Saturday, October 6, 2012

Savory Soups

     I can safely say that soup is one of THE most perfect foods for autumn eating!  The Soup Spoon Cafe on Michigan Avenue serves up a mean bowl of soup!  My husband and I cannot resist their Pumpkin Bisque.  It is a seasonal blend, so as soon as the pumpkins are ripe, in the fall, we rush over to grab a cup.  That is, usually, all I can eat, a cup.  With creme fraiche on the top and a cup of fresh, dark roasted Rudy Baggs coffee, it is almost like dessert for lunch, although it is not sweet.  The savory flavor makes it simply decadent!         

     However, soup is not all they do.  The Soup Spoon features a wide variety of deliciously prepared entrees to please even the most finicky palate.  My hubby goes for the Stacked Roast Beef, which consists of thinly sliced roast beef and sharp cheddar with lettuce, onion, tomato on sourdough bread with their own café sauce.  His meal also includes a side dish, so he chooses to try their homemade Coleslaw.  The roast beef is tender and juicy.  The texture of the meat is complemented by the crispness of the vegetables on top and the soft sourdough bread.  The sauce adds a rich, creamy goodness to the whole sandwich ensemble.  The Coleslaw provides a nice, crunchy accompaniment to the yummy meal.  The Cafe Combo, a cup of soup, a half sandwich, and a side dish, is fairly priced at $6.99.  I also choose this amazing deal!

      I decide on one of the Soup Spoon's luscious wraps.  The “Wraptor”  includes grilled chicken, snow peas, bell peppers, onions, carrots and romaine wrapped up with sriracha and a sweet chili sauce.  The chicken is melt-in-your-mouth tender.  The cooks have prepared it perfectly!  The vegetables are fresh and snappy, and the chili sauce adds a wonderful spiciness.  I also choose the Coleslaw,  but I am unable to finish it.  My husband polishes it off for me.  My tummy is happy enough with the soup, sandwich and coffee.  Delish!

     The Soup Spoon Cafe boasts a very busy but comfortable establishment.  Lunch time is always, always bustling.  You usually have to wait quite awhile for a table.  Seats at the bar seem to be available more readily, although there is no rush.  The servers are friendly and helpful, and they make sure you are happy with your meal.  My favorite waitress is Gretchen.  Her sense of humor makes lunch just a bit more fun!

     Also, do not forget to take the time to look at the Michigan and Lansing art in the restaurant and to go next door to get your honey a rose or other giftie!

The Soup Spoon Cafe

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

al Fresco in the City

     I am happy for a new season of blogging!  I absolutely LOVE autumn!  The sun is shining and the trees are just beginning to show tinges of color in the city.  Tavern on the Square represents perfectly the festive fall atmosphere.  You can sit by the fireplace in their cozy alcove.  You can sit inside the restaurant near the bar and enjoy a cocktail, or you can sit outside on the patio for lively conversation and people watching.  The day my husband and I went to lunch, the weather was not too hot and not too cold, just the right weather for dining al fresco.

     Every meal, at Tavern on the Square, begins with a small plate of crispy sweet potato chips, already provided for every table.  My husband did not get very many, I am sure, because I was totally enjoying those delicious tidbits.  A few were a bit overdone.  This made them bitter and tough, but that was very few.  It was a fun, little appetizer that was not too filling for lunch.

     For my meal, I chose the Fish Tacos with the Shredded Caraway Coleslaw ($8.95).  What a treat!  The whitefish had a mild flavor with a simple, light breading.  I did not know the taco would have Coleslaw on it, but it did not taste the same as the Caraway I had as my side.  I think, it was just a mayonnaise based cabbage salad with guacamole.  The fish and toppings were wrapped inside a soft flour tortilla.  Very flavorful!  The Coleslaw was quite tasty as well, creamy and crunchy with a slight bite.       

