Bernard H.

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Recent reviews by Bernard H. - Page 1 of 11
Restaurant Name City
Minato-Sushi San Jose, CA
Wow, this restaurant hasn't changed much in the past 2 decades; n' that's a _good_ thing, in this case. the fud's still consistently good. yah, as the previous critic sed, the sushi's not _really_ the star here but the dinner or bento boxes. well, no... the bento boxes n' the nabe dinners r both really good! like, u can get sukiyaki, "minato nabe" (yosenabe), or uh... sumpthin' else w/ chicken that i ought to try. yah, the dinner boxes r still good tho'... n' lots'f fud! u know what's 'lot'f fud? the mac's special... i think that's sumpthin' that came 'bout later, like in the 1990s or sumpthin', cos i didn't notice it as a kid in the 1980s. neway, man... i recommend this restaurant. last nite, i had the chosen yaki, which is s'pposed to be a li'l koreanesque n' spicy. it wasn't really either but was still tasty.
Jameson's By the Sea Kailua Kona, HI
this is not a great restaurant, no. my wife and i stayed at the magic sands condo building in which this restaurant is located. we lived for a week right above this restaurant. we enjoyed the same wonderful, beautiful view from our own lanai (balcony) that diners get from the restaurant's patio. the view's great, yes. but if we got the exact same view from our balcony, then why the heck was i paying $150 to eat a mediocre dinner at this restaurant??? <br> first off, the food tasted like it was prepared for people with no taste. maybe we're spoiled here in the bay area of california, but i was so disappointed that i was eating this crud all the way in kona, hawaii. the salads were drenched in blasé dressing. the caesar salad was covered with kraft style parmesagne cheese n' "out of the box" croutons. i'm not bagging on those particular products, but for a $150 dinner, you'd expect better, wouldn't you? there was absolutely nothing great about the salads. the seafood dishes were just so-so. the restaurant has great ingredients, but the chefs seem not to know what to do with them. the macademia nut covered scallops probably were the best thing at that point. the pasta that accompanied the seafood was so mundane! wow, that is a dish a college student can prepare in his dorm room!!! boil dry pasta and add marinara sauce from a jar. ugh! you know what was really disgusting? that at the beginning of dinner, they bring out these dried up melba toast style crackers as their filler. just think: in some nice restuarants you get nice olive bread or some kind of foccacia or at least some nice flatbread or sourdough or ciabatta bread. what was with these melba toasts? at least they were better than the boxed croutons on the caesar salad! they should have used those melba toasts as croutons instead. i've had nice caesar salads where they use grilled up, toasted cheese as the croutons. that works out great. <br> one of the nicer things was the turtle cheesecake, which probably was shipped in from an outside source. <br> the service was pretty pretentious. they have the type of servers that want big tips and are likely to kiss up to the "executive" types and ignore the young but cultured folk. that's the kind of clientele they want: filthy rich, uncultured trash. ok, that was a bit harsh. anyway, really, this ain't no culinary experience. sure, it's got a great view... however, think about it: don't most places in kona???
Crustacean San Francisco, CA
i wasn't sure whether to put $30~40 or $40~50 down for the price. i know some people would suggest the lower, but in reality, you'll end up spending a good amount if you want the good stuff, you know? what i mean by that is, yes, you'll most likely want to order the roast crab and garlic noodles as everyone is suggesting. <br> this contemporary vietnamese, asian-fusion, seafood restaurant has been around longer than most contemporary vietnamese, asion-fusion, seafood restaurants, and has lasted for good reason. it has great food, great atmosphere, great service, and even a not-too-shabby view from the rooftop. it's a fun place. it can be romantic, yet fun; so if you're looking for that kind of date place, go for it.
Zucca Ristorante Mountain View, CA
this restaurant has great mediterranean / middle eastern food and has a beautiful outdoor dining area. what really tops it off is the friendly management. you'll have a good time there. the food is pretty unique. <br> one thing i'll mention is that the "greek sea bass" isn't like your usual sea bass but tastes more like some kind of trout, but it's still good. i guess "greek sea bass" isn't the same thing as a sea bass, you know? <br> they have a decent wine selection although i've seen wider varieties of rieslings and gewurztraminers elsewhere and bottles cost more on the higher end of the range in comparison to other nice restaurants in the area. <br> you can find good salads and starters, good entrées, good dessserts, good wines.... you'll have a good time. <br> the restaurant is very popular and gets crowded, so i'll suggest resservations.
