Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Cheon Joo Young-yang Dolsot - Santa Clara

pork bone soup with potato (gamja tang jeongol)
Recently I watched a korean drama where there was scene of a family eating bossam (boiled marinated pork belly). After that I was inspired to look for bossam. It's been a while since we enjoyed our bossam. I think the last one was years ago at Chung Dam.

Then I found out that the small family restaurant at the corner of the strip mall where Paris Baguette is located actually has bossam on the menu. So there we went on our trip back home after a whole day out in San Francisco. This was like the fourth time we were there. But by the time we got there gamja tang seemed like a better option given the cold winter night. Though I was tempted to order bossam at the same time but worry that we might have too much pork at one seating. So in the end we settled with gamja tang jeongol (pork bone soup with potato) and seafood pancake (haemul pajeon).

Monday, December 25, 2017

Westfield San Francisco Center - San Francisco

I'm not talking about the stores. Just the food court which I think was called Food Emporium. Located at the basement area but was nicely designed just like the other food court I know at the Westfield Valley Fair in San Jose. There were quite some options here like Loving Hut, Sorabol (Korean), Buckhorn grill, Lobster Me, etc

I have been there once years ago. Didn't quite remember what I had then but today we had the Thai food called Coriander. The menu was almost like Panda Express. Rice with one item combo or two items combo. You could have white steam rice, brown rice or pad thai.

Sunday, December 24, 2017

Dish Dash - Sunnyvale

So this year's holiday dinner for our office was at this restaurant in downtown Sunnyvale called Dish Dash. This is the sit down dining place version of the Dish N Dash that also has another location in Sunnyvale (on Mathilda Ave).

I liked the chicken wrap at the Dish N Dash but since this one is more fine dining version so I was looking forward to try some other dishes. But it turned out that we actually were sharing a few orders of dishes instead even for the main dish. Which was actually a great idea. I was going to order something vegetarian but wasn't sure if it would turn out fine.

We started with flat bread with some olive oil combination which was just okay. Then the appetizer came out and the appetizer dip went well with the flat bread. The appetizer came in a long three slots platter. The platters contain combinations like Mediterranean style salad, tabouli, babaghanouge and some others which I didn't know.

Sunday, December 17, 2017

Anjappar Chettinad - Santa Clara

A friend brought me here for dinner on a Saturday night. We got there around 7:30 and the place was pretty busy but not full. We got a table for two and got our menus. I have never went to an Indian restaurant and ordered myself. Normally me and hubby would go to Indian buffet which we enjoy because we got to try a few dishes all at once place. So I let my friend did the ordering.

She ordered a goat soup called aattu nenjelumbu which was made with goat meat with tons of spices. It was pretty spicy and had a nice warming effect. By the time we were done I felt warm. Next was the biryani rice with goat which according to my friend was one of their strength. The rice was flavorful and meat was tender. The biryani rice was a bit spicy but more chili was provided along with yogurt for anyone who wanted more flavor.

Sunday, November 26, 2017

Kunjip - Santa Clara

bibim naeng myun
Meeting up some friends for lunch here. I have never been to this restaurant before and was glad to have a chance to try a new restaurant.

This restaurant had a small menu consisted of noodle dishes, soups and braised short ribs (galbi jjim). I was curious with the braised short ribs but was not ready to commit to one dish by myself especially considering the price of $48. So I opted for the bibim naeng myun which is a cold noodle dish with spicy sauce. Both my friends ordered the galbi tang which is short ribs soup.

Our orders came pretty fast and so were the side dishes (banchan). The side dishes were cucumber, napa cabbage kimchee and radish kimchee. There were okay and nothing special. They did go well with the soup which was a bit bland and my noodle sauce which was on the sweet side.

Saturday, November 25, 2017

Krung Thai - San Jose

Found our way to this old restaurant when our favorite Thai restaurant closed down. It became a Chinese noodle place. We were craving for some stir fry noodle so we could not settle with some other noodle. There were two Krung Thai and the one we went to was the original one.

