Wednesday, November 28, 2007

GillWoods Cafe

Having already visited most of San Francisco's tourist destinations on our many previous visits to the Bay Area, Devin and I took a trip to Napa.

On the way to find an eatery that was unique to Napa Valley, we passed by Filippi's Pizza Grotto. I hadn't known there were any locations outside of San Diego County.

Because I was weak from hunger (and tasting wines), we stopped into GillWoods Cafe when we spotted it in a small outdoor mall.

Although it was already mid-afternoon, I felt like having an omelet, which was great because at GillWoods Cafe, breakfast is served all day. I ordered the Veggie Omelet, which came with Home Fried Potatoes and Wheat Toast. The nice thing about GillWoods is that that they bought out salsa with the ketchup. The potatoes were well seasoned, but a little on the dry and mealy side. On the other hand, my omelet was very wet. The vegetable mixture of tomatoes, zucchini, mushrooms, red and green bell peppers, cheese, and onion was tucked into the egg instead of incorporated into the egg, so maybe it was the steam that left my omelet in a big, wet puddle. Regardless of the sogginess, the top part of the egg omelet was fluffy and the vegetables were able to stay slightly crisp.

Devin had a Club Sandwich on Wheat with french fries. The sandwich had chicken breast, mayonnaise, bacon, tomato, lettuce, and avocado. You can see that the sliced sandwich was very thick, mostly because of the chicken breast. Devin said this sandwich was on par for a club sandwich, but definitely not worth the $12.60 price tag.

Unfortunately, GillWoods Cafe closes at 3pm daily and we walked in at around 2:30pm unaware of their hours of operation. Our food took a while to arrive at our table and by then we started to notice that we were the only customers and that people were approaching the restaurant doors and walking away without entering. Halfway through our meal, the check was placed on our table, even though I had planned on trying their Carrot Cake, which they believe is "the best carrot cake anywhere". Instead of rushing our meal and making us feel inconvenient, I wish they had informed us when we walked into the restaurant that they would be closing soon so that we could have gone elsewhere.

GillWoods Cafe
1320 Napa Town Center
Napa, CA 94559


Devin and I drove up to the San Francisco area, like we have done for the past couple Thanksgiving holidays, to spend Thanksgiving with my family in Alameda. With both of us having classes on Wednesday, we left Tustin at 1:30am on Thursday morning, arriving into Alameda at 7:30am Thanksgiving morning. After a two-hour nap, I had to make Eggplant Bake as my contribution to the potluck Thanksgiving dinner. Luckily, at this Thanksgiving meal was my cousin's boyfriend, a vegetarian, so I knew ahead of time that with my Eggplant Bake contribution, there would be at least two vegetarian-friendly main dishes for me to assemble my meal instead of relying on vegetable side dishes.

The fare included: deep-fried turkey, pineapple-glazed ham, butternut squash lasagna, eggplant bake, spinach salad, garlic bread, herbed mashed potatoes, turkey gravy, leek and red potato au gratin, sweet potatoes, wild rice and mushroom stuffing, collard greens, cranberry and orange relish, buttery garlic green beans, sup merah (Indonesian "red soup"), tomalito, homemade coffee and Heath bar ice cream, pumpkin ice cream, young coconut ice cream, apple and pear crisp, cinnamon streusel cake, and fresh fruit.

Top Row from Left to Right: Wild Rice and Mushroom Stuffing, Pineapple-Glazed Ham, and Collard Greens. Devin said the ham as very tender and juicy. He seemed to enjoy it more than the turkey!

Bottom Row from Left to Right: Green Beans, Eggplant Bake, and Harvest Spinach Salad. That salad was amazing. I love red onions and the ones on the Harvest Spinach Salad were very delicately cut on a mandoline.

Zack's contribution was Butternut Squash Lasagna.

Right Row from Top of picture to Bottom: Wild Rice and Mushroom Stuffing, Pineapple-Glazed Ham, Collard Greens, Leek and Red Potato au Gratin, and Tomalito.

Left Row from Top of picture to Bottom: Green Beans, Eggplant Bake, Harvest Spinach Salad, Herbed Mashed Potatoes, and Deep-Fried Turkey.

Carving the Deep-Fried Turkey. At the corner of the turkey is the yellow-corn tomalito.

My cousin Clarice made Pear and Apple Crisp.

