Sweet and sour seafood hot pot – Nha Hang Ngon

Sweet and sour seafood hot pot - Nha Hang Ngon
Lau hai san chua cay. Shrimp, clams, fish, squid, cherry tomato, cilantro. 295,000 VND
Nha Hang Ngon, Ho Chi Minh City VIETNAM

Assorted greens and oyster mushrooms - Nha Hang Ngon
Assorted greens and oyster mushrooms. I have no clue what most of these greens were, but I think there were even mimosa (sensitive plant) stems and leaves!

Vermicelli rice noodles - Nha Hang Ngon
Bun rice vermicelli noodles.

Sweet and sour seafood hot pot - Nha Hang Ngon
All the ingredients stewing in the hot pot! The server placed them in there once the pot was hot enough.

Sweet and sour seafood hot pot - Nha Hang Ngon
The end result was a delicious bowl of beautifully cooked seafood in a delicious broth with a little kick.

Hung King's Monument
Hung King’s Monument, Tao Dan Park.

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Lunch buffet plate – Villa Escudero

Lunch buffet plate - Villa Escudero
Grilled fish, pork and chicken, pork apritada (stew), kangkong (water spinach) with shrimp paste, pinakbet (calabaza squash and string beans), pancit, and banana cue (deep fried banana coated in caramelized brown sugar).
Villa Escudero, San Pablo City PHILIPPINES

I was amazed at the variety of food they had especially since the service area was directly in the water! They also kept everything nice and warm, and had servers bring drinks to your table. This was a really fun, new and exciting dining experience. Everyone was just really happy and thankful to be eating at such a great location. And the food was really good too!

Villa Escudero waterfall dining area
It’s SO cool that you get to eat lunch in the water from a waterfall!

Villa Escudero waterfall dining area
The stream flows down through the entire dining area.

Villa Escudero waterfall dining area
You have to be careful though because some of the rocks can be slippery especially closer to the waterfall. Everyone is taking pictures of their experience. :)

Villa Escudero waterfall dining area
I would go back just to eat in this amazingly beautiful setting again!

Seafood chowder – Bar Crudo

Seafood chowder - Bar Crudo
Fish, mussels, squid, shrimp, potatoes, applewood smoked bacon. Happy hour $6
Bar Crudo, San Francisco CA

Omg, I loved this chowder! It was probably the “meatiest” version I’ve had a long time. It had SO much flavor and the most perfect, silky smooth texture. The seafood ingredients were delicious and abundant – I loved everything about it. NOMS!!!

7×7 Magazine’s The Big Eat San Francisco: 100 Things to Eat + Drink Before You Die – 2012, 2013, 2014

Bread and butter - Bar Crudo
Bread and butter. Complimentary

Sutro Tower
View of Sutro Tower from the Castro.

Crudo sampler – Bar Crudo

Crudo sampler - Bar Crudo
(Left to right) Arctic char: horseradish crème fraiche, wasabi tobiko, dill. Scallop: pineapple quince, roasted parsnip, lime caviar yuzu vinaigrette. Butterfish: roasted tomato aioli, asparagus coins, castelvetrano olives, citrus. Yellowtail: grapefruit, fennel, black garlic aioli, meyer lemon. Crudo for 2 $28
Bar Crudo, San Francisco CA

I’ve had this sampler before and it wasn’t as good this time around. The fish didn’t seem as fresh and they were a bit clunky on the plate. The flavors were really complex, interesting and very different between preparations. My favorite was probably the arctic char which is surprising because I’m not a huge horseradish/wasabi fan. I just thought this portion ate the cleanest and was refreshing.

Bon Tempe Lake
Bon Tempe Lake.

Hot pot proteins – Hoang Yen

Hot pot proteins - Hoang Yen
Clams, cockles, beef, fish, squid, and prawns. North-south hot pot 279,000 VND
Hoang Yen, Ho Chi Minh City VIETNAM

This was a pretty good selection of seafood and meat to throw into the hot pot. Everything seemed pretty fresh and well-cleaned. Can you really ask for much more? Noms!

Sauces - Hoang Yen
Mixed sauces.

Sauce ingredients - Hoang Yen
Soy sauce and sauce ingredients.

Martial arts practice
Martial arts practice at night, Cong Vien 23 Thang 9 Park.

Breakfast #2 – Best Western Hotel La Corona

Breakfast #2 - Best Western Hotel La Corona
Pan fried fish with onions, sautéed vegetables, kielbasa, garlic fried rice, scramble eggs with tomato, and berry cheese pastry. Complimentary
Best Western Hotel La Corona, Manila PHILIPPINES

Another random collection of food at the breakfast buffet. I didn’t like the fish very much especially since everything tended to be pretty cold. I love garlic fried rice though! I should have ordered another plate of the bacon but I think I was pacing myself for the day. Hehe!