     My hubby had the Shaved New York Strip Sandwich and the Grape Tomato and Baby Mozzarella Salad with fresh basil for his side ($10.95).  He was very happy with his sandwich.  The shaved NY strip was lean and tender with a cheddar cheese melted on toasty white bread.  The rich au jus sauce, on the side, added a tang.  Unfortunately for him but fortunately for me, he was not impressed by his grape tomato and mozzarella side.  We actually ended up trading his salad for my caraway Coleslaw.  He did not like the fresh basil pesto.  I, on the other hand, thought it was quite yummy.  The grape tomatoes were ripe, sweet, and juicy, and the mozzarella added a creamy goodness to the zesty basil.  That was just a matter of taste the salad was not bad in anyway.   

     My husband and I had recently celebrated our 17th wedding anniversary.  This was the first opportunity we had had to spend time alone.  What a lovely way to spend the afternoon together in downtown Lansing!   

Tavern on the Square

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Backyard Oasis

     This summer has been a hot one!  WooHoo!  Is it too hot in your backyard to barbecue?  Well, maybe you should try this gathering place.  Backyard Bar-B-Q in downtown Lansing has a fabulous selection of hot and cold flat bread sandwiches, garden fresh salads, and cold beverages to whet your appetite and not break the bank.  My husband and I had a hard time making a decision as to what to eat here!  Everything looked so delicious!

     My hubby opted for what was on the specials board, the Cuban.  The Cuban is pulled pork, ham, swiss, topped with mustard, pickles and Cole slaw.  The regular price of this sandwich is $5.29, pretty good for a sandwich with lots of meat.  He also had a side of baked beans for $1.09.  The Cuban, according to my hubby, is a wonderful balance of flavors.  He was not too sure he would like the pulled pork and the ham together, but this sandwich changed his mind.  The slaw gave the sandwich a nice crunch without being overpowering, and the flatbread was melt-in-your-mouth good.

     My sandwich was their most popular, the Backyard Bar-B-Q pulled pork, for $5.19.  It was delicious!  It was a flatbread sandwich made with authentic hickory smoked pulled pork topped with Cole slaw.  I love their barbecue sauce.  It is flavorful and tangy with a bit of a kick, and I can not say enough about the flatbread.  I should have ordered one of the sides to go with my sandwich, as well.  The marinated veggies sounded delectable!  We will definitely return to try other foods.    

      Also, the decor is adorable!  It is the chairs in the dining room that make you feel as if you are sitting on the deck under the umbrella in the great outdoors, but in the comfort of air conditioning.  Higher chairs give kitschy, hand painted bar height seating along the wall, and lower chairs truly are canvas deck chairs around large round tables to give a very relaxed atmosphere.  There is an umbrella suspended from the ceiling, and the sign that points you to the restrooms direct you to a hot tub.  Although, I was a bit disappointed that there was not one.  Just kidding!

      If you would like a break from the heat and a break from cooking in a friendly, tranquil space,  give this backyard a try.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

European Excellence

     Unique is the the first word that comes to mind when describing Restaurant Mediteran in downtown Lansing.  The Balkan cuisine is elegant, flavorful, and completely different than anything around.  The foods gets its influences from the many countries that make up the Balkan peninsula, as well as Italy, Romania, Slovenia, and Turkey.  Other European influences are certainly represented also!

     The meal I chose is definitely emphasizing a German flair.  This lunch special features a small rack of tender lamb ribs in a tangy tomato based sauce topping hearty spaetzle.  It also comes with a tossed salad with vinegar and oil dressing and fresh baked dinner rolls (included with every entree).  The lamb was fabulous!  All of the flavors blended together perfectly to make a well-rounded, savory feast.  I say feast, because it is a lot of food for only $7.95.  Keep in mind, however, that this is a lunch special, not on the regular menu, so this particular meal is available only once in awhile. 

     My husband's choice has a decidedly Italian slant.  The Sandwich Mediteran consists of deli sliced chicken breast, lettuce, tomatoes, onions, cucumbers, mozzarella cheese on homemade whole grain bread for $5.95.  If you have more of an appetite, you can order soup or a salad for just $2.00 more.  Our waiter, who is also the owner, seems to be genuinely surprised when you do not order something more, but this sandwich is a nice size for a full lunch.  What makes the Sandwich Mediteran so delectable is the bread.  The owner and his family are in early every morning to bake the bread for sandwiches and rolls for the tables. 