One of my cousins brought Cinnamon Streusel Cake (I also ate this for breakfast the next day). The ice cream scoop was used for the homemade coffee and Heath bar ice cream, young coconut ice cream, and pumpkin ice cream.

Fresh Fruit.

The day after Thanksgiving, Devin and I drove to Napa.

Our trip was very spontaneous, so we didn't know if any vineyards would be open for tours or tastings. Fortunately, we chanced upon Copia, the American Center for Wine Food and the Arts. Here we were given wine glasses and purchased a prepaid card to sample local and international wines. Devin and I sampled about five or six total, finding that we both preferred the red wines.

The United States of Wine. A wine bottle from every state in the country.

This device was found in Copia's very interactive museum called Forks in the Road. The instructions indicated to put your nose near the end of a tube and push the button underneath the tube. A scent emits from the tube and the objective is to guess the scent. Then you lift the panel to see whether your guess was correct. I didn't guess any of them correctly.

With a stomach full of wine, I wanted to eat whatever we could find first. The first restaurant we found was Filippi's Pizza Grotto. Unfortunately, ten of Filippi's eleven locations are in San Diego County, where I spent eighteen years of my life. I have already eaten at two different Filippi's, so Devin suggested going to a restaurant unique to Napa instead of somewhere I already know and enjoy, regardless of my increasingly draining energy level. All in the name of blogging...

As we continued to explore Napa on foot to find a meal, I noticed this beautiful mural. Wait a minute... !

Oh Bear, PEPPERONI pizza?! I would have stuck with the salmon.

Finding ourselves in a small outdoor shopping center, we decided to stop for a meal in GillWoods Cafe. My review of GillWoods Cafe is located here.

My Veggie Omelet with Home Fried Potatoes and wheat toast.

Devin's Club Sandwich on wheat with french fries.

On the way back to Alameda, we made a detour through San Francisco. View of Golden Gate Bridge from Marin Headlands.

So, after tasting wines, Devin and I ended our trip to Copia with a stop into the gift shop. The dachshund salt and pepper shakers were purchased as a Christmas present and not as a result of the wine's effects on my better judgment. This photo was taken when we had already arrived back home in Tustin.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Eggplant Bake

This year's Thanksgiving attendees included myself, a pescetarian, and my cousin's boyfriend, a vegetarian. Since Thanksgiving dinner was a potluck, I had the task of finding a substantial vegetarian main course. I knew in advance that my cousin's boyfriend was making Butternut Squash Lasagna, so I wanted to stay away from pasta dishes that I thought may be too similar to his lasagna.

With the positive reviews from both vegetarians and omnivores on the All Recipes submission for Eggplant Bake, I had found my vegetarian Thanksgiving contribution! The trouble was that I had never made this dish, so I didn't know how it tasted and didn't know how much work would go into making this dish.

Thus I began my eggplant adventure.

I began by salting the eggplant slices for 30 minutes and then rinsed them to draw out moisture and bitterness. I only made half of the recipe since this was a trial that only Devin and I would be eating.

This recipe is quite easy, except I chose to make my own Italian breadcrumbs by using store bought sourdough bread and both fresh and dried herbs. I baked slices of the sourdough at 250 degrees for 30 minutes and then allowed the slices to cool. Since I don't have a food processor, I used a rolling pin to crush the slices into crumbs. During this process, I learned that I need to cut the bread slices thinner to prevent large pieces of bread that refuse to crumble and to use a blender to crush the bread when I made the recipe again the next day.

The fresh herbs included sage, rosemary, parsley, and marjoram. I also used dried basil, dried oregano, crushed garlic, and cracked pepper.

Combining the breadcrumbs with the herbs.

Beaten egg to adhere the breadcrumbs to the eggplant slices.

The large pieces of breadcrumb proved to be a problem because they had trouble sticking to the eggplant and also resulted in uneven browning when I pan-fried the eggplant.

Sliced tomatoes to layer on top of the eggplant.

I altered the recipe by sauteing the onions before layering them in the baking dish. This gave the onions a mild and sweet taste.

I used as little olive oil as possible to fry the breaded eggplant, but this resulted in some eggplant slices being too hard and tough even after baking.

Letting the fried eggplant drain excess oil onto paper towels.

Layered from the bottom was the breaded and fried eggplant, tomato slices, sauted onions, shredded parmesan cheese, crumbled feta, and strips of Muenster cheese. The dish was then baked for 30 minutes at 350 degrees.