It was a Saturday afternoon around lunch time so the place was quite full. We got a table for two right away. Some other patrons were just finishing up. We got the menu and were able to make up our mind pretty fast. Tummy ruled !

I got the vegetarian pad kee mao (stir fry rice noodle with tomato and basil) and hubby got the jun pad po (stir fry vermicelli with crab meat). While waiting for the food I looked around the restaurant and thought it looked expanded and bigger compared to what I remember it before.

Monday, November 20, 2017

Roberto's Cantina - Sunnyvale

I had dinner with some coworkers here on a weekday night. I got there kinda early before 6 pm and was brought to the back of the restaurant which was surprisingly more spacious than the front. This part of the restaurant had bigger table to accommodate bigger group while the front only have tables for 2 or 4.

One of my coworker asked about the picture on the website featuring a dish with prawns on a big cup. Our waiter said it's not on the menu but could put it together for us. We proceeded to order nachos - one vegetarian and the other one with carne asada.

Meanwhile some of us were already busy chomping on the complimentary chips and salsa. There were two different kind of salsa provided. The green one was mild but the red got some heat. But I found the salsa was a bit bland.

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Pho Passion and Mintea - San Jose

Found out about this new establishment in San Jose and decided to give it a try. We got there on a Sunday afternoon close to noon. But there was nobody inside. I almost wanted to walk out again.

We were seated by the window and given the menu. The menu had pho on one side and different types of teas on the other. That's it. A very small menu. Out of the small pho menu I chose a safe one - rare steak with meatball. Hubby chose the sour and spicy seafood pho.

There was nothing special about the pho. The broth was decent but the cut for the steak was not. The meat was a bit chewy though it was served rare. I think it wasn't cut thin enough. Hubby's bowl had shrimp, shrimp ball and squid. The broth was decent but the shrimp was overcooked.

Saturday, November 4, 2017

Pho Ga Nha - San Jose

fried egg roll with greens and sauce
This restaurant is located on a strip mall across from Grand Century Mall on Story Rd. Parking there is a bit tricky since the lot is small and that strip mall got other restaurants as well. We got there after lunch time almost 2 pm but surprisingly there was still a few people lining up for this restaurant. But we got a table within five minutes.

This restaurant was pretty new and just like Pho Hanoi they like to line up their tables with white paper. I seriously don't know why especially this restaurant because their tables already got glass top. Beside it's such a waste.

Anyway, I was curious with their chicken pho so that's what I ordered. But I found out that they serve fried chicken with dry yellow noodle too. I only know another restaurant that does the same thing. So hubby ordered that one.

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Camy's Pizza and Hi Five Chicken - Vancouver, BC, Canada

Indian pizza with half tandoori and half butter chicken
Amazed by the Indian style pizza we had in San Jose, California we wanted to introduce our family in Vancouver to the pizza too. I found a few places but based on the reviews and menu I decided on Camy's Pizza. We went there on a weekday afternoon just before lunch hour.

The place was tiny and didn't have a lot of seats available. It's more like a take out place. It's located just across from a school and it's just the students' lunch hours. So we sneaked in between long line of kids and placed our order of half butter chicken and half tandoori. It took about 20 minutes to get our order.

We drove home carrying our pizza. And then saw this fried chicken place and thought why not get some fried chicken to go with the pizza. Brilliant.

Monday, October 23, 2017

Revisited : Motel 6 - Roseburg, Oregon

We stayed here on our first road trip to Vancouver back in 2013. Anyone interested in that posting can check it out here. This time our schedule again got us in Roseburg, Oregon. And since we were familiar with this establishment we decided to stop by again.

By the time we checked in it's around 9 pm. Tired from driving and lack of sleep I couldn't wait to get to our room. We got a room on ground floor facing the parking lot. This motel though pretty close to I-5 but not exactly by I-5 so it's pretty quiet.