Complimentary truffles - Best Western Hotel La Corona
Complimentary truffles in our room.

Sunset on Manila Bay
Sunset on Manila Bay.

Caramelized fish clay pot – Vietnamese Kitchen

Caramelized fish clay pot - Vietnamese Kitchen
Ca kho to. With chilies and scallions, served with steamed rice. 114,000 VND
Vietnamese Kitchen, Ho Chi Minh City VIETNAM

And this was the final straw! This sad clay pot with a single tiny slice of fish came out super salty and dry. Don’t be fooled with the illustrated menu depicting a lush clay pot with multiple pieces of fish. It’ll come to your table as sad as this picture looks! I love Vietnamese food but this restaurant gave a horrible representation of their delicious cuisine. Vietnamese Kitchen is getting away with highway robbery charging this much for crap food! Ugh, I guess you have to eat shitty food to appreciate the good meals. Lame…

Nightlife in the backpacker's district
Nightlife in the backpacker’s district. This is where Vietnamese Kitchen is so you’ve been fairly warned. Eat at any other restaurant, there are plenty to choose from!

Green mango salad – Vietnamese Kitchen

Green mango salad - Vietnamese Kitchen
Goi xoal kho sac. With dried fish, shrimp chips, and red chilies. 94,000 VND
Vietnamese Kitchen, Ho Chi Minh City VIETNAM

This place sucked! The food was mediocre at best, overpriced, and the service was rude and surly! This green mango salad was slimy and SUPER salty. I’m the last person to complain about saltiness because I love it, but this was TOO much. I really wish we hadn’t eaten here!

War Remnants Museum
War Remnants Museum.

Baja style fish taco made Nick’s way – The Taco Shop at Underdogs

Baja style fish taco made Nick's way - The Taco Shop at Underdogs
Beer batter fish in soft corn tortillas with cilantro, cabbage, red onions, roasted tomato and lime salsa. Nick’s way made with a grilled crispy corn tortilla wrapped in a soft tortilla with Monterey jack cheese, pinto beans, pico de gallo and guacamole. $5.50
The Taco Shop at Underdogs, San Francisco CA

Mmm, this really is a great taco! The fish is delicious and perfectly fried, not greasy at all, and really flavorful. And if you order the taco “Nick’s way”, you get at lot more flavors and textures to an already killer taco. Noms!

7×7 Magazine’s The Big Eat San Francisco: 100 Things to Eat + Drink Before You Die – 2010

Sierra Nevada Pale Ale - The Taco Shop at Underdogs

Sierra Nevada Pale Ale. $5

Germander sage
Germander sage (Salvia chamaedryoides, Lamiaceae), Castro.

Spicy and sour soup with black cod – Little Uncle

Spicy and sour soup with black cod - Little Uncle
Lemongrass, galangal, lime leaf, cherry tomatoes, chanterelle mushrooms, served with rice. $10.95
Little Uncle, Seattle WA

This soup was very similar to the flavors of a traditional tom yum, but I really wanted it to be more spicy as advertised in its description. I think it was more sour than anything, and I like sour but some heat would have been much appreciate. I loved the large chunks of black cod in the soup and the chanterelle mushrooms were a nice change up for Thai food. Overall it was tasty.

Rice - Little Uncle
Rice.

Seattle Space Needle
Seattle Space Needle.

Seafood poke – Rikki Rikki

Seafood poke - Rikki Rikki
Chopped various seafood and cucumber dressed with spicy soy sauce. Happy hour $4.95
Rikki Rikki, Kirkland WA

This place has a great happy hour with plenty of discounted food and drinks! That’s probably why one of sisters frequents this place, hehe. The poke was pretty tasty. It was more of a salad with some chopped fish on top, but I didn’t mind because it cost less than five bucks. The fish tasted fresh and the soy dressing was good.

Cape cod cocktail - Rikki Rikki
Cape cod cocktail (vodka and cranberry). Happy hour $2.95

Paddleboarders
Paddleboarders on Shilshole Bay.

Ciopinno – Cafe Renzo

Ciopinno - Cafe Renzo
Clams, mussels, calamari, prawns and fresh fish sautéed in a tomato garlic broth. $23
Cafe Renzo, Palo Alto CA

Meh, this was ok. Definitely not the best ciopinno I’ve had. The sauce was a bit salty and some of the seafood were overcooked, but the flavors were there. I wasn’t feeling the love from this seafood stew though.

Dinner roll - Cafe Renzo
Dinner roll. Complimentary

Pigeon Point Lighthouse

Pigeon Point Lighthouse.