“Hueco” translates roughly to “little cave,” a tribute to the Peruvian hole-in-the-wall restaurants that serve ceviche and charcoal-roasted meats at any hour of the day. El Hueco attempts to capture the feeling of a hangout in the little mountainous country with traditional dishes crafted by lauded chef Jaime Laos. “Laos,” the San Jose Mercury News noted in an article, “has come a long way since his grandmother taught him to cook in a one-faucet house they shared with eight others in Lima.” He now creates a full menu of traditional small plates and entrees, which rely heavily upon the seafood, South American chilies, and sweet potatoes that make up the bulk of Peruvian cuisine.
From the steaming vats of beef stew cooked in a corn-beer sauce to the pan-fried chicken cooked in a blend of porto butter and chocolate, Laos introduces clients to the ancient flavors of Peru. Guests experience how Peruvian chefs prepare mixed vegetables and quinoa. The soft grain was cultivated by Incans hundreds of years ago, but is now becoming popular in North American health-food stores and slapstick movies about people falling into vats of different things. After bowls of ceviche, traditional desserts at the eatery pair root vegetables with a splash of sweet molasses.
At Little India Restaurant, authenticity permeates the food, art, and music. Owned by the Baidwan and Malhotra families and staffed with northern India–trained chefs, the restaurant is a multiyear winner of numerous prizes, including CityVoter's award for Best Indian cuisine. Chefs grill meats over mesquite charcoal in the tandoori oven, and season curries with onion, garlic, and ginger. Handcrafted mint-cilantro and tamarind chutneys create opportunities for 11 types of bread to sneak toward unsuspecting droplets of spice-filled sauce, whereas potatoes soften the heat quotient of fiery vindaloos. Within the dining room, calming sitar music fills the air and larger-than-life paintings of food-based revelry decorate the walls and come to life at tables.
The chefs at Buri Tara Thai Cuisine draw culinary inspiration from regions across Thailand when crafting dishes such as panang curry and bangkok duck. They intersperse local and sustainable veggies and meats into their courses whenever possible, melding pan-fried Thai rice noodles with bean sprouts and ground peanuts in the familiar pad thai, and salmon green curry with bamboo shoots and basil. The menu also includes vegetarian options for non-meaters or werewolves trying to change their ways.
Seafood traverses the menu at DeCarlo's Place, sizzling on bread, inside tacos, or tossed on top of salads. Inside the colorful eatery, a walkup counter dispenses heaping baskets of half-pound cheeseburgers or fish 'n' chips to tables, alongside shrimp Louie salads or piping hot bowls of new england clam chowder. A selection of sodas, beer, and wine keeps mouths refreshed and less likely to hang open during rainstorms.
Cuisine Type: Cafe
Handicap Accessible: Yes
Number of Tables: 11?25
Parking: Parking lot
Most Popular Offering: Toasted and specialty sandwiches
Alcohol: Beer and wine only
Delivery/Takeout Available: Takeout only
Outdoor Seating: Yes
At the mom-and-pop Bay Leaf Cafe and Catering, cooks toast gourmet sandwich bread and burger buns, cook thin beef cheesesteaks on the grill, and fold eggs and cheese into breakfast wraps. The hearty dishes pair with espresso drinks and organic French roast coffee, which patrons can sip while browsing the web courtesy of free WiFi. They can also head out to the outdoor patio to soak up some sun and watch the canines at the dog park across the street playing fetch or Twister.
When Mike and Fera Hasemi were conceptualizing their restaurant, they knew they wanted to focus on the Persian recipes so intrinsic to their heritage. And they did just that at Arya Global Cuisine, transforming Middle Eastern ingredients into colorful dishes such as pomegranate-pistachio meatballs and the VegeTower?layers of mushroom, spinach, eggplant, tomato, and rice drenched in saffron-yogurt sauce. There are plenty of kebabs and polos (rice dishes), too, which makes it all the more curious when you arrive at the pizza section, available at the Redwood City location only.
No, Arya doesn't serve only Persian food?Mike, who is also the executive chef, spent time studying in Italy, so he devoted a considerable portion of the menu to pizza and pasta dishes. Whichever culinary style guests choose to order, they may be having their dinner during a show, as weekend nights find belly dancers or Persian singers entertaining the crowds.