Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Detroit, MI - The infamous Detroit debate, American or Lafayette Coney Island? The verdict - American, only slightly. The best way to do a test is to walk into one place, have a coney and fries, walk outside and about five feet to your right or left and have another coney and fries to do a comparison.

Next time I go, the new test will be to buy one from each and once I have them both in hand, do a bite by bite test. Then I'll see which I prefer.

In this test, American is the winner, only by a slight margin. I thought the chili was slightly more spicy, giving it more flavor. The fries were also slightly better with a better crunch and didn't find any soggy fries.

If you're not familiar with coneys, allow me to introduce two places to you. First either place is legendary in Detroit. The coney has a slightly toasted bun, grilled and not boiled all beef hot dog. Boiled dogs don't have the charbroiled flavor nor the snap when you bite into them. They are also not as firm since they absorb water. Getting back to the coney, its grilled and has an excellent snap when you bite into it, fresh diced onions, homemade chili and the flavor is unique here in Detroit, and lastly the homemade blend of mustard.

Either place, you won't be disappointed. I'll see how my next comparison test goes.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

San Francisco, CA - I'm hooked, I'm sold, my heart now seeks out almond croissants from french bakeries. If I see it in their display case, I can't stop from ordering it now. After having an amazing almond croissant at one place, I was so surprised on how delicious they are, I now have to try it anywhere I go.

La Boulange de Market is no exception. However, it really wasn't as good as other places. Since they have multiple locations, I wonder if they don't make them in-house, making it not a unique personal recipe. The croissants I love are ones that have beautifully toasted almonds on top and the almond cream in the middle should have only a slight flavor of almonds and should not overpower the croissant. In La Boulange's case, it was too strong. It was still good and for picking up a quick bite to eat while walking past, I would get it again. I just would not seek it out and drive across the city to try it.

It is a cute little shop inside, not much room though. The patio outside is very nice for grabbing a croissant, sit out there, read a book or people watch. Enjoy!

Friday, December 10, 2010

Farmington, MI
- There are lots of middle eastern restaurants in the Detroit area, but not many Chaldean places. Growing up, I ate at all my friends' homes who were Chaldean and always looked for those dishes at restaurants, but could never find them. I had to start wondering why?

New Saharas and the one in oak park both have Chaldean dishes that are not on the menu. In this case, what I came for, kari, which looks like tomato soup in the picture. As a kid, my friend's mom would make rice and kari in the morning and it sat on the stove all day for whenever you wanted it. Kari is a stew of tomato sauce, curry, and potatoes. I'm sure so much more, but that's the basics. Well, this version didn't disappoint. I was prepared to lick the bowl.

The falaffal was good too, not the best I've ever had, but not bad. The other highlight you'll want to make sure you try is their ranch dressing. I know, you're saying, ranch so what. They make it in house and it has some tangyness not typical for ranch. Its very good and I almost finished the little dixie cup when I typically never finish any dressing. Its also tasty dipping your bread in too.

Lastly, if your in the mood for a delicious heart attack, try the cream chop. Wow is it good. Its pounded and flattened steak or chicken then deep fried. Its delicious.

Service is good and the bread is prepared in the stone oven on the premises.

Saturday, December 04, 2010

San Francisco, CA - Hotel restaurants, most of the time, you hate them. They are convenient, but really, it's hotel food, not fine dining. However, sometimes it's really easy to decide to try it when you just arrive and you really don't know the city yet. Ducca's is just this situation.

Alright, lets try it. Well, for the rest of the week, you can guess that I was finding all kinds of other breakfast places. I tried their "Breakfast Buffet", looks average to decent. Lets see if they'll knock my socks off because it better for the price the buffet, it better be fantastic. From the star rating I gave it, you can guess that it did not do that.

Lets start with the positive feedback. Service was very good, very attentive, welcoming, and warm. Food, well, it was food. That's really it. The only component that I thought was delicious, was their french toast. That was the best part, not worth the cost of the buffet, but still it was very good. They were very large slices of cinnamon raisin bread with a soft egg flavor, but not overpowering. I would certainly order that again. The only other item that was helping to add worth to the buffet was having lox. I'll load up on that with any opportunity.

The biggest negative feedback is that the rest of the items are just average. The meats, eggs, etc... could have been ones that you found on the buffet at Big Boys for a third the cost.

Just get the french toast, that would be worth going. Enjoy!