After waking up in Napa, we had big plans on the way back to South Bay:
Before we could start on our adventure, though, we realized that Embassy Suites actually includes a breakfast for hotel guests: made-to-order omelettes, toast, English muffins, cereal, fruit, yogurt, coffee, juice, etc. C was like, NOPE, not eating it, but I never met a “free” (a.k.a. prepaid) breakfast I didn’t like so I did the dainty thing and had some coffee and “only” a strawberry yogurt and a mini muffin. (Fine. I ate two. Get off my back!)
Once we checked out, we had our real breakfast at Fremont Diner (2698 Fremont Dr, Sonoma), a cute old-timey–looking place that C pointed out on the way to Napa. She loves this place.
We started off with French-press coffee, and our waitress highly recommended the black-pepper brisket hash. I never used to ask for recommendations and I probably never would have picked this off the menu, but it was so yummy (especially the onions). I told myself that I wouldn’t eat all the potatoes, but…I don’t like to waste. C got the lemon-ricotta pancakes, which were also delicious.
Not far down the street is Angelo’s Wine Country Deli (23400 Arnold Dr, Sonoma). My sister first heard of this place when her old boss raved about some random beef-jerky place on the way to Napa.
C had been here before and we stopped by. I’m not a huge fan of beef jerky, but there were FREE SAMPLES of everything (beef jerky, garlic mustard, olives, bread). I got a few packs after sampling plenty of varieties, all of which were generously sized.
Afterward, C drove to Sausalito so we could get to Fish. (350 Harbor Dr, Sausalito) before it opened at 11:30 am. There were already people waiting at the picnic tables outside.
C was still full so she said that she’d just share an order of fish tacos with me and that I should get whatever else I want. I’d just eaten that gigantic starchy breakfast (with brisket!), plus beef jerky, so I decided to only order the clam dip and some Crispin hard cider. Yum. It was kind of windy so we lost two chips and we wound up leaving like half the clam dip anyway. And I’d never had salmon fish tacos before but I love salmon and I love fish tacos so it was predictably awesome.
After Fish., we walked around the harbor a bit and checked out some of the stuff at Heath Ceramics (400 Gate 5 Rd, Sausalito). I know nothing about dinnerware or tableware but my sister was thrilled to stroll around as I looked at some of the rubber stamps.
We returned to South Bay on the Golden Gate Bridge, where I obviously sang the Full House theme song and thought a lot about Rise of the Planet of the Apes. And when we got closer to my sister’s house (!), we stopped by La Terra so I could get that same marbled red-bean loaf. Six bucks!
So I got to see my sister’s 4BR ranch home. (How California: Elizabeth and Jessica Wakefield lived in a split-level ranch in Sweet Valley.) We decompressed a bit there before going to Fantasia Coffee & Tea (10933 N Wolfe Rd, Cupertino) for bubble tea. I was never too crazy about bubble tea, apparently because it’s not good on the East Coast.
Fantasia apparently uses real tea stuff to make bubble tea and doesn’t use artificial flavoring (like most places). I got red bean, and sure enough, there were tons of actual red beans (which proved a little hard to suck up through a straw). Still very good. We did some errands, which were pretty easy since every single retail store you could think of is all within like a 15-minute radius: Bed Bath & Beyond, Macy’s, Target, Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s, Jo-Ann, Staples et al. (And there are a lot of bilingual schools, bakeries, and churches here. Just saying.)
Around 6 pm, we actually left Penny at home to go to one of my sister’s favorite local places: Gokaku (10789 S Blaney Ave, Cupertino) for what it calls “Japanese tapas.” Uh, if it wasn’t obvious, we still were not hungry, so we (haha) shared salmon and unagi nigiri, in addition to the carbonara-style mentaiko-kimchi udon (“stir-fried udon with kimchi and cod roe in creamy sauce”), which we noticed a lot of people ordering. Gokaku is located in a pretty unremarkable-looking strip mall (though strip malls in this area seem…sunnier, somehow, than the strip malls back home) but it seems pretty popular. C wanted to get there on the early side to avoid the dinner rush, and sure enough, by the time we left, it was quite packed.
On a lark, we decided to go to Westgate Center (1600 Saratoga Ave, San Jose) to check out Nordstrom Rack. It was not as crowded as the one in Union Square, but since there was so much stuff, it was a little overwhelming. Didn’t wind up getting anything there, but I got a cheap top at Nike Factory Store.
But my sister wanted to make sure we left early enough to go to Snozen (2101 Showers Dr, Mountain View), a shaved-ice place. We got there with about 15 minutes to spare, but it looked as though they were closing so C yelled, “Nooooo!” Still very full, I said, “It’s okay! It’s okay!” trying to reassure her that I didn’t really care if we ate any more. Little did I know that she was upset for herself, not me.
No wonder! Snozen is so delicious! I was expecting a patbingsu-type thing, but the consistency of the shaved ice was…smoother? I don’t know. I don’t have patbingsu very often either, but that ice tastes unmistakably like ice.
When we finally got home, I got to chill out in C’s GUEST ROOM (so fancy). Very adult. I was also chastised for not using a coaster.
Fitbit for June 7, 2014: 8,030 steps
Better than the previous day. It was only this high because we were walking around so much at Nordstrom Rack. Tracksuit-clad senior citizens know what they’re doing.
Calories consumed on June 7, 2014: N/A
Mathematicians can’t count that high.