I will be spending a week based in Palo Alto and am looking for suggestions for places not to miss in the area roughly between San Mateo and San Jose, one I do not know much about. More chow than cuisine, especially in categories that are much stronger in this area than in Manhattan where I live (south India, Vietnam, Mexico are three), but I am open to anything special. Lunch suggestions in or close to Palo Alto are particularly welcome.
Below is a list of places that my online research has thrown up, with my read on what they do well. Thumbs up or down on these, alternatives, things I have missed would all be welcome. To help dial me in, the one place I tried on my prior that I will to return to is Chaat Paradise in Mountain View.
Thanks for any help.
Ian "Tazzalenghe" Morrison
JangTu Restaurant, Sunnyvale: Korean, liked for soondae gopchang
Gaku Sumi Yakitori, San Jose: Authentic, "bring a crowd and a designated driver" yakitori
Nam Vang Restaurant, San Jose: Vietnamese hole in the wall with one great dish, Hu tieu nam vang
Hachi Ju Hachi, Saratoga: Japanese small plates and omakase (the upmarket end of my range)
Osteria Coppa, San Mateo: best area salumi di autore, pizze etc, $15 corkage, Monday prix fixe $45
All Spice, San Mateo: upmarket California Indian (a south Asian Slanted Door), not cheap but quality is high, $15 corkage
Thien Long, San Jose: pho-centric Vietnamese but with interesting if limited extensions (banh xeo etc)
Com Tam Long An, San Jose: a bit more adventurous (nem nuong cuon cha ram) but erratic Vietnamese
Ephesus, Mountain View: Standard Turkish but well liked