When we walked in the first thing I noticed was the fragrant. I think it was a bit overwhelming though some guests may like it. The floor was laminate wood floor and there was an orange accent floor with matching orange curtain. The whole room looked renovated. Different compared to the old Motel 6 room we had previously.

Since we were pretty tired we didn't watch too much TV so I couldn't comment much on the channels. But we had good night sleep there and left early the next morning. On the road again.

side by side comparison with the photo from our previous trip in 2013

Motel 6
3100 NW Aviation Dr, Roseburg, OR 97470
Phone: (541) 464-8000

Sunday, October 22, 2017

Angie's Malaysian Eatery - Burnaby, BC, Canada

fried beehoon (stir fry rice stick)
This time on our Vancouver trip we happened to have a small family reunion. Somebody mentioned Seria noodle. Curious I looked it up and found out this Angie's Malaysian Eatery that offers Seria kolomee among other things on their menu.

Seria is a small town in Brunei a small country in the island of Borneo of South East Asia. Brunei is next door to Malaysia but I guess there's not much demand of Bruneian cuisine and Malaysian cuisine is a better selling point.

The restaurant was not very big but it's a good thing it was not too busy so we could all fit in there without waiting. The menu didn't have pictures but they had stack of loose photos of the dishes they offered. Nice. I didn't bother looking at the pictures because I know what I wanted to order.

Had I looked at those pictures I would not have ordered the nasi lemak. When the nasi lemak arrived I was surprised to see the green rice side by side with the other condiments like fried chicken, fried anchovies and chili sambal. I have never had a green nasi lemak before and it didn't feel like the green color added any flavor to it. The fried chicken was not the type of fried chicken normally served with nasi lemak. So the nasi lemak was a big disappointment.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Blaze Pizza - San Jose

choose your topping
We saw this pizza place since it opened every time we went to Trader Joe's. We thought it was just another pizza place. But one day we received a coupon to try it out so off we went on a Saturday night.

We got there on a Saturday evening around 6 pm. The line was almost out the door. Some of the people there were on the way to the Sharks game at SAP center. As the line moving I looked at the menu and decided we would go for the bbq chicken from their Signature pizza category. Though we could customize our pizza but mozzarella, chicken, bbq sauce and banana pepper sounded like a winning combination.

Monday, October 16, 2017

Donut Delight Oriental Pastries - Union City

fish noodle soup
Referred to this place in Union City by a Burmese coworker as a place for Burmese fish noodle soup (Mohinga). Just by name one wouldn't think that they do anything other than donut. But reading the available reviews I found out that they do offer some burmese fare on weekends and dimsum as well.

So of we went on one Saturday morning. They supposedly open at 7 but just to be safe we got there at 10. The place was tiny and only had about four tables for about 14 people. It's more of a take out place. They don't advertise the Burmese menu only when we asked then they gave us a laminated menu with some Burmese dishes on it. We ordered the mohinga (fish noodle soup) and ohno kaukswe (curry noodle soup).

Saturday, October 14, 2017

Revisited : Ramen Halu - San Jose

On our trip to Japan we have not had the chance to try any dipping ramen so hubby was curious about and was looking to try one. We found out that Ramen Halu offered dipping ramen (tsukemen) so off we went on a Saturday afternoon.

We got there at around 1 pm and there were people waiting. We put our name in and waited for about ten minutes. The lady asked if we would take a bar seating. We took it without thinking.

Turned out that their bar seating was very tiny. Just a two seater over looking part of their kitchen. I ordered a tan tan men and hubby ordered the dipping ramen and a rice bowl with chasu.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Ginger Cafe - Sunnyvale

This review was for take out food. My office was buying lunches for employees and decided on Ginger Cafe because of the close proximity. I have never heard of it before and was curious about it. Picked the basil tofu lunch special and was excited about. One reason because the previous week on our road trip we had this amazing stir fry with basil and tofu at a Thai restaurant in Vancouver, WA.

