Thursday, June 04, 2009

Silicon Valley Weekend

Benedicto Siciliano at Hobees CupertinoThe Sunday morning brunch at Hobees was terrific like my last time here. This time too, I was meeting an old friend after a long gap. This time too, the highlight was clearly the heavenly blueberry coffee-cake that accompanied my main dish: The Benedicto Siciliano, a creative version of Eggs Benedict with a melange of fresh sweet basil, roma tomatoes and avocado tossed lightly with olive oil and lemon juice atop two poached eggs on a grilled English muffin with a special marinara sauce and Parmesan cheese.

There are few places you can enjoy a better breakfast or weekend brunch than here at Hobees! They have multiple locations in Silicon Valley, but I like the one in Cupertino the most.

Blueberry Coffecake at HobeesAfter that filling brunch, I didn't have the appetite for anything substantive during dinner later. I was meeting with a friend in the vicinity of Santana Row and we decided to try Sino, a Chinese fusion restaurant that opened a couple of years back. Sino is a creation of Chris Yeo, who also runs the popular Straits Cafe in the Bay Area. Gleaming red walls with a crackled glaze, metallic bead curtains, and colorful bar area makes for a quirky and interesting ambiance.

Sake Sampler at Sino
Sino in Santana RowWe decided to sample their selection of sakes. Of the three varieties, I particularly liked the flavors of the Cherry Bouquet and Crysanthimum Meadow. We shared a plate of wild mushroom dumplings and followed it with crispy snapper in a spicy pepper garlic sauce with Dan Dan Mien, flat noodles with szechuan peppers, garlic and scallions (and chicken).

Wild Mushroom Dumplings at Sino
Crispy Snapper at SinoThe dumplings were excellent! The taste of the mushrooms was enhanced by white truffle oil. The snapper was lightly batter-fried and had a spicy, tangy sauce. The Dan Dan Mien is usually made of pork, but they were willing to substitute it with chicken for my friend. Pretty spicy stuff, but then I like spicy!

Dan Dan Mien at SinoSantana Row is designed to look and feel like the European promenades replete with cafes, pedestrian-friendly sidewalks and store-fronts. This is a great place to stroll around in the evenings, watching people and dining al fresco. Smaller than, but similar to, the wonderful 3rd Street promenade in Santa Monica.

12 comments:

MEGalomaniac said...

Those wild mushroom dumplings look and sound delish!

Vamsee said...

I think this is the first time I am here about white truffle oil used in Chinese cuisine!

Santana Row is pretty awesome. Did you try the French Restaurant "West Bank" It is pretty good.

As usual, great post. I am forwarding it to friends in the bay area.

Vamsee said...

I meant "this is the first time I am hearing about...

Lakshmi said...

loved the cake..tempting

Shantanu said...

@Vamsee: Yup, this is the 'fusion' part of the Chinese Fusion. :)

@Meg: They were quite delicious. Not often that I order vegetarian dumplings and then like them as much!

@Lakshmi: Desserts always are, aren't they?

kyh said...

vegetarian dumplings?? wow... makes me drool even more!

nice meal u had there... ;)

Shantanu said...

@kyh: Yeah, don't usually order veggie dumplings. But these were good.

Zhu said...

The breakfast looks so good! And somewhat healthier than traditional eggs and bacon too.

Shantanu said...

@zhu: Doesn't it look wonderful? Yes, I believe they are.

Nikita said...

I loved Santana Row too. :)
Such a European feel !

BTW, if you are a coffe-lover like me, you get the BEST coffee in one of those lil coffee places in Santana Row.

Loved it!

Shantanu said...

@Nikita: Welcome here. I am more a tea guy...

Nikita said...

Oh my friends always insisted on having the Santana Row Coffee. Try it!

Might tranform u! :)