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Preview: Suburbaurants By Kathi K.

Suburbaurants By Kathi K.



Reviews of restaurants in and around the Harrisburg area



Last Build Date: Mon, 01 Mar 2010 2:00:38 UTC

Copyright: Copyright 2015
 



Bistro 19

Mon, 01 Mar 2010 01:45:40 UTC

2010-03-01T02:00:38Z

A friend and I went to see Riverdance at the Strand in York, Pa the other day. Awesome show! But it was the entire day that just made me laugh! After realizing we had to use a parking garage and we didn't have any cash on hand, but had to basically clean out purses and the car to scratch together... A friend and I went to see Riverdance at the Strand in York, Pa the other day. Awesome show! But it was the entire day that just made me laugh! After realizing we had to use a parking garage and we didn't have any cash on hand, but had to basically clean out purses and the car to scratch together $5.00 worth of change all the while the traffic is backed up around the block, but I digress! I was afraid I already had an idea how this day would go. Bistro 19 Menu So after the show we had a list of about eight different restaurants in York that we wanted to try. Now, it's been at least 30 years since I've been to downtown York, and it was fascinating what comes back to you...the smells, sights, and sounds, and voila, you are right back, but that is another entirely different blog! Yea, the final decision was based on which we found first. Yeppers, Bistro 19 is located at 19 N. George Street, next to the judicial center, right across the street from the Strand! We had a plan. We were going to check out the bar before making a decision. Well, the bar was awesome and the drinks were better. After two drinks, we couldn't move so opted to try dinner there. The bartender, and sorry I didn't get his name, makes a drink with quite the punch! He is laid back but conscientious! Uh oh, no reservations – no problem. We will talk our way in. Notice, I didn't use the word “con”! Well, we struck up a number of conversations, introduced ourselves to the bartenders, and to the owner/manager. Ryan, the owner/ manager must have taken pity on us and decided to take us under his wing. We waited for a table, and we were shortly taken upstairs to the private dining area. The surroundings were absolutely stunning. Old, refurnished flooring, stenciled painted scenes dressed the room into a inviting atmosphere! Oh, there was this private balcony room adorned with lights and overlooked the lower bar area. The original brickwork from the building separated and added a measure of unsurpassed ambiance! The place is absolutely stunning. I decided I'm coming back and I'm eating in that private room! It was just stunning! Heck, we didn't even get to the food yet! And we should because it didn't disappoint! So we were situated upstairs in the private dining area, and our server came and gave us our menus. He introduced himself as Lucas. He then made some food suggestions. We needed some food after the drinks downstairs! He suggested the Cheese Steak Egg Rolls which was a philly cheese steak stuffed in a egg roll and fried! It was served on a bed of cheddar cheese sauce and adorned with onion rings. The serving was perfect for two people, and did I tell you how wonderful they were? I even just sopped up all that cheese sauce with an egg roll! Seriously, they were absolutely delicious! We ordered our entrees. We got the New York Strip steak and the Crab Cakes. Oh my, oh my! First we got our salads! What a great presentation of the salads, and I forgot to take a picture! Make sure you order the salads! You get a small side salad and only the freshest of ingredients are served. On the salad plate you also get a warmed pretzel! So totally unusual and enjoyable. We enjoyed our salads and our drinks, and when finished Lucas brought out our entrees! I think he must have been watching, but he never hovered! Great, great service! So we got our entrees. The plates were just perfect. The presentation on the steak was perfect.....and the crab cakes! Oh yea, just check out the pictures! I loved how the rice was molded into a shape! I still can't figure out how it remained hot in that shape, but it did! The lump crab meat was all crab! N[...]


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Camp Hill Cafe

Mon, 18 Jan 2010 22:21:53 UTC

2010-01-18T23:57:27Z

Oh, it was great to have a day off when the rest of the world is off too! So a friend and I ventured to the West Shore side of the river today. We decided to stop for lunch at our favorite little stop! Yea, the Camp Hill Cafe. It is located at 40 Erford Road in Camp Hill. Since...

Oh, it was great to have a day off when the rest of the world is off too! So a

(image) friend and I ventured to the West Shore side of the river today. We decided to stop for lunch at our favorite little stop! Yea, the Camp Hill Cafe. It is located at 40 Erford Road in Camp Hill. Since today was a holiday we thought we would be able to get in. Usually the place is packed from all the businesses located around it, and it is relatively small.

The menu is extensive and they have daily specials. We were in a quandary on what to have. Everything is really good at the Camp Hill Cafe! They had two soups available – chicken noodle and the Italian wedding soup. We decided on the pork barbecue sandwich. I had to have mine with the French fries! The pork sandwich was ample, tangy, and shedded. The roll was fresh, soft, and buttery. Cost was reasonable!

The Camp Hill Cafe serves breakfast and lunch, but call first at (717) 730-9887! The hostess greeted us promptly and sat us. The server came by and greeted us and said, “Two iced teas, right?” I was astounded because we hadn't been there since October. Yes, it was the same server, and she remembered our drink order. Go figure!