I thought the dish would be dry, but the tomatoes provided moisture and the cheeses really made the dish taste great. Devin's only other taste of eggplant has been eggplant parmesan and he really enjoyed this dish, so I decided to use this recipe for Thanksgiving. I did do one more trial run the next day, just to perfect my process.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Stigma of Restricted Diets

When I found out that the Thanksgiving dinner I was invited to this year was a potluck dinner, I went on a search for an equivalent vegetarian substitute for turkey. On Yahoo! Answers, Love is... asked "What is your vegetarian thanksgiving menu? I need ideas!?", to which Mildred S replied:

"a twenty pound turkey
pork sausage sage stuffing
prime rib
double stuffed potatoes with bacon bits and cheese"

As a pescetarian, I have been told (jokingly) that I don't deserve to partake in the Thanksgiving celebrations, Thanksgiving being a meat-fest holiday. The first time I met Devin's mother was on Thanksgiving day three years ago and he had forgotten to tell her that I don't eat turkey, so she has never again forgotten my diet restrictions, as she felt obligated to concoct me something to eat while everyone was already digging into their meat-laden meal. It can sometimes feel like having a restricted diet is a burden to oneself and an inconvenience to others, as a post by Pleasley on the SparkPeople "Calling all Vegetarians (and Vegans)!" team forum shows:

"I just got home from a friends house, her and her husband invited us over for a BBQ. The only thing she had without meat in it was potato salad. The potato salad was good but I am glad I decided to eat before I went to her house. I told them that I wasn't hungry when they asked why I wasn't eating, I didn't know what to do. I have only been vegetarian for about a month. How do you handle a situation like that without offending the hostess? I offered to bring a dish with me and I was told that everything was covered, I almost took something anyway. I need to know haw to handle this without offending anyone and without always having to eat before I go."
To this post, I replied:
"I have been to a couple BBQs lately and am invited to a couple more. Whenever I find out that a gathering will have food, I always ask if I can bring something because I'm vegetarian. I end up feeling kind of bad because usually after I say "Should I bring something because I'm vegetarian?", the host/hostess will insist that they can cover vegetarian food for me. It makes me feel bad because I know I will probably be the only one eating it and then the host/hostess will then have to deal with the leftovers I don't finish! The hostess at the last BBQ I went to bought an entire package of Gardenburgers AND Tofudogs just for me!

My friends and family know for the most part that I've been vegetarian for several years, but they just don't think about it and I really can't blame them. Once, at a surprise birthday party thrown in my honor, the host almost forgot to provide vegetarian food because I was the only vegetarian present! I would rather remind the host/hostess upon the invitation that I'm vegetarian, that way I won't feel left out at the party and the host/hostess won't be embarrassed that they forgot."

The host at the surprise party I mentioned above was Devin and we have been eating together since circa 2004, so I understand when my pescetarianism just isn't on everyone's list of priorities! And as a lover of food, I won't stand to be left out while everyone is digging into their meat dishes, so I have no qualms of reminding a host/hostess upfront of my diet restrictions and therefore have had no problems. I find it's pretty reciprocal that a host/hostess wants to accommodate his/her guests as much as I want to find things to eat.

Unfortunately, some others with restricted diets have not had as easy a time as I have had. I'm sure it helps that I do eat some flesh (seafood) and am very relaxed about animal by-products (cheese, eggs, honey, butter, milk, etc.), but certain posts on the Serious Eats discussion forum show the dark side to restricted diets:

When srphayre asked "Is it impolite to tell your food preferences your hosts?", some comments included:
"The vegan thing I do not accommodate. I am always honest and say to the vegan folks, I am sorry but maybe my food is not for you" from JerzeeTomato.

"I personally don't accommodate [veganism] because I have... philosophical issues with the practice, and because [of] vegans who cannot stand to have the same cookware, knives or dishes used for their food that are used for meat, ...and there are no circumstances under which I'm willing to deal with that" by thepictsie.

For lemons, it's the "self-proclaimed vegetarians who dive into the meat, saying 'Well, yeah, I'm a vegetarian, but I eat duck. And I just love seafood, don't you?'" that leave her "speechless".

Irohner believes "it is horribly rude [to tell the host your food preferences] unless there is a medical condition (allergy, diabetes, etc.) or religious belief involved".

JerzeeTomato had more to add, writing "I will not serve tofu. I just do not. I also like KDBlue will not make vegan food. It is not because I don't know how, it is because I won't. If you have that many reservations with food you need to make your own food or go to a place where you are appreciated. It is great to live in a time of plenty and be able to have so many choices. We are truely blessed."

choc_puddin, a vegan, suggests "Why not try giving up meat for one meal? People eat too much meat anyways."

