by Terrance Mc Arthur
Back in February, struggling with the pandemic closures, I tried a bunch of restaurants, planning to review them…until we went to Cattlemen’s in Selma, and that one place became the whole article for the month. However, I promised to write up the others, so this month’s Great Food Search will try to keep most of those promises.
Pho House—251 Academy Ave., Sanger
It was China House, a convenient take-out place, but it was sold in 2018. Now, Mama Sandy and Papa Kim bought it back, and they reopened it as Pho House, featuring the Vietnamese soup. I don’t know why, but I usually buy their Chinese dishes.
My daughter wasn’t feeling well, and she wanted Egg Flower Soup, so I took a half-mile ride to pick up her soup, along with my orders of Pot Stickers, Chicken Fried Rice, and Chicken Chow Mein. The Egg Flower Soup swam with chunks of egg, with chunks of zucchini squash, carrots, and the peas that my daughter will pick out and lay on a napkin for later disposal (Some childhood habits never change.). My daughter does enjoy the pot stickers, however. It’s good to see an old friend back, even in a new name.
Sandy‘s Country Junction—532 Clovis Ave., Clovis
Clovis is Clovis, know what I mean? They do things their way. Sandy’s is the ultimate breakfast/lunch place, as country-and-rodeo as you can get, so how did they deal with the Covid-19 mess? They closed for a while. Their patio out front became a lively eatery, and the interior is now hung with plastic partitions separating the booths.
We go for the biscuits and gravy. Yes, we like the potatoes (country or hash brown) that come with each breakfast meal. Of course, we enjoy the omelets and the egg platters, and the skillet dishes, but…those biscuits are the star of the show. Generous in size, fluffy in composition, and buried in a tangy gravy that comes in like Sandburg’s fog on little cat feet. Oh, so good!
MOD Pizza—2320 Clovis Ave., Suite 104, Clovis
Across from Sierra Vista Mall and southeast of the Clovis Costco, this quick-bake, choose-your-own-toppings pizza place gives you a lot of choices without raising the price (They don’t charge you extra for having more than three toppings). My wife likes meat on her pizza, so she adds pepperoni, mild sausage, and ground beef over mozzarella and red sauce. MOD (Make On Demand) calls that a “Mad Dog.” I’m more of a Death-By-Pizza person, piling many toppings on a crust. I mix white sauce with pesto, throw on mozzarella, gorgonzola, and parmesan cheeses, and heap on the veggies—mushrooms, olives, red onions, artichoke hearts, and…this is the first place I’ve seen that does this…ROASTED GARLIC! While writing this article, I discovered that they also have ANCHOVIES (You may not like them, but I’m an anchovy aficionado.). We were both very happy with our pizzas, and my daughter had a grand old time with a Caesar Salad.
Tokyo Steak House—1865 Herndon Ave. #H, Clovis
I’d heard about this place, a place to get teriyaki and sushi, and to watch chefs with flashing knives prepare teppan yaki style while you watch, but I’d never been there until this February. We didn’t go for the whole experience, but we heard the oohs and ahhs at the stove-tables behind us.
Start your meal with a hearty Miso Soup or a crisp salad. We had the Teriyaki Tempura Combo of New York Steak, Tempura Shrimp and Vegetables, and Steamed Rice. The dipping sauces were a nice layer of taste. The steak was excellent, and the tempura had a sweet crunch. Next time, maybe I’ll turn around and watch the show.
Pho House is Asian comfort food. Sandy’s is down-home comfort food. MOD let’s you have it your way, but Tokyo Steak House wins this round of the Great Food Search with style, food, and fun.