I’m sure there are lots of kids out there who embrace new foods and don’t crumple to the ground in a pile of defeat at the suggestion of trying a new restaurant. Those are not my kids.
Well, a few months back I hit a wall. I literally could not walk through the taqueria door one more time. I mean, I love a good taco but I was desperate for variety. And then it hit me, I knew what to do.
If you recall, my son is a gamer. He is also super motivated by rewards… especially shiny, gold trophy types of awards. It was clear what needed to be done, a restaurant challenge…
Try every restaurant in town and win a trophy.
There’s only one rule: At least try something new while there.
I live on an island which somewhat contains this, but it’s still a lot of restaurants. It’s gonna take awhile. This dawned on Jack so he suggested an amendment to the challenge: Half way through you get a medal, all the way through you get a trophy. Seems fair so that’s what it is.
Setting this up was pretty easy, I wrote down every restaurant on a piece of paper (cross checking yelp/phone book) and put it in a pot. We then pull from it when we are burnt on the old standbys. We’re a couple of restaurants into this challenge, but this is the official first post on the subject.
TONIGHT’S PICK: HANG TEN BOILER
This is a new Cajun/Creole/Hawaiian restaurant. Yes, interesting combo. The space previously had a Hawaiian BBQ so it actually makes more sense, they seemed to have just changed their business model. It must have worked because the place was packed.
They have bowls of shrimp, crab, mussels, and other seafood options which looked awesome but we decided to try meats and sides this time around.
We ate: Steamed Broccoli, Garlic Noodles, Rice, Macaroni Salad, Lumpias, and a mixed BBQ plate with Eggs, Pork Chop, BBQ Chicken, Teriyaki Steak, Kalbi Short Ribs… it was a ridiculous amount of food, I’m still full.
Mike & Me: The food was pretty good, very friendly waitstaff, and a fun vibe for the kids. It’s hands-on eating so they give you waxed paper tablecloths, a roll of paper towels, and crab bibs if you’re eating seafood. We would definitely try the seafood next time, it looked great.
Jack liked: Broccoli. Rice. Steak. (in that order)
These are also Jack’s favorite choices at all restaurants so he had to choose one new thing to try. He tried Lumpia. He didn’t make it beyond the first bite but at least he tried.
Elise liked: According to her, nothing. According to her empty plate, the egg and noodles.
HANG TEN BOILER
2306A Encinal Ave
(between Park St & Oak St)
Alameda, CA 94501