the Dahlia Dell.
http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-0YMIIEXKpAY/UBw14wBJbkI/AAAAAAAADbM/QMMmwxBZ7yA/s1600/IMG_7400.JPG

We picked up my mom's aunt from her apt in SF, and drove back to San Jose. That evening, we had dinner with more relatives at Southland Flavor Cafe in Cupertino. This casual eatery specializes in "street foods" found in Tainan city of Taiwan. One of my mom's cousin grew up in Tainan and she was the one who suggested this place as she thought it was very authentic. I haven't had most of these dishes for decades since I last visited Taiwan as a child. Among the foods we ordered were stinky tofu and oyster pancake.

Southland Flavor Cafe
10825 North Wolfe Road Cupertino, CA 95014
http://www.tainancafe.com/ (in Chinese only)

Day 2
We had most of the day free, so I suggested to Mom that we drive up to Half Moon Bay. I have never been there, and it sounds kind of nice in the guidebook. Well, it was okay I guess. Even though we are there in the middle of summer, we arrived at HMB to find it chilly, overcast, and foggy (60sF). We drove out to the beach front and stopped for a photo op, then drove into town and parked along the Main Street. The town was pretty dead since it was midweek and cold. The shops and restaurants take up about 5 blocks of Main Street. We walked from one end to another; crossed the street and walked back. After perusing the menus of every eatery in town, we somehow ended up in the most unglamourous lunch place - a diner. We chose that because Mom said she wanted "breakfast food."

In the end, Mom was tempted by their grilled sandwich, with bacon, cheddar, and avocado. I turned out to be the one ordering breakfast - (house-made) sourdough french toast with fresh blackberries. Mom was used to Texas-sized platters so she was shocked to find how small her sandwich was; small enough that she could finish the whole thing herself. I loved my french toast, and the blackberries were delicious.

Main Street Grill
547 Main Street
Half Moon Bay, CA 94019
http://www.mainstgrillhmb.com/

That evening, we met up with my relatives again for dinner; my mom's friends came along as well. They chose New Peking Restaurant in San Jose. Even though it is called New Peking, the restaurant actually serves Cantonese cuisine. It used to be a northern Chinese restaurant, but the ownership has since changed hands and the new owner hasn't bothered to change its English name. They did change the Chinese name to reflect Cantonses cuisine. There were 8 of us total so we had a great number of dishes, all served family-style.

New Peking Restaurant
5152 Moorpark Ave
San Jose, CA 95129
http://www.yelp.com/biz/new-peking-restaurant-san-jose

To be continued...

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