      The interior decor is also a blending of all of the European cultures, mentioned earlier.  The highlight of the restaurant's design is the art on the walls.  These are sketches drawn by the owner, himself.  The owner and his family are from Bosnia, and their attention to detail has made this downtown space into a European haven, with cloth table cloths and napkins, low lighting, and lush indoor plants.
     Next door to the main restaurant is a deli that is a takeout version of Restaurant Mediteran.  If you do not have a ton time for a lunch, you are able to get the same great food without the wait.  After lunch at the sit-down restaurant, my hubby and I go next door for their fantastic rice pudding!  It is so creamy and cinnamon-y.  It is hard to resist, even though we are fairly full.


     Restaurant Mediteran is a rare gem, far from the commonplace.  Come try a European treat right here in Lansing.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Hanging at the Nip-N-Sip

     It's cool!  It's hip!  It's a retro drive-in on Lansing's north side!  At Nip-N-Sip, just like back in the day, you drive up, order from the cute, little menu speakers, and a server (Sadly, not on roller skates.) will bring your food out to you.  Then, you can either eat in your car or there are pavilions provided with picnic tables where you can eat al fresco.  

     If you are looking for "health" foods, this is probably not the place to go, however what the menu does offer is delicious, classic diner fare.  Some examples offered are the grilled chicken sandwich, fish 'n' chips, onion rings, various burgers, and fountain soda.  There are also mouthwatering daily specials.

     My choice was the Smokey Joe for $3.89.  I upgraded to a combo meal for $2.50 more.  I got onion rings and a fountain Cherry Coke.  The Smokey Joe rocks!  It is a huge, juicy hamburger, very flavorful, with just the right amount of crunch from fresh lettuce and tomatoes.  The sesame seed bun compliments the meat perfectly.  I had to take half of it home, because it was so big.  The onion rings were large also with tasty breading, not too greasy.  Crunchy, onion-y goodness!
     My husband got the build your own quarter, double cheeseburger, with mayonnaise, lettuce, and tomato, for $2.75.  His sandwich was well- seasoned and yummy.  The cheese, a sharp cheddar, added a wonderful, savory flavor to his burger.  He upgraded his meal to a combo meal, as well, but he opted for the French fries instead.  He said the fries were crispy and hot without being greasy.  He could not stop eating them, even though he was full... I guess that is a good sign that they were pretty delectable! 

     Nip-N-Sip butts up to a dirt bike track, which could be fun to watch on competition days.  Unfortunately, there was no activity there the day we visited.  Oh well, maybe next time!  Plus, next time, we would love to try some of the homemade cookies or a Boston cooler.  We will, definitely, have to save room for dessert!

Menu courtesy of

Friday, June 8, 2012

Korean Hospitality

     Do you know what Bulgogi is?  How about Jap Chae, Kalbi, or Bim Bim Bab? These dishes were just some of the delectable offerings at Korea House Restaurant, a small out-of-the-way place on Trowbridge Road, in East Lansing.  By out-of-of-the-way, I mean tucked in a small corner behind a fast food joint, in the same plaza as Goodrich Shop Rite.  It was, actually, kind of hard to see.  There was a small sign on the street side of the building and a sign on the door.  It was totally unassuming and humble.  This was also the atmosphere inside the doors as well, with dim lighting, closely placed tables, muted colors, and soft music playing in the background.

      The cool thing about it was that you almost felt like you were in Korea!  Many of the other diners were Korean, and the servers were speaking Korean with them.  From the moment you walked into the restaurant, the owner was diligent in presenting each customer with authentic Korean cultural style and hospitality.   The wait staff was quick to direct you to a table.  Promptly, menus appeared for your perusal, as well as water and eating utensils (chopsticks and silverware).  The server was quick, efficient, and friendly, even in the busy, lunch hour rush.

     The lunch menu included a grouping of Korean meal options and sushi specials for a very good price.  My husband ordered the bulgogi ($4.72).  Korea House's bulgogi was tender marinated beef, so tender it almost melted in your mouth.  It was served with white, sticky rice, and three steamed wantons (mandu).  Delicious!  He said it had a wonderfully sweet, Asian barbecue flavor.  My hubby just does not do onions, so the next time, he will see if they can make it without those.  Along with his meal, he also ordered their house hot tea.  The flavor was a subtle, soothing blend of corn and barley, an uncommon, delightful combination!

