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Bike to Work Day May 29, 2015 Join thousands of bike riders throughout the region to bike to work and stop by one of an estimated 100 pit stop locations to pick up t-shirts, snacks and encouragement. Originally scheduled for May 15, but postponed due to rain.  71 other events on Friday, May 29
Seen Local
The media artist/designer wants women to challenge the idea of what’s expected of them
Seen Local
The third in our series on the artists awarded grants through the Creative Catalyst Fund
Seen Local
After nearly 50 years, faculty and staff fear next two shows will be the last for a while
Bertrand Bonello’s biopic fragments history to find the emotion of style
If I Were U
D.O.A., Bit Maps, Dead Meadow and other shows we’re stoked about this week


Home » Articles »   By Michael A. Gardiner
Tuesday, May 26,2015
Arts & Culture feature

Just the tip

Should we stick a fork in restaurant gratuities?

By Michael A. Gardiner
It's a ritual restaurant diners experience regularly: The bill arrives and it's time to calculate the tip. But how? Should it be 10, 15 or 20 percent? And a percentage on what: Before or after tax? What about wine? 
Friday, May 22,2015
The World Fare

There’s no 'con-fusion' at Myung In Dumplings

Bourdain-certified dumplings at Convoy District Korean-Chinese joint

By Michael A. Gardiner
Perhaps the best starting point is with Myung In's steamed dumplings with pork and shrimp. Essentially a Korean take on sui mai, this version's shaped a bit more like a "beggar's purse" and garnished with chives.
Friday, May 15,2015
The World Fare

A Dapper Dipper in Mission Hills

Best sandwich on the planet, Part 7: Rubicon Deli

By Michael A. Gardiner
The "French Dip" is Southern California's entry in the Best Sandwich on the Planet derby. The version at Rubicon Deli (3715 India Street, Mission Hills), the Dapper Dipper, may be the best I've tasted.
Friday, May 8,2015
The World Fare

You know it when you see it at Kabob House

Superb falafel and great grilled meats in Golden Hill

By Michael A. Gardiner
In Jacobellis v. Ohio, 378 U.S. 184 (1964), Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart declined to define "hardcore pornography," writing, instead: "I know it when I see it." The same might be said of Middle Eastern food.
Friday, May 1,2015
The World Fare

Authentic, or not, at Szechuan Taste?

Incendiary heat and numbing, flowery flavors at Convoy District spot

By Michael A. Gardiner
Authentic: It's a word we think we understand. Take "Chinese food," for example. We think we know "authentic Chinese" right up until we realize that deep into the '60s, chop suey was the hallmark, though chop suey is hardly a Chinese dish at all. 
Friday, April 24,2015
The World Fare

Las Gueritas: Highly unique street food

Grilled quail and rabbit served here in the Valle de Guadalupe

By Michael A. Gardiner
Friday, April 17,2015
The World Fare

A new spin at Kula Revolving Sushi Bar

Nigiri, rolls and fun on Convoy Street

By Michael A. Gardiner
There's something about sushi. Maybe it's the simplicity: an itamae, a cutting board, a knife and some fish. Perhaps it's the minimalist aesthetic. It could be the spiritual sense, the connection to tradition, the itamae's role as chef, tour guide and confidant.
Saturday, April 11,2015
The World Fare

Fine-dining picnic at Deckman’s

Octopus with pork belly, beef tongue with clams in the Valle de Guadalupe

By Michael A. Gardiner
Much has been made about the battle between upscale-casual and fine dining. Deckman’s takes the debate to another level. 
Friday, April 3,2015
The World Fare

No need for silverware at Harar Ethiopian

Find injera flatbread and savory stews at North Park

By Michael A. Gardiner
The building housing Harar Ethiopian Restaurant (2432 El Cajon Blvd., City Heights) is barely more than a shack, though a colorful one.
Friday, March 27,2015
The World Fare

Best lunch in town, Part III: Do Re Mi House

Brilliant banchan and bibimbap at Convoy Korean joint

By Michael A. Gardiner
The old gang would have loved Do Re Mi House (8199 Clairemont Mesa Blvd., Kearny Mesa). For starters, take the banchan, the array of intensely flavorful small plates (think kimchi and similar dishes with daikon, bean sprouts, cucumbers, potatoes, fishcakes) that arrive at your table to accompany a Korean meal.