So she brought us our iced teas, and we asked about a couple different entrees. She responded to all of our questions, and was so friendly and outgoing! She didn't hover, but kept us in iced tea, cleared plates as needed, and generally kept an eye on us.

So I asked how long she had been serving and where she had worked. We are talking about a professional server here, and she also works at another eatery on the East Shore. Her name was Barb, and the thing that I noticed over and over was that the customers knew her by name.....and she knew theirs! She was able to greet a new customer and then bring his drink without being prompted. Quick, efficient, and so personable.

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When you walk into the Camp Hill Cafe the first thing that you see is the dessert case, so when Barb came over, I had to go over all the desserts with her. They had Banana Cream Pie, Turtle Pie, Kentucky Derby Pie, and the usual arrays. She suggested the apple pie with ice cream! Okay, can't go wrong there! We enjoyed the warm apple pie ala mode, and it was delicious. The ice cream was vanilla, but had a tang of cinnamon which complimented the apple pie.

The Camp Hill Cafe is a great place to go with friends. It is easy to find, plenty of parking, great product, but their biggest asset is their service! The Cafe is open everyday except Saturday from 7:00 a.m. until 2:00 for breakfast and lunch. It is open Sundays from 8:00 until 2:00.


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Houlihan's Hershey

Sat, 02 Jan 2010 22:26:41 UTC

2010-01-03T00:10:17Z

New year, and I've decided that I have to do a much better job at writing this blog. Things have been lax because I just can't afford to eat out often. But, I decided to change that attitude and to make time to eat out once a month and blog it! So, today I ventured out to Houlihan's in... New year, and I've decided that I have to do a much better job at writing this blog. Things have been lax because I just can't afford to eat out often. But, I decided to change that attitude and to make time to eat out once a month and blog it! So, today I ventured out to Houlihan's in Hershey. Not a tough decision because I wanted to use some of the gift cards first. Off to Houlihan's for a late lunch. Went in and was promptly greeted and handed one of those vibrator thingies to let us know when a table would be available.. Five minutes – not a long wait at all. So off to the restroom! My first impression wasn't kind at all. Restroom was a mess. Okay, it must have been busy at the restaurant. The five minutes turned into ten minutes, but we were being entertained by another couple sitting waiting also. They were enjoyable and we laughed ourselves silly. Wow! We got a table....actually a nice comfy booth! Nice table! Our server came promptly and took our drink order. An iced tea and a hot tea! Okay, drinks are just not in order because we are using gift cards and are on a budget! We then ordered. We ordered our soups, a potato soup and French onion soup. Both were delivered in a reasonable amount of time, but the soups were lukewarm. Not cold mind you, but lukewarm, like they were sitting awhile which wasn't possible because the server delivered immediately! Hmmmm, maybe they were dished out and sat under a warmer or something??? Server refilled our drinks when we requested but never offered any water. Is this passe? Don't restaurants serve water anymore unless it is requested? Guess I missed that article! We ordered our entrees and they were nothing special. A burger and fries, and a French dip with fries. Both plates were presented about 10 minutes later, and they were a nice presentation. All condiments were served on the side which is a nice touch! No catsup bottles at the table but served in a ramekin. I like that! Starving, we dove in. Using my fingers, I picked up a fry! Uh oh, what's up? It's cold! I tried a few more and offered them to my table mate and she concurred. Cold fries. So I try my French dip on a toasted bun with melted provolone. The roll was not toasted and kjkBurnt picked out bun!the provolone was only on one half of the sandwich. Quizzically, I checked my table mate's plate. Her French fries were a little warmer – not cold. I looked at her burger. She took off the top bun and lo and behold! Burnt bun! Not only was the bun burnt but someone tried to pick out the middle! You know that this meant that it was no accident, but that someone in the kitchen tried to hide the mistake but served anyway. Yes, I took a picture of it! We ate what we could. We showed our server when she came over and she removed our plates to present to the manager. She came back and offered free desserts which we declined. She then offered us our bill and removed all but the drinks. The server handled the situation professionally and courteously under trying circumstances. Of course, we still tipped her. Since both of us have served, we know that it was not her fault and she didn't do the cooking. And yes, we left her a tip based on what we would have paid had the meal been acceptable. Overall, extremely disappointing experience. And yet, we still have three gift cards to use but are apprehensive to go back. Too bad! [...]


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Fiesta Mexico

Sat, 04 Apr 2009 04:28:34 UTC

2009-04-04T05:12:59Z

The other evening I had family members visit and wanted to eat out in a relaxed atmosphere. Since we hadn't seen one another in some time, we decided to try Fiesta Mexico. We've enjoyed El Rodeo in the past and thought we would try their counterpart on Paxton Street. We didn't have reservations, but it was a Tuesday evening. We...

The other evening I had family members visit and wanted to eat out in a relaxed atmosphere. Since we hadn't seen one another in some time, we decided to try Fiesta Mexico. We've enjoyed El Rodeo in the past and thought we would try their counterpart on Paxton Street.