Caffe Giovanni Berkeley, CA
first off, my wife kaela probably means <i>garlic</i> bread, not "ginger" bread in her review. <br> as we both spent a significant amount of our lives in the uc berkeley campus area, we're decently familiar with giovanni's. the review before mine by jane goodall rags on this dark dive as being a place where a used car salesman would take his mistress. ha ha, yes, she hits it on the nose; yet i'll totally disagree with her in other ways. <br> you see, even though i'm only giving this restaurant 2 stars because i'm a serious critic, i have many good things to say about it. yes, the garlic bread is tasty. that's one thing. the other is that the ambiance, although reminscent of old 1970s vegas dives has this kitschy appeal that attracts a young crowd that aren't all used car salesmen with mistresses. furthermore, that young crowd doesn't come just because it's the only italian "sitdown" restaurant within walking distance from the southside dorms. no... rather, there's the crowd that finds some sort'f americana cultural appeal to it. they think it's cute or quaint or something, and i can understand why. <br> the service can actually be quite pleasant and focused. the last time i was there, the waiter was decently attentive and very polite. <br> yes, the menu doesn't have any new fangled inventions. i find more contemporary dishes at pasta pomodoro. of course, if i up my budget, i'll find more unique italian creations at nice east bay joints such as olivetto etc. however, this is a pretty casual joint, and it's better for a big group of young people, celebrating a birthday or a taekwondo belt promotion or something. <br> it's nice to patronise a more homegrown traditional italian joint instead of always selling out to the maggiano'ses and buca di beppos of the world, you know?
Krung Thai Restaurant San Jose, CA
i'm giving this restaurant 4 stars, but i really mean to give it 3. i just need to equalize the irresponsible review by chan down below. you see, here, we're serious restaurant reviewers. we're here to critique the restaurant, critique its food, critique it's ambiance, and yes, critique its service. however, you can't just give this restaurant 1 star over a grudge. <br> krung thai, year after year after year is san josé's most favourite thai restaurant. the next runner up is that overpriced place downtown where i got creeped out cos some sleazy man was talking to some girl about hiring her to do a porno or something. anyway, yeah, that was nasty to overhear, but that runner up restaurant is still good, just overpriced. <br> anyway, krung thai #1 & #2 are both good. the food is consistently good. my biggest complaint with this restaurant is that it's too crowded. perhaps they need a krung thai #3. if you don't have a reservation, try to go on an "off" night. <br> well, krung thai doesn't really feature any extradinarily unique creation but more of your standard, familiar thai cuisine. thus, as i said, i really mean only to give this place 3 stars. however, it _isn't_ meant to be some chez panisse of thai food or anything. perhaps in the past, the restaurant called devanni in the east bay set out to do that, but krung thai just gives your traditional set of thai dishes familiar to the american palate. heh, wow, that sounded like a euphemism, sounded like i'm saying it's americanized thai food. no, i'm not necessarily saying that; but maybe it is... just a little. <br> it's a good restaurant for a group of friends celebrating a birthday or something as long as they want a more calm dinner and not like a sake bomb party. it's ok for romantic dates but maybe not qutie classy enough for the most romantic of dates. in other words, i personally have never heard of anyone proposing there, but hey! people do different things. <br> i've been there with little kids, and it's ok for them... just ok.
Stokes Adobe Monterey, CA
stokes is listed as a casual restaurant, and diners do arrive casually dressed in jeans; but the decor and ambience are beautiful and the food is elegantly delicious! the have a wonderful website that shows their building well. it's just as beautiful in person! my wife and i went their on a summer evening, and the natural lighting really made a nice, romantic setting. <br> the restaurant is a little expensive, but i wouldn't say the food is overpriced because it is very good. in other words, the food is worth the price. they have a decent selection of wines, but i'm used to have more choices of whites, i.e. more rieslings, more gewurztraminers, more pinot grigios... however, my wife and i found a good syrah there instead. <br> i can comment on the food we tasted: - the sardines on toasted bread were great. it's a somewhat simple dish, and we'd like to try to make it at home. however, i'm sure we won't make it as well. - the duck confit salad was practically a meal. i suppose it should be almost a meal since it costs $12.95. yes, it's _almost_ a meal but not quite. the duck was crispy as promised and deliciously marinated. - the morel small dish was very good. i don't necessarily recall it that great, but i know i enjoyed it. - the housemade lamb sausage was awesome. that's a great meat dish. - the chocolate lava cake was good. is "lava cake" the nouveau term 4 souffle? - their decaf tazzina "amalfi" blend coffee was awesome! <br> the service is very friendly and sincere. they aren't pretentious at all. i appreciate that. <br> i'm giving this restaurant a solid 4 stars, really considering it 4.5~4.75.
