Date Night: Chili’s and Tequila Drinks

We usually try to go someplace new for date night because of my New Year’s Resolution.  One of my coworkers treated me to Chinese food dinner a few nights ago at a new Chinese place, so I got to eat at a familiar place for dinner.  Dinner was followed by a trip to the grocer to pick up some additional liquors for the rest of the night’s festivities.  We decided to share 4 tequila based beverages from our tequila cocktail book.

Acid Trip

  • 1/2 oz tequila
  • 1.5 oz Midori
  • 1/2 oz gin
  • 1/2 oz vodka
  • 1/2 oz rum

Shake with ice and strain into a cocktail glass

Review: Tastes like alcohol, but not much else.  DH says that it needs sprite to make it not hurt to drink.

Arizona Aztec

  • 1 oz gold tequila
  • 1 oz Bacardi Limon
  • 1/2 oz spiced rum
  • 7 oz coke

Stir well in a highball glass

Review: Tastes like watered down coke.  Maybe it would be different if I had a heavier hand with the alcohol or just used less soda.

Warm Blonde

  • Tequila
  • Southern Comfort
  • Amaretto

Layer equal parts in a pony glass or shot glass

Review: Super yummy, warm, and smooth.  Our favorite of the night.

The White Devil

  • 3/4 oz gold tequila
  • 3/4 oz Crown Royal
  • Tabasco (for rim)
  • Margarita salt (for rim)
  • Lime wedge for garnish

Dip the rim of the glass in tabasco and then in the salt.  Pour the alcohol into the glass and garnish with lime.

Review: In the words of DH “No.  God, no.”  This was interesting, but definitely not something to be tried again.  Ick.

Date Night: Federico’s in Union City

I was super excited to try this restaurant.  I’ve only had one previous tapas experience, and it was positive so when I found out there were tapas here I was happy.

My husband and I visited this past Wednesday night.  I was happy to see fenced off outdoor seating, but it was too cold to eat out there so we wandered into the building itself.

There were a couple of tables with customers sitting at them, a wall of bench seating (ugh, but at least it wasn’t the only seating), bar seating like at a chef’s counter, pretty paint and a water feature.  The chef had his back to us, and there was nobody else to be seen.  After a couple of minutes a waitress came out and sat us.

A carafe of water came out. We ordered a mango martini and sangria too.  The martini was OK, but needed a garnish.  The sangria was yummy.  I noticed lipstick on my water glass, but a replacement glass never came.

We ordered Hawaiian Poke, Gnocchi, Vegetable Risotto, Alligator and Sea Bass.  The waitress didn’t know how to pronounce poke or gnocchi – poke doesn’t rhyme with spoke, and gnocchi isn’t nah-chee.

It took soooooo long for the food to come.  Seriously, we timed it – 45 minutes from the time we ordered until the first plate arrived.  Completely unacceptable.

The sea bass was really tasty.  I would have ordered seconds.

The alligator was described as fried in a tempura batter.  It didn’t resemble any kind of tempura I’d ever had.  Although it was tasty, it seemed as though it was overcooked. The batter was dark and the meat was a bit rubbery.

The risotto was delicious and light.

The gnocchi was richly flavored and delicious.  I was worried it would be rubbery, but it was tender and good.

The poke was roughly textured.  I don’t know if it had to do with the freshness of the fish or if it was due to the way it was cut.  The flavor was good though.

In the end, we left hungry.  We would have ordered more or dessert but we were turned off because of such slow service.

Overall the food was really good.  We might go back in a few months to see if the service and speed has improved.  Unfortunately, right now the taste of the food doesn’t outweigh such a simple problem to fix.

Date Night: iSushi in Castro Valley

Every Thursday is date night, and this past Thursday was no exception.  Because we’re always looking for new restaurants with great food, and we hadn’t yet tried this one, we chose to eat at iSushi for date night.

DH and I walked in and noticed how cramped the place was.  Well, there’s not a lot you can do about that when space is at a premium, so we asked to be seated at the tall table in the far corner.  We figured it would give us extra room.  Then we opened the menu.

There are lots and lots of different rolls and appetizers and things, but it’s difficult to tell how many pieces you get with each roll and appetizer.  You can’t base it off of price either because all of the choices (except for rice and soup) were $10+.  I ordered the Jada and a miso soup, DH ordered the iSushi.  We shared a sake sampler.

I saw the different plates come out to all of the tables and had a very bad feeling.  Most of the plates only had 3-4 pieces on them instead of the normal 6-8 pieces you get with a roll anywhere else.  Then ours came out…  the Jada, while very tasty only had 2 pieces and the iSushi had 5 slices of tuna.

Even though we were both still hungry, neither one of us could stomach paying for more.

So, bottom line is: if you like feeling crowded and want to pretend to be a millionaire, eat at iSushi.  The food is really yummy, and the sake sampler was tasty.  The people were nice too.

Date Night: Extreme Pita

We moved our date nights to Thursday nights because DH wanted to take Judo classes on our regular night.  So last night we went to Extreme Pita on Automall in Fremont, but we didn’t mean to initially.  When you’re driving around the Bay Area, you often see restaurants out of the corner of your eye.  As you can imagine might happen, if you can’t fully read the sign you’ll make up a name that fits what you think you’ve seen.  So we were totally stoked to go to “Extreme Pizza.”  All day DH was texting me about the various types of pizza he wanted, the beer he hoped they had and how awesome dinner would be.  I was excited to find a cheap place to go that also met my New Year’s Resolution to try a new restaurant every week.  Imagine our surprise to drive up and see that “Extreme Pizza” was really “Extreme Pita.”

We poked our heads in and saw a clean place.  A girl was mopping and the floor was wet so we were scared to go in and ruin her hard work.  She scowled when we asked if it was OK to go in.  The guy behind the counter gave us a huge smile and welcomed us into the building.

DH ordered the small Buffalo Chicken Pita and a sweetened Lipton iced tea, and I ordered the small Falafel Pita (vegetarian) and a honey Lipton iced tea.  DH liked his quite a bit and finished it quickly.  He said that it was spicy but it was a good spicy.  Mine was good, but it was a little boring.  It needed more spices or something.  I’d definitely try something different next time.

Although the food was good, we ended up leaving hungry.  The small sized pita didn’t provide enough bulk to fill us up.

Bottom line: the place was clean and the food was good.  I probably wouldn’t make a special trip to south Fremont for this restaurant, but if I’m in the area and hungry I wouldn’t turn it down.

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