Bale French Sandwiches… FINALLY- We Hit a Vietnamese French Sandwich Shop!

Shrimp Sandwich and Ham Sandwich with egg rolls
Shrimp Sandwich and Ham Sandwich with egg rolls

I blame it on my dad. It has taken almost a year for Mom to come hang out for a few days all because Dad decided to have foot surgery on one foot, then the other. I know, how selfish of him! Sheesh!!

But, we made it and hoo-doggies, our lunch was good! Or, at least two-thirds of it was.

The lovely mom, showcasing the Bale French Sandwich shop.
Mira Mesa’s Bale French Sandwich shop.

Bale French Sandwiches is a shop in Mira Mesa, part of the greater San Diego area. The web site mentions how they offer a fusion of cuisines, and I’m discovering that there are a lot of Vietnamese and French shops around this part of town. The small shop was hopping when we stopped by right in the middle of lunch hour- it’s always a good sign when you try a new place and see that it is really busy, right?

Here’s our report:

I was expecting to eat my whole ham sandwich as it was just the right size- about a five inch bun. But noooo, I’m here with Mom, remember. In her mind you don’t order for yourself, you are ordering to share. Mom always gets her way with food… she’s four feet ten inches of a taste testing machine, I advise against getting in her way when it comes to food. There went half my ham, but I did get my share of her shrimp sandwich.

Shrimp Sandwich
Ham Sandwich

Guess who’s sandwich was the best? Hers. I never would have ordered a shrimp sandwich. A Shrimp Sandwich? Really? It was delicious! Way better than my ham, in fact, there was no comparison. I didn’t care for mine at all. I wonder if it was a different kind of ham than one usually sees in a sandwich shop? I’ll have to ask my Vietnamese friends. We wimped out and asked for our sandwiches without jalapeño, and I regret not asking for extra cilantro like Mom wanted to order. Get the extra cilantro!

Ham Sandwich
Shrimp Sandwich

The egg rolls, by the way, were also delicious. Our combo meals were around five dollars, each for a hot sandwich, two freshly fried egg rolls and a drink. Mighty cheap for a lunch combo, in my book. And Bale also has a super catering menu, I know where I am going to pick up three different large trays of appetizers for a crowd for under $100- Bale French Sandwiches.

Burros, not Burritos- Have You Discovered El Pescador Yet?

IMG_6619One of the first places we discovered upon moving back home to California was a leetle-beety-teeny-tiny fish joint El Pescador. In its new location, right across the street from the old, El Pescador now has an eat-in area for the patrons at least by ten times the original spot’s size. As a regular, let me say THANK YOU to the owners for this move! La Jolla has a bajillion places to eat fabulous food for all budgets, and if the absolute freshest seafood is on your list, do not miss this place.

IMG_6620El Pescador has a fresh fish counter with mostly local catches, but also offers popular items flown in from far-away sites. The menu features some of the best fish sandwiches, according to The Husband, and I love their seafood salads on greens. Check out their menu here.

IMG_6625You don’t order a burrito at El Pescador, you order a burro. And yes, they are pretty big. I finally ordered something other than the FABULOUS mixed seafood salad and tried the Burro of the Day- a halibut and shrimp (both local) monstrosity with black beans, fresh spinach and a yogurt based white sauce, served with salsa and chips. A two word summation: Holy yum.

IMG_6617I am a creature of habit and this really shows in my dining choices. I will order the same thing at restaurants- it is always linguini with red clam sauce at the Italian join instead of the special, only a ham and cheese sandwich at our favorite deli, never a turkey club, always the same three sushi favorites at every Japanese restaurant… enough was enough, and I have been loving it. Nothing like a public forum to hold myself accountable, yea, WordPress! I picked a winner Monday night… but might go back soon for that seafood salad?

Change of Plans and Tuna Salad Needs Jalapeños

I love helping drive the field trip carpools for my kid’s school- I love these kids! The morning trip to the courthouse and afternoon doctor appointment left me with having to change today’s plans… but as one of the teachers who trained me used to say, “Tomorrow is another day!”

Instead of my go-to favorite sandwich I tried something different today- a Tuna Salad on Whole Wheat with Jalapeños.

The jalapeños made me suspicious… I like chilis, but don’t like food that hurts! I went ahead and tried the tuna instead of my favorite ham and cheese on a croissant… Tuna Salad Needs Jalapeños!!! The blackberry iced tea was nice, too, freshly brewed and not fake fountain tea. This was a huge sandwich and I was so glad to find that one of my friends was happy to take the other half off of my hands.

Tuna Salad with Jalepeños from Pannikin Coffee and Tea
Tuna Salad with Jalapeños from Pannikin Coffee and Tea

Pannikin Coffee and Tea has two locations- Encinitas and La Jolla, and a third if you count San Diego Int’l Airport…