     My choice was the spicy chicken ($4.72).  The chicken and vegetables were perfectly cooked.  Plus, the spiciness did not overpower the flavor, a balance that seems to be difficult to achieve.  This meal also came with sticky rice and three pieces of mandu.  Kimchi came with every meal, as well, yummy small dishes of spicy cabbage, pickled radish, and bean sprouts.  I ordered the hot tea with my meal too, along with my water.       

     The food came out tasty, hot, fast, and at a good price.  The servers were polite, and they smiled a lot.  The atmosphere was really mellow.  Plus, the secluded location made it a get away from the routine of work stress.  What more could you ask for?  Korea House was the ultimate in lunch time dining.  The big bonus?  Diners got to experience small piece of Korean hospitality right in East Lansing!

Lunch menu courtesy of

Thursday, May 24, 2012

What, No Periscope?

     Want a submarine?  No, not that kind of sub... the sandwich.  There are tons of places in Lansing that sell them.  Which one is the best?  I have to say, Lenny's Sub Shop is pretty close.  Unfortunately, it's not a local company.  It is a chain, headquartered in Memphis, TN, but with the daily specials and the generous portions, their quality extends far beyond their Tennessee roots.

     Lenny's motto "More Food, More Taste, More Personality" is something the downtown Lansing shop takes very seriously.  The employees welcome customers warmly with plenty of smiles as you approach the end of the counter to order.  The young woman who took our order was quick and efficient.  My husband ordered the turkey sandwich special.  This was a Turkey Sub with provolone cheese, a chocolate chip cookie, and a Luzianne sweet tea for $6.99.  I ordered the Roast Beef Sub Combo with provolone cheese, jalapeño chips, and a Luzianne unsweetened tea with lemon, which was a bit more expensive for $8.59.  The special is definitely the way to go, if you want to keep the cost down.

     When we were finished at her counter, she directed us to the next station where a gentleman made our sandwiches.  We had our choice of a white or a wheat sub bun.  We both opted for the whole wheat.  To these, he added a pile of meat and a few slices of cheese.  Then the questions began.  Lenny's does not have their toppings laid out for you to choose.  The person making your sandwich asks, a few ingredients at a time, what you would like.  We found this a bit odd...  However, each time you chose, he added a good amount to your liking.  Lenny's also makes their own spicy relish.  It is so, so delicious on any of their many sandwich choices.
     The next station was where one would pay for their meal.  Lenny's has an online reward system that customers can utilize to earn free food.  My hubby happened to have earned enough points for us to have a free sub.  Score!  This was good for the bank account!  Our meal also gave us five point toward another free sub.  I am liking this. 

     Lenny's has a very clean, well cared for dining area.  A gentleman was cleaning up nearby, and even offered to refill our drinks for us.  This is the kind of service Lenny's is famous for, and tastes such as Philly Cheesesteak, Black Bean Veggie Sub, and Chicken Salad will keep us coming back to try their food again!

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Para Lansing con Amor

  Where to go on a gorgeous 80 degree, May day?  Hhmmm....  Neither my husband or I wanted to be inside on such a warm day, so we decided to turn to El Oasis (Antojitos Mexicanos), a popular food truck on Lansing's east side.  El Oasis serves authentic Mexican food and drinks for breakfast and lunch.  This seemed like the perfect choice! 

     It, absolutely, was.  We each ordered a Gregorio's special for $3.00.  It came with one taco, beans and rice.  My husband ordered his taco with no onion.  He also ordered a sope at $2.00, and both of us ordered an horchata, $2.00 each.  El Oasis was busy, busy!  We waited quite a while for our food, but it was worth the wait.  The tacos were made with two soft white corn tortillas, mildly spicy ground hamburger, creamy cheese, and a delectable blend of cool vegetables, lettuce, tomato, and onion.  The rice and beans complimented the taco with a bit of spice.  My husband's sope had a yummy corn fry bread as its base with layers of refried beans, shredded beef, lettuce, tomato, cheese, avocado, and sour cream.  We were offered two very different versions of pico de gallo sauces, one red hot and one green mild, so we got one of each.  Both had a unique flavor that added a nice zing.  Delicious! 

