We enjoyed a nice Sunday afternoon in Allston yesterday. Brighton Ave particularly. Because we have enjoyed our past meals there so much, we dropped in for a late lunch/brunch at Jo Jo Taipei – which serves up delicious Taiwanese food. The variety was good and a couple of the dishes we ordered got rave reviews from the Mrs and my mom, who along with little bao bao, joined me for this lovely escapade (By the way, they offer a 10% discount for cash purchases).
The sun came out by the time we walked out the door, when we proceeded to cross the street to Yi Soon bakery and got a few treats we liked. Next door was Infusion Tea where Mrs G got a ginger boba tea for herself. Since we were in the neighborhood, we walked a couple of blocks and to Super 88, soon Hong Kong Supermarket, and got our fill of vegetables and other supplies.
Yes! Hot Pot!
And the grand prize – we picked up a shiny new hot pot – something we enjoy thoroughly (we have one in California, but not here). We found that when we go out to hot pot, we end up spending 19-21 dollars per person – which is steep for what we usually get. For example, we really like watercress and a small
bunch of this costs $3+ at the restaurant. We got 3 enormous bunches (really enormous) for under $3.
We estimated that whereas 3-4 people would spend 60-80 dollars at a hot pot restaurant, with the home version, after the one time cost of the hot pot ($35-50 typically), each meal for 3-4 people would cost $15 TOTAL, give or take a few bucks depending on types of meat or seafood added (if any). Also, the soup broth that we like, in its exact form, can be found at most Chinese markets. We use Little Sheep Brand and they had a sale yesterday 3 packages for $10 (each package has 2 servings which are so powerful we stretch to 4 each).
Furthermore, we like to mix some of the best of Japanese hot pot (Shabu Shabu) with Chinese by adding acorn squash (Kabocha), trumpet mushrooms, and udon noodle.
Want to Host Dinner, But You Cook So Bad, You Burn Pasta?
A little helpful advice – if you’re not a cooking genius, but want to have people over, get a hot pot. You’ll look cool and won’t need to much expertise (just go to a hot pot place 3 times and you’ll have the idea down. There, I just solved your dinner hosting problems – no more burnt food.
What Does This Have to Do with “Clement Street?”
Clement Street is a street in the Richmond District of San Francisco. I call it “Little Chinatown” and it’s a place we visit way more often than the real Chinatown in SF. Chinatown is nice too, but Clement Street has great restaurants (not all Chinese) and wonderful little
places to find groceries on the cheap. Allston is not really close to feeling like Clement Street yet, but if more cool little Asian places (restaurants, bakeries, stores, tea shops, etc) open up there, maybe it will help me not miss Clement St too much!