Southern Californian Poutine (Going Out: The Kroft in Tustin)

It all started off, as most mealtimes do these days, with my toddler wanting french fries. While he adored them (what toddler doesn’t?) before he ever set foot in the USA, he discovered an entirely different level of availability while we were in California this past autumn. It seemed that every restaurant we went to would randomly throw fries onto the plate, just to spite me. Steak and fries. Sandwich and fries. Soup and fries. It was an epidemic. We had to impose a limit, just to make sure he didn’t give up entirely on the five food groups in …

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Going Out: Hanko Sushi Vantaa

This was my second sushi experience during our weekend in the Helsinki greater metropolitan area last July. This was also my second sushi experience with this particular Finnish restaurant chain, Hanko Sushi. I use the term “restaurant” loosely because I would classify this more as fast-food sushi, really. Except for the not so fast part. But wait, let’s start at the beginning. So the day before, I’d taken the bus out to Espoo to visit a friend and have an awesome lunch at LN-Sushi Art. Wanting to sleep in late and knowing that we were leaving that afternoon, I stayed …

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Going Out: LN-Sushi Art

Last summer, I accompanied the hubby on a series of weekend trips to various cities around the country for his RC car competitions. In the process, I took what was basically the abbreviated Sushi Tour of Finland. Such as it is. Finland doesn’t have a huge number of sushi joints, so there are usually only a couple per city at best, unless it’s a particularly large one like Helsinki. Then they might have, like, ten or so. Sadly, I do not exaggerate. And most of them probably opened in the recent past, because there were considerably fewer when I first …

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August in Taiwan Photo Album (in which there is snake!)

This gallery contains 15 photos.

In late August of 2012, I had to return to Taiwan due to familial obligations. Afterwards, we spent a bit of time exploring some local attractions that I didn’t get a chance to see last time we were there. This included sampling some of the more unique food offerings at a night market. Hence the snake. Amongst other things.

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The one with the dumplings.

This gallery contains 23 photos.

Wow, look what I found lurking in my old to-post folder! The last batch of photos from my London work trip back in spring of 2011. Yeah, the one where it became my mission in life to order steamed dumplings from every place within delivery range that made them. Seriously, I’ve got the pictures to prove it. It was an obsession. Just thinking about the woeful lack of delivery dumplings here makes me sad. It’s almost criminal. Why do you hate me so, Finland?

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Going Out: Kado Sushi

So, we have a new local sushi joint. “Local” being a relative term, since it’s around an hour’s drive into the nearest large-ish city. But we go there on a fairly frequent basis to visit friends anyway, so it’s just a happy opportunity that we also get a decent sushi fix on the same trip. In fact, the first time I visited this restaurant was with those friends, on what was probably my second trip to Finland. They were telling me about this place that was pretty good, except for the strange sweet mayonnaise that they put in some rolls… to …

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Going Out: McDonald’s (!!!)

Right. So I can probably count the number of times I’ve been to a McDonald’s in Cali over the past several years on one hand. Usually when I am craving soft serve and there’s no frozen yogurt place nearby. The last time I ordered actual food from there, I can’t even remember. Not that 99-cent Chicken McNugget Tuesdays don’t bring back very fond memories of university roommates and scrounging in couches for spare change, but… let’s face it, there’s a stigma attached to eating at McD’s if you’re not a cheap student or a parent of rugrat-aged children. They cater …

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Frutti di Mare Pizza

Okay, I don’t think this a restaurant review, since the only going out involved was the block that the boy had to walk to go pick up our pizzas. Still, it’s worth a shout-out because this ain’t your ordinary pizza. At least, if you’re from the States. The first time I encountered Finnish pizza was when the boy’s family ordered several different pies one winter evening. They got the usuals — pepperoni and sausage, ham and pineapple, mussels and tuna… Yes, mussels and tuna and shrimp. Quite possibly the most awesome seafood pizza I’ve ever encountered. Back in Cali, even …

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Going Out: Spinner’s Turkish Kebab, Redux

I last wrote about Spinner’s about this time last year and at the time, I didn’t do much justice to their food presentation. Which really is a shame on me, because the way they set things up when you dine in is much closer to a restaurant than most places with a walk-up counter. To be fair, this was because we lived so close that we often wanted to eat at home and so would get everything to-go. We did take the family in to eat a few times, though, and I remembered to bring my camera with me when …

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