Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Black Bear Diner

Black Bear Diner offers breakfast, lunch, and dinner. They offer a big variety of choices and serving sizes to fit every appetite.

I have eaten at Black Bear Diner for all three meals. My favorite is breakfast. I had a smaller portion of egg, bacon and hash browns along with fresh biscuits. The biscuits are giant and very fresh. They serve fresh squeezed O.J. too.

The Ham steaks are giant and the pancakes are like eating fluffy wagon wheels. The country gravy is full of flavor and delicious over biscuits or chicken fried steak. Keeping with a bear theme, pastry's offered include bearclaw's made from scratch.

The atmosphere of the restaurant is designed around the black bear theme leaving you with a feeling of being outdoors in the woods. The menus are designed to look like an old newspaper and contain tidbits of info from the past. It is geared toward family dining and offers a large selection of choices for the "little cubs". It is a great place to take the family for any meal.

Black Bear Diner get's 2.5 out of 5 spoons.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

TED'S HOT DOGS

There's nothing like a hot dog fresh off the grill. As soon as you walk in the door, the smell of the grill gets your taste buds going. Ted's has hot dogs, corn dogs, burgers, sausage of all variety and bratwurst too. They cook your order on a large charcoal grill while you wait. Then the hard part...what to put on your dog or burger. There chili is an old New York style that is thick and all meat,

Ted's also have the best fries and onion rings around! I had a shake to make my meal complete. It was great food and the price was a steel for all you get.

The atmosphere is similar to an old fast food place so nothing fancy here. It's a great stop for lunch or just before a game.

Ted's gets 3 out of 5 spoons.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

The Herb box

The Herb Box offers a wide variety of foods which include breakfast, lunch and dinner.

The Herb Box has fabulously amazing food. The menu offers a nice variety of affordable gourmet foods. A lot of the fresh ingredients are purchased locally which makes it even more appealing. The specialty cocktails are equally creative and inviting. The cheese boards are customized so that I can choose what I want depending on my mood or cocktail! I have eaten there many times now and love the way the chef adds new soup flavors and dishes to fit the season. It keeps things fresh and interesting. The desserts are equally delicious and always fresh.  I am sure this food is made with LOVE!!!

Brunch is amazing. The Red velvet pancakes are unbelievable.They are served with mascarpone cr√®me, gran marnier syrup and wood smoked bacon that is to die for. 

The atmosphere is very upbeat. The decor is a chic mishmash that works so well! My favorite decoration is the moose wearing a tutu sitting on a swing. The patio is relaxing and offers different views depending on where you sit. The service has always been very good. The servers seem to know the menu very well and have always been able to answer any questions I have had from ingredients to flavors and spices used in the dish. I LOVE The Herb Box and recommend it to ANYONE.

This place get's my first 5 out of 5 spoons.

Freddy's Frozen Custard & Steakburgers

Freddy's Frozen Custard is a little burger joint. The menu offers a variety of steak burgers, hot dogs, chili and freshly made frozen custard.

Feel like kickin it ol' school?  Freddy's is the place to go.
Great burger and fry joint. The steak burgers are fresh patties made to order. They have a home cooked taste not the frozen fast food burger. Yes, they even have Veggie burgers too. You can get darn near anything you like on it. The Fry's are fresh cut and seasoned or you can top them with cheese or chili.

I tried a little of everything and my favorite is the chili dog. Tastes like I remember growing up as a kid. The  frozen custard sundaes are amazing. My favorite is the PBC&B mmmm good!
I like that they sell their seasonings so I can grill up the great taste at home. Great family fun atmosphere.

Freddy's gets 4 out of 5 spoons.

Abuelo's

 Abuelo's is a Mexican restaurant. It is a chain and boasts many awards! REALLY?

Took a guest to Abuelo's for dinner. I was very embarrassed. First off, the atmosphere was nice. Very unique! Our service was great but there was not a lot of people there. The chips were good but the salsa tasted like they squirted Macayo's taco sauce into a bowl and called it fresh!( My guest came up with this comparison!)

My guest had a steak fajita chimi plate that came with rice and beans. The presentation was gorgeous! The cheese sauce on top tasted like the canned Nacho cheese sauce you might get at a state fair. In fact...my guest said that was all he could taste. The refried beans were very bland. No lard for sure. The rice resembled a Chinese fried rice which was just weird.  He hated it so much that he didn't eat much.

I had the steak Fajita's which were supposed to be marinated.(NOT)! It was over cooked(some spots were even burnt and crunchy) fatty cheap steak. My guess, Flank or Skirt steak. The veggies under it were not Mexican. They consisted of broccoli, zucchini, yellow squash, a few peppers and a lot of onions. It was served with a bowl of pinto beans. They were soupy and tasted like liquid smoke! I didn't eat much of my dinner either.

I have traveled many places and dined in many exquisite establishments. This in no way resembled Mexican or Spanish cuisine in any way.  Just gross and VERY over priced!

I give it a half a spoon out of 5 and that's being generous.

Black Angus Steakhouse

Black Angus Steakhouse has a great variety on the menu which includes steak, seafood, chicken, and sandwiches. They also have a really nice bar area.

I have lived in AZ for 20+ years and have never tried this place...Ok I admit it and yes, I know it's a chain!!! My friend and I really liked it. We shared the dinner for two. Our appetizer of choice was the zucchini. It's battered in a light Panco breadcrumb. The crispness and crunch was great and I LOVE the fact that it was not a greasy soggy mess. It is served with a fresh, light cucumber sauce which complements the veggie dish very well.

I had the filet with blue cheese and chose garlic mashed potatoes along with green beans. The filet was cooked just as I ordered. The steak was melt in your mouth tender. The potatoes were fresh with small chunks and lots of garlic. The green beans are crisp. My guess is the chef blanches them and then sends them swimming in an ice water bath. They are kissed on the grill for flavor just before serving. Just perfect.

My guest had the New York with green beans and onion rings and was equally pleased. The dessert was a shared piece of chocolate cake. The cake was moist and very rich.

The decor was a little dated. The bar was beautiful and had many customers. I liked the booth height. It kept the noise down and made it private.

Our server was Shannon. Our drinks were NEVER empty. She was pleasant and knew the menu well. She made our first experience a great one. We both plan on returning. A great value for the money.


Black Angus gets 4 out of 5 spoons.

Friday, September 30, 2011

Rock Taco Cantina

Rock Taco Cantina in the Chandler Fashion Square Mall is a bar and resteraunt that serves Tex/Mex. It has rock memorabilia scattered around the walls and a a nice outdoor seating area.
 
I was out and about with my friends. We decided to tried this new place today for lunch. I can see why it was pretty empty. The atmosphere was ok, nothing special.
small Animal fly clip artThere were flies that dive bombed us constantly and we sat inside. A mosquito even landed on our salsa bowl. It was disgusting. By the time we left, my arm was sore from trying to keep the flies away.   
 
The food was very blan. The chips tasted like a bag was opened in the back. Definitely not fresh made. I was afraid to eat the food because of all the bugs.  Our server was Heather. She was great and knew the menu well.

I won't go back. There are just too many real Mexican food restaurants that are better in the valley and don't require you to bring a fly swatter!
 
Sorry...No spoons for you!