Another Daytrip to Santa Cruz

Who knows when I’ll go back again!

I am sleepy and have a ten hours of work today, so if you wanted to try back another time I wouldn’t blame you. After this weekend passes,my summer class will be gloriously ending and I’ll only have two jobs and internship applications to work on! Then I’ll be leaving one of them and going on a long trip to San Diego! Then…back to overwhelming workloads in the Fall. But I’m sure what really matters is I’ll be eating. What a lovely constant.

I’m going to post the food haps backwards, because I’m only reviewing the first place I ate that day. For dinner, we tried Mexican at Los Pinos:

free chips/salsa. I loved the large chunks of tomato/onion but this was the hottest salsa i've ever encountered. i don't like when food makes me feel wimpy

free chips/salsa. I loved the large chunks of tomato/onion but this was the hottest salsa i've ever encountered. i dont like when food makes me feel wimpy

my veggie taco, no cheese. i dont like corn tortillas either. avocado's looking a little meager. i dunno what the thought process behind this was, but they didn't have any salad on the menu

my veggie taco, no cheese. i dont like corn tortillas either. avocado's looking a little meager. i dunno what my thought process behind this was, but they didn't have any salad on the menu

so much better! M loved the crispified flour tortilla on her veggie burrito. it was so large/soft/warm, like a delicious baby.

so much better! M loved the crispified flour tortilla on her veggie burrito. it was so large/soft/warm, like a delicious baby. still, mexican food in the US is all the same ingredients in different combos/presentation to me

Marini's ice cream/candy shop is all over SC! Old fashioned, beach-side soda fountain vibe. This is a single-scoop sundae with strawberry/cake batter ice cream, hot fudge, whipped cream, and peanuts. Ice cream was a little over the top, i'd go with vanilla next time

Marini's ice cream/candy shop is all over SC! Old fashioned, beach-side soda fountain vibe. This is a single-scoop sundae with strawberry/cake batter ice cream, hot fudge, whipped cream, and peanuts. Ice cream was a little over the top, i'd go with vanilla next time

The place on my must-eat list this trip was a cute food kiosk in the middle of town called Alfresco, serving vegetarian/vegan rice bowls, wraps, salads, and sandwiches. Their menu is a dream for people like me who like to choose their food specifically.image002

i'm sorry this doesnt look less gross. she doused it in amazing lemon/tahini sauce

i'm sorry this doesnt look less gross. she doused it in amazing lemon/tahini sauce

For example, you can choose wheat/rice paper wraps or salads with 1-4 main ingredients out of their list of like, 15. They’re all different and unique, like eggplant caponata, marinated feta, shitake mushrooms, chickpeas, not to mention several types of nuts, tofu, veg sausage(!), etc. They make seven sauces that each sound delicious in their own right for your salad or to dip your wraps in. There was nothing I didn’t want to try on the menu.

As the picture shows, I created my own salad for 5 with an extra dollar for some warm brown rice on top – so it was more like their rice bowl. For the salad you pick five additional items and I chose sun-dried tomatoes, marinated artichokes, teriyaki tofu, roasted red pepper, and shitake mushrooms. The only thing I would’ve preferred  is more lettuce and fresh veggies in the salad. No more words necessary, I’m lazy and skipping to reviews

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Salads in Santa Cruz

This weekend C and I took a day trip to SC which is the only vacation I’ve had so far, but I’m planning another trip there at the end of the month! As usual, I was behaving like the bad blogger I am and missed two avocado photo moments. I’ll explain later.

I should've gotten a slice just to try all of these spices

I should've gotten a slice just to try all of these spices

Once we picked M up from UC Santa Cruz, we drove to the downtown area and immediately I was beckoned by entire streets of booths selling vintage clothing and antiques! The SC antique fair is only held once a month and of course with our karmic powers combined, we stumbled upon it! I wanted to go at once but M and C didn’t eat breakfast so they wanted nourishment or some rubbish like that. Now I remember why I shouldn’t have children, or pets, or plants.
So we went to the chain Pizza My Heart which has a cute name but obnoxious Hollisteresque vibe inside. Where are the hearts and disgustingly cute decor, I kept wondering. I wasn’t that hungry but the salad was under four dollars so I had to get it.

your standard greek (3.75) with olives, feta, onions, artichokes

your standard greek (3.75) with olives, feta, onions, artichokes

As the day went on I realized most food in SC is insanely cheap compared to SF. I chose a honey mustard dressing because I felt rebellious. I never get that one but it was delicious and I possibly saved it to use later in the day. I carry around my own salad dressings/toppings, ok?
based on lack of remarks i'm guessing it was unremarkable

based on lack of remarks i'm guessing it was unremarkable

Then I got a Nutcracker iced coffee at the SC Brewing Company and it was the most delicious hazelnutty, cinamonny coffee I’ve ever had. As the weather gets hotter, I’m cultivating a bad iced coffee addiction but finding nothing as good here in Berkeley.
I’m not rating the food I ate in SC because it was too sporadic, but I do give their antique fair the guacamole. Not too big, not too small, cheap, and all the vendors had impeccable taste. I loved every single stall.
who cares what all this stuff is. it is cute

who cares what all this stuff is. it is cute

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why didn't i get this again?

why didn't i get this again?

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I left four dollars poorer and with a gorgeous woven purse and cigar box. The clothes were nice but I’m in a style rut currently. Anyway, moving on to food!
boring salad with cilantro lime dressing

boring salad (5) with cilantro lime dressing at Saturn Cafe

I know, I was craving more salad. I will soon lose all my readers but at least I will have my roughage. Why am I a disgrace to blogging? Because I added my own avocado and also my leftover dressing from “lunch” on top of this salad and didn’t even take a picture. It was totally justifiable to whip out an avocado from my purse because they had NO avocado in the establishment.  This place really was like Saturn. But for the most part, SC has a great variety of vegan/veg restaurants. I was also saving myself for this cute food stand in downtown called Alfresco that had an amazing vegan menu with customizable wraps, grain bowls, etc. When we got there for dinner, it was closed 😦 so I got dinner at a fancy grocery store. It may or may not have been salad…

While eating outside, some hippie sitting behind us was snacking on a plain avocado with a spoon. Strike two – I didn’t ask to get a picture of him or take out my own avocado so we could have a moment. This is 55% why I’m going back again to do it right. Next time there will be more avocado, Alfresco and coffee!