It smelled good when I opened it up. The lunch special comes with a choice of steam rice or egg fried rice and soup of the day. I chose steam rice and I could see that the rice was abundant. For the small eater, that box could last 2 meals.

Monday, October 9, 2017

Poke Poke Fish Bar - Santa Clara

sushi rice comes with a scoop of seasoned imitation crab
We have passed by this restaurant quite a few times before finally decided to give it a try. I think this restaurant had been opened quite a while before other similar poke restaurants opened later on.

The restaurant was located on the strip mall at the corner of El Camino and San Tomas Expressway. They are sharing parking spaces with another restaurant Blurr Kitchen, a Starbucks, Noah's Bagel, T-Mobile store, etc. So parking is a problem there.
Pickle ginger topping gives a sushi like taste to the poke bowl

Here one could customize their own bowls of poke. Start with the rice base, choose your fish, then pick your other toppings and finish with the sauce of your choice. Depends on what you pick the bowl starts around $12 something. Even with no additional topping in my opinion it's more than enough topping.

rating :

Poke Poke Fish Bar
2362 El Camino Real, Santa Clara, CA 95050
Phone: (408) 244-2110

Sunday, October 8, 2017

SF Exploratorium SeaGlass Restaurant - San Francisco

corn chowder
SeaGlass restaurant is part of San Francisco Exploratorium. We encountered it by accident on one of our Pokemon Go visit to San Francisco. We play Pokemon Go and occasionally travel to San Francisco (SF) in an effort to try different types of pokemon.

We passed by Exploratorium so many times already and occasionally just hanging out there at their lobby. That day we happened to venture to the back of the Exploratorium and saw people coming out with plates of food. As it was close to lunch time we became curious and followed them through the door into the building. I think the front entrance most likely is through the paid area of the Exploratorium. The door we used was more like a back door for people to go out to the two picnic table setting outdoor.

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

King Oscar Motel - Centralia, WA

This year for our road trip to Vancouver, Canada we decided to try a different motel. Last year we stayed at Lakeview Inn. Both are located in Centralia, WA. Centralia is a small town just south of Seattle. But we like Centralia because it sort of perfect distance to rest between San Jose and Vancouver - about 12 hours.

This motel was located very strategically on the same exit as the Centralia Factory Outlet. So if you plan to shop, this motel could be perfect for you. It's also very close to I-5 so getting there is no trouble. And in the morning when we left we noticed there was a gas station very close to the motel just before the I-5 ramp. Very convenient.

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Thai Wok Kitchen - Vancouver, WA

pad kee mao (drunken noodle) - stir fry rice noodle with basil
Found this restaurant on this road trip to Vancouver, Canada. This time we left earlier in the morning and got no distraction so our stop for dinner was around this part of I-5. As usual I checked the reviews on the restaurant and it looked pretty promising so we decided to give it a try.

We got there around 6 pm on Saturday and the restaurant was like half full. We were waiting to be seated but the waitress just told us to grab whatever table ourselves. She then brought us the menu and asked if we would like any drinks other than water. We declined the offer and went to study the menu instead. One of the reviews on Yelp mentioned of khao soi - a northern style Thai curry noodle so we decided to try that. And then I ordered the drunken noodle (pad kee mao) which was also recommended on one of the reviews.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Nasi Bakar Bully - Jakarta, Indonesia

Nasi bakar is an Indonesian dish of a grilled wrapped up banana leaf package of steam rice and stuffing. The package normally looked like a tube like shape with each end tied up. The stuffing could be shredded chicken, beef, fish or mushroom cooked up with spices and chili. The grill process gave additional fragrant to the rice.

