Archive for the 'Food & Drink' Category


Americano calls itself a burger bar, but they have more than just burgers to offer. My family and I visited on a random Saturday evening while we happened to be downtown for a sporting event. We arrived at 5:30 to find no wait for a table, which was good for us as we were somewhat in a hurry.



They are located on Race street just a block away from fountain square. They have a small patio space and a much larger inside dining area. There is a somewhat large bar that flanks the northern wall and booths fill the majority of the remaining space.



The kitchen occupies the western portion of the restaurant. It is open air and view-able from the majority of the restaurant. We happened to be sitting within close view, which provided a little entertainment/distraction for our elementary aged children.



We all split an order of pretzel and beer cheese to get started. The pretzel was of good quality and I loved the beer cheese. It was a little too spicy for the kids though, but they were happy to enjoy the pretzel on its own.

Pretzel & Beer Cheese

Pretzel & Beer Cheese

Though there isn’t a kid’s menu posted on their website, they do offer a variety of selections for the little ones. My son enjoyed the plain cheese burger ($6) along with a side of fries ($4). My daughter had the kids mac n cheese ($5). Only tried the fries, which were freshly fried and cooked to perfection!

Kid's Burger

Kid’s Burger

My choice for dinner was the grilled spicy chicken sandwich with pepperjack cheese, lettuce, pico de gallo, and jalapeno aioli ($13). I upgraded the included side of fries to hand battered onion rings ($3). I really enjoyed the chicken sandwich and the onion rings were obviously hand breaded and fried to order. Delicious!

Grilled Spicy Chicken Sandwich

Grilled Spicy Chicken Sandwich

My wife enjoyed the housemade veggie burger patty of farro cannellini beans, topped with caramelized onions, brie, tomato, arugula, and mayo ($13). The farm greens side salad was included and was fresh and of decent size. The veggie burger was outstanding and we really enjoyed the toppings as well.

The Veggie Burger

The Veggie Burger

Overall we had a very nice dinner at Americano. The prices are a little higher than normal, but that often comes with an excellent location downtown. This will not be a monthly stop for us, but we will definitely be back in the future.

Americano Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Yellow Submarine – Nags Head, NC

As we pulled into the Outer Bank to start our week long vacation, we stopped for lunch in Nags Head on our way to Kill Devil Hills. Our first couple of stops were only serving breakfast or brunch. We moved on to Yellow Submarine and found our lunch just after 12:30 on a Sunday.



Our table for ten was ready immediately and many of the other tables were also occupied or would soon be filled with hungry patrons. The long bar stayed empty but would make a good spot for a quick dinner if the tables were all full.

Chicken Philly

Chicken Philly

My wife and I split the chicken Philly, grilled chicken cooked with white onions, sauteed green peppers, and mushrooms. This is topped with lettuce, tomato, mayo, and white American cheese, served with potato chips (6-inch: $8.49, 12-inch: $13.49). Overall this is a very filling sandwich and the taste was good. There is plenty of cheese on top, which is a requirement for a solid Philly.

Rip Curls

Rip Curls

The start of the meal were the rip curl appetizer we shared with the table. These are pizza dough brushed with extra virgin olive oil, fresh garlic, Italian seasonings, and stuffed with Mozzarella cheese and pepperoni, sliced into pinwheels then baked (12 count for $17.48). These are awesome and highly recommended! A smaller 6 count is available for a smaller group.

Overall the prices are a little high, but that often comes with tourist destinations. Our service was excellent and the food was good.

Yellow Submarine Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Raleigh Beer Garden

Another dining stop we had during our brief stay in Raleigh was at the Raleigh Beer Garden. We actually had tried to go elsewhere, but a popup storm had us quickly changing plans to find a large indoor space for dinner. This place is so big that our party of ten was able to be seated right away just past 5 on a Saturday. We had a cool table with a fake tree growing out of the middle of it.

Tree Table

Tree Table

There are two floors inside, an outdoor rooftop bar, and a large patio on the ground level. They claim to have the worlds largest draft beer selection, and there are plenty of choices for every style. The full list is online and includes over 300 options. Some of my wife’s selections turned out to be pretty expensive, so watch what you order as prices are also listed.



The food menu is not nearly as long as the beer list, but there is a wide variety of apps, wings, salads, sandwiches, pizzas, and platters. I went with the North Carolina pulled pork sandwich with pickle on a brioche bun. This was served with fries and coleslaw ($10). This was a lot of food for a fair price as the sandwich was piled high and the fry cup seemed to be never ending. The taste was good and seemed fairly true to North Carolina style.

Pulled Pork Sandwich

Pulled Pork Sandwich

My wife went with the firecracker shrimp platter with fries and coleslaw ($13). I think she jumped the gun on the shrimp order and should have waited until we were closer to the ocean to enjoy. She thought that these were not very fresh and she commented that she should have ordered something else.

