San Francisco Bay Area

April 10, 2012

Ramen Night @ Sutton Cellars (SF)

by Kayoko Akabori

It’s been a while since Umamimart has put on a big event. Honestly, our Gift of Food benefit last April for Japan set the bar so high that I haven’t had the chutzpah to do anything since. So Umamimart took a long hiatus from events. Too long. But that all changed a week ago, when […]

March 27, 2012

Great UM Noodletown: Tsukemen @ Ramen Halu (San Jose)

by Kayoko Akabori

I should confess that I have never really been a fan of tsukemen (ramen with dipping sauce). Shouldn’t ramen be in a piping hot broth, brimming with scallions and chashu (pork) and menma (bamboo shoots)? Tsukemen just always seemed so WRONG to me, despite the fact that I love zaru soba (cold soba with dipping […]

March 21, 2012

Tokyo-SF Bartender Salon

by Kayoko Akabori

On Sunday 3/11, the one-year anniversary of the earthquake and tsunami in Northern Japan, Yoko and I helped organize a cross-cultural exchange between bartenders from Japan and San Francisco. Held at Prizefighter Bar in Emeryville, it was an intimate gathering of old friends, and new. Tomokazu Kai (Heuga Bar) and Masako Ikegami (Bar Shake) had won […]

March 2, 2012

Great UM Noodletown: China Village (Albany)

by Kayoko Akabori

I woke up to an email this morning with the subject line: “You’re so ahead of your time!” Bryan’s good friend Rob was informing me that March is National Noodle Month, and forwarded me this article about the celebrations in LA. So what the hell, let’s extend noodle month through March! April! FOREVER! Today, I […]

February 24, 2012

Great UM Noodletown: Amphawa Thai Noodle House (SF)

by Kayoko Akabori

Sakura’s noodle report from Bangkok earlier this week had me craving for a bowl of bah mee nam here in the Bay Area. I scoured the city’s Thai restaurant menus but did not find anything comparable to Sakura’s favorite noodle dish. But, fear not, as an awesome Thai spot recently opened up in the Richmond called Amphawa Thai […]

February 17, 2012

Great UM Noodletown: Naengmyeon @ Sura (OAK)

by Kayoko Akabori

I love the pucker-your mouth tartness of naengmyeon–cold buckwheat noodles with cucumbers, hard-boiled egg and pickled Asian pears, doused in a chilled vinegar broth. Like craving ice cream when it’s snowing out, I do love this during the cold winter months. Thanks to Chungtech for introducing me to Sura. They have noodle specials every day! But […]

February 8, 2012

Great UM Noodletown: Pho Ga Special @ Ao Sen (OAK)

by Kayoko Akabori

Pho ga dac biet is a special chicken noodle soup at Ao Sen, my favorite pho joint in the East Bay. They serve boiled chicken on the side, bone-in and skin-on, with a florescent orange ginger sauce. It is comforting when you are sick, and warming on dreary rain-filled days. The new Ao Sen location in […]

February 1, 2012

Great UM Noodletown: Misoya Ramen (Santa Clara)

by Kayoko Akabori

Happy February, everyone! Umamimart turns 5 years old this month, and I thought it would be fun to celebrate NOODLES! We’re all fans of noodles here, and there are pages and pages worth of posts, since 2007 (!), dedicated to the almighty noodle on Umamimart. The column name “Great UM Noodletown” is an homage to […]

January 12, 2012

Lois the Pie Queen (OAK)

by Yoko Kumano

Chicken + waffles at Lois the Pie Queen in Oakland.

December 23, 2011

2012 Peko-Peko Osechi Bento (SF)

by Kayoko Akabori

For the last four years, Sylvan of Peko-Peko catering in San Francisco has been making osechi bento sets for the first of the year. Osechi, as you know from Yamahomo’s annual posts (here and here), are foods that are traditionally cooked for the new year, that are consumed for good luck. There is a special […]