On this trip to Jakarta, Indonesia we got to try nasi bakar Bully which was delivered to us courtesy of a friend. The brown spot on the banana leaf was indicator that it was indeed burnt/grilled. There was picture indicator which worked both decorative and informative. Cute. The tube shape wrapped rice had tuna or chicken as stuffing and the pyramid shape had chili anchovy stuffing. The tuna stuffing was sweet and savory with fragrant of basil leaves. It had a bit spiciness to it. But the pyramid shape one which was called granat (or grenade in English) was indeed explosive. Its spiciness could make one's head smoking. No joke.

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Japan Trip Day 7 : We Will Miss Japan !

Breakfast at Matsuya
Sky was gloomy when we woke up in the morning. I opened the rolling glass door to the balcony just to see how the weather looked outside. Just a bit drizzle and humid.

We got ready and went for breakfast next door at Matsuya. We've been to another Matsuya in Osaka and enjoyed the Japanese style breakfast there. It came with a bowl of rice, a bowl of miso soup, a slice of salmon,  a side of pickle veggie and a piece of tofu. Simple and healthy.

Then we continued to Don Quijote (Donki) in Shinjuku. Ran across a young Japanese guy who seemed to have trouble standing straight after a night of party. Later we came across another group of Japanese men and one of them requested a hug from hubby. They sure know how to party.

Saturday, September 16, 2017

Sam's Kebab & Gyros - Milpitas

Chicken shawarma plate
This place is located in the Great Mall food court. It's been a while since we visited the Great Mall and I noticed the food court has been remodeled. They have bar seating area for single person, regular sitting area for families and also couches just for lounging.

We have been craving kebab so we were happy to see this place. I ordered chicken shawarma wrap and hubby ordered the chicken shawarma plate. Total order $20.69 before tips.

The plate has the same chicken as the one used for the wrap. But the plate came with yellow (saffron ?) rice and salad. The wrap came with the marinated chicken, lettuce and sauce. Very juicy and tasty.

Rating :

chicken shawarma wrap
Sam's Kebab & Gyros
172 Great Mall Dr, Milpitas, CA 95035
(408) 935-9288

7 Eleven dessert - Tokyo, Japan

Japanese cheesecake

Red bean ice cream

Cheesecake is different from New York style - similar to Uncle Rikuro cheesecake

Ice cream with the shape of flower

First bite to show the red bean inside

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Japan Trip Day 6 : Shibuya, Yoyogi Park and Shinjuku

Lunch at Genki Sushi
We started the day at Hachiko statue outside the JR station of Shibuya. It was still just before 9 and the morning shower sort of delaying the other tourists from coming out early. We continued across the street to Starbucks.

Posting about our breakfast at Starbucks can be found here.

While at Starbucks I found out that there was a Donquijote or Donki just around the corner. So left our seats at Starbukcs and found our way there. Donki is a good place to get your fill of souvenirs. They usually dedicated the ground floor just for souvenirs. And then if you have more time to spare you could make your way to the upper level for more selections of items.

For souvenirs we got matcha flavor kit kat (a must !), matcha cookies, spicy squid, spicy squid legs and rice cake. I like this Donki because it looked new and it's a Mega Donki meaning it's bigger in square footage thus carries more items. I found they have souvenirs marked as coming from different part of Japan. So those are helpful. Prices vary so you could pick one that suits your budget.

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Yakisoba Kabukichi - Shinjuku Tokyo - Japan

We had time before dinner to go back to our apartment and charged our devices and did search on all available options. I suggested sukiyaki but the options was a bit more pricey due to the meat. We scratched that out and looked some more. In the end we thought of yakisoba which is a stir fry soba noodle. And it just happened that there was one restaurant just very close to our Airbnb apartment.

We followed the direction and found our way to the restaurant. But before that we were surprised by the establishments we passed through. Turned out that we lived pretty close to the entertainment district of Shinjuku. Unlike Bangkok where people sort of gather in front of the establishment either trying to entice customers or just hanging out. Over here we didn't see anyone, maybe it was too early ? The only thing we noticed was plenty of pictures of pretty men/women. All of those in innocent poses nothing raunchy.