Firecracker Shrimp Platter

Firecracker Shrimp Platter

The kids enjoyed their burger and chicken tender meals ($5 with fries). Overall I was impressed by the beer selection and for the most part the food was enjoyable. The pork was a popular item in our group, as was the brisket and burgers.

Raleigh Beer Garden Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Flying Biscuit Cafe – Raleigh, NC

Our first vacation of the summer took us to the Outer Banks of North Carolina. On our way there we stopped for a night in Raleigh. After driving through the night to get there we immediately headed for breakfast at the Flying Biscuit Cafe, a southern chain of roughly 20 restaurants through 4 states.


The parking lot was crowded upon our arrival and the restaurant appeared fairly small from the outside. Our group of 10 was told that it would only be 15 minutes wait for a table, and it turned out to be even less than that. The inside is much more spacious than the outside led me to believe.


After placing our drink orders, plates of warm biscuits and apple butter were dropped off for our table. The biscuits were light and fluffy and the apple butter added some great flavor. Our group also enjoyed a selection of mixed drinks including the manmosa with vodka, blue moon beer, and orange juice.

Biscuits & Gravy

For breakfast I went with more biscuits, but this time they came covered in homemade chicken sausage gravy ($5.99). I almost always order biscuits and gravy if it is on the menu, and these did not disappoint. The chicken gravy was a little different than the more traditional pork sausage, but overall I enjoyed it.


I also had a cup of grits on the side ($2.69). They claim these to be award-winning creamy dreamy grits, and they certainly were creamy. Normally when I order grits I enjoy them with cheddar and jalapeno, so these were a little bland for my tastes. Others in the group enjoyed them more than I did. Though overall we all had a really good breakfast.

The Flying Biscuit Cafe Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Next Door Eatery – Denver, CO

Our last meal in Colorado was a pleasant surprise. We were staying one night in Stapleton before a morning flight the following day. After searching for nearby restaurants that are good with kids, we settled on Next Door Eatery.


Our arrival before six was great as the restaurant was nearly empty and it also happened to be happy hour! The inside was very clean and still looked new for the most part. The house made fried pickles and pepperoncinis were a great start to our meal ($4 during happy hour, $5.95 otherwise). I’m a huge fan of fried pickles but I don’t recall having fried pepperoncinis before. I really enjoyed the addition of these. Neither of them begged for the dipping sauce that was provided as they had a great flavor on their own.

Pickles & Pepperoncinis

For dinner I went with Merlin’s Carolina pork with mustard BBQ, cole slaw, crispy onions, and house pickles ($11.95). The sandwich was piled high with well flavored pork. It was very filling and came with a side of chips and simple salad.

Merlin’s Carolina Pork

As good as my dinner was I was pretty jealous of my wife’s order of the ancho chile chicken bowl with brown rice, black beans, corn, fresh pico de gallo, tortilla strips, lime creama, and cilantro ($13.95). The flavor combination in this bowl was outstanding, similar to a taco style bowl from other places, but the ingredients were fresher and the serving size was huge.

Ancho Chile Chicken Bowl

Our kids enjoyed the cheeseburger slider and the kids bowl, though my son really wanted fries with his burger, which are not available. Next time I would try to talk him into trying the crispy smashers. Overall we really enjoyed the food, service, and quality from Next Door Eatery and would definitely visit again.

Next Door Eatery Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Lowry Beer Garden – Denver, CO

Before and after our ski trip to Copper Mountain we spent some time in Denver. Upon our arrival we met some friends at the zoo and then met even more friends at the Lowry Beer Garden for lunch. One a nice sunny Denver day this is the perfect place. The outdoor patio is huge and lined with plenty of picnic style tables. The beer selection was good, a kids menu is available, and food comes out fast!


For lunch I chose the pulled pork sandwich with BBQ sauce, cheddar cheese, and pickles on a cornmeal Kaiser bun with a side of Carolina slaw ($9). This was messy but tasted quite good. The side of slaw was immediately dumped on my sandwich and the flavors melted together perfectly. I also stole a bite of a Cubano sandwich ($10) which was equally as good.

Pulled Pork Sandwich

The prices are a bit high since sides are not included, but who can complain when you can get a side of fried pickles for $5! This was more than enough to share and came served with dipping sauce. Our kids enjoyed the grilled cheese with fries and drink for $6.50. Overall we enjoyed our visit and would not hesitate to swing by again on another sunny visit to Denver.

Fried Pickles

Lowry Beer Garden Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Freddy’s Frozen Custard & Steakburgers

I was recently given some free meal coupons to use at the Freddy’s Frozen Custard & Steakburgers location on Red Bank. Started in 2002, the chain has grown coast-to-coast and serves made to order food without a long wait. The Red Bank location has been open since October 2016.


