Tuesday, March 16, 2010

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Friday, August 8, 2008

Starbucks - Strawberries & Cream

Allow me to preface this review by stating that I hate and despise coffee with every fiber of my being. And, no, this review is not of a meal, but since my drink cost as much as a chicken sandwich, I’m reviewing it anyway.

I recently ended a late night with a visit to the Starbucks on Bayou Blvd. I can probably count on one hand the number of times I’ve been in a Starbucks and don’t really care to up that to a two handed count any time soon. Alas, the other members of my party on that particular night love the place.

I ordered a Strawberries & Cream Frap Blended Crème with Toffee Nut on the recommendation of my sister. She assured me that there was absolutely no coffee taste to it what-so-ever and promised that I could punch her in the ear if I detected any. After paying $4 and some change and waiting long enough for little Starbucks gnomes to run to the Strawberry farm in Allentown, my blessed little pink drink was served. Sip…dramatic pause…hey, that’s actually good. Sarah’s ear is safe. It tasted exactly like Captain Crunch with Crunch Berries. Amazingly like CC w/ CB. So much like it that I thought maybe they just threw a bowl of cereal in the blender. And maybe they did, which I am cool with as long as it doesn’t taste like coffee.

The Low Down:
Coffee, Tea, Snacks
Local Favs: um, coffee
Location: every freaking corner
Open morning, noon and night
$$$ considering what you get

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Thursday, August 7, 2008

Times Grill - Cajun Sunset

According to Times Grill, “Times Grill is a family-friendly, casual dining restaurant best recognized for its 20 specialty burgers offered in conventional versions and wild variations. Our most distinctive burger is the Cajun Sunset®, seasoned with Creole spices and topped with a pan fried egg. At the heart of every Times Grill hamburger is the patty. All patties are chargrilled and hand made to order. “

I ordered the Cajun Sunset not knowing that it boasts the title of “Most Distincitive Burger”. I just have a penchant for burgers and runny eggs and thought I might like them together. And boy, do I! I ordered my Cajun Sunset medium-rare with cheddar cheese, mayo and a side of sweet potato fries (regular fries are so last year). The huge burger comes out open face, with a perfectly cooked egg staring up at you just waiting for the yolk to be popped. And the smell is outstanding, just like you would expect a burger to smell (not like fast food).

Note: if you are an attention addict, this burger is for you - I’ve ordered the Cajun Sunset on three different occasions with three different parties – each time my party exclaims “OOOO – look at Jen’s burger!”. Everyone looks. Everyone wishes they ordered my burger. I eat with an aire of superiority and enjoy every minute of it. I will not apologize.

So, does the taste live up to the look and smell? Yes! It is delish, albeit super messy. The bun is fluffy and fresh. The Creole spices aren’t too spicy or overbearing. The beef is cooked to perfection. The yolk runs down your fingers. I couldn’t ask for anything more from a burger.

Now, about those sweet potato fries. I’ve had better. Times Grill does a nice sweet potato fry. I will order them every time I dine there (my almost inappropriate adoration of the Cajun Sunset assures I will dine there again). They just aren’t as tasty as Jerry’s Cajun Café’s sweet potato fries. Give me a blind taste test…I’ll know the difference.

By the way, Times Grill isn’t the fastest game in town, so make sure you have a few minutes. The minutes will be well worth it.

Your Most Distincitive Jen-o-saurus

The Low Down:
Burgers/Sandwiches/Wraps, Entrees, Bar, Dessert
Local Favs: um, the burgers
204 E. Nine Mile Road
Open for Lunch and Dinner
Around $10
Take out available (no delivery)

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Thursday, July 31, 2008

Seafood di Venezia at Carrabba's Italian Grill

As you’ve read from colleagues’ posts, the crew of the PFC set out for some food and fun at our local Carrabba’s Italian Grill. We decided to hit the place on a Wednesday to take advantage of “Wine Wednesdays” which meant that there was $10 off any bottle of wine.

At our table, our waitress Robin recommended several specials to us. One of them caught my ear and I decided to try it out. Enter... the Seafood di Venezia.

This Ventian seafood platter featured “Trout Nocciola” and “Venetian Gamberoni” served with some pan-seared vegetable ravioli and sautéed asparagus.

The “Trout Nocciola was a hazelnut-encrusted filet of trout cooked on a wood-burning grill and then lightly covered with some basil-lemon-butter sauce. I thought that the mild trout flavor was well complimented by the sauce. This was actually my favorite piece of the plate. It was fresh, crunchy, and simply delicious.

The “Venetial Gamberoni” was shrimp stuffed with fresh crabmeat covered with a little lemon butter. This was my second favorite part of the dish. The crab meat and the shrimp came together pretty well. I think I can attribute the great flavor of this combination from the freshness of the seafood. I’ve had something similar to this at some other place in town, and it was a tragedy. This one was right on target. The spices were just right and it wasn’t over cooked.
The vegetable ravioli was par with ones that I have had at Carraba’s before. They were good, but not awesome. It tasted like it was missing something, but I couldn’t put my finger on it and I still can’t.

The asparagus was awesome, but I’m partial to asparagus in any form. It wasn’t overcooked so it actually still had a little crunch when you bit into them. In my humble opinion, that’s the way asparagus should be cooked. Carrabba’s hit the nail on this one.

Overall, I would definitely recommend the “Seafood di Venezia” to anyone. I really enjoyed it and I think I would definitely order it again when I come back. Do check with your server and see if it’s available. According to Robin, the dish was available for a limited time. It if is available, go ahead and try it. Let me know how what you think.

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