Category Archives: Dinner and a Movie

Boni’s Tacos a Wonderful Little Taco Shack

By Teri Bayus ~

In my culinary adventures I have accepted that the look of a restaurant doesn’t always reflect on the food. Some of the best things I have tried were from street vendors.

I’ve had duck soup in Thailand; curry pies in Grenada; and tacos in Mexico. On my latest “stay-cation” we traveled to the village of Cambria. Our first stop was for lunch and as I pulled into the industrial part of town, littered with broken cars and dented doors, I was hesitant to get out of the car and go to my destination.

But my husband reminded me of my credo and my responsibility to squirrel out the best food no matter what the outside looks like.

We found Boni’s Tacos, a small restaurant tucked away behind a jasmine plant. With only 4 seats outside, most of the food was to go. When I arrived, there was a line and it never went away.

Boni (pronounced, bone-ee) and his wife have owned and operated the taco stand for over 11 years, with the help of other family members — plus customers and staff that have become family.

As we waited, a family from Australia arrived. They were fresh off the plane and had to go back to their Air B&B to get American dollars, because cash is king at Boni’s. They returned and we helped them decipherer the menu. Their first taco was an extraordinary event for all of us.

The house special is “al pastor,” a favorite of mine. Al pastor is pork, marinated in Boni’s secret red sauce, then cooked on a vertical rotisserie to a crispy perfection. The other meat choices were carne Asada, which is hand-cut beef seasoned with authentic spices and expertly grilled until tender and succulent.

The pollo is fresh, never frozen, chicken breast, slow cooked in a delicious chipotle sauce. And finally the chile verde, a tender pork, lightly fried until golden brown, then slowly simmered in a savory green sauce with special spices.

Gary started with the Flan, a traditional custard dessert covered in a rich caramel sauce. He claimed it to be the best one he had ever tried and ordered another so we could get a bite.

I ordered one taco of al pastor and one sopes or Huaraches. The sopes is a thick handmade tortilla (more like an English muffin) that is layered with beans, shredded lettuce, sour cream, cotija cheese and the salsa roja. Boni makes all the salsas and the subtle flavors show through. The sope was crispy, yet pliable and I was in Heaven. The al pastor was emanating with authentic flavor and I now understand why there was still a line to get this food.

The burritos were shown in three sizes, the largest one as big as my head! My producer ordered that and she was in Heaven and this girl is a burrito expert (I swear that is all she eats). The chile verde with beans, rice, cilantro, sour cream, cotija cheese and the salsa morita, this was the flawless example of an exceptional burrito. A Mexican cola was the perfect accompaniment to this wonderful meal.

Boni and his wife came to talk with us and said everything is 100-percent authentic and created there. The dishes are made from recipes that have been passed down from generation to generation, leading back to their roots in Taxco, in the Mexican State of Guerrero.

Boni emigrated from Mexico in 1972, and in 1989, he and his wife laid new roots in Cambria. Boni and his family have been living in Cambria since then and founded Boni’s Tacos in 2004. He is a cabinetmaker in his spare time and a culinary delight at this wonderful little taco shack.

Boni’s Tacos is located at 2405 Village Ln., Ste. F in Cambria. They are open from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Mondays-Fridays. They do catering and special events, too; call them at (805) 909-7651.

‘Into the Woods’ — Read the Book, Skip the Movie

By Teri Bayus ~ 

A Walk In The Woods is a film that follows Robert Redford, as author Bill Bryson, as he makes an ill attempted trek along the famed Appalachian Trail with his long estranged friend, Steven Katz, played by Nick Nolte.

Director is Ken Kwapis, but this book adaptation did not excite as much as the source material, however, it was a fun movie to watch.

The plot: travel writer, Redford, wants to reinvigorate his life. Many of the people he knows are dying and he wants to do one great thing. He’s a successful, yet unfulfilled writer.

His patient and loyal wife, Emma Thompson, tries to get him to perk up. He has returned home to New Hampshire after years living in the U.K. He comes up with an idea to walk the Appalachian Trail to experience and reconnect with his country.

He contacts many of his friends who refuse to accompany him on this fool’s journey. Steven Katz, an estranged friend, begs to be included in this adventure.

I was impressed that Ken Kwapis and his writers, Rick Kerb and Bill Holderman, did not try to recreate the book. What they did was put together vignettes, episodes similar to the book but more adaptable to the screen.

Nolte captured Katz to his very soul. Katz is the everyman of this insane millennium — out of work, fighting booze, avoiding drugs, running from the law — and Nolte nailed it. Surprisingly, Redford plays straight man to Nolte’s Katz throughout the movie. A very subtle performance that turned the film into The Stephen Katz Story rather than Bill Bryson’s walk in the woods.

Redford has been trying to do this movie for years and originally, he wanted Paul Newman to play his friend. It’s rated “R” for language and some sexual content. I would say, read the book and then rent the movie.

Teri Bayus can be reached at: [email protected] or follow her writings and ramblings at: Bayus also hosts Taste Buds, a moving picture rendition of her reviews shown on Charter Ch. 10. Dinner and a Movie is a regular feature of Tolosa Press.

Oki Momo Asian Grill Is Deliciously Healthy

By Teri Bayus ~ 

There’s a preconceived misperception that food that is good for you lacks flavor. That is rarely true, but in the hands of a masterful chef, even the healthiest meal can become a symphony of flavor and texture.

teri bayus
Teri Bayus

I was excited to try a new concept in nourishing cuisine at Oki Momo Asian Grill of San Luis Obispo. I was there the second day they opened. With a clean esthetic and the promise of gluten free, vegan and vegetarian, this wholesome food turned out to be some of the best casual dinning I have had in this area.

Jon Yeh greeted us at the cash register, as we grilled him on the menu and what to try. What was immediately impressive is that they make everything in-house. I asked about the concept and he said his wife is a vegetarian, so eating out was always a challenge for their family.


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Heavenly Staycation Meal at Madeline’s in Cambria

Dinner and a Movie
By Teri Bayus

I spent a superb 2-day “staycation” in Cambria at the 9 Iron Inn (see:, where innkeeper, Michelle, guided me to new culinary finds in this city of pines and seaside beaches.

I would encourage everyone to do the same, as this brief time away energized my soul and cemented my passion at finding new brasseries.teri bayus

Michelle came to dine with us at the recommended Madeline’s Restaurant. The quaintness of this bistro was instantly apparent with an herb and vegetable garden growing in the flower boxes out front. Tuffs of basil, chive, Rosemary, parsley, cilantro, and a variety of vegetables sprouted as a welcoming greenery of smell and visual delight. I knew that the chef would be a connoisseur when his herb garden is also a decoration.

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