Friday, March 11, 2011

Parental website control

For parents who want an effective way to restrict your child's access to inappropriate material on the web check out Basically what you do is set your computer's default DNS to point to the IP address of; it DNS (domain name system) associates IP addresses with host names (for example, the IP address of is It is easier to remember a name rather than a string of numbers, so DNS does this association for you. OpenDNS sets up categories and you can restrict access based on these categories or specifc websites. In this way you can restrict access to social networking sites, adult contents, drugs, alcohol, etc.

Tuesday, March 08, 2011

Bon Appétit in San Diego

Bali Hai Restaurant
2230 Shelter Island Drive
San Diego (619) 222-1181

Surfing on the popularity of the Broadway musical South Pacific, Bali Hai debuted in October 1954 as the town's first "tiki temple," offering up Polynesian floor shows, "island" cuisine, and a cocktail list replete with planter's punch and near-lethal mai tais. This Shelter Island landmark emerged from several months of intensive remodeling with the same tiki vibe and World Famous Bali Hai Mai Tai. But its owners also made some important updates, including more serious Hawai'i-accented menus, created by respected chef Christopher Powell, and an even more panoramic view that now extends to the seagoing Coronado Islands floating off Baja California. There are no murals of island life, since murals require walls, and Bali Hai instead offers windows covering about 300 degrees of its circumference. By day, views encompass San Diego Bay and distant Mount San Miguel beyond downtown; by night, the backlit honey onyx bar lends drama to the richly polished tree trunks that support heavy roof beams. For starters, consider the lili'i tasting for two, a platter of ahi tartare, coconut shrimp, crispy spring rolls, and teriyaki-flavored edamame. The kama'ilina crab salad, decorated with papaya and hearts of palm and spiced with a kimchee "consomme," is also clever and satisfying. One of several culinary holdovers from the old Bali Hai menu is the crisp, savory Chicken of the Gods. It's good, but better choices include the elegantly garnished Maple Leaf duck breast or sizable New York steak with soy-flavored pesto and garlic-glazed choi sum. Among seafood options, standouts include a wok-fried whole striped bass served with Szechuan-style vegetables and an excellent Alaskan halibut with tempura squash blossoms. For a dessert as lovely as a Polynesian princess, look no further than the vanilla poached pineapple with a rum-soaked baba.
- Review by David Nelson, March 2011

Setting: A remodeled resort like location on Shelter Island, with rare woods inside and panoramic views of San Diego Bay
Service: Very friendly and informal
Best dishes: Kama'aina crab salad; Alaskan halibut; New York steak with soy pesto
Dinner prices: Starters, $7-$17 entrees, $1b-$24 desserts, $7

Sunday, March 06, 2011

Bon Appétit in San Diego

120 Orange Avenue
Coronado (619) 319-5696

Laura and Raffaele Petrazzuolo took a 28-year journey around the world en route to Coronado. They met at Hotel Le Grand on the isle of Jersey in the English Channel. Laura, an Englishwoman of Irish heritage, was a trained chef, pastry chef, and chocolatier. (Would she consider her amazing walnut-date caramel tart a confection or a pastry?) Raffaele, from Italy, waited tables. They married and immigrated to Sydney, Australia, where they operated several Italian restaurants until they fell in love with Coronado while vacationing. With their school-age daughters in tow, they recently returned and opened Sapori in 2010. Fans of authentic Italian fare will appreciate the move. Laura oversees the kitchen and personally prepares the handsome desserts. Raffaele, ever so deft when serving, guides the meal at a gentle pace. In the dining room and on the shady terrace from which a few tables enjoy views across San Diego, the day's menu is chalked in capital letters on enormous blackboards. When zucchini blossoms are in season, savor them stuffed with silky ricotta mousse, floured, flash-fried, and served sizzling with pesto and arugula. Sizable portions encourage sharing, especially with the marvelous antipasto of hors d'oeuvres, which includes prosciutto draped over watermelon, garlicky white bean salad, and deliciously dressed carrots. Luscious lips eating spaghetti paper a dining room wall; imitate them by ordering spaghetti tumbled with tomato, pungent olives, garlic, and creamy mozzarella. The pastas are all excellent, and also include fusilli with pesto, ricotta-stuffed crepes (manicotti) in tomato sauce, and linguine with shrimp, olive oil, garlic, and chile flakes. Served hot from the pan, the crisply breaded boneless chicken breast arrives alla Milanese under a juicy tomato salad. Lamb ossa bucco with risotto and sea bass with olives and capers are other fine entrees. For dessert, just try to resist the individual (and huge) lemon meringue pies.
- Review by David Nelson, February 2011

Setting: A few outdoor tables glimpse downtown San Diego across the bay; indoors, sexy lips eating spaghetti adorn the wallpaper
Service: Professional, but friendly and un rushed
Best Dishes: Antipasto; all pastas; breaded chicken breast with tomato salad; lemon meringue pie
Dinner Prices: Starters, $10-$15 entrees, $13-$30 desserts, $7

Saturday, March 05, 2011

Bon Appétit in San Diego

5965 EI Cajon Boulevard
San Diego (619) 269-9904

Samia and George Salameh, the operators of one of San Diego's newest spots for budget-conscious diners, designed an attractive home-style decor for Alforon, their tiny storefront restaurant near the multiethnic City Heights district. The beamed ceiling and wrought iron chandelier evoke a home in 19th-century Lebanon, while the 21st-century menu of baked-to-order flatbreads with myriad Middle Eastern toppings are as familiar today as they would have been then. Hot, chewy, and delicious, the breads can be garnished simply with the spice blend called za' atar or elaborately with cheeses, vegetables, and meats, alone or in combination. Salads (one made with torn bread), appetizers of hummus and roasted eggplant. and crisp, honeyed baklava are other specialties of this charming little place.
- review by David Nelson, March 2011

Thursday, March 03, 2011

Bon Appétit in San Diego

Mr. Dumpling
7250 Convoy Court
San Diego (858) 576-6888

Traditionally decorated and located a short distance from Convoy Street's Asian restaurant row. Mr. Dumpling serves nothing but Chinese hot pot dinners and varied, splendid dumplings. The sizable hot pot dinners are not cheap, but the affordable dumplings combine into luscious meals that set the chopsticks flying. Mostly priced at $5.99-$6.99 for an order of 10, the plump beauties burst with shrimp and cabbage, brightly seasoned fish, mixed vegetables, or pork with fragrant dill. Order them steamed and juicy or pan -fried and crisp. Mix a soy sauce-vinegar dip to taste, and punch up the flavor quotient with dribbles of chili oil. For dumplings in soup, try succulent shrimp and pork wonton swimming in an almost-spicy broth.
- review by David Nelson, March 2011

Tuesday, March 01, 2011

Bon Appétit in San Diego

Bud’s Louisiana Café
4320 Viewridge Avenue
San Diego (858) 573-2837

San Diego Chef-owner Bud Deslatte describes his cuisine as "authentic Creole and Cajun," and his Bud's Louisiana Cafe promotes "great American food in the New Orleans manner." The Big Easy native's newest local eatery fills Monday through Saturday (closed Sunday) with avid fans of the seafood gumbo, which is jammed with crayfish tails, shrimp, crab, and andouille sausage. Filling Po' Boy sandwiches boast house made spreads: tangy remoulade with fried shrimp, barbecue-scented mayonnaise with pulled house-smoked pork shoulder, rich gravy with the sloppy roast beef sandwich, and so forth. A wedge of Creole pecan pie ends the party on a Mardi Gras note.
- review by David Nelson, March 2011