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Archive for "Food and Drink"

Tina’s Surprise Birthday Dinner at Napoli

Posted on April 6, 2021 by under Events, Food and Drink.    

A bunch of us met at Napoli Italian Eatery recently for Tina’s surprise birthday dinner. Jay got a $100 gift card from one of the owners so he brought everyone together under the guise of spreading the love and buying appetizers for everyone to share (which he did). Tina had no clue we were there to celebrate her birthday.

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There was room inside when we first arrived but we decided, since there were so many of us, that the patio would be best. Little did we know how windy it would be that night. The weather was much cooler than we anticipated and we probably wouldn’t have lasted longer than five minutes had it not been for the patio heaters. By the time we decided to throw in the towel and try to get a table inside, they were already packed and there would be no way to accommodate our large group.

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Here are pictures of some of the appetizers we enjoyed.

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I tried two of the drinks.

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Here are a few of the entrees.

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You can probably guess who ordered the pizza. He’s not very adventurous. I couldn’t get pictures of everyone’s food because I was clear on the other end. Some people ordered the same things, though.

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Here is a picture of Tina’s beautiful cake. Justin and Jay did a great job of keeping the birthday portion of the dinner a secret. I really think she was surprised.

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It’s hard to believe that we’re approaching 50 now. I feel like it was only yesterday that we were celebrating our 40th birthday milestones. It won’t be long before Brian and I become members of the 50 and over club ourselves.

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Here’s a picture of the Napoli patio that I took as we were leaving. It’s nice and big and it will be a great place for dinners once we have warmer (and hopefully less windy) weather.

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In case you’re wondering, Napoli is at Siena Plaza in the old Fetch Bistro space. They’ve been open for a while but, as Brian and I really haven’t been venturing out to eat as much (besides hitting our usual places), it was our first time there. It was really good. I enjoyed everything I tried. Brian and I will likely be back very soon.

Until next time. GNG.

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Final Dinner in Delray Beach

Posted on April 5, 2021 by under Food and Drink, Travel.    

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We walked by DADA’s beautiful patio everyday walking to and from the tennis center and our hotel. I really wanted to eat there at some point during the trip but they were always so busy.

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Unfortunately, these patio pics are as close as we got to eating there.

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We were going to El Camino again on our last night because we wanted good, affordable food and cheap happy hour drinks but they were crazy busy. I think the wait was 45 minutes to an hour. As many great restaurants as there are in the area, we figured that we could probably find an equally good place with a lot less of a wait but we actually walked for a long while before we settled on a place because nothing seemed to appeal to Brian.

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We ended up eating at Amar Mediterranean Bistro because the aroma of the food wafting from the restaurant onto the street smelled amazing. Also, they could get us in right then. Sometimes you question how good a place is if there’s not a wait but we saw dozens and dozens of carry out bags waiting to be picked up so we took that as a good sign. Plus, I decided to trust my nose. There is no way that food that smells is good can be terrible.

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I’m so glad we did. This was probably the best Mediterranean food I’d ever tasted. I wasn’t really sure what was different about their hummus but it was better than any other hummus I’d ever had. Also, the house-made bread was so fresh and warm. We really could have filled up just on hummus and bread alone.

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They also brought out this thing that was like crunchy strips of bread served with this thick yogurt thing.

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Brian and I decided to share the mixed grill for dinner. It’s basically a plate of chicken, beef, and kafta (lamb) kebabs. I’m glad that we decided to share the entree because we were both really stuffed from the hummus. Even sharing, we still had plenty leftover. I would have felt bad for wasting so much food.

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Here’s a picture of Brian enjoying the fried kibbeh, which is another reason why we were so full by the time we got around to our entree.

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We found out that Amar had only been open a month. I think that’s why it wasn’t as crowded. Not enough people knew of its existence yet. The food was fantastic, though. I’m pretty sure the lines are out the door and around the block these days.

I am so happy that we found this place. I highly recommend it for if you’re ever in the area. We would totally dine there again if we find ourselves back in Delray Beach. That’s all for now. Until next time. GNG.

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Our Dinner at Deck 84

Posted on April 4, 2021 by under Food and Drink, Travel.    

We passed by Deck 84, a cute restaurant next to the water, on our walk to the beach. The visitor’s center had 10% OFF cards for the restaurant so that kind of clinched the deal. I wanted to check it out anyway because it reminded me so much of Skipper’s Dock, so the discount was just icing on the cake.

PRO SAVINGS TIP: When visiting a new place, always swing by the visitor’s center because they usually have all sorts of coupons and deals.

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Here’s a picture of Deck 84 from the Atlantic Avenue bridge.

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One of the neat things about this restaurant is that you can dock your boat and grab a quick bite. I suppose there are probably many places like this in Florida but it seemed notable to me as we don’t really have places like these in Wichita.

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If you’ve been fishing, they’ll even cook your catch for you!

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We came on foot, rather than by boat, but we had to take a dock selfie.

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We decided to sit outside to enjoy the beautiful weather as well as the view of the fancy yachts and various other boats cruising on by.

