A week of eating out

My sister Katherine spent her spring break with us and very graceously babysat Mika most nights she was here. This and the fact that I didn’t felt like cooking all week, meant that I ended up going out for most meals. I talked about the early part of the week, but there is more.
Thursday, Kahty, Mika and I went to lunch at Fontina in Pleasanton. We all enjoyed the sidewalk dining, the wheater once again was beautiful. Michaela behaved wonderfully. Alas, we found the food overpriced and not very good. I’m still hoping to find one good restaurant in downtown Pleasanton with outdoor dining where I can return again and again.
Thursday night is Survivor night so we didn’t go out (poor Lex got bamboozled!) and instead got Panda Express take out. I’m not very fond of chains as a matter of principle, but Panda Express actually produces some fairly descent Chinese(American) food. The mandarin chicken is particularly tasty.
Friday we all had lunch at Emil Villa’s, a local coffeeshop which seems to be operating under new owners. The food was quite decent (it usually is) and I found their grilled cheese sandwich particularly tasty (though also a bit overpriced).
For dinner we went to Benihana the chain “Japanese steakhouse” and a favorite of Kathy’s. The food was fine and the “show” kept Mika’s attention for a bit. Most importantly, Kathy had a good time.
Saturday we skipped lunch and Mike and I went to dinner at CreAsian, a local upscale fusion restaurant. The little restaurant is interesting but needs some more variety in its menu (it doesn’t seem to have change since our last visit there over a year ago). Still, we had a good, if too-quick meal.
Today we took Kathy to brunch before her flight back home. We went to JD Restaurant in Castro Valley. Big portions, OK food, Kahty was happy again.
Finally, for the grand finale, our friends Regina and Boris took us to dinner at Pomegranate, a Mediterranean restaurant in Berkeley. It was one of the most affordable places we dined at this week and probably my favorite. The food was simple, hearty and very tasty; the atmosphere managed to be elegant/casual and comfortable at the same time and people didn’t even seem to mind Mika going beserk (she was in too good a mood, sometimes a crying child is easier to control than a too-happy-child).
This week I’m planning to eat in, eat in and eat in. And cleaning up the pantry is not out of the question.

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