     As for horchata, if you have never had this wonderful rice milk drink, you are truly missing out.  The drink my hubby and I ordered at El Oasis was creamy, cinnamon-y goodness.  The blend of spices in the rice milk were just the right mix.  It was hard not to just drink it all right away, and not let it compliment the meal.  It was truly divine.   

     All of the food items at El Oasis were packaged in small Styrofoam containers, ready for travel.  It is important to remember that there is no outdoor seating available.  However, just down the block from their prime location is the Foster Community Center, which has picnic tables outside as well as a playground for the kids.  This was where we opted to enjoy our meal.  Perfect for an impromptu picnic lunch.

      Antojitos Mexicanos, in Spanish, means Mexican Cravings.  The hot, fresh, made to order menu at El Oasis will certainly create cravings for a long time to come.      

Monday, May 14, 2012

Leo's House

     Walking into The Brunch House, in South Lansing, is like walking into someone's home.  As soon as you come in the door you are greeted with enthusiastic smiles and warm welcomes.  You do not have to wait to be seated, you can pull up a chair where ever you choose.  A server will be right with you to take your order.  There are big screen TVs with the news, so you can watch while you wait, and WFMK (light rock) pipes in through the speakers.  The waitress my husband and I had, one of only two for a lively lunch rush, was very sweet with an accommodating manner.  She used "Sir" and "Ma'am" when taking our orders, although she was in a hurry.  It made me feel a little old, but this is the kind of polite service you do not get everywhere! 

           The menu has an extensive breakfast selection, as well as lunch, comprised of basic diner fare.  The owner also adds an authentic Lebanese dish to the menu daily.  As my hubby and I looked over the menu and specials board, we decided to go with some of The Brunch House's many breakfast options.  He had the blueberry pancakes, two eggs over easy, and ham at $6.00, while I had an item from the specials board, (which was not on the menu, I might add.) a veggie scramble with rye toast for $5.99.  The veggie scramble had a layer of hash browns topped with eggs, mushrooms, green peppers, tomatoes, cheese and sausage with a sauce on the top.   I am not sure what the sauce was though.  Hhmm....

     The server apologized for the wait, which was extra long.  Unfortunately, the food, in our opinion, was nothing spectacular.  However, it was hot and made to order.  The highlight of my husband's meal was the Blueberry Pancakes.  He said they had a good flavor and a generous amount of blueberries throughout the mix, although a bit dense.  His eggs were also tasty.  They were cooked perfectly.  As far as my meal, I liked the hash browns and the other vegetables.  These ingredients were crispy with subtle seasoning.

     The best thing about The Brunch House is the relaxed atmosphere.  Owner, Leo Farhat, is extremely serious when it comes to customer satisfaction. He came to our table to introduce himself at the end of our meal.  Leo made sure we had gotten enough to eat, asked if there was anything else he could do for us, and shook our hands hardily.  On The Brunch House's web site Farhat explains. “If customers don’t totally enjoy how they’re treated, they don’t come back, and we’re not going to allow that. Here, they can escape from their work day for a bit and truly enjoy a great meal, what’s better than that?”  A good philosophy for any restaurant.

NOTE:  Since this blog came out, I have had more than one person rave about Leo's Housa.  I definitely have to go back and try this or one of his other Lebanese specialty items.  Thank you!  

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Thai It Up!

     What is all the buzz in downtown Lansing?  The waitresses at Thai Village Restaurant run around busy, busy, busy like bees!  They are fast, highly efficient, no nonsense with few extra pleasantries, but that is only because they have little time to stop and talk.  There seems to be a constant whirr, during the lunch hour, at the corner of S. Washington Square and Kalamazoo Street! 

     "What would you like to drink?"  We asked for hot tea.  Tea comes in the cutest little teapot with a square edged cup.  It is very hot, but it cools off nice and gradually as you sip, talk, and listen to delightful Asian music.  Even though the pace around you is quick, the decor is soothing to the senses.  The mirrors along the inside the wall create the optical allusion that the space is bigger than it actually is.  This effect makes the restaurant bright and airy.

