Sushi, or Pho?

Linda Burton posting from Sacramento, California — “Do you like sushi?” asked Liz, a bright and friendly Sac State student who works at the front desk of my hotel. I was asking for advice, a grocery store, pet supplies, good restaurants.

“Not so much,” I replied, with a sort-of-grimaced face, “though I do love Asian food.”

“Well you’ve got lots of choices here!” Liz waved her hands as she pointed towards Arden Way, and Howe, downtown, naming places I could find good food. Her nails sparkled as she waved, I reached out to touch, ten works of art in miniature, flowers layered in 3-D, “Explain these nails to me!” I smiled. I needed a pedicure too, Liz directed me.

I found the place, storefront nestled midway in the mall. Walkins welcome, said the sign, and I was seated right away. “It’s my birthday,” I revealed, “I’m going for a lunch treat after this, tell me someplace good to eat.”

“Do you like pho?” she asked.

I wondered at the Asian population here, a Google check shows this:

Sacramento, US 2010 Census

45% white, 26.9% Hispanic, 18.3% Asian, 14.6% Black; 7.1% list two or more races.

With such diversity in a city, not only Asian restaurants are plentiful, food choices are many and varied. This promises to be fun!

First page of the Spring & Summer Visitor’s Guide – 8 wide-variety restaurants & bars in 1 Block between 15th and 16th on “L” Street:

  1. Cafeteria 15L: Casual American
  2. Ma Jong’s Asian Diner: Fast Casual Asian
  3. The Park Ultra Lounge: Nightlife
  4. Devere’s Irish Pub: Classic Irish Pub
  5. Mix Downtown: Small Plates & Wine
  6. Sapporo Japanese: Grill and Steakhouse
  7. Petra Greek: Authentic Greek Cuisine
  8. Firestone Public House: Sports Bar

This former gold-rush town still caters to the hearty appetite, steakhouses abound; historic places near the riversides, Old Sacramento, midtown. Or you can choose the new, the family owned, the chains.

And back to Asian, I’m intrigued by Fat’s Chinese, Fat City in Old Sacramento, Frank Fat’s near the capitol. I see Thai restaurants, Korean bar-be-cue (Seoul food?), Mikuni’s Japanese at several spots; and as for Pho, I stopped my count at 50 Vietnamese listings in Urban Spoon: Andy Nguyen’s, Pho Bac Hoa, Pho Lotus, Noodle Shop, Pho Dynasty, Saigon Bay, Viet Hoa.

Enough! Jenny Craig whispers in my ear.