Survey Says: We Travel For Asian Dining

Montclarions have spoken, and we travel for our Asian meals.  In fact, we drive to places throughout Oakland, Piedmont, Alameda, Berkeley, Albany and San Francisco for our evening repasts.

These and other findings came from Today in Montclair’s recent survey.  The goal was to understand how much we depend on Montclair Village for either dine-in or take-out options.

Previously, I thought Montclarions were basically lazy, because our four Asian restaurants have been open for years.  That theory was shot down by you.

What happened?  On a monthly basis, at least 75% of you supported Pagarung Thai, Silver Palace, Thai Bai or Toshi Sushi.   However only 25% were loyal (or lazy) and ate all your Chinese and Thai here.  No one reported eating all their Sushi in town.

Perhaps this survey attracted Montclarions who dine out often.  Nearly half of respondents consumed Chinese food five-plus times per month!  Your Thai and Sushi meals were less frequent, with half eaten once or twice a month.

Different patterns emerged among folks with the strongest yen (sorry) for Asian food.  Half ate Chinese locally up to four times monthly, and drove elsewhere for the other meals.  Ardent sushi eaters didn’t stick around much at all.  Thai diners stayed put more often, by comparison.

Survey participants shared all sorts of interesting restaurants outside Montclair, yet none stood out as clear winners to report here.  So that calls for another survey (later) which uncovers your definitive top spots, Asian or otherwise.

Anyway, thanks for  participating – and proving that we do, in fact, venture outside the burg for our Asian meals.  You are a more energetic bunch than I ever expected.

How Walkable Is Montclair?

Well, it depends on exactly where you stand.  This question is typically raised by people considering a move to Montclair, as they wander around the confusing topography.

Here’s one tool that delivers a walk score related to nearby shopping, schools and parks.  These calculations are supposed to measure how “easy it is to live a car-lite lifestyle.”  When you achieve 70/100, then it’s possible to go car-free.

Of course, Montclair scores depend the delta between you and the Village.  If you live next to the coffee shops, then you’re in luck:  Thornhill Coffee Shop rates a 69/100, while Peets jumps to 88/100.

When you live higher up, it’s not practical to shop on foot.  Redwood Regional Park (Skyline) rates a paltry 8/100, surrounded by nature and a few ridge line homes.

As you move through the hills, the walk scores don’t improve much.  Places like Farallon Way (26), Robin Hood Way (35) and Ascot Drive (also 35) are far from stores or other services.

Still there are walkers out there.  We have an Oakland walking map that marks ideal streets and staircases, and use it frequently.  Yet most folks are exercising their dogs or themselves, rather than shopping.

The upshot?  Cars remain a way of life around these parts.  We’re dependent on guzzlers for work commutes and daily errands too.