     "Would you like egg drop or hot and sour soup?"  (Choice of soup comes with every meal.)  My husband and I got one of each.  The hot and sour is decidedly the favorite with a delectable blend of spicy broth and crunchy vegetables.  The egg drop soup seemed bland in comparison.

     "What would you like for you entree?"  For me, P7 Pad Pak with chicken, a tasty stir fry of broccoli, pea pods, carrots, baby corn, napa, and bamboo shoots in a brown sauce for $6.50.  Medium heat, please!  For my hubby, P19 Peanut Curry, a spicy, flavorful combination of beef, chicken, and pork with bamboo shoots, carrots, bell peppers, and green onions in a sweet Thai peanut curry for $7.00.  He asked for no onions and medium heat, as well.  It is so tempting to delve into your neighbor's plate, because the colors, flavors, and aromas are quite enticing.  A large mound of white, sticky rice helps to balance out the textures.  Also, I found the portions to be quite generous for lunch.  I had some left over for a snack later.

     The website states, "Our delicious Thai Cuisine awaits you!"  This is true.  The food at Thai Village Restaurant is yummy, hot, and fresh.  The bonus?  It is all made to order.  You can have it as spicy or as mild as you wish.  Plus, the waitress told us that you could add or subtract vegetables and change up the sauces.  How great is that?  We thought it was pretty amazing and scrumptious at an affordable price!

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Pie? Yes, please!

     Do you live, work, or play near downtown Lansing?  If you do, and you haven't been to Grand Traverse Pie Company yet, go!  This, Traverse City, MI based, restaurant is definitely one exceptional establishment.  Their menu features breakfast, lunch, dinner, and, of course, pie (Which gets its own top billing!), as well as other desserts.  They also have coffee drinks and their own unique, brewed coffee blends.

     Ironically, my husband and I ended up ordering exactly the same meal.  Weird, huh?  It just sounded so delicious!  We picked the combination of a Cherrywood Bacon, Lettuce, and Tomato grilled sandwich on sourdough bread and a house salad with their creamy, homemade ranch dressing.  My hubby made his a little different by getting the house blended chipotle ranch instead, although, in my opinion, there wasn't much of a difference.  The chipotle dressing could have used a bit more spice.  I think this was my only complaint.
     The sandwich was very good, fresh and tasty, with crisp, cherrywood smoked bacon, and the salad was of the highest quality ingredients with feta cheese that added just the right amount of sharpness to compliment the mild, creamy ranch dressing.

     The best part of the whole meal, however, was what we ordered afterward, PIE!  I ordered  the Blackberry Peach Crumb with their robust, sassy house blend coffee.  My hubby ordered the Apple Crumb with Caramel and Pecans.  We tried some of each other's pies.  We just could not resist.  So, so delicious!

     If you are anywhere near Washington Square, and you want a wonderful, affordable treat, go to Grand Traverse Pie Company.  Our meal was a combo, salad and sandwich, for $6.29.  You can add a drink for $1.00 and any slice of pie for $2.49.  The staff is very friendly, the samples are scrumptious, and the place is hopping!  The restaurant is very busy during the lunch hour, because the business people, who are downtown everyday, know where all the good food is.  A little secret, though, they are also open until 7 pm, on week nights.  Plus, they have weekend hours to enjoy a slice of pie and a cup of joe anytime you have a craving!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

It's All Greek to Me

     This restaurant excursion was a bit different.  My husband and I had been to Zeus' Coney Island Restaurant, in south Lansing, a few times before, so we had to bring an objective party, our 15 year-old daughter.  She was not so sure she would like the Greek food.  She wanted to eat at a fast food joint, somewhere completely mundane.  She needed some convincing. 

     As soon as we walked in, we were greeted by a very friendly hostess, who took us right to a booth.  It was quite busy, but we were seated right away.  The waitress came promptly with waters and menus.  Now came the real test, would there be something on the menu that our brave daughter would want to try?  There were so many tasty looking things on the menu.  We all had trouble deciding.  Greek foods like gyros, mousaka, lamb shank, and kebobs, as well as American favorites like a bacon cheeseburger, chili, and the tuna and Swiss melt jumped out at us as the specialties of the house.  Also on the menu, were breakfast classics and yummy desserts. Are you hungry yet?

