Friday night was my third date with Doug. After stressing all day about where to go we finally decided to head to downtown Huntington Beach. I read a blog in the OC Register about a new restaurant called Izakaya Zero. Izakaya is a type of Japanese tavern that serves “little plates” of food with lots of sake and drinks. Think of it as Japanese Tapas!
Earlier in the day I had thought of taking Doug to LA and show him The Grove. He had not been there before and thought it would be nice to walk around and stop by the Apple Store (our favorite store!). Then I thought maybe Long Beach and then maybe stay local and go to the Spectrum (again, for the Apple store). Doug’s parents were visiting from Northern California on Saturday, so we thought to stay local!Doug picked me up and we drove up to Huntington Beach. He had just made a mix CD and listed to Britney’s Gimme More along with some other tunes.
We got to Izakaya Zero and it was crowded! Based on the blog entry on Thursday, it said they were suffering from nearby construction and the place was empty. This Friday night it was packed! Seems the review in the OC Register brought the patrons in. However, it seems that the surge in business may have been testing. This is probably the first time the staff was tested in a full house experience.
Doug and I decided to start with drinks. I ordered a club soda with a twist of lime and he ordered a Kirin. After our drinks arrived I decided to try the Yoku-jito and Japanes Mojito. Made with limes and mint, there was also a hint of ginger.
We ordered 4 plates to eat. First we ordered a Zero Roll and Huntington Beach roll. I can’t remember what was in the rolls but I have to tell you that it was some of the best rolls I have had in a LONG time. We both enjoyed it. In Doug’s words – it was amazing! In addition to the rolls, we ordered Albacore Tataki and a plate of Tempura. The tempura was perfect, not oily and the vegetables were crisp and flavorful. The Albacore Tataki is seared albacore topped with roasted herbs and vegetable sauce. A small pile of microgreens was served on top. I LUVED that dish.The over atmosphere was very trendy and contemporary. There was a good beat going on all night. Almost everyone in the place seems to be enjoying themselves and the vibe was good. Overall it was a good night, but the service was a bit slow. Our second roll didn’t arrive until 15 minutes after we finished eating the first three plates.
Score? 3.99 out of 5
After dinner we drove down PCH down to Newport. We parked on Balboa Blvd and walked down to the water. It was low tide and the waves were coming in softly. It was very peaceful, it was a bit cool and there was a nice breeze. We walked for a bit along the shore towards the Newport Pier. We stopped at a lifeguard station and climbed on up and sat on the station looking out to the water and listening to the water. It was so nice just sitting there with Doug. I put my arm around him and he pulled in close. (awwww….)
After some time at the water, we headed back towards home. I decided to show him where Fashion Island was and how to get back to Irvine the back way via the Newport Back Bay. When we got back, we hung out and did more cuddling. (more awww….)
Doug’s parents are visiting him for the first time since he moved to SoCal. They were flying in today at 11am and so Doug had to head home. I won’t see Doug until Monday night when we see each other for Episode 2 of Heroes.
I had a great time last nite and look forward to seeing him on Monday…