Other places to try in Newark... this is where I eat lunch...
La Pinata on Thornton near Sycamore (Mexican) - great for Caldo Tlalpeno (spicy chicken vege soup)
La Cabana on Filbert near Central (Mexican) - great for Caldo Tlalpeno (spicy chicken vege soup)
Goldilocks on Newark Blvd (Filipino) - i like their stews, palabok (noodles)
Afghan Village on Thornton near Cedar
East Bay Thai on Thornton near Cedar - great lunch buffet
New China Station on Newark Blvd at Mowry inside the Lion Food Center - great won ton
Dino's on Jarvis x Newark Blvd - very popular soup, salad, burger, sandwich, pasta place. I really like their soups, salads and pasta. Good prices.
Chipotle on Newark Blvd near 84 - fast food chain for burritos, salads, etc.
Sorabol inside New Park Mall - place to sit down in the mall for quick Korean food/sushi
King Egg Roll on Thornton x Sycamore - Scoop up Chinese food for a quick lunch to go
Sushi Yoshi - Cedar near Newark H.S. - I really really like their Oyakodon (Chicken + Egg + Rice). They also have interesting small appetizers you don't find at most Japanese restaurants. This is a Japanese restaurant actually run by Japanese people.
Nguyen Vu - Jarvis near Newark Blvd. has very good pho broth.
re: Melanie Wong
Whoops, wrong link above, here's the right one.
I did stop by Good Luck today. The Burmese selection is all dry, packaged goods. I did pick up a couple things and will post when I try them. The spicy tea leaf mix brand you mentioned is $5 per pack.
Since the mall directory is not much help, I'll mention that Good Luck is on the second level right next to the interior entrance to Mervyn's.
There are tons of good food there but I wonder if you like ethnic places ? They are all around you.
Chinese (several regional specialties such as Szechuan, Cantonese, Shanghainese, Dongbei, Muslim Chinese) , Vietnamese, Indian, Filipino, just to name a few.
There is a shopping complex (Albertson ?) near the freeway entrance that has a great Vietnamese tucked in the corner.
The trick on all these places: you have to know WHAT to order. Instead of the common fried rice, that kind of thing - you must go for their specialties
If you like plain American food, the Hometown Buffet by the Newpark mall has very decent buffet with grilled steaks. Again, you must know the tricks and grab the steaks as they are being brougth fresh from the grill and asked for medium rare instead of the usual tough dry meats. One of the best American buffet around there
All Hometown are NOT the same. Some are much better than the others.
The one by Newpark Mall is probably one of the best together with the one in Hayward Southland Mall. They have different menus that varied slightly on the grilled sections. One person can have a great experience with the grilled meats and the next one terrible because it depends on the degree of doneness and also cuts of meat. I refused to eat the gristles and well done meats - I made that clear to the carver and come back later. If you do not heed this and eat it anyway, you will be disappointed and vowed never to come back.
Both branches are outstanding in terms of quality. Very decent - not awesome - but solid and better than most Vegas buffets or Reno buffets because they have taste to their meats and dishes.
haah there's actually a good sushi place in the raley's shopping center (4 corners- i believe it's newark blvd and jarvis). they have a good salmon teriyaki from what i can remember. i also enjoy their 49er roll for a cutesy type of sushi.. i think that's the one i'm thinking about.. with the lemon slice on top? if you are goign to go here for food, i suggest in your off chance to pick up a to go menu and then call it in. if you order there, you may have to wait pretty long...
in the ranch 99 shopping center there are 2 pretty good chinese resturants. they are right next to each other. i like the one NOT on the corner. they have an awesome crab dish with rolls (i know, odd, but you dip the bread in the crab sauce, delish) and both restaurants are filled with other chinese folks, and the parking lot seems to always be full (that and ranch 99 is right next to it)
there's also a red ribbon bakshop that shares a space with another filipino restaurant, also in the raley's shopping plaza... i haven't eaten from the share filipino space before but some folsk i know enjoy the food their. i'm just wary of other filipino resturants since well, i can easily get homemade... although i have ordered a mango cake from the red ribbon, and it was very very moist... i believe i saw a sans rival there too... but haven't tried it...
there's also a thai orchid (NOT to be confused with the quaint thai orchids in the south bay). i haven't been there yet, nor do i have a feeling to go there, but whatever... you can look yourself and decide if you want to partake in it =)
i believe there's also a tk noodle house and either an L & L or an ohand hawaiian bbq. i'm more a fan of plate lunch places on the islands, as i travel frequently out there, but when i'm not there, i do go ahead and settle.
you can also get stuff from the raley's deli, which i hear is better than the other supermarket deli's at 4 corners, but i'm not sure i can attest to that 100%. if you want to travel further, there's a new king eggroll over by thorton by the railroad tracks, which has a good deep fried shrimp ball... i believe tk and new king are cash only.
these choices may not be 5 star or have the right kind of atmosphere that you may want, but for the area, the food is edible, and i actually go to these places when i'm there.. it is pretty safe to order from here, and i haven't had any bad-experiences. in fact, if i happen to be in the area visiting folks, and they are too tired to cook (which is fine by me.. it's all about the company anyway), they often order out from these places since it's pretty reliable =) i'm sure that you can check ou tthe places that pique your curiosity and you can decide whether to try the establishments out =)
i hope this helps =) and happy eating and discovering =)
If you don't mind driving to southern Fremont, I've had good nigiri at Yuki @ 1932 Driscoll Rd. No fancy rolls, just plain good fish.
I second Shin Tofu House and Lee's Tofu House. Lee's lunch special is a really good value, 3 different panchans, jap-chae, soup, rice, & your choice of bbq meat for around $6 IIRC. There's also another good Korean place off of Mowry, Kiwajip @ 39033 State Street.
Thanh Thanh, also in the Ranch 99 center, has decent banh mi but other good Vietnamese takeout, the banh cuon there is great.
Little Potato & New China at the Marina Market Plaza @ Decoto/Alvarado Niles are great for chinese food.
I worked with a client just on the other side of 84 from you for six months and had a ball exploring the fantastic chow to be found in Newark and Fremont. Even with eating out nearly every lunch and dinner, I barely scratched the surface. If you head up Jarvis to Newark Blvd., there's a Ranch 99 supermarket and a few other shopping centers clustered there with many eating spots to choose from. You're right on the border so be sure to check out Fremont recs and Union City too. The place I miss the most is Chat Patta Corner, very close to your office, here's more about it.
I have never been there, but I've read a few positive statements online about a place called Sushi Yoshi (39261 Cedar Blvd, Newark). Plugging this into Google Maps, though, it looks this is 4 miles or so from your work, so I'm not sure if that's too far or not.
I'm sure locals will be able to steer you better, but this was just the first place that popped into my mind. Sorry I can't be of more help.