Monday, March 2, 2015

Zachary's Chicago Pizza

We have probably eaten Zachary's 1,000 times. It's been around forever and it always delicious. However, it is always jam-packed. The wait for a table is an eternity and then you have to wait for 20-40 minutes for your pizza depending on whether you go thin or thick crust. 

We pretty much always just get it as take-out. We also pretty much always get the deep dish. When we went to eat at Zachary's for this review we went at lunch time on a weekday so we were seated right away (bonus!) but we still didn't want to sit there for 40 minutes while they hand-crafted us a deep dish pizza. SO, we opted for thin crust slices (only a 5 minute wait, extra bonus). Not the most exciting options to choose from, but they did the trick.

Veggie slice. The sauce is so addictive, its a little bit sad you don't get as much when you don't get a deep dish pizza.

The sausage is hidden under the cheese! Shh. Its sleeping.

Totally okay Greek salad.

Thien Pham's comic about Zachary's featuring Briana.

Look at all these empty seats!

To be honest this lunch we had on this day was just okay, but we know from years of experience that we love Zachary's. We even looked at their menu this time (we are so used to ordering our favorite things that we haven't looked at their menu for probably 10 years) and we noticed pizza combos we had never tried and are excited about the next time we get take-out... which will probably be not too far in the future. 

We give Zachary's 4.5 sabuys. We wish we could eat in the restaurant without the long wait, but we also just cant quit you, Zachary's Chicago Pizza.

Next stop: The Ramen Shop!

Friday, February 20, 2015

Jules Thin Crust

We are pretty impressed with Jules Thin Crust for having the unbelievable chutzpah to setup shop directly across the street from Zachary's Chicago Pizza, one of the most well known and best loved restaurants in the Bay Area. The two pizza places are so close, in fact, that we weren't really sure which came first on our tour of College Avenue because their doors line up almost perfectly. 

The view of Zachary's through the windows of Jules.

But once we were inside, it all made sense. Jules Thin Crust is a totally different style of place. Zachary's specializes in Chicago style deep-dish pizza that is so deep, so dishy, and so Chicago that some people don't even consider it pizza, but more of a pizza-casserole. Jules Thin Crust, on the other hand, is so thin you could almost call it a pizza-cracker (a delicious pizza-cracker). 

Now all we need is for a food-truck specializing in "medium crust" pizza to park in the middle of the intersection and we'll have all the pizza thicknesses covered in one place. 

Jules has a very informal vibe to it. All the pizzas are laid out in front of you at the counter and you can either order by the slice or get a whole pie. They just heat up your pizza a little bit before they serve it, so it's a great option for a quick lunch if you're in a hurry (unlike Zachary's where they take 40 minutes to bake a pie from scratch). 

They have so many options!


We ordered three slices: one pesto special, a Kim's pie (chicken, portobello, caramelized onions, balsamic bbq, mozzarella, and chives), and one slice of kale and pancetta.

As tasty as it is pretty. 

We really liked this place. Like most people on the planet, we love pizza, and we have room in our hearts for any type of crust as long as the toppings are delicious. Jules Thin Crust has a crazy number of fresh toppings and combinations to choose from, so if you're down with "flatbread" style pizza like this, then you're sure to find something you'll like. And if you don't like it, you won't have to walk very far to get a completely different pizza experience.

Way to go Jules! Your crust may be thin, but your courage is great, and you've got the delicious pizza to back it up. We give Jules Thin Crust four Sabuys!

Next stop: Zachary's Chicago Pizza!

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Smitten Ice Cream

Smitten is an ice cream shop that makes your ice cream while you wait using liquid nitrogen. It's kind of like the Blue Bottle Coffee of ice cream, but with more liquid nitrogen (probably).

We're not sure what the benefit of making ice cream with liquid nitrogen is, although Smitten's website will tell you all about it if you're curious. We couldn't tell any difference between Smitten's extra-cold ice cream and regular ice cream, but they did have some great flavors and it was delicious (all ice cream is delicious). 

Just your typical neighborhood ice cream parlor, with its 50,000 gallon nitrogen tank. 

Seems like a lot of work for something you could just scoop out of a freezer. 

Who knew making ice cream was so complicated?

 Brrrrrr! So cold!

 The finished product! We tried brown sugar with cinnamon cookies (left) and lemon with ginger snaps (right). Both were great, but the brown sugar was the winner. 

Also this.