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We didn't have reservations, but it was a Tuesday evening. We were seated promptly. Our hostess gave us a four top in one section, but we wanted to sit in the large room with the comfy chairs, so she graciously accommodated our request.

Our server brought us out a basket of nachos with a couple bowls of salsa. Yes, and she also willingly brought us out a second basket when we finished the first.

We perused the menu which was extensive. We had a lenthy discussion on different beers of which we ended up trying three different ones. In other words, they had a good beer menu, and also a variety of frozen drinks. I gave the raspberry marguerita a try, and totally enjoyed it.

We ordered different dishes. I'm not proficient in Spanish nor do I really know Mexican culinary dishes so I let one of my friends order for me. I got the Chicken Fajitas which was sliced chicken with stir-fried peppers, onions, and tomatoes all served on a hot, sizzling plate with warmed, soft taco shells on the side. Of course, I also got the side plate with all the lettuce, tomatoes, rice and refried beans. All served piping hot. The entire meal was delicious.

Another member of our party always orders the Grande Dinner which includes on of each of the following: The bean chalup, beef chile relleno, beef enchilada and hard beef taco and a beef burrito along with beans and rice. Simply put - his plate was empty and clean at the end of the dinner.

Any party member ordered a variety of items. He was starving and just ordered anything that sounded delicious. He decided he had a hankering for pork so he ordered the Carnitas. Carnitas are pork meat served with rice, beans, a tortillas. Of course, the salad wasn't really enjoyed, so he had to order a chicken burrito too!

The thing about Fiesta Mexico that we enjoyed the most was the relaxed setting. The lighting gave a soft ambiance to the room. The chairs were extremely comfortable, and the entire atmostpher were reminisce of an outdoor cafe. Furnishings were of Mayan influence, and you could easily get swept away and imagine yourself in some foreign place. As our conversation and laughter continued, we all decided to vacation somewhere soon in a warm spot!

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We finished off our meal with Choco Tacos. You know - that delectable campy dessert that we all enjoy but don't want to admit too. Since we all got one, we just indulged and laughed at ourselves.

Just a little piece of Mexico in our own backyard! Try it soon and enjoy!

3957 Paxton St
Harrisburg, PA 17111
(717) 920-1553




Linglestown Chocolate Cafe

Tue, 15 Jul 2008 02:15:29 UTC

2008-07-29T17:41:45Z

In my travels around the area, I noticed this place and wanted to give it a try. After calling an old and dear friend, we met there for lunch last week. First I have to say, there is no street parking, but just park around behind the place. If you miss the entrance, (I did!) just go down to the...

In my travels around the area, I noticed this place and wanted to give it a try. After calling an old and dear friend, we met there for lunch last week. First I have to say, there is no street parking, but just park around behind the place. If you miss the entrance, (I did!) just go down to the intersection, make a right and go back the alley. Linglestown Chocolate Cafe is located at 5948 Linglestown Road.

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After going in the side entrance, we were greeted and seated promptly! I noticed a small cafe type room that led into the a larger dining area. There is also an outside deck you can enjoy. Since it was hot, we opted for the dining area.

The Chocolate Cafe is a renovated church. Many remnants of the church are still present and you can tell what it once was. In the center of the dining area, is an original pew from the church. In the dining area, there is an enclosed "White Napkin" area called the Alcove. It seats four and is reserved for special occasions.

Once seated our server, Renee, gave us a brief history. We ordered our drinks and of course, we needed lots of extra time to peruse the entire menu and make a selection. We found out that all the soups are homemade on property! So we had to try one! We tried the Chicken corn Soup as an appetizer. Delicious! We then ordered our entrees. Hamburger and a Turkey Club. The hamburger was do to specification and had that great charred taste but so juicy inside! You know, dripping on the plate juicy! The Turkey Club was on a Panini-type bread with the usual turkey, bacon, tomato, etc. The sandwich was excellent, but we had to take half of it home.

Then came desserts. I asked to see the dessert tray. You know when the server brings out the samples to show you, it will be trouble. There were a number of choices, and we decided on the Hazlenut Chocolate Mousse and the Carmel Mousse. Now, the server called the desserts by their "real" names in the appropriate language, but the spelling is totally beyond me! Anyway, decadent, gooey, rich, absolutely delicious desserts. Then Renee told us about the selection of homemade ice creams they also carried. Yes, that's right......Homemade!

Even with two desserts, we still ordered a sampling of the Triple Berry Ice Cream! Oh my! You can't believe how good it was! There really is nothing like homemade ice cream!

If you want to go, check out Linglestown Chocolate Cafe at http://chocolatecafe.biz/index.html. They are closed for private parties on Sundays and Mondays. They also have a nice catering menu if you want a private affair catered.

Reservations are encouraged as they do have some busy nights. Call at 717 920-9321! Good food, really super service, and in a great location! Try it soon!




Damon's Grill......Revisit!

Fri, 11 Jul 2008 15:06:51 UTC

2008-07-29T17:42:27Z

Yea, I go back to places....even ones I didn't like the first time around! The other night a couple of us went shopping up at the Susquehanna Shoppes. We just didn't want any heavy so that eliminated Macaroni Grill. We weren't in the mood for Moe's either, so we decided on Damon's Grill. I was there before and even blogged...

