Day 201: New Capital Seafood

New Capital Seafood dim sum.

New Capital Seafood dim sum.

I have yet to find a decent dim sum restaurant in the Inland Empire, so whenever the craving hits, my wife and I go to family favorite New Capital Seafood in Rowland Heights. The basics (shuimai and har gow) are good and we always manage to try something new, whether it’s vegetable dumplings, fish balls, or other dishes that we haven’t learned the Chinese names for.

Like other dim sum joints in the San Gabriel Valley, New Capital gets insanely crowded on the weekends. Thanks to some fortunate scheduling today, my wife and I were in the area and stopped by to munch on all of the deliciousness found in those magical steamer trays. The food was good, the prices were right, and the Monday crowd was a fraction of the weekend masses. Not a bad way to kick off our week.

Day 199: Domi’s Peruvian Cuisine


Lomo Saltado is my go-to meal whenever I eat Peruvian food. It’s hard not to like a dish that contains three of my favorite foods: steak, rice, and fries.

The owners are the nicest people you’ll ever meet. I have a semi-personal connection with them (as I wrote in my Yelp review here), so I’m not exactly an unbiased critic. Their home-style restaurant is cozy and quaint; a true labor of love that you can taste in every bite.

Day 198: The Donut Hole

The Donut Hole. La Puente, California.

The Donut Hole. La Puente, California.

I was in La Puente this morning, which meant I had to stop at The Donut Hole. While Randy’s Donuts in Inglewood is the Los Angeles icon, for my money The Donut Hole offers the best bang for your buck. Where else can you drive through a donut-shaped building for a dozen fried bits of heaven?

As I wrote on Yelp, the donuts were pretty standard fare. However, things have improved: today I noticed the addition of specialty donuts: red velvet, Fruity Pebbles, Froot Loops, and others. I ordered the blueberry donut and a dozen cronut holes and both were excellent.

The food is secondary, though. It’s all about the experience of driving through the giant donut: it’ll delight your kids and the kid in you.

Day 197: Throwback Thursday


Warm summer nights of my childhood meant playing outside, hoping to hear the magical song from the ice cream man’s truck. When my lolo was staying with us, my brothers and I were always well-funded; we’d run through the house like headless chickens trying to find him and his endless supply of change for our treats.

Bomb pops, 50/50 bars, Fudgesicles, and other frozen goodies made it into our hands, but my favorite was the snack-sized bag of Doritos. The ice cream man kicked it up a notch for our neighborhood. He had a bottle of Tabasco on hand and upon request he’d pour a few drops into the bag and shake it up, coating the Doritos with a little heat. It was a revelation to my pint-sized taste buds.

While I don’t eat Doritos as much as I used to, I always have a bottle of hot sauce on hand, just in case I decide to do a Throwback Thursday snack like I did today. I’m sure lolo would approve.

Day 194: Tacos Ensenada

Fish Tacos at Tacos Ensenada

Fish Tacos at Tacos Ensenada

Any time I’m in Duarte, California, I make a stop at Tacos Ensenada. It’s a small taco shop that serves excellent fish tacos: lightly battered and fried fish served on warm corn tortillas with fresh pico de gallo, cabbage, and crema.

I’ve already raved about Tacos Ensenada on Yelp (read my review here), so I’ll just say here that the tacos de pescado are still muy delicioso.

Day 193: Nepal Cultural Festival


My wife and I love the USC Pacific Asia Museum in Pasadena. We attended a few of their Fusion Friday events last summer and today’s Nepal Cultural Festival and Earthquake Relief Fund was our first visit this year.

The festival happened to fall on Second Sunday, when the museum offers free admission. We made the trip before noon and were treated to traditional and fusion Nepalese music and dance. There were a few crafts tables where you could make your own Nepalese mask and one of our favorite food trucks, the India Jones Chow Truck, was there.

Of course, a trip to the museum wouldn’t be complete without a walk through the museum itself. We liked the copies of Snakes and Ladders that were available for play; as explained here, the ancient game originated in India and is still played by children today in its modern version, Chutes and Ladders.

We enjoyed the Visualizing Enlightenment: Decoding the Buddhist Iconography exhibition. This exhibit featured a six-foot Buddha wood carving from over 500 years ago, with an explanation of its details.

The weather warmed up as the day wore on, but the pleasant vibe kept everyone in good spirits, as performers and audience mingled and danced together in the courtyard. It was a good-for-the-soul Sunday Funday.

Day 182: Carl Crawford

Dodgers' Carl Crawford DH for the Quakes

Dodgers’ Carl Crawford DH for the Quakes

The last time I caught a Dodger doing rehab with the Rancho Cucamonga Quakes was when Andre Either played a few games before going back to the big leagues. Last night I met some local Yelpers for our third Unofficial Yelp Event at the Epicenter (technically Loan Mart Field). It was Recycle Tuesday, so fans who brought 10 CRV cans and/or bottles received a free seat at the game. Spending a summer night at the ballpark is something I love to do, so being able to do so for free (while helping the environment) was a real treat.

The five of us Yelpers were treated to a Quakes blowout, as they took it to the visiting High Desert Mavericks early and often, putting up 6 runs in a few innings. The Dodgers’ Carl Crawford was DHing for the Quakes and while he went 0-for-3, he did have the most important RBI of the game. This season Quakes fans’ lucky number is seven; when the team scores seven runs, everybody gets a coupon for two free tacos at Jack in the Box. When Crawford grounded out while driving in that seventh run, it was one of the biggest cheers of the night.

Day 179: The Jolly Oyster


I impressed my wife today by showing off my samurai-like oyster-shucking skills. We spent a wonderful day in Ventura at the laid-back The Jolly Oyster, a beachside stand that serves up fresh oysters, clams, and crab claws. Unfortunately, they were out of crab claws, so we stuffed ourselves with raw oysters (shucked them ourselves!) and steamed Manila clams (we had the Jolly Oyster’s kitchen take  care of that).

We ate, we laughed, we played oversized chess and checkers, we ate more, and we walked on the beach. It was one of those perfect summer Sunday afternoons that you don’t want to end, with good food, good music, and good times with the one person in the world who I’d want to be with for a day like this.

Day 172: The Habit Burger Grill


I used to eat at the original Habit Burger Grill in Goleta during my college and post-college days. Thanks to a giveaway on the Mad Hungry Woman blog, I was able to experience some of the Habit’s tasty wares in Upland tonight.

My wife and I love the Habit and are creatures of habit whenever we dine here. For me, it’s the basic Charburger with fries; for her, it’s the Santa Barbara burger with fries. We always get a container of malt vinegar to dunk our fries. Tonight we considered ordering something different, but ended up ordering the usual.

It’s great seeing how much success the chain has enjoyed and it’s nice not having to drive a few hours for that delicious Charburger goodness. One day I might order something new, but I doubt it. As long as it tastes the same, I’m content with the same old, same old.