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The two sides of the bridge occasionally part to allow the bigger boats passage. And then as soon as the bridge is back together, you’d see a steady stream of people walk across. We saw it happen a few times while we were dining. It’s really neat.

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With COVID, a lot of restaurants really aren’t doing physical menus any longer. Most places have QR codes on the table that you can scan with your phone to view their menu online. Deck 84 was no different. However, they didn’t have a paper menu with daily specials.

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Here’s a picture of that drink listed at the bottom called “The Siren.” I’m not a huge fan of paying $13 for a drink but I figured what the heck. We’re on vacation.

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I ordered the shrimp mac n’ cheese for dinner.

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Brian ordered a basket of fries and the empanada listed on the paper menu.

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The empanada was not what we expected. I think Brian was expecting something like a Mexican empanada. This one had a strange filling. It was almost like a shepherd’s pie wrapped in an empanada. Brian said it wasn’t terrible but it wasn’t good either. LOL.

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Our server explained that they normally have the Mexican kind but they made special empanadas for St. Patrick’s Day and they didn’t realize that was the kind they had on the menu. Brian and I wondered if these were leftover from St. Patrick’s Day and they were trying to get rid of them. It was an unpleasant thought but a clever way to get rid of excess food inventory.

After we had this conversation, Brian decided he liked the empanada even less. I mean, we were there on a Friday — two whole days after St. Patty’s Day. It seemed kind of gross.

It really sucked because, up until this point, we were really enjoying our Deck 84 experience. I liked my mac n’ cheese and my drink was pretty good (expensive, but that’s how much drinks are at nice restaurants are — unless you happen to be there for happy hour) and the service wasn’t bad. Maybe they weren’t leftover empanadas and we’re just imagining all of it.

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Outside of the empanada thing, I really liked the place. I liked that they are super dog-friendly and even have a special menu just for your fur-babies. They have an entire section on this on their website with an extensive list of dos and don’ts for pet owners (I’m assuming, because dogs don’t know how to read or own phones).

Based on the list of chef-prepared dog entrees, I’m guessing these pooches are quite spoiled.

Overall, I’m glad we stopped here for early dinner. Brian might feel differently but I actually liked what I got and I thought it was a neat experience. Whenever I’m out of town, I’m always looking to dine at places that aren’t available at home. Deck 84 checks that box for sure. Until next time. GNG.

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Happy Hour at El Camino

Posted on March 29, 2021 by under Food and Drink, Travel.    

El Camino, Delray Beach

Brian and I really liked El Camino. It was our first stop when we arrived in Delray Beach because we were both starving from the trip.

El Camino, Delray Beach

El Camino has great happy hour menu but we were so hungry we decided to order off the regular menu instead.

El Camino, Delray Beach

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The food was pretty good. I enjoyed my tacos and black beans.

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But I enjoyed my blood orange margarita best of all.

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Brian enjoyed the hot sauce. Maybe a little too much.

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More about our recent trip next time. Until then, GNG.

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First Time at the Belmont (and Frost)

Posted on March 28, 2021 by under Food and Drink.    

Brian and I finally got a chance to check out the Belmont. The place is so popular that it is extremely hard to get in during regular hours. The times that we’ve tried to eat there, the wait has been too long and so we’d never been until now. The funny thing is, we didn’t even plan to eat there. We were out for a drive on a beautiful day and on the hunt for root beer floats. We decided to go to TJ’s since we were at Seneca Park but we were too late. I’d forgotten that they close at 2 PM on Sundays.

Plan B was to get our root beer float fix at Ziggy’s. Ziggy’s also has great root beer floats. But on the way there, we saw that the Belmont wasn’t busy so we ended up ditching the root beer float plan and going for happy hour instead.

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We’d never been able to get in before so we decided to take advantage of this opportunity. It ended up costing us more than what it would have cost us had we stuck to our original plan because we also got a cheese board but happy hour at the Belmont is actually really good. They have $8 pitchers of beer and their cocktails, which are normally $10, are only $6 during happy hour.

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I really wanted to try all six cocktails but Brian wouldn’t let me. Since I could only have two, I decided to try the first two on the list: Calumet and Daylight.

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Even though both drinks were very good, I liked Calumet (pictured above) best out of the two. Daylight (pictured below) was yummy too but was a bit tart.

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Here’s a picture of our cheese board.

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When they brought out our check, they also brought out a couple of cookies. One was oatmeal raisin and the other was snickerdoodle. I’m not a fan of snickerdoodle cookies but this one was really good. Hands down, the best snickerdoodle cookie I’ve ever tasted. The experience made me realize that I probably don’t like snickerdoodle cookies because I’ve only ever had bad ones before.

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Our server told us that the cookies were homemade by the Frost people next door. As it happened to be Pi Day (March 14), we decided to walk over to Frost to get a piece of pie. However, they were overrun and were completely out of pie (except for pecan flavor, which Brian doesn’t like). We ended up with a slice of chocolate cake instead. You can never go wrong with chocolate cake.

Here are a few pictures we took at Frost. They’ve only been open a few months and we’d really not even heard of them had it not been for our server mentioning it. Frost is totally worth checking out if you’re ever in the College Hill area.

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I guess that’s all for now. Until next time. GNG.

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