Monday, September 15, 2014

Mixx in Mountain View: Weekend Food Fun

On Friday, we were invited to have lunch at Mixx in Mountain View during its soft opening.

We went toward the end of the lunch service after we picked up the kid from school.

The meal started with warm bread and butter. The boys were excited since they don’t get to eat a lot of bread at home. Both said it was excellent.

Our appetizers were pork belly sliders, which were served on steamed buns. Since I can’t eat gluten, I didn’t try the bun but liked the slightly sweet sauce on the pork belly and especially the marinated vegetables on top. The kid gave them 10 “thumbs/fingers” up. Smile 

Andy ordered the steak frites, which was served with fries and a salad. I really liked the presentation of the fries in a little wire basket. The fries were served with a homemade ketchup, which was good but quite sweet. 

The kid got the croque madame, a giant grilled cheese and ham sandwich that is served with a poached egg on top. He enjoyed it a lot but couldn’t make a dent in it. The sandwich is definitely big enough to split between two people.

Finally, I got the kale salad. It was well marinated/massaged and had a generous amount of quinoa as well as feta cheese, dried cranberries, nuts, and fresh grapes. I very much enjoyed the kale salad. I like kale a lot, but I think even those who aren’t the biggest kale fans would enjoy this version as it’s well marinated, and the kale taste is therefore quite mild. The serving was huge. Two people could have a nice meal splitting one or two appetizers and the kale salad.

Andy enjoyed a Firestone Walker Union Jack with his meal and was excited that Mixx offers a selection of craft beers on tap as well as in bottles. There are also ciders on the menu as well as specialty cocktails. A big lounge area features big screen TVs as well as numerous games, including a shuffleboard. It looks like a fun place to hang out after work (for those of us who can….). 

Questions: What was the highlight of your weekend? Do you like kale? (Biz, you don’t need to answer this… Winking smile)This is the second kale salad I had in a restaurant in the last few weeks, and I enjoyed them both even though they were completely different. The one I had at Herbivore wasn’t massaged/marinated and the kale flavor came through a lot more. I think the version at Mixx is perfect for those who enjoy a milder kale flavor.

Be well,

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Recent Kid-Friendly Hiking Adventures in the South Bay

The kid is enjoying longer and more difficult hikes (for the most part – I would lie if I said there was never any complaining, but it’s rare…), which has been awesome. Hiking, especially hikes with some steep parts, is definitely my favorite way to get those daily steps!

On Labor Day, we did a 9-mile hike in Henry Coe Park in Morgan Hill. It’s quite a drive to get to the parking lot as the winding road leads you 10 miles up the mountain. The trail we followed was beautiful, but there wasn’t a lot of shade and it was quite steep at times. Since it was 90+ degrees on the day of our hike, it was not the ideal hike to do on that day. Plus, we didn’t bring enough water – a big no no.

Here are some photos from the hike:

A few months ago, we hiked in Castle Rock State Park in Los Gatos. It’s a beautiful hike with plenty of opportunities to climb on some rocks, which the kids loved. The longer hikes there are great for kids 6 and older.

Rancho San Antonio in Los Altos is a favorite with the locals and parking can be a challenge. Deer Hollow Farm – a working farm with chickens, pigs, goats, sheep, a cow, plenty of herbs and vegetables, and more –  is about one mile from the parking lot and many families walk there on the weekends. If you are lucky, you may even be able to buy some farm-fresh eggs from truly happy chickens (they run out quickly though). There are many trails to choose from throughout the park, and you can do anything from a leisurely walk to the farm to more challenging trails, including the - at times - quite steep 8-mile PG&E trail.

Some hiking dos:
  • Bring enough water – you’ll probably need more than you think! We learned that the hard way last week!
  • On hiking days, make sure you are well hydrated, even before you start your hike
  • Wear hiking shoes that provide stability – since I have a weak/previously injured ankle, this is an absolute must for me
  • Bring sunblock and a hat
  • Pay attention to your surroundings – this past weekend, a 6-year-old boy was attacked by a mountain lion in the Santa Cruz mountains – read the warning signs at the trail head and know what to do when encountering mountain lions, snakes, etc.
Questions: Do you like to hike? Do you have a hiking bucket list? For now, I just want to explore more of the awesome trails in our immediate area, but I also would like to explore the Pinnacles sometime soon.

Be well,