Sunday, September 10, 2017

Kona Inn Motel Anaheim - Anaheim

This was the hotel we used on our last minute road trip to Anaheim for the kangaskhan event. We got it through Expedia for a total of $86. Not bad for a hotel within 3-4 miles from Disneyland.

We checked in at around 5pm and got a room on the ground floor. The parking lot was empty except for 1 car. The parking lot was actually quite big considering the opening of the motel was pretty small just enough for one car in and one car out.

Our room was pretty big with a king size bed. A little table and chair next to bed if you need a working area. The sink was just out side the bathroom so even if one person is in the bathroom the other person could do make up, etc. I like it.

Bathroom was very clean. Towels were clean though a bit thin. Other amenities included microwave and a small refrigerator. Coffee was available in the lobby area in the morning but we didn't try it.

Our king bed came with three pillows. The blanket was still the old style furry blanket with a layer of bedsheet. Adequate and got the job done. Our AC was cold. There was a pool but we didn't try so could not comment on that.

All in all a decent hotel. Location was great on a street that offered lots of choices of food. Starbucks was almost across the street. Highly recommended.

rating :

Kona Inn Motel Anaheim
331 North Brookhurst Street, Anaheim CA 92801

Seasons Kitchen USA - Anaheim

chicken satay
Found this restaurant online just before our trip to Anaheim and decided that we needed to give it a try.

It's located about one exit before Disneyland on hwy 5. The strip mall that it was located seemed pretty new and had a variety of shops like Ranch Market, Daiso and a few other restaurants. When we walked in we were seated right away.

The paper table mat they used was sponsored by Yeo's and looked like a promotional item for Malaysian tourism. We ordered a char kway teow and noodle with roast pork. The lady (owner ?) who took our order offered appetizer. We decided to try their satay.

While waiting for our order, the same lady (owner?) brought out a ukulele and started singing and encouraged everyone to sing along. The lyrics was also on the back of the menu booklet. Interesting.

Breakfast at Starbucks - Tokyo Shibuya, Japan

Starbucks matcha scone - very good
If you are a Pokemon Go (PoGo) player you most likely know about Farfetch'd. One of our check list for Japan is to catch Farfetch'd which is this regional pokemon that only spawns in Japan, South Korea and Taiwan. It had been a few days in Japan and we still had not succeeded and time was running out.

So our breakfast at Starbucks was related to Pokemon Go games but I am not going to bore you with the details here. We found out that the second floor of Starbucks actually had an amazing view of Shibuya Crossing. So while we were there we made sure to take some shots. Of course with our limited devices we could only do so much.

Saturday, September 9, 2017

Genki Sushi - Shibuya, Tokyo - Japan

summer combo
During our first visit to Japan years ago we only tried sushi from a local supermarket. It was inexpensive and very good. Simple roll sushi. But this time going back I wanted to try a different kind of sushi. Sushi that got delivered to you by train !

Genki sushi in Shibuya was that kind of sushi place. When we walked in a woman at the reception assigned us to two stations side by side. There are no tables here just tracks in front of you and a tablet for ordering.

On the counter next to the ordering tablet was a stack of cups, container filled with matcha powder and spout for hot water. Help yourself with the hot drink. I checked on the other container, pickle ginger. Sweet. Chew on a piece of pickle ginger to clean your palate between each sushi dish.

Monday, September 4, 2017

Tokyo Subway Pass

Add caption
Tokyo subway pass is a pass only for visitors to Tokyo. It can be used on all lines serviced by Tokyo Metro and Toei Subway. Note that it's different from JR pass that works on lines serviced by JR group. Tokyo subway pass comes in 3 different time limit - 24 hour, 48 hour and 72 hour. Each of the time limit has different price tag for adult and children.

Just like JR pass, you could purchase the coupon and then exchange for the pass when you arrive in Tokyo. Or you could just go to places that sell them like what we did. We bought ours from BIC Camera in Shinjuku.