The "point is," chefman writes, "big food pussies should let their hosts know."

Fellow pescetarian KarynMC believes "If I invited someone with a food allergy or another food restriction, I would make a meal they could eat. That's what hospitality is, folks."

thepictsie provides the last post in the discussion, responding to choc_puddin's post with "I don't enjoy beans, and I don't function well without meat (yes, I have tried). Trying to tell omnivores not to eat meat is just as obnoxious as omnivores trying to tell you to eat it."

Some of the responses to the discussion topic "Is it impolite to tell your food preferences your hosts?" are very heated because restricted diets tend to carry a stigma, which is addressed in another Serious Eats discussion topic titled "Why the hostility toward restricted diets?"

On a website such as Serious Eats, people tend to be very serious about food, eating it, cooking it, and seeing other people enjoy or dislike it. Devin and I get into huge arguments when he makes a disgusted facial expression or comment about the food that I eat. I went into a silent fury once when I put a piece of pickled ginger in my mouth and my friend simultaneously commented "I don't see how anyone can eat that pink stuff. It's disgusting". Wow, well that's rude. I feel that these comments should be kept private, especially when you see that someone nearby does in fact enjoy the food in question.

I recognize that my passion for food is not necessarily something that everyone can or even should understand. We all have different reasons for appreciating the foods we love or rejecting those which are not compatible with our palates. These are things that should be respected, just as differences in other personal beliefs, and not imposed upon others. Many times I do feel like an inconvenience to the people I eat with, but I alleviate most tension by being truthful and specific about my diet restrictions and offering to contribute a dish.

Obviously, I cannot associate myself with organizations like PETA, because I do eat some flesh and most animal by-products. But I also refrain from fully supporting militant and fanatical organizations like PETA because I believe that their strategy for spreading the vegetarian cause is counterproductive. Like JerzeeTomato says, we have the power of choice, but unfortunately, neither PETA or JerzeeTomato seem to realize that the power of choice involves the choice to eat meat OR to not eat meat.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

The Cheesecake Factory

I am an emotional eater. In sadness, I relieve my sorrow in foods to comfort me and in happiness, my favorite way to celebrate is to indulge in treats that I usually restrict from my diet. So when I received my Calculus midterm back, we went to The Cheesecake Factory to temporarily console me.

The Cheesecake Factory used to have an amazing Veggie Burger that helped the restaurant to earn its place as my favorite eatery. As I have mentioned before, I go to restaurants to eat foods that I can't or won't normally cook myself, so I usually avoid the burger alternatives of Boca and Gardenburger that many restaurants offer, since I regularly eat them at home.

At The Cheesecake Factory, their Veggie Burger was made in-house using beets, blacks beans, brown rice, and other vegetables that I have now forgotten since the Veggie Burger was removed from the menu over a year ago.

I still stick with the Avocado Eggrolls, filled with creamy avocado, sun-dried tomatoes, cilantro, and red onion, and served with a sweet tamarind sauce, but I have yet to find something that satisfies me as equally as the Veggie Burger always did. I have even tried ordering it off-menu and writing to corporate, all to no avail.

Completely at a loss without my beloved Veggie Burger, I ordered Evelyn's Favorite Pasta, hoping that the delicious carbohydrates would put me at ease about my midterm grade. The enormous bowl of penne pasta, with broccoli, oven-dried tomatoes, artichoke, eggplant, kalamata olives, pine nuts, red peppers, parmesan cheese, garlic, and basil that was set in front of me immediately put a smile on my face. The pasta, lightly tossed in olive oil, was sweetened by the dried tomatoes, had a mild smoky flavor from the roasted eggplant, a slight crunch from the pine nuts, and was salty from the artichoke. I enjoyed the vegetables individually with the pasta, but together, I think there were just too many flavors and textures in one bite, so I still have not found an adequate substitute for the Veggie Burger.

Devin's usual order at The Cheesecake Factory is The Navajo, a fry bread sandwich filled with grilled chicken, avocado, lettuce, tomatoes, red onions, and accompanied with french fries. Pretty much anything with avocado (except guacamole), Devin will order and like.

And of course, being The Cheesecake Factory, we took home our usual, a slice each of Vanilla Bean Cheesecake for Devin and Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookie Dough Cheesecake for me.