Yea, I go back to places....even ones I didn't like the first time around! The other night a couple of us went shopping up at the Susquehanna Shoppes. We just didn't want any heavy so that eliminated Macaroni Grill. We weren't in the mood for Moe's either, so we decided on Damon's Grill. I was there before and even blogged it, and I wasn't impressed.

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Well, things have changed. Be ready to be impressed because I was!

Greeted promptly and seated immediately. Oh, by the way, watch out that you don't park in the "Take Out Zone" spots! Once we were seated, our server, Mark, came and got our drink order. Just ice teas.........no alcohol because we were planning on some serious shopping. Mark brought out drinks and took our orders. One of the guests had difficulty deciding what to have and was leaning towards a spicy grilled sandwich. She can't do spicy, so Mark suggested the plain grilled sandwich and then she could just pick her toppings. Great suggestion!

We order the grilled chicken and the veggie of the day, broccoli. We also ordered the pulled pork and fries. Our young adult ventured into the salad land with a Southwestern Chop Chop Salad. The salad was huge and topped with blackened chicken. The dressing was a spicy, ancho ranch which topped a zesty green salad surrounded by tri-color nacho chips. A couple different cheeses adorned the salad along with red peppers, salsa, and tomatoes. The pulled pork was just exactly what was needed too. Soft, warm bread with an ample serving of spicy pork. Hmmmm! Hmmmm! Good!

Dinner just isn't dinner without a sweet to top it off. Damon's has a small dessert menu, but the items all looked terrific! We went for the New Double Chocolate Mousse Pie on a bed of chocolate syrup and whipped cream sprinkled with Oreo cookie. Oh my! It was awesome!

The place was adorned with sports memorabilia, and check out the pics in the ladies room! I just thought it was fun. Damon's is clean, good service, great food, and definitely will go to the top of my favorite places to eat out.

Oh, did I share that the prices were definitely right too?




Roxy's Chatterbox Cafe

Thu, 19 Jun 2008 18:39:44 UTC

2008-07-29T17:43:28Z

Oh my! Delicious food! Great ambience! Such fun! The Chatterbox exudes charm with a through back to former times. The pictures that adorn the walls were of celebrities that may have frequented the "Town & Country Restaurant" that is now Hoss' Family Restaurant. You will also notice family photos sprinkled thereabouts also. There is even an original menu from the...

Oh my! Delicious food! Great ambience! Such fun! The Chatterbox exudes charm with a through back to former times. The pictures that adorn the walls were of celebrities that may have frequented the "Town & Country Restaurant" that is now Hoss' Family Restaurant. You will also notice family photos sprinkled thereabouts also. There is even an original menu from the Town & Country Restaurant encased. Family history!

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Roxy's Chatterbox Cafe is located at 254 West Main Street in Hummelstown PA. Roxy's is family owned and operated. With their roots in Hummelstown, they cultivate friendship along with serving outstanding, salads and sandwiches. Their service is friendly and personable.

We arrived early for lunch and got a great corner table. They serve some novelty drinks....no alcohol. We enjoyed the ice tea and the punch. Their salads are crisp, sweet, and enjoyable. We ordered our lunch meals. We had the chicken salad meal on a bed of lettuce with almonds and mandarin oranges topped with a sweet and sour red vinaigrette dressing. They also offered this salad sans chicken salad as their side salad. Truly a great summer salad! We also ordered our sandwiches. We thoroughly enjoyed the ham and cheese on the pretzel bread with honey mustard dressing. We also had the ham and cheese with coconut mayonnaise on the farmer's bread. The serving was more than ample! The sandwiches were garnished with fresh fruit. All meals were delightful for lunch.

For desserts there was a coconut cake and peanut butter pie with an assorted array of ice creams. The prices were more than reasonable. If you would like to try Roxy's, please call first. They are only open certain hours. They are also opening an ice cream shop too located nearby. Please call for more information! Their phone number is 566-1445.




Sex and the City

Tue, 03 Jun 2008 04:20:04 UTC

2008-07-29T17:43:59Z

Finally! A movie for women over 40! For us and about us! The movie is very satisfying. It actually has substance and a story that is so much more than just a "chick flick!" The movie exemplifies the power of women! It was well worth the wait! Carrie, Samantha, Miranda, and Charlotte are back! The clothes, the condos and furnishings,...

Finally! A movie for women over 40! For us and about us! The movie is very satisfying. It actually has substance and a story that is so much more than just a "chick flick!" The movie exemplifies the power of women! It was well worth the wait!

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Carrie, Samantha, Miranda, and Charlotte are back! The clothes, the condos and furnishings, the jewelry, accessories, and the shoes! Oh the shoes! All an indulgence in excess! As women, it is awesome to imagine living those excesses!

The men of "Sex and the City" also didn't fail to charm, engage, love, and anger the audience. The emotions were a roller coaster ride of feelings. Big, Harry, Steve, and Smith have all returned. New twists on old story lines, but always with so much style.

