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SD Trip Report (long)

Ting | Sep 24, 200203:07 PM

Sat din: Ono Sushi at 1236 University Ave, (619) 298-0616. The rolls were not bad...not as flavorful as one would expect when they say 'wasabi roe' for their 5th Ave roll (tasted like..well, didn't taste like anything! Just the mild sensation of crunchiness). Most memorable dishes were the lobster taco, snake roll (eel with crab avocado), and crunchy roll (shrimp tempura). The rice was a bit on the mushy side. Liked the edaname beans with rock salt though.

Sun lunch: Spicy City (sorry did not take down the address- friends drove. Distinguishing landmarks: adult bookstore and honda dealership...). Quite impressed with the steam dumplings with its juicy filling and handrolled skin/wrapper. The spicy "husband wife" beef tendon and meat slices was very good. Using a taiwanese term, the 'Q' index for the tendon was near-perfect (chewiness). The spicy 'water boiled beef' with lettuce was not to my taste, very oily (it's a greasy dish to begin with). Also had the napa cabbage with pork clay pot (nice counter balance with the spicy dishes but the green bean noodles were too soft) and ground pork with green bean noodles (ants going up a tree) also suffered from the lack of chewiness of the noodles.

Sun din: Sbicca at 215 15th St (858)481-1001. Seared foie gras with cherry demi (not having a lot of experience with foie gras, I enjoyed the sweet tartness of cherries with the intense flavor inherent in foie gras) and Louisiana blue crab cakes (too salty but the shredded crab texture was good). Lobster-shrimp bisque was a delightful dish, not too salty nor overpowered by the cream. The chicken sausage pasta dish was light and well made with sun-dried tomatoes and spinach. The grilled duck leg confit with cherry and wine demi was quite a disappointment. The cherry demi, where it was subtle with its sweet tartness in the foie gras dish, was plain BITTER in this dish.

Mon lunch: Porkyland at 1030 Torrey Pines Road. Very impressed. Pork tamales were the best I've ever had (and I get my mex fixings in East LA). The corn meal was moist and flavorful from the infusion of sauce inside the pork fillings. The carne asada and fish tacos in corn tortillas were good but not a religious experience as the tamales are. The carnitas burrito was tender however Mr. Ting favors the crispier versions of this mexican classic.

Mon snacks: Banana cake with cream cheese frosting at Come on In, 1030 Torrey Pines Road. Dense and the frosting can be used as drywall. Coconut cream tartlet and Truffle-covered chocolate loaf at Extraordinary Desserts 2929 5th Ave. Liked the fluffiness of the coconut cream, but the milk flavor was too overpowering. Choc loaf too dry however the choc flav was perfect-no bitterness nor sickly sweetness detected.

Overall, a satisfactory gastronomic journey in SD.

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