It was a ton of food, not to mention that our entrees took a while to come to our table, so we finished the sourdough and wheat bread placed on our table upon being seated, was given more, and we each ordered a beer, so we each ended up taking half of our entrees home with us.

The Cheesecake Factory
71 Fortune Dr.
Irvine, CA 92618

Friday, November 23, 2007

Food Networking

Leafing through the June 2007 issue of Bon Appetit this weekend, I found an article entitled "Food Networking", providing FoodCandy, Extratasty, and BakeSpace as examples of social networking sites focused on food. Social networking, as defined by Bon Appetit, is "the online phenomenon in which people meet on a Web site to talk about subjects they love".

Although the names suggests it, the topics on FoodCandy are not exclusively about candy, but encompass a wide range of foods. You can create a profile to communicate with other members, recommend recipes and restaurants, syndicate your blog, and post videos and podcasts.

On Extratasty, you can find drink recipes and also provide feedback on drinks you have tried and made. You can create a profile and make friends with other users to see their favorite drinks. Recipes can be uploaded onto your iPod for easy access.

BakeSpace is a site to make friends, post recipes, find out about food-related events, and chat using the instant message program called "TeaRoom".

These social networking food sites are different from sites such as AllRecipes because you can create profiles to communicate and associate with other members. In addition, these food social networking sites are comprised of input directly from members such as recipes, videos, comments and recommendations, photos, and discussion forums instead of relying on articles written by staff members, as does AllRecipes.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Taco Rosa Coupon

Be sure to pick up a copy of this week's New University, UCI's weekly newspaper. On page 27, there is a Buy-One-Get-One-Free entree coupon for Taco Rosa, which I have previously reviewed. The coupon is specifically to be used at the Newport Beach location, which is half the distance from UCI than the Tustin Marketplace, where I did my review. This is a great opportunity to try a restaurant which I highly recommend, but be sure to save room for dessert!

The coupon does not expire until November 30th, so hopefully it will be run again in the next few issues. Also, you must present a UCI student ID card or UCI business card in order for the coupon to be valid.

Monday, November 12, 2007


Historic Old Town Tustin is a nice place to take a stroll because there many trees to provide shade and interspersed throughout the district are interesting historic homes and buildings to see, often of the large Victorian style.

Another reason to take a trip into Old Town Tustin is to have a meal at Rutabegorz, either outside on the patio or inside where a section for private parties is separated from the main dining room.

Stepping into Rutabegorz is like visiting Grandma's house, where photos, mugs, vases, watering cans, and other kitschy knick-knacks line the walls and the straight-backed wood booths are narrow. The restaurant is a very homey place reminiscent of the surrounding area.

In researching Rutabegorz before our visit, I learned that every month they offer a new appetizer sample for $1. For the month of November, they are offering Roasted Red Pepper Tapenade served with Tortillla Chips, which is a great way to appease your hunger while you thumb through their newsletter of a menu. Seriously, their menu kept going on and on, ranging from soups, salads, bagels, wraps, crepes, and smoothies, to House Favorites, including lasagna, enchiladas, ratatouille, fondue (dinner only), Chicken Cacciattore, and a Mu Shu Burrito. I was a little overwhelmed by my options as I munched on the sweet tapenade.

I ordered The "Italian" Vegetarian Sandwich which consisted of sourdough garlic bread slices stuffed with cucumbers, tomatoes, red onion, and swiss cheese, served with a side of Mediterranean dressing, pasta salad, a pickle slice, and a slice each of pineapple and carrot.

Now, I don't cook very often these days, but I can cook (kind of), so when I eat out, I like to get something that I can't/won't cook myself. I also know that I can only expect vegetables on a vegetarian sandwich. That being said, I was not impressed with this sandwich because it was just cold, sliced vegetables between dry bread slices. The thin spread of garlic butter that made up the garlic bread slices didn't provide much flavor or moisture, so I ended up dipping each bite into the Mediterranean dressing, which helped flavor the sandwich tremendously. I like my vegetables crunchy, but when they're sliced too large, like the cucumbers were in this sandwich, it just makes for a hard sandwich that falls apart because there was nothing to hold the vegetables together. A mayonnaise-based spread or bruschetta (continuing with the "Italian" theme) would have helped to hold the vegetables together and also provide flavor and moisture.

