About David Allen

A journalist for more than 30 years, David Allen has been chronicling the Inland Valley for the Daily Bulletin since 1997 and blogging since 2007. He is the author of two books of columns: "Pomona A to Z" and "Getting Started." E-mail David here.

Restaurant of the Week: Domi’s Peruvian Cuisine

Domi’s Peruvian Cuisine, 915 N. Euclid Ave. (at Foothill), Upland; open 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. except until 9 p.m. Friday and Saturday; closed Mondays

The Inland Valley used to have just a couple of Peruvian restaurants; now it’s got at least five: one in Claremont, two in Rancho Cucamonga and two in Upland. Domi’s is among the latter, opening in 2014 in the center on the southwest corner of Euclid and Foothill, in the strip south of Coco’s that faces Euclid.

The last time I’d eaten in that space, it was a taqueria. I’d seen the Domi’s sign many times but hadn’t gone in until recently, when I arranged to meet a friend for a weekday lunch.

It’s a small spot, just a few tables, with tourism-type photos of Peru on the walls. They’ll wait on you if there’s two or more of you, it seems; otherwise you order at the counter.

The menu isn’t online, but it’s got the best-known Peruvian dishes and many that were unfamiliar to me. Click on the photos below for a larger view.

Note there are five vegetarian options.

I had the pollo saltado ($11.50, above): chicken on fries sauteed with tomatoes and purple onions. It was a good version.

My friend had the beef tacu tacu ($12.75): sliced Angus beef saltado (chicken or shrimp and calamari available too) served on garlic rice. He’d never had that, but he liked it.

We had considered getting an appetizer to share but were glad we didn’t, as we could barely finish our entrees.

Another item on the menu intrigued me, the chicharron sandwich, so I went back for a solo lunch. How could I resist, with this menu description: “Blow your mind away when taking a bite out of this delicious piece of heaven. A sandwich layered-in with slices of fried sweet potato, marinated fried pork meat and topped with a kick of salsa criolla.”

Rather than pork skin, as in Mexico, the Peruvian version of chicharron is a pork cutlet. Combined with slices of sweet potato and strips of pickled purple onion, it was served on a thick roll. I’m not sure it blew my mind away, but then, by middle age one becomes a bit jaded. But this was a pleasant combination of flavors, and filling.

If you like Peruvian food, or would like to try it, Domi’s is a good choice.

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Column: To spill the beans, Taco King is for sale

A longtime Upland favorite is for sale and its future as a restaurant is not assured. An extended family gathered last week at Taco King — you’ve probably seen the neon sign along Foothill Boulevard if nothing else — for the proverbial “one last meal” and invited me. I used that as an excuse to learn about Taco King’s history and its owners’ retirement plans, which I write about for Wednesday’s column.

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IVDB in Dubai

Reader Andy Sze of Rancho Cucamonga does a lot of traveling for work. Sightseeing recently in Dubai, he accidentally left his Daily Bulletin in his hotel, but he improvised a Daily Bulletin on Vacation photo, recalling that I’d once said some readers used their phone or tablet to call up our paper.

For his photo, Sze opened up one of my columns while in the world’s tallest building, the 163-floor, 2,722-foot-high Burj Khalifa. See below. Why, it’s almost like I was there, at least in spirit. Thanks, Andy. It’s probably just as well I wasn’t there, as I’m scared of heights.

Click on his photos for a larger view. But you may wish to hold onto something when you open the one with the view down.

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Column: A ‘Little’ treasure found in Pomona

A Pulitzer-winning biography of Laura Ingalls Wilder leads me to a surprise the Pomona Public Library didn’t realize it had: a set of signed first editions of Wilder’s “Little House on the Prairie” books. Also: a bunch of Culture Corner items, a plug for this blog and a Valley Vignette, all in Friday’s column. Above, one of the books’ title page. Hey, bulldog.

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Restaurant of the Week: Chuy’s Cocina

Chuy’s Cocina, 10285 Central Ave. (at Kingsley), Montclair; open daily, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.

A friend who drives up Central on a frequent basis noticed Chuy’s and suggested a group of us meet there for lunch. I had overlooked the restaurant, which opened last September in a small, multi-tenant building, but agreed instantly. Always nice to find a new restaurant to try in modest Montclair. (The current Yelp rating, by the way, is five stars, based on 63 reviews.)

You generally order at the counter, it seems, although a staffer came to our table to take our order based on the menu behind the counter. Hey, it’s a family-run place, they can make their own rules. Menu board is below; click on the photo for a more readable view.

I got a sope (with pastor) and a mulita (with asada), each $4. I think I’d had a sope once, which is pictured at top below, but not a mulita, foreground. A mulita is somewhere between a taco and a quesadilla. I liked it. It turns out I’m not a fan of sopes, which are hard to pick up and eat, and have crumbled cheese and other toppings that fall off, but there was nothing wrong with this version.

One friend got the chile relleno and enchilada combo ($9) with beans, rice and a wee salad. “Esta muy rica,” he said, practicing his Spanish. “Very delicious. I liked it very much.”

The other two friends each got three-taco combos ($7), one with bean tacos — “Tasty. I really liked the salsa,” she said — and one with chicken. After much thought as to a pithy comment, he settled for: “The tacos were excellent.” Posterity thanks him.

Chuy’s seats about 30. The staff was helpful, even if their English is lacking. When the vegan in our group had a question about the preparation, the chef came out to answer. When our complimentary chips were finished, they brought out more, and also refilled our drinks.

The friend whose idea it was to meet there mused aloud, “My thought was, how could a place so small be a restaurant? In the inside, it’s a lot larger than it looks from the outside.”

“Like the Tardis,” said another.

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Bob’s Big Boy, Pomona

Above is the Bob’s Big Boy that operated in Pomona at 221 W. Holt Ave. at Main Street. The photo comes from the redoubtable Darin Kuna at the Growing Up in Pomona Facebook page.

Here’s one from reader Bill Marino, which he shot circa 1970. Big Boy has a nice glow about him.

I couldn’t determine when this Bob’s opened. It closed in 1995. It went through several tenants after that, including a stretch as a combination Chinese-Pakistani restaurant, Shalimar Garden, in the 2000s. That or Super China Buffet may have been the last tenant. It’s been vacant for five or more years.

Here it is in its current state. There’s a for-lease sign.

Any memories of the Pomona Bob’s, readers?

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