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Hand to Mouth

[whitespace] kiosks Twenty Thousand Leagues Down the Mall: Santa Cruz sidewalkers take a break in front of one of the Jules Vernesque kiosks.

After tireless research, painstaking scientific inquiry and utter disregard for convention, we at Metro Santa Cruz have devised our own guidelines for culinary and nutritional success. After all, if the Modern Library can issue a list of the 100 most important novels of the 20th century, surely we are entitled to decree which foodstuffs are crucial to the health, not just of the body, but of the soul. It takes a village to topple a pyramid--but it takes only a gentle Food Handshake to crush a Food Pyramid. We have dispensed with the Pyramid's hierarchical culinary tyranny and rigid triangular shape and substituted an outstretched Hand as the hospitable new symbol of civilized dining.

The Handshake offers, on five friendly digits, the five food groups we consider essential: Pizza, Asian, Mexican, Breakfast and Dessert. The Handshake, as its name suggests, is about eating friendly. It's not out to offend anyone; no one finger is more important than any other, and we're certainly not going to get into that discussion of left versus right.

The most important meal of the day, breakfast, is designated as the thumb on our Food Handshake. Without opposable thumbs, humanity couldn't have pulled itself out of the primordial ooze, and ditto without breakfast. You can't shake hands without a thumb, can you? Santa Cruz is nothing if not a breakfast town, as you'll see from the rich variety of hash joints listed below.

Breakfast should get you through the day until, dizzy and weak from hunger that night, you consult your Food Handshake chart for advice on what to have for dinner.

The Food Handshake-method of eating is designed for convenience and mobility. The central fingers of the Handshake--the index, middle and ring finger--stand for Pizza, Asian and Mexican. All three cuisines were selected for their ease of ordering in, getting as take-out or eating on the go. They make excellent leftovers and lend themselves to microwaving or straight-from-the-fridge, late-night noshing. And, the Handshake is multicultural, each finger touching a different corner of the globe.

Although we've saved dessert, the pinkie finger of our Handshake, for last, this all-important food group can actually be consumed throughout the day and, in a pinch, can be substituted for any of the other fingers on the Hand.

If you've been trying to pacify the Pyramid's rigorous demands, try the Food Handshake method instead. It's egalitarian, wholesome, beneficial to body and mind, and above all, it's easy. Five food groups. Five fingers. One friendly hand.
--Tai Moses


Aptos Pizza--Delivers.
7945 Soquel Dr., Aptos (831/688-4030)

Big J's--Delivers.
845 Almar Ave., Santa Cruz (831/458-1000)

Michael's Pizza--Delivers until 9pm, weekends only at Aptos location.
99 Rancho Del Mar Shopping Center, Aptos (831/662-3362) and 1700 Portola Dr., Santa Cruz (831/477-0456)

Pacific Avenue Pizza & Grill
1415 Pacific Ave., Santa Cruz (831/425-7492)

Pizza Amore
103 Cliff St., Santa Cruz (831/423-2336); 783 Rio Del Mar, Aptos (831/688-1477)

Pizza Mania
809 Bay Ave., Capitola (831/464-3755)

Pizza My Heart--Delivers until 10pm weekdays, 12:30am weekends.
1116 Pacific Ave., Santa Cruz (831/426-2511); The Esplanade, Capitola (831/475-5714)

Pleasure Pizza
4000 Portola Dr., Santa Cruz (831/475-4999)

Storti's Pizzeria
920 Pacific Ave., Santa Cruz (831/425-8888)

Tony & Alba's--Delivers until 9pm.
817 Soquel Ave., Santa Cruz (831/425-8669); 1501 41st Ave., Capitola (831/475-4450)

Upper Crust Pizza--Delivers until 1pm weekdays, 11pm weekends.
2415 Mission St., Santa Cruz (831/423-9010); 2501 Soquel Dr., Santa Cruz (831/476-2333)


Aldo's Harbor Restaurant
616 Atlantic Ave., Santa Cruz (831/426-3736)

Bea's Koffee Kup Restaurant
1209 Soquel Ave., Santa Cruz (831/423-9224)

Beach Street Cafe
399 Beach St., Santa Cruz (831/426-7621)

Cafe Brasil
1410 Mission St., Santa Cruz (831/429-1855)

Cliff Cafe
815 41st Ave., Santa Cruz (831/476-1214)

Harbor Cafe
535 7th Ave., Santa Cruz (831/475-4948)

Linda's Seabreeze Cafe
542 Seabright Ave., Santa Cruz (831/427-9713)

New Davenport Cash Store
Highway 1, Davenport (831/426-4122)

Old Sash Mill Cafe
303 Potrero, Santa Cruz (831/426-7392)

Paula's Brooklyn Coffee House
3500 Portola Dr., Santa Cruz (831/464-0741)

Red Apple Cafe
783 Rio Del Mar Blvd., Aptos (831/685-1224)

Saturn Cafe
1230 Mission St., Santa Cruz (831/429-8505)

