First Impressions – “Good Times at The Good Spot”


Whats Good? Learn more about a new spot opening up in San Jose

by Alexander Quebec

Shelter-in-place has turned us all into food gremlins who either have their food delivered or brought back to our decrepit little hovels for consumption. Now that it’s mostly over, we can resume making public appearances. As for me, I exist in this weird spot on that spectrum: I enjoy eating out in public, but I am somewhat nervous around crowds (and this was BEFORE COVID). 

One of the newest places taking advantage of the SIP orders getting lifted is a new eatery in the SoFa district, right across the street from the SoFa Market and Aura Kitchen + Bar and a short walk away from The Continental and Original Joe’s. The neighborhood itself has been a bit of a hotspot with the younger elements of San Jose for years, and I have to say that in its current iteration, I love it. Lots of walkable areas to eat and hang out…well, for San Jose anyway. 

Located where The Swinging Hookah used to be, the place itself is massive, with enough room for keeping 6 feet away from every unvaccinated stranger that’s not in your circle. According to one article, there also seems to be another floor, where an art gallery and private party spot is planned for, and a large sloth mural painted on the wall (painted by local artist Fernando (@Force129). It’s giving me that vibe that this is a place to slow down and really get to talking with your crew over some drinks and food. And, according to their website, they seem to agree with my assessment as they say on their website that it hangs with leisurely self-assurance over Good Spot’s diners as a reminder of the establishment’s fundamental mission: “to nourish the souls of sloth humans” with everything they have to offer, from space to sustenance to the contents of their hearts. The humble, permanently smiling creature brings a youthful, whimsical touch to the entire place and reminds us to not take ourselves, or itself, too seriously. 

Same guys, Same.

I tried a few menu items, per the usual, most of them were bought and paid for by me, except for the Salpicao which was given to me courtesy of Mr. Thoi Trinh

Katsu Pork Belly Rolls ($10) – The katsu rolls sound good in theory. While they were a bit tough on the outside, they were still serviceable and they paired well with the creamy dipping sauce that they came with. In spite of the toughness, the pork belly did have that melt-in-your-mouth goodness that came through.

Patatitas Bravas ($8) – I got mine piping hot and fresh, as potatoes should be. I got some heat from the soyrizo, which paired nicely with the soft and tender potatoes. I can’t say much more than that, but I’m a firm believer that good potatoes need no explanation.

Chicken Karaage ($9) – Pretty light on the batter, which I liked. The ones on the bottom might be a bit soggy for the faint of heart (I’m a fan to be quite frank), but overall, pretty good fried chicken. Squeeze some of that lemon to get another flavor dimension.

Brussels Parmesan Deviled Eggs ($7) – Deviled eggs are proof that humans can consume more than what is actually good for them, except these ones. I didn’t care for the bitterness from the brussel sprout, however, if you pluck them off and eat them with the capers and nothing else, they’re pretty good.

Garlic Noodles ($8) – It never occurs to me that the simplest dishes are usually the best. These garlic noodles were pretty good. Enough garlic flavor to be tasty, but not so much to knock you on your ass, these pair well with pretty much anything you might get from the menu, especially any of the proteins. 

Salpicao ($15) –  While it was labeled as medium-rare,  mine came out more medium-well. I like my steak more on the rare side (as in, the beef is still mooing), but for flavor and texture, this was pretty palatable.

I was actually surprised by the pricing of some of the menu items. Most places tend to jack up the prices, but with some of the menu items in the single-digit prices, it definitely is a bit easy on the wallet. The vibe of the place, COVID aside, felt pretty easy-going and relaxed, although to be honest, I’m not 100% ready to be in massive indoor crowds just yet in places that I am not paid to be at. Overall, I’d say that if you’re trying to reintegrate back into normal society after a year of being cooped up at home, The Good Spot is a good start.

Full Disclosure: One of the owners is a friend of mine from high school, so take this article as you will (if you want the good tea on him from high school, venmo details ).

Wanna check them out? They’re at 386 S. 1st street in San Jose. Or, you can just use the power of the internet and just go to the link here

Menu items might change, contact the restaurant for more details.

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