We give Smitten Ice Cream 3 Sabuys

Next Stop: Jules Thin Crust

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Cactus Taqueria

Cactus Taqueria has a reputation as a kid-friendly restaurant, so we decided to bring our little munchkin with us for this review. We weren't that hungry so we didn't order many things, but honestly Cactus has been there for like 1,000 years so you've probably eaten there already anyway. 

The food is pretty bland, which is great for kids, but not so great for sophisticated, refined culinary geniuses like ourselves. 

Here we see Jane sampling a traditional Mexican dish called a "quesadilla". She appreciates the authenticity. Jane's review: "THE PLATE IS BLUE LIKE LEOMARDO!"

Briana and Steve shared a couple of crispy tacos. Our plate was also blue.

 Jane's review: "Can we get ice cream now?"

We give Cactus two Sabuys.

Jane gives it one jellyfish and two bumblebees.

Next stop: Bica Coffeehouse (turns out Bica does not prepare food on site) Smitten Ice Cream!

Bourbon and Beef

"Bourbon and Beef" sounds like the name of the worst cocktail ever invented, but we would almost rather drink one than eat at this place again. We did not like this restaurant. 

Where to begin...  

This rib-eye steak was OK (not great), but it was pretty small and it cost us $27 and came with NO SIDES! More like rib-off, am I right?

The fried chicken would have been fine, but it was covered in a way-too-sweet honey sauce (it may have just been honey, or honey with sugar added). The cornbread was a dry hockey puck of flavorless crumbs, and their "coleslaw" was just shredded cabbage and water. Maybe they got the recipe from the Burrito Shop?

 We've been loving brussel sprouts lately, especially after we had those great ones at A16 recently, but these were terrible. Soggy sprouts, gross sauce, and spongy bacon. How do you mess up bacon?! It didn't taste any better than it looks.

Big ol' TV over the bar showing football. The big red chairs at the tables looked like something from the kids section at IKEA. The whole place gives off a real chain-restaurant type of vibe although fortunately there's only one.

So yeah, we've got major beef with Bourbon and Beef. How could a restaurant named for two things we love so much be such a letdown? Oh well it will probably be closed soon, I mean how could they stay in business after a review like this?

We give Bourbon and Barf Beef 1 stupid Sabuy.

Next stop: Cactus Taqueria!

Homespun Cafe

We were about to eat at Homespun Cafe (formerly I-Squared), but it turns out that it's still the same food as I-Squared, they just changed the name.

We give the new name 4 Sabuys. Way better than I-Squared.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014


A16 sounds like the name of a fighter jet, or maybe a highway in Europe (because it is), but it's also a pretty fancy restaurant located where Garibaldi/Marzano/Hudson used to be. Their main thing is wood oven cooked pizza, but they also have other entrees. 

This review features special guests: Anna, Christa, and Peter. Thanks for joining us, guys!  

Margherita pizza. Standard yummy pizza, but nothing that blew anyone away. One great thing about all the pizzas at A16 is that they bring them to the table un-sliced, but they come with a pair of pizza scissors that allow you to cut whatever size piece you want. Other restaurants, take note, pizza scissors are the future.

Brussel sprouts seem to be the new it-vegetable at fancy restaurants. These were among the tops. Favorite dish of the night for most of us. They were crispy and lemony. So good.

Funghi pizza (with proscuitto). Kind of sad there was no sauce on this pizza, but it was very good. Observe the pizza scissors in action. Just look at them, slicing wherever they wanna slice without a care in the world.

Bean and veggie soup with croutons. Hearty and warm for a cold night. We were convinced there was a lamb base to this, but the rich flavor was somehow constructed entirely from veggies!

Lamb sugo pasta with cannellini beans. These pastas were pretty gummy. Some of us thought they were like the Twizzlers of pasta and didn't like them. Others of us (mostly Briana) thought they were the Twizzlers of pasta and liked them a lot. The lamb flavor was a little overpowering. This time the lamb flavor was from actual lamb.

A dinner for one. Anna (our vegan friend) had this pizza with marinara sauce topped with arugula and her cocktail: the bronze horseman. This restaurant might not be super vegan-friendly, but it looked like Anna enjoyed herself. She said the cocktail was good, but on the sweet side.

A16 is a lovely restaurant with great food. It's a big place, but it still manages to seem cozy. The staff is super friendly. We've eaten here a few times before this review, and we'll definitely come back when we are in the mood for a cozy restaurant with great food and wine, fun cocktails, and unusually shaped pizza slices.

We give A16... A4 sabuys!

Next stop Homespun Cafe. Bourbon and Beef!