China Way Santa Clara, CA
i was not very impressed with this restaurant the one time i visited severla years ago. perhaps it's better now, but i was impressed back in 2003. when i visited, my party opted to order the northern style chinese food that is often favoured by the korean culture. we thought the restaurant would be good at making this kind of chinese food since they advertise these dishes with neon lights in their window, in korean characters. well, we were disappointed with those dishes. jjajang myuhn, jjambong, kkangpoong saewoo? yah, i live in the area, n' if i want those dishes i opt to go to either china china (geumbonghwang) or yeitnal jjajang. both are just down the street. <br> now, i don't know if maybe they cook southern style chinese food better. that could be true. i don't know.
Filfela Santa Clara, CA
when this restaurant moved in, replacing chi dog, i was quite excited to get some persian food in our neighbourhood. however, when i visited for lunch on a weekday, i was quite disappointed with the amount of food i got for the price i paid. perhaps, the food is better at dinner, i don't know. i just know that, when i compare the experience against places like eat-a-pita or bongo burger in berkeley or else falafel's drive-in, i prefer to go to those places. again, maybe dinner's better; i don't know.
The Chi-Dog Santa Clara, CA
this restaurant is gone! please remove it, or at least forget about visiting. i suppose it's nice to keep it here to document its existenc. although i never visited it, i kept hearing it was good.
Woodham Deli Santa Clara, CA
this place, at least at night, is a korean hof not a deli. what's a hof? it's kind of like a korean pub. why is it called a hof? i'm guessing that word comes from german, as there's no "f" phoneme in the korean language. anyway, from the one time i visited back in 2002, i liked it. i don't remember too much, but i liked it.
V I P Restaurant Santa Clara, CA
this is a korean style northern chinese restaurant. it's ok. i wouldn't mind going there again, but usually i prefer to go to either china china or yeitnal jjajang in the same neighbourhood when i want this style of food. one thing i remember is that the food was a little too salty here. however, the service is very nice and friendly, so i do suggest you go and check it out for yourself.
Boas Restaurant Cupertino, CA
boas is a beautifully decorated, korean / asian-fusion restaurant. the service is very attentive and generous. the restaurant exemplifies what koreans in korea expect a nice euro-american restaurant to look like. i figure this is _true_ asian-fusion. much of the menu consists of modernized korean dishes. the presentation of the food is really nice, more artistic than your ordinary restaurant. <br> i recommend the avocado scallops and the spicy king prawns. also, i suggest the bokboonja raspberry brandy / rice wine.
Cascal Restaurant Mountain View, CA
personally, i feel this is an underpublicised, good latin restaurant. i assume your familiar with the term "sleeper" for movies, right? it refers to a movie that is really good but doesn't get enough attention. i feel some restaurants on mountain view's castro street are "sleeper" restaurants. i feel this is one of them. <br> one dish that surprisingly stands out in my memory is their cuban medianoche sandwich. this sandwich has become very trendy in recent months. i mena, you realize that the top trendy foods for 2005 are beets and white tea, right? well, the medianoche sandwich will also go down as a trendy food for 2005. cascal's version of it is pretty good, and i recommend it... that is, if you eat pork. it's not the healthiest thing on their menu, but it's good.
Hangen Szechuan Restaurant Mountain View, CA
this restaurant is good, and thus i gave it three stars. the food here is at least "very good, " so i want to give the restaurant _4_ stars. however, the atmosphere and decor don't do much. <br> like cascal, the latin tapas restaurant down the street, this restaurant is a "sleeper" on mountain view's castro street, i.e., it's a good restaurant that doesn't get enough publicity. walking or driving past this restaurant, you'd think it's some trite, rundown ol' greasy spoon joint that just serves up mushu pork and chicken chow mien to uncultured folk w/o a clue as to what real chinese food should taste like. no! this place is actually pretty good. some of the dishes remind me of shanghai 1930 in san francisco's embarcadero, but wow... this really shows two extremes, in that, shanghai 1930 is very nicely decorated and got a decent amount of publicity when it was new. <br> well, i recommend this place, and i suggest you try something different when you go there.