The Walnut Avenue Cafe
106 Walnut Ave., Santa Cruz (831/457-2307)

Whale City Bakery Bar & Grill
Highway 1, Davenport (831/423-9803)

Wharf House
Capitola Wharf, Capitola (831/476-3534)

819 Pacific Ave., Santa Cruz (831/427-0646)


Bangkok West
2505 Cabrillo College Dr., Aptos (831/479-8297)

1541 Pacific Ave., Santa Cruz (831/425-7079)

China Station
2301 Mission St., Santa Cruz (831/458-9097)

China Szechwan
221 Cathcart St., Santa Cruz (831/423-1178)

Golden Buddha
4610 Soquel Dr., Soquel (831/479-0788)

King Chwan
415 Ocean St., Santa Cruz (831/429-5898)

Little Shanghai
1010 Cedar St., Santa Cruz (831/458-2460)

427 Capitola Ave., Capitola (831/476-7284)

Mei Garden
533 Ocean St., Santa Cruz (831/458-1687)

Miyako Sushi Bar
1820 G 41st Ave., Capitola (831/462-5288)

Mobo Sushi
105 S. River St., Santa Cruz (831/425-1700)

2316 Mission St., Santa Cruz (831/425-8458)

Pacific Rim Buffet
8035 Soquel Dr., Aptos (831/688-5208)

Panda Inn
Deer Park Center, Aptos (831/688-8620)

Paradise Sushi
200 Monterey Ave., Capitola (831/464-3328)

Pink Godzilla
830 41st Ave., Santa Cruz (831/464-2586)

Real Thai Kitchen
1632 Seabright Ave., Santa Cruz (831/427-2559)

Saigon Palace
5600 Scotts Valley Dr., Scotts Valley (831/438-6888)

Star of Siam
3005 Porter St., Soquel (831/479-0366)

1701 Mission St., Santa Cruz (831/426-6660)

Sushi Capitola
820 Bay Ave., Capitola (831/462-3387)

Szechuan Garden
617 Pacific Ave., Santa Cruz (831/423-2574)

Takara Japanese Restaurant
1800 Soquel Ave., (831/457-8466)

Thai Basil
210 Monterey Ave., #3, Capitola (831/479-8985)

Thai House
353 Soquel Ave., Santa Cruz (831/458-3546)

Westside Thai
2238 Mission St., Santa Cruz (831/469-3209)


Cafe Carlos
6016 Scotts Valley Dr., Scotts Valley (831/439-8448)

1934 Main St., Watsonville (831/761-2161)

Costa Brava
505 Seabright Ave., Santa Cruz (831/423-7871)

Don Quixote
6275 Hwy 9, Felton (831/335-2800)

El Palomar
1336 Pacific Ave., Santa Cruz (831/425-7575)

La Mission
1719 Mission St., Santa Cruz (831/426-3564)

Little Tampico
2605 Main St., Soquel (831/475-4700)

Mexico City
5050 Soquel Dr., Soquel (831/464-0739)

Planet Fresh
1003 Cedar St., Santa Cruz (831/423-9799)

Rancho Grande
1205 Freedom Blvd., Watsonville (831/722-1606)

Rosa's Roticeria
493 B Lake Ave., Santa Cruz (831/479-3536) and 1726 Freedom Blvd., Watsonville (831/728-4249)

Tacos Morenos
1053 Water St., Santa Cruz (831/429-6095); 303 Beach St., Santa Cruz (831/427-2200)

822 Pacific Ave., Santa Cruz (831/458-2821)

Taqueria Santa Cruz
2215 Mission St., Santa Cruz (831/423-0606)

Taqueria Vallerta
608 Soquel Ave., Santa Cruz (831/457-8226); 893 41st Ave., Santa Cruz (831/464-7022)

206 Laurel St., Santa Cruz (831/457-0159); 1201 Soquel Ave., Santa Cruz (831/466-9739)

Sofia's Taqueria
140 Rancho Del Mar Shopping Center, Aptos (831/688-1417) and 860-41st. Ave., Santa Cruz (831/475-8316)

Tortilla Flats
4616 Soquel Dr., Soquel (831/476-1754)

Tucson Taqueria
218 Mt. Hermon Rd., Scotts Valley (831/439-8470)


Locations in Santa Cruz, Scotts Valley, Capitola, Aptos and Freedom

Double Rainbow
1123 Pacific Ave., Santa Cruz (831/423-3231)

Fosters Old Fashion Freeze
229 Laurel St., Santa Cruz (831/426-2311)

Gelato Bar at Riva Fish House
500 Municipal Wharf, Santa Cruz (831/429-1223)

Marianne's Ice Cream
1020 Ocean St., Santa Cruz (831/458-1447)

Polar Bear Ice Cream
1224 Soquel Ave., Santa Cruz (831/425-5188)

Saturn Cafe
1230 Mission St., Santa Cruz (831/429-8505)

Yogurt Delite
1306 Mission St., Santa Cruz (831/429-6400)

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From the September 24-30, 1998 issue of Metro Santa Cruz.

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