The best thing I like about this card was the ease of use. You just insert it at the gate of subway station before you pass through and insert to open the gate when you arrive at the destination. It is good for 24 hours from the time of your initial use. We got ours on evening of our first night in Tokyo and started using it as soon as we receive it and it's valid till the same time the following night. All for 800 yen (USD 7.30)

Japan Trip Day 5 : Sensoji, Imperial Palace and Shibuya

Nakmise dori leading to The Thunder Gate Kaminarimon (just outside Sensoji Temple)
On my original itinerary day 5 would be the day we visit an onsen in Hakone. But we ditched that plan about two weeks prior and cancelled the reservation. We'd revisit that idea when we visit Japan in winter. So maybe there would be Japan trip part 2 in the making.

Sensoji Temple - Asakusa, Tokyo

Sensoji was in our original itinerary but on the day 6. We pushed it forward and placed it on our day 5 first spot for the day. Another blogger mentioned that most of the stores on Nakamise dori there close by 4 pm so it's best to visit in the morning. Also because it's summer and it could get pretty warm in the afternoon I tried to start our day as early as possible.

We got there around 9:30 and stores were opening on Nakamise dori. There were swarm of people taking pictures at the gates to the temple already. So we did our selfies quickly and moved on. Took a few more pictures of the inside of the temple and tried the omikuji as well (paper fortune).

As we sat down under one of the trees in the compound of the temple we were approached by a man who was doing survey on visitors' point of view of Tokyo. We did the survey and received a small souvenir. Then we continued exploring the Asakusa area outside of the temple. There were quite a few street food that one could find around Asakusa and we did try though only managed to try two -agemanju and taiyaki.

Check out story on Sensoji over on this link.
Gate before Sensoji Temple

Imperial Palace (East Garden)

This was not on my original itinerary. It was thrown in last minute and was inspired by the visitors' survey we took at Sensoji Temple. Our consideration was there is a big park surrounding the Imperial Palace so we may have chance to catch Farfetch'd. The actual palace itself is not open to public. Though some areas are open to public on New Year (Jan 2) and the Emperor's birthday. (source : wikipedia).

We found our way to the Takebashi station. There were two different exits there pointed to the Imperial Palace but I didn't remember which one we took. We got to the street level and walked about 10 minutes on a nice road planted with fully grown trees. Then we crossed the moat to the entrance of the garden. There was a security guard checking our bags and pointed to a sign that said "no drones allowed". We passed through with no issue and were issued passes.

Honestly we didn't explore far deep in the garden as sun got higher and the day got hotter. No farfetch'd sighting on our Pokemon Go games. We decided to leave and looked for lunch.
East Garden of Tokyo Imperial Palace


Ginza is the famous shopping district with stores like Burberry and Chanel. But some bloggers talked about the eight storey Uniqlo flagship store. Eight storey Uniqlo store ? What could they possibly have ? Ground floor gave preview of what's in store. Then two floors of womens, one floor of childrens, one floor of mens, one floor of pyjamas (?).

There was also another store, a clothing store called GU which offered similar items to Uniqlo but at a lower price. We bought quite a few items there.

Another store which I think worth checking out in the Ginza area was the Muji flagship store. Muji is popular for the natural look clothing but the store also carried food items, essential oils, books, stationery etc. We spent quite some times there just browsing and ended with some food for gifts.

But the most surprising thing for us was to find a restaurant that serves the best Singaporean style Hainamese chicken rice outside Singapore. And also a Bee Cheng Hiang store which is a popular brand of Singaporean style barbecue pork.

Also read posting about our lunch here.
Bee Cheng Hiang - from Singapore to Ginza, Japan
Muji matcha red bean cookies

Muji lemon lime ginger mixture


From Muji we found our way back to the subway to go to Shibuya for dinner at Torikizoku. From Shibuya we didn't do much and just went straight back to our Airbnb because our Tokyo pass will expire about 7:30 pm.

Curious about our dinner at Torikizoku ? You could read it here.