Catering in Newark

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In 1946, John Kinder opened his first meat market in the Bay Area town of San Pablo. More than 65 years later, Kinder continues to oversee daily operations at more than 15 neighborhood locations. He owes his continued success, in part, to the second- and third-generation family members who have leant their own tireless dedication to the company.

This dedication has certainly paid off. The Kinder family’s barbecue sauces, marinades, and rubs consistently take first-place ribbons from judges across the country and have earned the market a loyal following of cowboys and outlaws alike. In a 2008 article on what to order at Major League ballparks, the New York Times hailed the ball-tip steak sandwich and its "mess of Kinder's smoky-sweet sauce" as a much-welcome relief from the fried menu items at McAfee Coliseum. :m]]

43761 Boscell Rd

Culture Organic Frozen Yogurt is a healthier way to sate a sweet cheek. The freshly prepared concoctions are enhanced by active cultures and complemented by toppings such as seasonal organic fruit. Culture's menu features a bevy of sweet foundations, including original, vanilla accents, signature chocolate, and seasonal blends. Frozen yogurts start at $3.99 for a small before scintillating toppings (up to $1.29) are added. Top off any sweet structure with flavors such as coconut-crunch granola, plums, mangoes, dried raspberries, chocolate-chip cookies, brownie chunks, dried banana, seasonal specific offerings, and more. The spoon-averted can enjoy frozen Yo'Wiches, yogurt blanketed between freshly baked cookies ($4.49), or a mango Fro Yo Shake, which brings bursting flavor to a highly drinkable package ($5.99).

340 S California Ave
Palo Alto,

The menu at The Ace of Sandwiches encompasses more than 100 possibilities. Even so, every sandwich at the family-run shop has one thing in common: premium ingredients. The staff bakes their chicken breasts in-house and roasts their own roast beef, rather than following the lead of other sandwich establishments and hiring a freelance dragon. They rely on Boar's Head Brand to deliver cold cuts and cheese, whereas other items come straight from the community, including produce from local farm stands and bread from nearby bakers.

All of these components come together behind the counter. There, the staff builds custom orders as well as their own signature sandwiches, including chicken pesto paninis, The Ace of Clubs, and West Coast Grinders with nine different meats.

3864 El Camino Real
Palo Alto,

Back a Yard Caribbean-American Grill: A User’s Guide

From-Scratch Caribbean Cuisine | Southern Barbecue | Addictive Jerk Chicken | Corn Festivals

Sample Dishes

  • Jerk chicken: served with fried plantains, rice, and beans
  • Barbecue: pork spare ribs served with fries, a warm roll, and coleslaw
  • Seafood: fried snapper breaded with a special blend of herbs and spices
  • Dessert: sweet-potato pudding

Who's in the Kitchen? Chef-owner Robert Simpson’s techniques and recipes are the foundations for both Back a Yard locations: the one in downtown San Jose, and the original in Menlo Park. He began cooking at age 6 alongside his grandmother in Jamaica, and he went on to receive his formal training at the Culinary Institute of America.

Inside Tips

  • Parking at the Menlo Park location can be tricky because it's all on the street. But the San Jose location is a bit easier, since Back a Yard validates parking at a huge garage nearby.
  • Don't let the hole-in-the-wall exterior of the original Menlo Park location fool you: inside, it's all colors, reggae tunes, and smiles.

Vocab Lesson
Plantain: very popular in Caribbean dishes, these starchy fruits are a slightly larger cousin of the banana and must be cooked before serving.
Corn festivals: sweet, fritter-like treats made of cornmeal. They're deep-fried and often served with something more savory, especially fish.

Culture Lesson: "Back a Yard" isn't a typo. It's a term that means, quite simply, "back home." It refers to the spirit and welcoming nature of life in Jamaica.

1189 Willow Rd
Menlo Park,

Tandoori Paradise?s chefs stock the kitchen with many of the same ingredients found in Indian homes. They use myriad herbs and spices to add bold flavors to chicken legs, shrimp, and pieces of tofu. A traditional clay oven helps them cook marinated proteins, Indian cottage cheese, and fresh vegetables. On the stove, they simmer cauliflower and lamb in creamy curries, resulting in such dishes as gobi aloo and lamb vindaloo. Each dish can be customized according to the diner's tolerance for spiciness, ranging from mild to "I eat molten lava for breakfast."

225 West Winton Avenue

Chef Andy Ye and his staff of cooks at Banh Thai Restaurant believe their classic dishes deserve an exquisite flavor balance as well as artistic presentation. “Thai chefs focus on creating a blend of the spicy and subtle, the sweet and sour, so that all are equally satisfying to the nose and palate,” says one post on the restaurant’s Facebook page. Luckily, the seemingly endless list of traditional Thai ingredients these chefs have access to allows for ample opportunities to make that happen. Among their creations is a sauce flavored with curry spices that bestows rack of lamb with a bright yellow hue. Seafood isn’t excluded from their artful touch either, as green curry paste, basil, and string beans add pops of green to be soaked up by delicate sea bass. That blend of visual and tasty also extends to more than 30 vegetarian entrees and noodle dishes on the menu that come decorated with savory and sweet touches of eggplant, mango, and cashew.

1818 Milmont Dr