Shiva's Mountain View, CA
this restaurant looks very nice. i love fancy indian restaurants because they stand out from the many ho-hum ones you find in the silly valley. however, with some pain, i have to admit that i would rather go to amber india instead of shiva's. shiva's _is_ a good, upscale indian restaurant. however, in my humble opinion, it's really not as good as amber india, especially the santana row location. after all, at both restaurants, you'll need to shell out quite a bit of dough, so well... you might as well pick the one you'll really enjoy. <br> one great thing about shiva's though is that the waiter we had was very honest. when we wanted certain dishes, he flat out admitted that those dishes weren't very good. i appreciate that. keep up good service like that, and maybe i'll return to you restaurant and decide it's gets 3 or more stars!
Fresh Choice Restaurant Pleasanton, CA
i hate to write a bad review for this restaurant because i usually really like fresh choice and believe they probably usually _are_ better than this, even _this_ location. usually, i really enjoy fresh choice for its abundance of fresh vegetables and fruits, warm muffins and pizza, creative soups, and dependable desserts. it's usually a great deal, especially with the online coupons from their website. i usually really love fresh choice. <br> however, last saturday evening (2004.12.11), i visited this location around 8:00 pm on my way back from a daytrip to tahoe with my friends. i was rather disappointed. i was surprised to find out the weekend price is $8.99. i usually get lunch with the online coupone for $4.59 on a weekday. well, i accepted that and continued. at the cash register, the cashier did not provide me a receipt till i asked for one, which is not too bad but not a good thing. when i got to the muffins... i usually love the blueberry muffins and the cornbread muffins, but both were cold, not warm like usual. then i tried the pesto pizza. it was _also_ cold! a little into my meal, my friend informed me that the bathroom had no hot water, not even warm water. that's an awful sign. i've heard food inspectors usually check that first. after all, you need warm water in order for employees who handle food to "wash their hands with soap and warm water before returning to work" after using the bathroom in any way. it's even more disturbing since much of the food is raw thus the bacteria can't even be killed through cooking. <br> the bad things didn't stop there. their maccaroni and cheese that night wasn't cheesy but really runny and bland. their baked chicken pasta was also very unimpressive. later, i had a hard time tracking down some napkins, and no one came around to refill our ice water or sodas. <br> i'm sorry, but this was a very bad experience. honestly, if i'm ever in that area, i _might_ return because i _do_ really like fresh choice... but i'll be much more hesitant, and i really think people should know about this instance.
Chili's Santa Clara, CA
chili's is usually rather dependably good. this location's no exception, but i've gotta admit. if you're in santa clara or sunnyvale on sunnyvale, there _are_ many, many, _many_ more interesting places to eat. after all, the world doesn't stop at burgers and ribs. however, in comparison to other restaurants in this genre; sure, this chili's is great. i usually get great, attentive service. the food is consistently good. i noticed at another chili's recently (one in vacaville) that they stopped serving their great veggie tacos. i wonder if this one still does. i hope they do because you really don't _need_ to eat animals _all_ the time. i'm not a vegetarian, but i just believe in eating healthily when possible, and those veggie tacos were great. at _this_ chili's, i've had pasta that was good, and i've had fish burgers that were good. i've also had some salads here that were good.
Maggiano's Little Italy San Jose, CA
pretty good. (3 stars is pretty good for me.) the waiter was very friendly and courteous, without doubt. the portions are huge. the atmosphere is rather lively but not too unromantic for a date. the wine list isn't too bad for a franchise restaurant. i love dining at santana row, but i was disappointed that this is one restaurant that does not allow a well-behaved, well-trained dog into their dining patio.
Pizza Chicago Santa Clara, CA
this is really good pizza. i first heard about it because they sent out an ad with a coupon for a free pizza. i didn't expect much and just ordered a sausage and mushroom pizza. it was awesome. later, i went with my coworkers and saw that they had a menu full of all sorts of creative ingredients. it was really funny cos some of my coworkers are vegetarians; so originally we worried what they could eat. however, this restaurant has so many choices for vegetarians! even though i'm an omnivore, i often opt for the soy mozzarella just because i can. now, i always stick to their long menu of special pizzas.
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