Michael B.

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Recent reviews by Michael B.
Restaurant Name City
Cafe Mirage Rancho Mirage, CA
This is a local watering hole, known more for its bar than the food. The latter, however, is quite good. The owner is Portugese, and the small wine list features several wines from Portugal, all of them inexpensive, but decent quaffing wines. The food is a mixed bag of seafood, meat and veggie dishes. The place is reminiscent of a 50s American restaurant. You can have a nice meal here in quiet surroundings for a reasonable price. Service is decent, too.
Shame On the Moon Restaurant Rancho Mirage, CA
This is a terrific restaurant. California cuisine all the way and well-executed. The thing that sets this restaurant apart for me is the service. Fun waiters who really know how to MANAGE the service. Timing perfect. Food not allowed to sit under the lights, etc. Only negative is that it tends to be noisy, but most of the crowd (younger than me) didn't seem to mind.
Captain Cook's Sea Grill Palm Desert, CA
The food in this restaurant is very good, but the prices are outrageous. A piece of fish with a couple of boiled potatoes and some steamed veggies is $25 a la carte. A crab Louie is $19. The wine markup is horrendous. A bottle of Kendall-Jackson Chardonnay - $7.50 retail almost anywhere - is $35. Service was good, but not in keeping with the prices. I had Escolar, lightly blackened. Absolutely marvelous. Figure on paying a minimum of $50/head.
Tanpopo Japanese Country Inn Palm Desert, CA
This is a very complete Japanese restaurant. It has a sushi bar and teppan-yaki tables in addition to a regular restaurant setting. The menu has a great variety to offer, and there are several very reasonably priced combination plates. I had one containing sushi, tempura and yakitori. The sushi was very good, the yakitori so-so, but the tempura was as good as I have had anywhere including some of the finest tempura bars in Tokyo. The meal came with soup and rice and was less than $15.
They have a small but good selection of sakis.
Our server, a young lady, was quite knowledgeable and very attentive, althought the service is quite informal.
If you like Japanese food, there is something for everybody at Tanpopo at a reasonable price.
Pomme Frite Palm Springs, CA
I admit to being a Belgian food freak. This hole-in-the-wall restaurant has a mini-menu, but what they have is great if you like your food a la Bruxelloise. Pomme Frites are the real thing. I go often for a bowl of mussels, a stack of pomme frites, a salad and a bottle of white wine. Great stuff. The staff is small, but very friendly. Count on shmoozing with one of the owners while you dine.
My only complaint is that the quality of the bread isn't very good, but good French bread is impossible to find anywhere in the desert. (A multimillion dollar opportunity for somebody.) If only Acme, Boulangerie or Grace Brothers would open a Palm Springs Branch. Wishful thinking!
Le Pot Au Feu Menlo Park, CA
This restaurant has changed hands several times and I haven't eaten there in years. The current owners, who run the front rooms themselves are very gracious and make guests feel very welcome. I've had occasion to have dinner there twice in the last month. Both meals were excellent. The dishes were uniformly good all round our table. The baked Brie appetizer and the apple tart dessert are both spectacular. By today's standards, the wine list,although not extensive, is reasonably priced and has a decent mix of local and French bottles. The service is well-paced for my taste - I like leisurely dining. All in all, a very satisfying evening can be had here. This restaurant takes the Transmedia Card. If you use it the evening will be a bargain.
Bandera Los Altos, CA
The quality of the food was excellent and the portions huge. Prices are reasonable. Service is quite uneven. Some servers are very efficient and knowledgeable. Some are not. Major problem is the noise. Tends to cater to a very young, somewhat boisterous crowd. When the place is crowded as it often is, it is virtually impossible to carry on a conversation without shouting.
Thai Cuisine of Los Altos Los Altos, CA
Food is excellent, but the menu is not as extensive as other Thai restaurants I have tried. Service is pleasant. Have been there several times and never crowded. Unless business picks up, they might not sttay in business. Decor derives from previous tenant, a Mexican restaurant. Ugh!
The Posh Bagel Los Altos, CA
For my taste, this place makes bagels that are the equal of the best anywhere in the world. (I have extensive experience in New York, Boston, L.A. and Chicago and know from whereof I speak.) Also one of the few places in the area where you can get decent whitefish. A new offering is a pizza bagel. Maybe a bit off-the-wall for bagel purists, but it tastes good! At $.55 per bagel. somewhat pricey, but I still pay it.