Banh Mi Usurper on the Eastside? Yeh Yeh’s

Getting a good banh mi sandwich on the Eastside is problematic. Several places sell them, but not exclusively, which doesn't mean that they're bad. It's just that the best places, like those in Seattle, specialize in this delicious Vietnamese sandwich. Much attention is paid to using the freshest bread and preparing the variety of fillings... Continue Reading →

Burger at Dundee Bistro (Dundee, OR)

One of the best burgers I've had in a long time was served at the Dundee Bistro, a restaurant associated with Ponzi Vineyards in the town of Dundee, which is situated in the gorgeous rolling hills of Tualatin Valley wine country. Friends of ours who live in nearby Sherwood treated us to lunch. There is a tasting... Continue Reading →

Alma Rose Rhodochrosite (Hillsboro, OR)

One of the most unusual crystal specimens I've ever seen on display is the Alma Rose rhodochrosite at the Rice Northwest Museum of Rocks and Minerals in Hillsboro. This extravagantly beautiful specimen boasts five large rhodochrosite crystals, speckled with yellowish calcite deposits. Almost pure MnCO3, they have a deep pink, almost cherry-reddish coloring and are shaped... Continue Reading →

Floored by a Mexican Market in Hillsboro

Once in a long while, you stumble across a store so phenomenal that it takes your breath away. After lunch at Taqueria Hermanos Ochoa's, four of us were trying to kill some time before the start of Star Trek: Into Darkness at a multiplex. There used to be a market attached to Ochoa's, but it... Continue Reading →

Lunch at Taqueria Hermanos Ochoa’s (Hillsboro, OR)

In this fifth largest city of Oregon whose major employer is Intel, among other high-tech companies, almost one fourth of the population is Hispanic. It's not surprising, therefore, that a commercial district has developed in the city's southeast portion to serve this demographic. One of the most popular Mexican restaurants is Taqueria Hermanos Ochoa's that... Continue Reading →

Lunch at Pho An Sandy (Portland, OR)

The rain, or more accurately the showers, had been coming down off and on starting with our visit to the Washington Park Japanese Garden. There wasn't going to be anymore walking around outside today. Before checking into our hotel in Jantzen Beach, we headed over to a popular Vietnamese restaurant in the northeast part of... Continue Reading →

Washington Park Japanese Garden (Portland, OR)

Moss is your friend. At least, that's what I try to tell my friends who've been battling to remove it from their Seattle lawns. I have long since given moss full sway in my front yard rather than covering it with sod. I'm allergic to grass anyway. After many years of inattention, there is a... Continue Reading →

Lunch at Szechuan Chef

When chef Cheng Biao Yang, one of Seattle's luminaries of Chinese—and specifically Szechuan—cooking sold Szechuan Chef to pursue another restaurant opportunity, fans began to wonder the inevitable. Would there be a decline in quality? As the weeks went by, there began to be reports that, yes, things have started to go downhill. I used to go there... Continue Reading →

Dinner at Bai Tong (Redmond, WA)

Years ago, when I worked in Renton, a group of us used to go to Bai Tong for lunch, a Thai restaurant that was located on Airport Way near SeaTac airport. The interesting backstory is that an ex-Thai Airways flight attendant wanted to make familiar foods available to the Thai Airways crew on layover in... Continue Reading →

Spring in the Bellevue Botanical Garden

The recent run of good weather made it ideal for us to visit a local garden and admire the springtime displays. One of the small horticultural treasures in the Seattle area is the Bellevue Botanical Garden, a stone's throw away from the Bellevue commercial district. It's a resource for gardeners and a showcase for flowers, shrubs... Continue Reading →

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