Cooks Out of the Kitchen

Judi Friedman and Jerry Lankin

We’re two SaddleBrooke foodies forever seeking great places to eat!

We’ll review two restaurants each month for taste, presentation, service, price, value, and ambiance. If you have a favorite eatery and would like to spread the word, please send us an email at [email protected].

Sunny Side Up Café

15800 N. Oracle Road, 510-818-1083

Your “Cooks Out of the Kitchen” went to breakfast on a Saturday morning at about 11:30 at the Sunny Side Up Café. If you are looking for an old-fashioned, country-style restaurant, look no further! This restaurant offers great breakfast and lunch choices in a location that reminded Judi of a restaurant she often went to years ago. We were seated immediately in a spacious room with a few other diners—there are several dining areas within the building. Our drink orders were taken immediately, and we were handed menus. Service is prompt and friendly, and we were treated with kindness and felt welcomed by our server. Judi ordered a senior breakfast, having a poached egg, bacon, and pancakes, along with two types of syrup, traditional maple and boysenberry. The egg was poached perfectly (not too runny or well done) and had no hint of vinegar, which happens in many places. The bacon was crisp, and the pancakes were light and fluffy. Jerry ordered hash and eggs with two eggs over easy, corned beef hash, hash brown potatoes, and marbled rye toast. His eggs were also perfectly done, the hash browns were good, and the toast was excellent.

This is a good spot for homestyle food, and your Cooks will definitely be going there for lunch! We received a 10% senior discount, which we did not know was offered!

Taste & Presentation ****

Service *****

Price Range $

Value ****

Ambiance ***

Sunny Side Up Café is definitely recommended.

Guadalajara Grill North

7360 N. Oracle Road, 520-989-0500

Guadalajara has been Jerry’s go-to Mexican restaurant for 15 years and it has never disappointed. The food is always consistent and the drinks are promptly delivered and generous. After returning from three weeks in Pennsylvania, your Cooks were ready for some excellent Mexican food, and we found it, of course, at Guadalajara. We were delighted to share this experience with our intrepid dining friends Dan and Jack!

At dinnertime, the best salsa and guacamole in town is prepared tableside to exactly your heat specifications. Plenty of chips accompany the fare, and we always give a tip to the preparer for her efforts.

Judi ordered the lobster enchiladas—delicious lobster sautéed with fresh garlic, butter, and pico, rolled in soft corn tortillas, and covered with creamy chipotle sauce and jack cheese. It is usually served with black beans and Veracruz rice, but Judi prefers Guadalajara’s refried beans. It was more than enough to eat, and it made a great lunch the next day. Jerry ordered a beef chimichanga overstuffed with shredded beef (you can order it with chicken or ground beef if you prefer), and it is served with refried beans, rice, and lettuce, and is smothered with melted cheese with a generous side of sour cream and fresh guacamole. He likes his enchilada style with a generous helping of red sauce. Again, took enough home for another meal.

Dan ordered mini chimis where the plate has six mini chimichangas filled with beef (or chicken or carnitas), served with sour cream and freshly made guacamole. Dan chose the beef and loved it. Happily, for him, he had enough for lunch the next day! Jack chose the plato ranchero, a traditional dish that offers a cheese-stuffed chili relleno, a pork tamale with enchilada sauce, and a hot gordita stacked with beans, shredded beef, cheese, and sour cream, all of which are served with beans and rice. He devoured it all.

As always, we rolled out of there satiated.

Taste & Presentation *****

Service *****

Price Range $$$

Value *****

Ambiance ****

Guadalajara Grill North is highly recommended.