January 2008


Tandoori Chicken USA

Tucked away from the buzz of highway 80 off of San Pablo Dam Rd, in El Sobrante, is a little Indian place that looks like an old diner. Welcome to Tandoori Chicken USA. The tandoori chicken is for the delicious Indian food that they serve, the USA is for the throwback drive-in fast food building that it is in. With a pass through window and hard plastic seats, the decor is about as minimalist as it can be. Although they seem to have a full Indian food menu, the thing to get here is the Tandoori Chicken sandwich. The sandwich comes with the tender tandoori chicken with lettuce and raita sandwiched between nan. Delicious.
Tandoori Chicken USA

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Sakuran_poster.jpg

Asian Cinema Nite continues this week.
Tuesday 7pm Blue Screening Room

Sakuran
directed by Mika Ninagawa
In Japanese w/ English subtitles
2007 – 111 min.

Adapted from a manga with the same name, Sakuran, is the story of a defiant oiran, or prostitute, living in feudal Japan. Much like Sofia Coppola’s Marie Antoinette, Sakuran is rich with color and style, with a modern sensibility and soundtrack. Anna Tsuchiya, of Kamikaze Girls fame, rides that fine line of being bitchy, independent, and likeable, always choosing love over fortune.

Trailer here:

More Here:
http://www.midnighteye.com/reviews/sakuran.shtml
http://twitchfilm.net/site/view/ninagawa-mikas-sakuran-review/
http://lunapark6.com/sakuran.html

Tacos at Taqueria 16th de Septembre

There are so many taquerias and taco trucks in Fruitvale that it is hard to keep track of them all, let alone try them all. At first I had no idea what I would get for lunch today. I thought that I would go for the old standby of a carne asada super burrito at El Farolito, or a torta at La Torta Loca, or tacos at the La Michiocana truck. Those images went out the window when I saw the steam rise from an outdoor grill in front of a non-descript taqueria on International Blvd and 35th St called Taqueria 16th de Septembre. I’ll have to drive by it again to see if I got the name correct.

I ordered the usual, 2 al pastor, 2 carnitas. The carnitas wasn’t the stringy type, but was more chopped up bits of carnitas. Not my favorite, but it was tasty. The al pastor was one of the better types that I’ve had in the area. They didn’t come from a spit and was already ready in it’s tin water warmed container. The al pastor had heft and meat to it. It wasn’t wimpy and the chunks were sizable. The seasoning was flavorful without being too greasy or oily. I was pleasantly surprised by it. As a side perk, they had grilled jalapenos and a red onion, radish mix that was readily available as a free side condiment. I also got two types of salsa with the taco, one salsa verde that was typical, not too sweet, not too spicy, and the other was a thicken tomato puree style salsa that didn’t quite work for me.

All in all, with so many choices in Fruitvale, it’s nice to know that I now have another option as an old standby.

In my previous post about Wag hotels, I mentioned the Dog Days of Summer with Giants baseball. I finally found some pics of that day.
First up is Nick watching the game.
Nick at Dog Days of Summer

Here is Nora having a GREAT time. We really don’t try to dress up our dogs, but Nora being black had to have some orange to support the home team.
Nora at Dog Days of Summer

Courtney and I took a quick trip up to Tahoe for the long weekend. Since it was last minute, the place where we have our pups stay was already booked, so we decided to give Wag Hotels a try. Last year, we had gone to the SF Giants Dog Days of Summer at AT&T park. It was a great time since you get to sit in the bleacher section with tons of other dog owners, while watching the game. If you have a dog and love baseball, this is the thing to do. The schedule isn’t up yet but it is generally in August and you have to get the tickets through the promotions page when it is up.

One benefit of the baseball game was that the tickets were also a coupon for 1 free night at a Wag Hotel. We booked three nights at the Wag in Sacramento. The nice thing is that you can pick up and drop off your dog at anytime, 24 hours. The lobby was very nice, though I wasn’t sure what the facilities were like since it was located in a giant industrial area warehouse.

If it weren’t for the free nights from the coupon, we would never have had our dogs stay there since it was so expensive to begin with, but it was convenient. Aside from the convenience, we were not happy with Wag. Although it it pricey, it wasn’t the price that turned us off. When we picked up Nick and Nora, Nick threw up in the lobby. When looking at the report cards of how the dogs did, the cards had said that Nick was fine, and that his stool was also good. Since Nick had thrown up in the lobby, one of the Wag attendants went to get his chart to see if there was anything written up. It turns out that Nick had already thrown up while he was there and also had diarrhea, clearly not indicated in our report cards. The staff had said that this was normal and that dogs frequently does this when they are nervous. Nick then threw up later that day and then Nora started to throw up throughout the night.

We took the two to the vet this morning, and it seems as though that they had gotten some sort of infection. The vet noted that they were dehydrated and had swollen lymph nodes. They are now on medication. We have called Wag to complain about the cards.

For a completely opposite experience, we have always had super happy pups when they have stayed at club k-9 in Castro Valley. Check it out since it is much cheaper, and a better place overall.

A friend of mine sent me this link for an upcoming rally that is remeniscient of the old Alpine Rallies called The Snowball Rally.

I would love to attend, but unfortunately my car does not have a top to it so it may get a little cold driving up to Tahoe in April.



MacBook Airs

Taken at the 2008 MacWorld. The MacBook Airs are pretty incredible. They are light and the thickness really seems to be limited by the usb port, otherwise it is really, really thin.

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