     Success!  Our daughter went for a grilled chicken breast sandwich, which consisted of a marinated, grilled chicken breast on an onion roll with lettuce, tomato, and mayo on the side, and, of course, French fries.  The meal was a good price too at only $5.49 for the sandwich + $2.99 to make it a combo meal (fries and a drink). She was pretty impressed with the food.  The chicken was cooked perfectly, not dry at all, and the fries were crispy and hot.

     My husband ordered from the breakfast menu.  It was called the Two Eggs Breakfast.  You could, kind of, make up your own meal here.  His choices were two eggs over easy, ham, hash browns, and two 4 inch banana/pecan pancakes, for $4.49.  He said it was not great but not bad.  It was an average breakfast.         

     My meal was the  California Gyro $4.99 - portabella mushrooms, broccoli, green peppers, and onions, with melted cheddar, lettuce, tomato, and their homemade gyro sauce in fresh pita bread.  I added grilled chicken for $1.00 more.  The gyro was huge, so I did not need fries with it, but I stole a few of my daughter's, just to taste them.  Yum!  The whole meal was nicely prepared, and the pita bread melted in your mouth.
     Overall, we had an excellent experience at Zeus' Coney Island Restaurant.  The atmosphere was homey and friendly.  The waitress had a fun sense of humor, and our daughter, who was not too keen on going to a Greek restaurant, enjoyed it thoroughly.  Next time, we'll have to save room for dessert!

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Where's the Corned Beef?

     Well, this is it!  My first post on my very own restaurant blog.  What an exciting adventure!  For this first endeavor, I decided we should go somewhere we had never been before.  One of my husband's co-workers recommended Schwartz's Deli to him, so here it is!
     Schwartz's Deli is in the Frandor area, in the building that used to be Mr. Taco.  It still resembled Mr. Taco, a bit, on the outside, but the inside had been transformed into a New York deli style diner.  The sign on the window claimed Schwartz's Deli is "The Ultimate Sandwich Experience."  This made me hopeful!

     As we looked over the deli's extensive menu, the friendly cook asked another customer if he would like "the usual," #5.  I thought it was really cool that she knew the people who came in frequently and cared about what they wanted to order.  It took my husband and I awhile to decide.  The menu had a wide range of sandwiches and a smaller selection of soups and salads.  I gave up on trying to make my own decision, so I went with what the other guy had (the #5), which was called "Benjamin's Best".  It consisted of Hot Corned Beef and Pastrami on Rye with Cole Slaw, Russian Dressing and Swiss Cheese.  The hubby got a #6, Isabella's Idea.  This sandwich looked good too!  It was made up of  Roast Beef on Rye with Swiss Cheese, Lettuce, Tomato and Mayo.  Excellent!  The only issue I had with these sandwiches was the price.  They were a little expensive for a simple lunch, plus you had to pay $1.50 extra to make them a combo meal.  This made the meal about $10.00 per person for a sandwich, a pickle spear, a small bag of chips, and a drink.
     We had one other problem at this establishment, which could be easily ironed out, the service.  They only had two people working during the lunch rush, and there were several people waiting for their food.  It seemed that the cashier got a bit confused as to who had which sandwich.  Unfortunately, our sandwich was given to another customer.  The cook was very sweet about this and apologized profusely.

     The food, however, which is what we came for in the first place, was delicious!  The slogan "Proudly Serving Overstuffed Sandwiches" is not an understatement.  The meat, on the #5 - Benjamin's Best, was piled high, and the tangy Russian dressing added a nice flavor.  The Cole slaw, although a bit bland, gave the sandwich a nice crunch.

     The website boasts that Schwartz's Deli is "Mid-Michigan's Best Deli, Period!"  In my opinion, that's a bold statement.  The management has a few things to work on to make that claim, but the sandwiches give it lots of potential!

Unfortunately, Schwartz's Deli has closed.  :(