The appearance of a rare Portuguese bakery, as well as other restaurants on the Peninsula and South Bay

The newcomers represent a variety of cuisines including Korean, Portuguese and Spanish. Other places specialize in one dish, like Korean fried corn dogs or Vietnamese-style pancakes. Perhaps the 700-seat Milpitas dim Sum marks the return of the massive banquet hall. Popular restaurants such as Dumpling Time and Telèferic Barcelona continue to target the area for expansion.

Read on for more information about nine new places to eat on the Peninsula and in the South Bay.

Santa Clara gets a little Portuguese bakery

From left: Lemon Bisquitos, Coconut Quejada, and Custard Tart are delicious Portuguese desserts in Santa Clara

Elena Kadfani

The South Bay has a new destination for Portuguese egg tarts: Santa Clara’s delicious Portuguese pastry. The bakery offers pint-sized versions of its custard tart, loaves of sweet bread and cupcake-like coconut quejadas, among other Portuguese specialties. A small but well-stocked retail section filled with Portuguese goods: olive oil, canned fish, and bottles of piri-piri sauce. Also be sure to ask about the selection of cheese and butter in the fridge behind the counter. Fresh bread is used to make sandwiches with linguica, a spiced pork sausage, from Tuesday through Friday. Head there on Saturdays for coffee and malasada, served as plain or custard-filled Portuguese flat cakes, and grab one of the tables set up outside. Dedicated Portuguese bakeries are somewhat rare in the Bay Area; The delicious Portuguese dessert joins Popular Bakery and Pastelaria Adega in San Jose and Silva Bakery in Hayward.
1085 El Camino Real, Santa Clara. 408-821-3741

Ambitious concert hall debut in Milpitas

The 700-seat dining room at HL Peninsula in Milpitas.
The 700-seat dining room at HL Peninsula in Milpitas.

Provided by HL Peninsula

HL Peninsula, a popular dim sum restaurant in South San Francisco and Burlingame, opened the doors to its largest and most ambitious Milpitas location in late January. The state-of-the-art 18,000-square-foot ballroom seats 700 and is outfitted with an 80-foot projection screen that the owners hope will be a draw for corporate events and weddings. Five private rooms have karaoke screens. The menu is mostly the same as other HL Peninsula restaurants, with a large selection of Cantonese dishes and dim sum including shrimp rice rolls, Peking duck and pandan-flavored egg tarts. The owners also plan to open a hot pot restaurant in Burlingame in late May.
136 Ranch Drive, Milpitas.

Half Moon Bay Airport Cafe has opened under new owners

Belgian-style cake with raspberry compote and honey butter served at Pilot Light in Half Moon Bay.
Belgian-style cake with raspberry compote and honey butter served at Pilot Light in Half Moon Bay.

Presented by Pilot Lite

The new airport café in Half Moon Bay is already drawing lines of people eager to eat golden Belgian waffles in view of the landing strip. Pilot Light is a more casual brunch spot, but thanks to the owners’ fine-dining experience at All Spice in San Mateo, wings and sandwiches get touches like freshly baked bread and house-made spice rubs. The café is light and airy, with bright yellow picnic tables set on an expansive outdoor (and dog-friendly) patio.
9850 Cabrillo Hwy. North is Half Moon Bay.

Korean corn dog specialist arrives in burlingame

Cheesy Korean corn dog fans rejoice: San Francisco’s Stix has expanded to include Burlingame. The corn dog specialist serves a variety of fried hot dogs, a beloved street food snack in Korea. In Stix, they’re coated in a rice flour batter, rolled in toppings like cornflakes and blocks of french fries before being deep fried. Dipping sauces include spicy mustard, wasabi mayo, and ranch. Stix also serves milk tea and Dalgona coffee, another Korean hit.

1355 Broadway, Burlingame.

The San Jose Mall gets a new location at dumpling time

The dining room and bar at Dumpling Time's new Santana Row restaurant.
The dining room and bar at Dumpling Time’s new Santana Row restaurant.

Courtesy of Patricia Chang

Hitting a San Francisco dim sum location, the South Bay’s first Dumpling Time location is now open on San Jose’s Santana Row. Look out for xiao long bao flavored with tom yum and other dumpling flavors made fresh in the glass-walled room in front of the dining room. Thanks to the full bar, there are cocktails that highlight Asian ingredients and flavors like bourbon mixed with Chinese five spice and bitters.
378 Santana Row, Suite 1035, San Jose.

Snack on fresh mochi dumplings in Mountain View

Chewy waffles loaded with boba and whipped cream are the focus at this new store in Mountain View. The made-to-order pancakes come in several flavors, including red bean, black sesame, and pandan—known as banh cop la dua in Vietnam. Here, pancakes can be enhanced with toppings like black sugar syrup, banana, and Nutella. Takeout orders keep toppings and pies separate to avoid soggy pies. For drinks, there are milk teas and colorful lattes topped with Dalgona Korean candy.
805 E. El Camino Real, Suite F, Mountain View.

Telèferic Barcelona continues to expand in the Gulf region

Paella and tapas from Telèferic Barcelona in Los Gatos.
Paella and tapas from Telèferic Barcelona in Los Gatos.

Courtesy Abel Rincon

Los Gatos is home to the newest location of Spanish restaurant Telèferic Barcelona. Like the Walnut Creek and Palo Alto restaurants, this one serves appetizers, squid ink, and plenty of sangria. There is also an adjoining market with imported Spanish goods, wines and paella collections.

50 University Street, Suite B270, Los Gatos.

Cupertino is getting a new regional Chinese restaurant

Cupertino’s special noodle soup focuses on food from Chiu Chow, a city in China’s eastern Guangdong province where both the restaurant’s owner and executive chef have roots. Owner Benny Xue, who also runs Donburi Ya in San Francisco and 9 Noodle House in Millbrae, grew up eating his mother’s home-cooked Chiu Chow, while Chef Lung Chen is from the area, whose namesake dish is a rich chicken broth simmered over low heat. More than 20 hours with abalone and ginseng. Diners can customize the dishes with their choice of pasta, proteins, and toppings. Small dishes include salted duck, spiced chicken and knife cut noodles.
10275 S. De Anza Boulevard, Cupertino.

The popular Fremont Taco Truck is expanding

Above: Paella and tapas from Telèferic Barcelona in Los Gatos.  Above: halal tacos at halal restaurant Amigos, opening in San Jose.
Above: Paella and tapas from Telèferic Barcelona in Los Gatos. Above: halal tacos at halal restaurant Amigos, opening in San Jose.

Provided by El Halal Amigos

This popular Fremont Halal truck is opening its first restaurant in San Jose’s Willow Glen neighborhood. Halal tacos and burritos filled with barbacoa, carne asada, and other meats are also on the menu. Owner Hisham Abdel Fattah, a southern Gulf national who is part Palestinian and part Filipino, started the food truck in 2020 to give Muslims who adhere to a halal diet a place to eat Mexican food. San Jose Restaurant opens Saturday, February 5, at noon.
1100 Lincoln Ave, Suite #160, San Jose.

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