Similarly, I thought the side of cold pasta salad that comes with each sandwich was pretty plain. Tossed with cuts of green peppers, red onions, tomatoes, parmesan cheese, and herbs, the vegetables gave the pasta salad all of its flavor. Unfortunately, there was much more pasta than there were vegetables.

The pineapple slice was really great though. It was a thick slice of fresh, juicy pineapple that was perfectly balanced between sweet and sour.

Devin got Joe's BBQ Chicken Sandwich which was found on the specials page inserted in the menu. This sandwich had BBQ chicken, red onions, tomatoes, lettuce, avocado slices, and jack cheese on squaw bread. Like my sandwich, Devin's was accompanied with pasta salad, a pickle slice, and a slice of carrot and pineapple. Even though Devin was apprehensive about the squaw bread, he really enjoyed his sandwich with its creamy avocado and the tangy BBQ sauce on the chicken.

My sandwich was a miss, but I'm eager to give Rutabegorz another chance, probably sticking with their cooked dishes listed under their House Favorites or even their crepes. The Mu Shu Burrito sounds particularly intriguing and I've also heard their salads are both great and gigantic.

If you do give Rutabegorz in Tustin a try, behind the restaurant is a parking garage with free parking.

158 W. Main St.
Tustin, CA 92780

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Zon Baguettes

I remember when there was just an empty lot where Zon Baguettes now stands. Strata Tustin Center, where Zon Baguettes is located, is so close to our apartment, that Devin and I chose to ride our bicycles. It was a green and healthy way to grab our equally healthy meal.

Zon Baguettes opened in July 2006 and it's a a convenient place for us to pick up a couple of sandwiches (banh mi) for under $10.

There are tables both indoors and outdoors and while we waited for our sandwiches, I noticed some customers picking up orders that they had phoned in. In addition to the banh mi, Zon Baguettes sells pho, fried rice, egg rolls, summer rolls (goi cuon), boba, pastries, salads, popsicles, and a stand filled with bags of chips, Yan Yan, and tins of pate.

While they had goi cuon already made and packaged, I ordered mine without pork, so I had to wait a little longer for them to make it especially for me. I was willing to wait because I'm glad they were able to accommodate my pescetarian needs so I could enjoy one of the foods that I love. One order of goi cuon came with two medium-sized summer rolls and a small tub of Hoisin and peanut sauce.

As you can see in this slice of the goi cuon, at Zon Baguettes, it is filled with shrimp, rice vermicelli, iceberg lettuce, and cilantro. Without the mint that I am used to tasting in goi cuon, this ended up being pretty bland goi cuon, and the shrimp didn't help. Although I counted four shrimp through the opaque wrapper, there only ended up being two full-sized shrimp that were cut in half to make four pieces. The shrimp were tough and flavorless, so I was pretty much eating wrapped up vermicelli noodles.

But, as you can see in the above photo, my #14 Viet Veggies banh mi was packed with an array of vegetables.

The #14 Viet Veggies banh mi contains jalepenos, cucumbers, carrots, vermicelli, cilantro, and a sweet and tangy mayonnaise that really brought the flavors together. The vegetables were crunchy and fresh and they certainly didn't skimp on the portions. My only very minor complaint is that the jalepenos didn't pack very much heat.

And the bread. You don't come to Zon Baguettes expecting Lee's Sandwiches. The bread at Zon Baguettes is always fresh, with a crispy exterior and a soft and fluffy interior that doesn't leave the inside of your mouth raw.

Devin had a Turkey and Swiss Cheese sandwich from Zon Baguettes, and while I thought it looked pretty mediocre (I obviously didn't try it), he really enjoyed it.

Even though Devin's Turkey and Swiss Cheese sandwich wasn't as packed as my Viet Veggies banh mi, I would say the ratio of bread to filling is still pretty good for a sandwich. He agrees that the bread at Zon Baguettes is great, so having a sandwich from here that is half bread, half filling is a win-win situation.

Our sandwiches took a little longer than usual to make because there were several orders ahead of ours and because of my special order of goi cuon. Our view while we waited was of the stand of chips, Yan Yan, Snow Pea Crisps, and tins of pate, so I couldn't resist picking up two bags of chips after oogling them as I hungrily awaited our order. These were a nice addition to round out our meal.

Whenever I have visited Zon Baguettes, there has always been a stack of menus to take home. It figures that the one time I actually have a use for the take-home menu, they don't have any. I will snag and post a menu the next chance I get.

Zon Baguettes
14081 Newport Ave.
Tustin, CA 92780