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650 Eats: Grass-fed Burgers, Wings of Love

Cheeseburger at Aly's on Main.

Grass-fed burgers (ground in house daily) and sangria are part of the dining scene at a new 650 spot, cheers! Meaty options abound, but you can also have a pleasing plate of porcini-based pasta and a Little Gem lettuce salad, too. That particular opening means that the quest for hot and filling Thai (with tea) and pleasing chicken wings now points diners to a petite-sized restaurant over in Foster City. 

For those working that New Year’s Paleo diet, and those just seeking fresh-organic-and-fabulous, Aly's on Main in Redwood City gifts you artisan options that happily include a killer, juicy, grass-fed Marin Sun Farms’ burger. Lose the bun and (if you are particularly starving) bump your order up to the larger 14-ounce portion. Non-Paleo pals can find culinary gems of their own, too, and we can all agree that a Bavette steak done medium rare is a thing of wonder. Chef Michael Mazaffari opened Aly’s late last year, and the restaurant is named for his wife, how sweet is that? He changes the menu to reflect the seasons and Aly’s lunch and dinner entrée prices run $15 to $25. That’s a shade lower than similar fare found elsewhere, and the fish tacos, spaghetti (with crispy pancetta) and lamb (grilled or in the form of hearty meatballs) have gained notice—there are also pasta and salad options, of course. Save room for brioche bread pudding that is as rich as it is satisfying.

The space has high cielings, bamboo floors, and brick walls—a comfy setting for date night over a pitcher of house sangria. Plan accordingly: Aly’s is shuttered on Sunday and Monday. Real estate watchers may mourn the fact that Buri Tara Thai was housed here recently and has moved down the road to new digs in Foster City. 911 Main St., Redwood City; (650) 995-7500.

In the pretty and mellow town of Foster City, Buri Tara Thai settled into a new space in the Edgewater Place Shopping Center and is open seven days a week. Dig into consistent and filling dishes of volcanic lamb, duck fried rice, pad se ew (Thai stir-fried rice noodles), green curry, mango shrimp, and spicy crispy catfish. The pad thai with prawns or perhaps spicy catfish seem to both be popular dishes. Diners can start things off warmly with a pleasing glass of hot Thai tea and soup for a leisurely lunch or meal. The tea is often served as a freebie, oh yes.

Ordering the wings of love as a starter may get that 1982 Jeffrey Osbone tune in your head (sorry!) but it’s worth it for the oomph factor of chicken wings that arrive with a lickable sweet chili sauce. Service here is particularly adept and welcoming for those days when it’s a “Manic Monday” to keep things decade-specific, or say you just need a pick me up, large or small. The atmosphere is warm and cozy and suitable for a dining space that is definitely on the smaller side. Anxious types may want to call or click online and get that express meal to go. 939 A Edgewater Blvd., Foster City; (650) 525-5880.

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