All I wanted to do was give my friends Suvir and Charlie and their friend Abhimanyu a good dinner. Which, in this city stuffed full of gastronomic delights, you wouldn't think would be a problem. The last time we'd gotten together here, we'd enjoyed a progressive supper, sampling burritos and tacos at three Mission taquerias, enjoying aloo puri and chicken tikka masala at three Indian dives, and finishing up with dessert at a fancy French place -- an evening we all remembered with pleasure. But I figured Suvir would be tired from a week's teaching at the Culinary Institute of America in Napa, not to mention opening a new restaurant, Veda, in his hometown of New Delhi, since we'd met. (Plus, let's be honest: I didn't know if I was up to finding several parking places on a Friday night.) Suvir requested Mexican, and I wanted someplace comfortable, more upscale than the fluorescent lights and rickety tables at my favorite, Mi Lindo Yucatan, and nearer to their hotel than Doña Tomás in Oakland. I'd heard good things about Maya, and a Web search revealed that the chef/owner, Richard Sandoval, was in town that week cooking a lunch to celebrate Rick Bayless' new Mexican cookbook, another good sign. (Sandoval also has restaurants in New York and Denver, and... More >>>