The characters were all more pronounced on the big screen, but true to their self. Carrie and Big were so reminisce of Scarlett and Rhett while Miranda and Steve were more our everyday lives. Charlotte and Harry are Cinderella and Prince Charming. Okay, Harry doesn't appear to be Prince Charming, but what else can you call a man who dotes on his wife and family and wants to be surrounded by women? He is also impeccably attired in wonderfully made suits! He literally charms women everywhere with his attentiveness. Samantha and Smith certainly didn't fail in their endeavor into their excesses either but Samantha stays true to her one great love. Samantha admits to a milestone and embraces her new found knowledge!

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Certainly, the movie had a few rough, raw moments. Tears and laughter abound among the audience members. The true theme of the movie is the deep, abiding friendship through the years. Even with all the hurt and pain, we learn the power of forgiveness and the continual commitment of friendship.

I certainly won't spoil and intimidate any outcomes, but the movie delves into the outrageous characters and their relationships with one another and their significant others.

Escape with a girlfriend! Most men will not be able to sit through it. It is so much fun!




Cantone's

Mon, 26 May 2008 00:40:27 UTC

2008-05-26T00:40:34Z

Cantone's is located on Fritchey Street in Colonial Park. It specializes in Southern Italian cuisine. A family-owned and run restaurant with a long history reminiscent of Italy, I had wanted to try it for some time! A friendly, attractively decorated restaurant with an extensive menu, we were greeted and seated immediately. Our server took our drink order and told...

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Cantone's is located on Fritchey Street in Colonial Park. It specializes in Southern Italian cuisine. A family-owned and run restaurant with a long history reminiscent of Italy, I had wanted to try it for some time! A friendly, attractively decorated restaurant with an extensive menu, we were greeted and seated immediately. Our server took our drink order and told us all the daily specials. Drinks were delivered promptly.

We ordered salads and they were cold, crisp and delightful. For our entrees, we ordered the Homemade Baked Lasagna and the Penne ala Vodka. The servings were hot and ample. The lasagna was delicious and the bread.....warm Italian bread....how can you go wrong? You can't! Just sit back and enjoy! The Penne ala Vodka was very good and the sauce was a mild, tomato cream sauce served with peas and Proscuitto ham throughout. There was even enough leftover for warm-ups the next evening. The atmosphere was definitely Italian with an awning to replicate an outdoor cafe. Old Blue Eyes and Friends adorned the walls.

For dessert we were shown a tray of delightful, calorie-rich, decadent sweets. We choice a canolli! Sweet, creamy, oh so good!

The outing was very reasonable for the product served. The only area of concern that I found was that when I checked my bank balance a couple of days later, I noticed that the balance submitted was $20 more than what I signed for! Thinking perhaps I just miscalculated and misplaced my glasses, I waited to call the bank until the next day. Lo and Behold! The bank must have realized something was up, and recalculated! If you go, hang onto your receipt! You don't want any "extra" charges tacked onto your bill. Along that line, I always leave a cash tip.....never on my card! But....on the tip portion, I write "left at table" so there is never a discrepancy.

Cantone's has many different rooms and can also cater large parties. Overall Cantone's has a good product, good service, and a great atmosphere. Check them out at www.cantones.net!




Dukes Riverside

Sat, 19 Apr 2008 15:05:10 UTC

2008-04-19T15:05:23Z

Couple of us stopped over at Dukes for lunch last week in Wormleysburg. Having never eaten there, I was somewhat taken back. Extensive menu, outstanding service from the host to the busser, clean, and delicious food! First of all you go in and are pleasantly greeted. No wait! Sure we only went for lunch, but it is still nice to...

Couple of us stopped over at Dukes for lunch last week in Wormleysburg. Having never eaten there, I was somewhat taken back. Extensive menu, outstanding service from the host to the busser, clean, and delicious food!

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First of all you go in and are pleasantly greeted. No wait! Sure we only went for lunch, but it is still nice to be treated like they want to have you. We asked to be seated on the patio area. There are several sections to Duke's. You can eat at the bar, in the restaurant portion, patio area, or the outside deck. I even noticed a private room or two for special occasions.

We ordered our drinks and the server was very patient with us. Having to look over the entire menu took us awhile. They had an appetizer section, sandwiches, pasta, dinner entrees, and my personal favorite! Dessert! Oh, more about that later.

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We ordered. Tuscan Turkey and the Crab cake sandwich were the big winners. Not a long wait for either. Oh, the crab came with chips, but I had to get fries for a dollar extra. The crab cake sandwich was broiled, ample, and served on a toasted roll with a side of tartar. Wonderful, fresh Maryland lump crab! No filler! The Tuscan turkey was real sliced turkey with zucchini, peppers, provolone cheese, grilled on that thick garlicy Tuscan bread. I had to bring home half the sandwich. Fries were hot and delicious!

Of course, she mentioned dessert, and I was ready! Nice choices all of them, but I just had to try their Giant Strawberry Shortcake. Their triple-layer shortcake was huge, smothered with strawberries, topped with whipped cream. We shared, but still couldn't eat it all. So, we took it home and enjoyed the rest for the next couple of days.

We got our check and another pleasant surprise. Very, very reasonable.

Overall, the experience was delightful. We loved sitting on the patio and the food, service, and surroundings were great. We will definitely go again. Did I mention the clean bathrooms?

Check out their website for further information at www.dukesbarandgrille.com

Gee, what more can we ask for?




Giotti's

Fri, 21 Mar 2008 17:16:35 UTC

2008-03-21T18:08:16Z

Today I visited Giotti's at Patton Place off of Linglestown Road for lunch with a friend. Griotti's is relatively new. Beautifully decorated in old world Italian, you can't help to notice the ceramic tile flooring and the stone work at the walls. The furnishings, from the light fixtures to the table ware, were top-notch, expensive and tasteful. We were greeted...

Today I visited Giotti's at Patton Place off of Linglestown Road for lunch with a friend. Griotti's is relatively new. Beautifully decorated in old world Italian, you can't help to notice the ceramic tile flooring and the stone work at the walls. The furnishings, from the light fixtures to the table ware, were top-notch, expensive and tasteful.

We were greeted and seated promptly. It was basically downhill from there. Noticing the lack of organization in the restaurant, we were seated and the overhead television was blaring. We ordered our drinks. Giotti's does not have a liquor license but you can BYOB if you would like. First thing I noticed when I took off my coat were the crumbs under the table. Surprised because I knew that at 11:30, we had to be some of the first customers.

We looked over the menu, and frankly, it is huge! I personally don't understand having one menu for lunch and dinner. Just seems to me that with separate menus, it would be easier to read and would increase the bottom line for the dinner. Don't restaurants want to serve their expensive entrees sooner than offer sandwiches for the dinner crowd? The big seller seemed to be the oven brick pizza.

We then ordered our food items. A cheese steak and a grilled chicken panini. Simple enough - unless you wanted mayonnaise on something. Never happened! The cheese steak was certainly ample enough, but I didn't understand that the same bread or roll was used on the panini. Also, the cheese steak had minimum cheese on it. Nothing else was served with the sandwiches. No fries, chips, or pickles as you may normally find. No presentation on the sandwich plates at all. Just lonely sandwiches!

The server refilled drinks when asked. We did notice that the servers didn't seem to have a server station and they had tables all over the restaurant. As we were seated at one end of the restaurant, our server also had to cover tables at the other side also. We had to wait for drinks, desserts, and our check because of the server assignments. Knowing something about restaurant management we commented to one another that it is unusual to get quality service from a server when management assigns and splits their stations.

We asked for the dessert menu, and our server brought out the dessert tray. Unusual for the lunch time crowd. She presented the two desserts and commented that the "leftovers" were only being served at that time because the other desserts were being made for the dinner crowd. We still tried the chocolate truffle cake, and yes, leftover - obviously. No, no tiramisu or parfaits were available. So disappointing!

We got our check eventually along with our coffee and our "to go" box and I would like to at least say that the prices of our sandwiches were reasonable. Our total check of $24 for two people without any liquor just seemed high for a lunch!

Other than the company, Giotti's was a disappointment. Such a beautiful establishment, but already you could see maintaining a clean, well-run restaurant, didn't seem to be a top priority. Overall, I will venture back to Giotti's in a couple of months and hope for an improvement and attribute the early problems to growing pains.




Your Place

Mon, 31 Dec 2007 18:21:53 UTC

2007-12-31T18:37:43Z

Sometimes you just stumbled onto fun spots! Yesterday while I was working. I got a call to meet some friends for a drink at Your Place. Yes, a sports bar! This group was diversified with their football teams. One wanted to watch Green Bay; one the Steelers; and one, the Falcons. Me, I just don't care about NFL games all...

Sometimes you just stumbled onto fun spots! Yesterday while I was working. I got a call to meet some friends for a drink at Your Place. Yes, a sports bar! This group was diversified with their football teams. One wanted to watch Green Bay; one the Steelers; and one, the Falcons. Me, I just don't care about NFL games all that much!

So we were engrossed in conversation enjoying our beer and wine, when we noticed a young couple at the bar. They were obvious Seahawk fans of a big nature. Wearing matching shirts and hats was the big clue! My personal opinion is that they were more enjoyable than any game that was on!

So we ordered. The small pizza was the special so we got one along with a stromboli and fries. When I go to a sports bar I'm usually disappointed with the food, Well, did I learn a lesson! Pizza! Hot and gooey - you know where the cheese just stretches out! Basket of fries... my personal weakness! Hot with just enough salt! Stromboli - utterly delicious! Seriously! The food was good! The server/bartender was polite, funny, and personable. The entire bill was very affordable. Check out their website and be sure to print out some discount coupons!

One thing that I also noticed was that there were kids in the dining area. Well behaved and polite. Nice to see that a sports bar doubles as a family restaurant too.

Entertainment! Back to the young couple of Seahawk fans - yea, Seahawks were losing! It just didn't dampen their spirits. When it started snowing, the couple went berserk! Apparently they were from Miami and saw snow for the first time!

What a fun outing!




Chocolate Avenue Grill

Sat, 15 Dec 2007 04:02:21 UTC

2007-12-17T14:40:49Z

This week I ventured to a relatively new restaurant in Hershey. The Chocolate Avenue Grill is located on Chocolate Avenue near a few other restaurants. The Grill was very busy during lunchtime, and although there were few vacant seats in the restaurant, there was more than adequate parking in their lot. When the lot is full, you are encouraged to...

This week I ventured to a relatively new restaurant in Hershey. The Chocolate Avenue Grill is located on Chocolate Avenue near a few other restaurants. The Grill was very busy during lunchtime, and although there were few vacant seats in the restaurant, there was more than adequate parking in their lot. When the lot is full, you are encouraged to park across the street. Jaywalking across Chocolate Avenue isn't my idea of fun, so I was pleased that I found a parking spot.

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The first thing that strikes you about The Grill is its clean, uncluttered feel. The restaurant is upscale casual with understated furnishings. There are different rooms but with an open layout. There are big airy windows, so you can observe the traffic and other activity. There is also an absence of server stations. Very refreshing!

We were greeted immediately and seated. Our server was prompt and attentive. Since it was lunchtime, we didn't imbibe. We ordered our ice teas and perused the menu. There is an extensive, eclectic menu even at lunch! We ordered a side salad, a Tuna Salad Wrap, and the Noah Sandwich. The salad came out immediately and looked crisp and delicious. The wrap and sandwich came out shortly thereafter. The portions were ample. One thing I really liked is that you can order any sides you want. If you don't want chips, but a salad, they will easily do that for you.

So back to the meals. The tuna wrap was a good enough size that we had to take home a half. It was freshly prepared, tight, and wonderful. The Noah Sandwich was very interesting. Turkey, bacon, avocado, melted provolone, crisp lettuce, chipotle ranch dressing on wheat bread. It was a delectable combination. The chipotle dressing gave the sandwich a kick while the avocado gave it a southwestern flavor.

Since we hadn't seen one another for awhile, we spent time talking. Our drinks were refilled when needed. We ordered the creme brulee and coffee. It was a blueberry creme brulee. Creamy and light with just enough sweet blueberries.

I want to go back and try many other entrees especially off the dinner menu. On the day we went, the place was packed. At one point every seat was taken. Yet, there was no frantic, chaotic movements - just a nice, relaxed atmosphere to enjoy. Impressive!

If you go, I would suggest reservations especially during the dinner hour. You can check out their menu online, but don't judge the restaurant by the website! The owners have put together a very nice establishment with a proven product!




Revisits!

Mon, 03 Dec 2007 03:38:42 UTC

2007-12-03T03:52:10Z

In the past couple of weeks I revisited a couple of local restaurants. Okay, they are two of my favorites so I actually revisit often.

In the past couple of weeks I revisited a couple of local restaurants. Okay, they are two of my favorites so I actually revisit often.

Macaroni Grill. Why do I like this place? The food is consistently good and the liquor flows. Salads are crisp and look like they were just dished out. The entrees are just the way you like them. I can't rave enough for the "Pasta - Your Way!" It is by far in my top three list of entrees. They do change their appetizers and desserts frequently, and that is fine by me. I like to try different appetizers and desserts and I personally think that being creative in that area is just plain smart. Increase your bottom line with change in those areas, but don't mess with what works. The place is clean. Clean front of the house and back of the house. When the back of the house is visible to the clientele, then the employees always feel like they are "On stage!" Not only the back of the house employees are attentive to detail, but the front of the house, servers and hosts cater to people. They are friendly, accommodating, and knowledgeable! They also have great bathrooms. Clean, decor is great, easy to find, and well-equipped are the descriptions that come to mind. I know that Macaroni Grill is a chain of restaurants, but I think that the Harrisburg Macaroni Grill exemplifies what this chain wants in a restaurant!

I frequent the Macaroni Grill often, and consistently find that the service and product are what I want and it is affordable for frequent visiting.

But.....my favorite place to eat is the Hershey Grill at the Hershey Lodge. Unusual menu, impeccable service, and a chef who is young, energetic, and really pays attention to detail. Each plate that comes out of that kitchen is a masterpiece!

I went a couple weeks ago and had the opportunity to try their Norwegian menu. We had the venison and the cod. An extensive wine list, appetizers and salads filled to your specific requests and a menu that was totally unusual. Let me say, that the Grill is known for their different menus. If you decide to try the Grill, take a risk! Try something new! Don't settle for an 'ole American burger and fries!

The venison with blackberry current was outstanding. The cod was the lightest fish dish I've ever eaten. Both dishes included a serving of potato and vegetable! The plates were an artistic endeavor for the individual palate. The restaurant has the best wine glasses in the locale! The Hershey Grill has it all, but in the way of cuisine, they are far ahead of the pack.

In February they will host their "Taste of Hershey". This is an event that I am really looking forward to because they will include other international dishes to savor!

The Hershey Grill is somewhat expensive, but it is one of the finest restaurants in Central Pennsylvania. Try to enjoy the restaurant on a night that the lodge is NOT booked to capacity! Make reservations and just enjoy the experience!




Azalea Ristorante, New York City

Mon, 29 Oct 2007 00:57:17 UTC

2007-10-29T01:17:13Z

I had a great weekend, and had the opportunity to eat at my favorite restaurant - Azalea Ristorante in New York City. Located between 51st and 8th Ave, plunked straight into the theatre of New York, it is rapidly becoming a favorite of locals and tourists alike. I've eaten here a number of times, and try something new every time.... I had a great weekend, and had the opportunity to eat at my favorite restaurant - Azalea Ristorante in New York City. Located between 51st and 8th Ave, plunked straight into the theatre of New York, it is rapidly becoming a favorite of locals and tourists alike. I've eaten here a number of times, and try something new every time. I haven't found anything wrong to report.....only the best! The service is outstanding, actually impeccable. We didn't have reservations, so I stopped in an hour before opening and got us a reservation. We got a party of four in at their opening hour. Do you know how rare that is in New York City? I explained that we had tickets to a show, and not the show next door. So accommodating! The restaurant is old world charm including an out door cafe! Since the weather was less than desirable, we opted for indoors! It feels so European but Georgia O'Keefe covers the walls! We got there promptly at noon, and were seated immediately. Our server came over and introduced himself and gave the drink specials. Azalea is known for their wonderful wines. I asked for the wine list even though they had a couple wines on special. Sometimes I don't understand the servers b/c of my deficiencies so I also want to see everything in print. He brought the wine list - huge by the way! I ordered a nice Pinot Grigio and he brought it out and served. There is nothing like service in New York. Your busser is taking the plates, the waiter is serving you, and they all make you feel so darn special! I never did get this server's name, but I've had him three times now and he is always wonderful! So we ordered. There were four of us and we didn't order anything similar. We had bruschetta for the appetizer because I wanted to try it. The others decided early that I was charge because I kind of forced them to go with me.....but that is so not important! I had a hankering for some seafood & veggies, so I ordered the Salmone. The other members ordered the Avocado con Gamberetti, Ravioli D'Aragosta, and the Fusilla Azalea. Oh, let me explain! First the bruschetta. Yes, you've all had bruschetta but this is unequivocally the best I've ever experienced. The order was half with tomatoes and the other half with mushrooms. Sweet, delightful, and totally Italian! The Salmone was salmon & veggies. Delicious! We are talking a beautiful display of grilled salmon served in a champagne sauce over a bed of grilled vegetables. The Avocado con Gamberette was a salad of watercress, avocado, hearts of palm (lettuce) served with grilled shrimp. What makes the salad delicious and unique was that it was served in a parmesan crust. Again, another beautiful presentation. Then, we also ordered the Ravioli D'Aragosta...or the lobster ravioli. There were five raviolis served on the plate in a lobster cream sauce. Larger size that what you've seen before. Delicious especially if you sop up the sauce with the bread! Oh the bread! The bread is made in their kitchen....seriously, and served with a side of olive oil with the capers in it! We totally enjoyed two full baskets of the bread! Lastly we also ordered the Fusilla Azalea, which is a pasta dish of broccoli and chicken covered with a olive oil, garlic, and a brown sauce. I don't know what thi[...]



Colonial Park Diner

Sun, 21 Oct 2007 22:47:36 UTC

2007-10-21T22:59:21Z

Okay, when can a diner be "Simply the Best?" Well, if you are the premier diner in the area, you are simply the best around. The Colonial Park Diner earns the title the hard way. They deserve it! I made the time this weekend to check out the Colonial Park Diner and what I found was a great breakfast, very...

Okay, when can a diner be "Simply the Best?" Well, if you are the premier diner in the area, you are simply the best around. The Colonial Park Diner earns the title the hard way. They deserve it!

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I made the time this weekend to check out the Colonial Park Diner and what I found was a great breakfast, very reasonably priced, with all the old world charm of a diner.

We were seated promptly and our drink order was served immediately. Yes, we had a very seasoned veteran of a server. She knew her job and did it extremely well. She took our order the old fashioned way - with pen and paper. No stop at a computer either to let the kitchen know!

Our breakfast came out in record time.....hot, piping, and delicious. The food was exactly what was ordered. No fancy special names or entrees, this was the real deal! Breakfast like mom used to make. It was also great seeing the owner work as an expeditor! The kitchen ran like clockwork, the busser turned over the tables as soon as they were emptied, and the hostess didn't take names.....she filled tables! It was a well run restaurant. So nice to see! All the people were pleasant and accommodating.

You really can't beat the price either for breakfast. For two of us, we spent less than $15. You can't do better than that anywhere.

Next, having paid the hostess, I took a minute to drool over the pasties! I will have to go back sometime for a dessert or two with coffee after shopping! Hopefully soon!

By all means, put the Colonial Park Diner on your to-do list!

It is "Simply the Best!"