There is a drive through window, but I chose to get my to-go order from the counter to check out the entire space. The dining area is very large and customers flooded through the doors just past noon on a Friday to get a quick lunch.


I placed my order, grabbed my cup and filled a cup of ice tea. Within a couple of minutes my order number was called and I was on my way.


Initially I was a little hesitant to give them a try as most of the menu focuses on steakburgers. But I decided to give it a try anyway. Before I get to my sandwich, I must note that the fries are excellent! They also have their own fry sauce, which seems to combine mayonnaise and ketchup with some signature spices. Make sure you get some of this!


As I don’t eat burgers I was left picking between the veggie burger and the grilled chicken sandwich. I went with the veggie burger and was presently surprised. The patty is made mostly of black beans, and though mine seemed to be a touch over cooked, the texture and flavor were good. It came topped with cheese, a full slice of onion, Freddy’s sauce, lettuce, and tomato on a toasted bun.

Veggie Burger

I look forward to another visit to Freddy’s. Next time I’ll be sure to take the kids as they will love the burger, grilled cheese, and chicken tender options. I also need to try some of the frozen custard. I’m sure I will have plenty of opportunities to do so as they are located just down the street from our swim club.

Freddy's Frozen Custard and Steakburgers Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Good Fellows

Good Fellows has been operating in the Anderson Towne Center since 2004. I’m in the area at least one a month and often pass by but had never walked inside until my family and I were in the area at lunch time. It always looked so dark from the outside I assumed it was more of a bar than a restaurant. But it turns out they are open for dinner every day of the week and lunch on the weekends.


We were seated near one of the front windows and there was actually a surprising amount of natural light entering the space. I think that the red walls and dark ceiling make it look much darker from the outside than it truly feels inside.


After placing our orders, we found a few games between our table and the entrance to help pass the time. A couple of arcade games were available, but the Foosball table proved to be the most fun!


One of our kids is a pretty picky eater and unfortunately decided he didn’t want pizza. We ended up with the Italian cheese stix with the sauce on the side ($5.99). I would have preferred one of other appetizers such as the pepperoni balls or the veggie skins, but these weren’t bad.

Italian Cheese Stix

My wife and I decided to try a couple of the signature pizza offerings but splitting the pizza in half. Louis’s love features olive oil, fresh garlic, artichoke hearts, banana peppers, black olives, and goat cheese. While the BBQ Grippo is topped with BBQ sauce, chicken, bacon, onion, cheese, and BBQ Grippos chips. Both were $10.49 for a 10 inch all the way up to $20.99 for 16 inches.


I love BBQ Grippos and that half was an easy decision for us. I thought the Sweet Baby Rays BBQ sauce complimented the spicier chip topping really well. This is a must try! Louis’s love was much different, a more traditional pizza combination and was also good. Good Fellows has a couple of other unique signature pizzas include lemon pepper chicken and chicken fajita. Overall the food was good, service was quick and friendly, and the value was just right.

Goodfellows Bar and Grill Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Casa Sanchez – Copper Mountain, CO

There aren’t a ton of restaurants at the base of Copper Mountain, but even so there are some that we will likely not return to. Casa Sanchez is one of those on our skip list. The enchiladas presentation was pretty sloppy and the flour tortillas were disappointing. Overall the taste was pretty typical of your average Mexican restaurant.


The burrito was huge, probably enough for two to split, but the taste was again very average. The sauce on top was sub-par, and probably should have been replaced with the somewhat better tasting green chile sauce.


One thing that was really odd were all of the water cups lined up across a counter. It shouldn’t be hard to fill these cups on demand for your customers. It wasn’t even very crowded, so this seemed excessive and bordering on unsanitary. We will likely not return.

Water Cups

Casa Sanchez Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Eagle BBQ – Copper Mountain, CO

Another spot in Copper Mountain that I’m a fan of is Eagle BBQ. They have been located in the center village since 2016 and server up what they call Colorado BBQ, a mixture of the traditional American styles.


Orders are placed at the counter and there is plenty of seating available for groups of any size. There is also a small bar with a good selection of local craft beers and a full bar. Kids plates are available and include a burger, hot dog, chicken tenders, or mac and cheese.

Pulled Pork Platter

I went with the slow smoked tender pulled pork platter ($16) served with a choice of side (bbq beans for me), thick cut white bread, and a fountain drink or PBR. The side of beans was large and of good flavor. The meat was tender and had a nice smokey flavor.

Pulled Pork Sandwich

My wife had a similar order but went with the pulled pork sandwich with side and same drink choices ($15). The portion size of pork seemed to be pretty much the same, so maybe the sandwich meal is the way to go, unless you are going to try more than one of the meats offered. They do offer brisket, turkey, ribs, and sausage in addition to the pulled pork we tried. Overall a good and quick meal option in Copper.

The Eagle BBQ Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato