Sunday, October 28, 2012

Polska Chata

Polska Chata is a Polish and European Delicatessen and Restaurant in Rochester, NY. Thanks to for helping me find this gem! We were on vacation and visiting the Rochester area, so we just had to stop in for some good ole Polish food. Smacznego!

I had the Polish Platter which was a bit of everything good about Polish cuisine. The gołąbki was huge and pretty , smothered in a slightly tomato-ey gravy; I think it could have cooked a bit longer as the cabbage leaf outside was just a bit tough, and the filling just a bit dry. The pierogi were Ruskie style: cheese/potato/onion and were boiled and very tasty--but a side of sour cream would have been nice, I think. The real hit of the meal was, I think, the bigos, which was outstanding, just full of the great flavors of sauerkraut, cabbage, kiełbasa, mushrooms, and so much more. The kiełbasa was also good as were the potatoes. Heck, there was nothing I did not like about this meal--except maybe the size--it was a lot of food! 

Tommy had their Fish Fry, and what a feast it was! The portion of fish was huge, absolutely huge. It was served over chip (fries) and with some fried shrimp--also good, and some deep fried pierogi--they were a bit dry and could have benefit from a side of sour cream as well. 
I started out my meal with a bowl of żurek and it, too, was very good. It had a lot more "stuff" in it than i usually find, including some ham, but was full of flavor with just a tinge of the requisite sour/acid flavor from the sour-rye started used as a base. It was very good and went nicely with my Leżaisk beer!

Our service was somewhat slow and disorganized, and it seemed there was only one waitress for the place and she doubled as the deli counter person as well. I heard that some waitress called in or quit or something. But we did get our food and she was nice and pleasant, just very busy with a fairly busy place. My guess about our lone waitress is that she's the owner and maybe her husband the cook, and their  boy the runner and busboy? Well no matter, the food was great and she did a good job and worked hard trying to please everyone--and we were pleased!

The restaurant is upstairs and there was music playing and a few other diners as well, enjoying the evening. Downstairs is the deli and it's quite well stocked, not only with fresh food items, but also with a nice selection of imported Polish good. It's a very nice place and Rochester is fortunate to have such good Polish food and atmosphere. Smacznego!
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Ireland's Four Provinces

After yet another long day in Washington, DC, being tourists, we had a late dinner at Ireland's Four Provinces in nearby Falls Church, VA. It was a good choice. We chose it because it was (a) close to our hotel and (b) had a great rating on We were not disappointed!

We came in and sat near the bar, finding a trivia contest in progress. We did participate, but we are no experts (as we soon learned). But it was fun and a nice way to pass the short wait for our food.

I started out with the Potato Leek Soup, and it was very good! It was rich, creamy, velvety, in the best tradition of a vichyssoise--though I did think I'd have preferred a bit more leek and a bit less potato flavor. Still, it was very good and I did like it a lot.

Tommy had the seafood gumbo and I did have a taste. Indeed, it tasted like seafood gumbo, like a gulp of the sea, a bit of fish, a bit of shrimp, it was all very good. 

For my main course I had the Fish 'N Chips. Wow, it was actually quite good. The fish was very good, probably haddock, with a nice beer batter type breading and fried just right. The fries were thick cut and tasty. My only complaint would be the small portion of coleslaw, but then that's all there was room for on the plate. I liked this a lot.

Tommy had the Seafood Platter and it, too, was very good with perhaps mahi-mahi for the fish, and scallops and shrimp. The scallops were very tender with a bit of blackening, the shrimp cooked well. There was a big portion of rice pilaf to go with this, but also some nice fresh veggies.

We had a good meal, good service, and a good time here. Nice!
Ireland's Four Provinces on Urbanspoon

La Côte D'Or Cafe

La Côte D'Or Cafe was right next to our hotel when we were in Arlington, VA recently, and was a delightful find for a late evening meal. We'd spent a long day walking all over Washington, DC, so when we found a restaurant so close by that had a great rating on, we just had to try it. It was a good choice.

Once we ordered, we were treated to a complimentary treat--a shot of consomme. It was awesome, so much flavor in such a small portion. It certainly left us expecting a very good meal, and that's just what we got. 

First off, the pictures do not do this food justice--my regular camera was back in the hotel and all I had was my iPhone. But the food was indeed very good.

I had the Marguez (spicy lamb sausages) served with spicy lentils. Now, the lamb sausages were just a tad on the dry side, but very flavorful and with a nice kick. The lentils were also very rich and full of a hearty meat flavor, and also spicy. I liked this dish a lot and ate up every last drop.

Tommy had the steak and fries, and ordered the steak medium rare. It came out perfectly cooked, juicy, tender, red in the middle, and full of flavor. They sure know how to cook a steak here.

We had good service and a wonderful meal here. I loved it. Two thumbs up, for sure!
La Côte D'Or Cafe on Urbanspoon

Cafe Mozart

We had a delightful lunch at Cafe Mozart in Washington, DC recently. Earlier, we toured the White House, and so I only had my iPhone for food pictures. They do not do the food justice. We had an excellent meal and superb service here.

Cafe Mozart is a deli out front with a fine restaurant in the back. You can buy all kinds of German and European food there, including a wide deli selection. But we were there to eat lunch, and we did that with a vengeance!

Being in a German restaurant, I had to try a Schnitzel (OK, it's Austrian in origin, but that's another story), so I ordered the hunter schnitzel with pork. It was wonderful, a nice schnitzel covered with a rich mushroom and red wine gravy. To go with, i had the German potato salad (of course) and red cabbage. The cabbage was also excellent.

We started our meal with a latke, however, a potato pancake. It was perfectly cooked, nice and crispy on the outside, creamy on the inside. Well done!

Tommy had a Chicken Schnitzel sandwich and it too was very good. As an added bonus, this was the picture that turned out the best--go figure!

Our service was great, the atmosphere great, and the food great. What's not to like?
Cafe Mozart on Urbanspoon

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Dogwood Tavern

We had a nice meal at Dogwood Tavern when in the area recently. We had a hard time choosing, it all looked so good, but eventually we decided to order some appetizer and split them.

First off we tried the Chesapeake Crab Sliders, four mini crab cakes on petite buns, served with lettuce, pickle, mayo, and a sherry wine sauce. These were real winners with a nice crab flavor that was not overpowered by the binder. Very good, we both loved them. 

We also had the Shenandoah Sliders, small Angus beef burgers on petite buns with caramelized onions and pepper-jack cheese, also served with lettuce, tomato, and pickle. Again, they were very good and we liked them a lot. 

We started off with some soup, though, and found them very good. I had the Baked Potato and Four Cheese soup, and it was absolutely delicious. Maybe not the most healthy choice, but it sure was rich and flavorful.

Tommy had one of his favorites, the Fish Chowder, and he liked it a lot too. It was nice and rich and creamy and had a nice "ocean" taste to it. We ate at a table by the bar, but service was attentive and quick. We enjoyed our meal here, definitely.
Dogwood Tavern on Urbanspoon

Coleman Public House

The food was good at Coleman Public House but there were a few disappointments here. Yes, it's a brew pub, but their wine selection was quite minimal and a very limited selection. The food was good but the server was quite green. Fortunately, the manager helped turn our experience into a positive one. 

I ordered a sampler of beer, 4 different 5 oz beer samples, they were all good but the Railhouse IPA was the best, followed by a local brew, the Westbrook Marzen.

When our food arrived, Tommy took one bite of the fish taco---it was very hot as in spicy hot. When he called the waitress over she said "well, the menu specified that." Ooops. Wrong thing. The menu mentioned no such thing. We summoned the hostess and she summoned the manager. He did all the right things and was very apologetic. He offered to make a new fresh fish taco without the salsa. He came back and said he tasted the salsa and it was indeed quite hot. He also said he spoke to our waitress. She was polite and efficient after that but a bit aloof, not very warm. But she did take care of us and the reprovisioned fish taco was indeed very good.

I had a southwestern salad, mixed greens, pepper jack cheese, black beans, corn, tomato salsa, and grilled chicken. It was very good. It did have a little bit of to heat which I liked.

Overall, the manager's great attitude and handling of the situation saw us leave happy and full, so overall, a good job. 

Coleman Public House on Urbanspoon

Lowcountry Bistro

We're glad we found this place! We were in Charleston, SC, for a day and we'd seen Lowcountry Bistro the previous night--the hostess gave us a menu and told us a bit about the place, so we had to go back to try it, and we did for a late lunch on Sunday.

Tommy had the Carolina chicken, a nice tender chicken breast on  a sandwich with a fried green tomato and a crabcake with a nice aioli on a soft bun. It was very good. The chicken was char-grilled and very tender. It was a great sandwich

I had the Lowcountry Cuban, roasted pork shoulder made into a sort of ingot and fried, topped with a slice of swiss, some carolina pulled pok, and pickled okra. It was served on a french bread bun with a bit of dijonaisse. It was tasty but just a bit dry, especially with the bun--it needed more moisture somewhere along the line. But the flavors were nice and the pickled okra was a pleasantly good surprise. But the best part of this dish was the sweet potato salad that was served as a go-with. It was truly tasty and quite unique. Nice job!

We really enjoyed the food and the service here as well. 
Lowcountry Bistro  on Urbanspoon

Boulevard Diner

We had a very nice dinner at Boulevard Diner  after a long day of driving from Orlando to the Charleston, SC area.

We started with fried green tomatoes. They were thinly sliced but hot and flavorful, served with a (shrimp?) remoulade that had a bit of a horseradish bite to it. Very good.

For my dinner I had the pork chop special. It was very good. The pork chop was  cooked to a medium but very tender. It was served with a peach chutney that was wonderful. It was served with collard greens that were cooked just right--they were tender and flavorful but not mushy. It was served on a bed of blue cheese grits.

Tommy had the prime rib, it was cooked medium rare and quite juicy. It was served with asparagus that was nice and crisp. But what he liked the best was the potatoes--he says they were  the best potatoes he ever had. Red potatoes cooked in the skins, roughly mashed, with a bit of cream and onion and butter. They were to die for indeed.

The service was attentive and fast, too.
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