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Category Archives: Restaurants

Kensington Quarters – Philadelphia, PA

Kensington Quarters – Philadelphia, PA

The Fishtown area is one of the hippest in Philly and for good reason. Kensington Quarters is one of the places that has seen the growth of the area. They are a hip destination with cool décor and vibe. The service was top notch and meal was pretty good also. I had the KQ burger on a brioche bun that has cheddar, garlic aioli, jus, and caramelized onions with a fried potato.

As usual don’t forget to listen to the #1 listed “Food Radio Show Philadelphia” and the #1 listed “Food Radio Show South Jersey” Small Bites Radio on Sundays at 635pm on Wildfire Radio at:

https://small-bites.simplecast.com/

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Nicaragua 2019

Nicaragua 2019

Let me begin by saying you would have thought I was traveling to Iraq or Afghanistan with the amount of people who told me I should reconsider my travel plans to Nicaragua.  Even the US Department of State has an advisory still posted to exercise extreme caution if traveling to Nicaragua. I don’t know how things were in the past, but I can tell you currently it was nothing but a wonderful and pleasant experience with some of the nicest and friendliest people around. Every place we visited the hospitality went above and beyond.

It was easy to tell that gringos such as myself have not descended upon the country in large groups yet because in some areas it was entertaining to watch groups of school children pretend not to stare at you or even trip over and walk into things while acting like they weren’t looking your way and then wave, shyly say “Hola”, and smile at you. I haven’t experienced this since my travels in certain parts of China.

My visit was solely up and down the Western portion of the country. The scenery and landscape is absolutely stunning, lush green, beautiful, luxury eco-resorts to stay at, and places to experience nature mostly unspoiled from mass tourism or development. How could you possibly go wrong in a country where you can see an active volcano with an actual lava lake flow happening right now at Masaya Volcano National Park? It truly was a wonderful adventure everywhere we went. Two pieces of advice though. Brush up on your Spanish as it helps tremendously during your travels there and don’t always trust the GPS if it wants you to go on dirt roads even though for the majority of the time the roads are in really good condition and well-marked, some of dirt roads are enter at your own risk.

I am also happy to report that I didn’t have a single bad meal during my stay either. It’s not often I can say that, especially since I didn’t have high expectations arriving. Photos do not do this trip justice and you really need to go there yourself to appreciate Nicaragua so I haven’t included any except for the food. For once, I was extremely off my game as I did not photograph every meal. It was mostly living in the moment. Below are some of the places and meals I had. As I said, they were all great, so I recommend them all.

A Falta de Amor otra Cerveza Por Favor Bar y Restaurant – Granada, Nicaragua

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How can you go wrong with a place named “In the Absence of Love another Beer Please”. Had a wonder pan fried fish fillet with fried plantains and white rice.

The Garden Café – Granada, Nicaragua

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Just a truly pleasant meal here in a beautiful tranquil setting. I had the Gringo which is 3 eggs, 3 strips of bacon, 2 pieces of homemade toast, and sautéed potatoes.

Restaurante El Zaguan – Granada, Nicaragua

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Love how this restaurant just opens up into a wonderful space as soon as you enter the doorway. Had the Nicaraguita which is grilled filet with sweet fried plantains, fried cheese, and rice and beans.

La Palapa Restaurant at Aqua Wellness Resort – Tola, Nicaragua

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With a breathtaking view which is enough of a reason to visit this location alone, I went with the surf and turf option with grilled vegetables and rice. Every bite was stunningly delightful and extremely delicious.

Juntos Beach Bar and Grill – Playa Gigante, Nicaragua

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A beachfront location with a hammock, darts, tree swing, and a children’s playground next to it was a joy to find and the food was just as nice. Had the Fish and Chips that was great.

Factory Steak & Lobster – Managua, Nicaragua

High end elegance in a hustling and bustling city. I had pure empanada bliss in a crispy shell with their Filet Mignon Empanada appetizer, the lobster bisque soup topped with puff pastry, and whole Lobster Thermidor with grilled vegetables.

Helados Pops – Metrocentro Mall – Managua, Nicaragua

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Good old fashioned Vanilla milkshake in a really cool, hip, and happening mall.

As usual don’t forget to listen to the #1 listed “Food Radio Show Philadelphia” and the #1 listed “Food Radio Show South Jersey” Small Bites Radio on Sundays at 635pm on Wildfire Radio at:

https://small-bites.simplecast.com/

Centanni Trattoria – Collingswood, NJ

Centanni Trattoria – Collingswood, NJ

Sitting a little distance from the main drag of restaurants and shops in Collingswood, New Jersey sits Centanni Trattoria. The ambiance is mellow, service was personable and quick, and food was pretty good. I enjoyed a meal that was reasonably priced, paced well between courses, and filling. They are another welcome addition to the dining scene and even though I didn’t order one, I really like the variety and option of ordering many different kinds of personal sized pizzas to enjoy dining in. I had Cauliflower and crabmeat soup, Pappardelle Verde with sautéed shrimp, crabmeat, and fresh tomatoes in a white wine pesto sauce, and Vanilla gelato with Chocolate.

As usual don’t forget to listen to the #1 listed “Food Radio Show Philadelphia” and the #1 listed “Food Radio Show South Jersey” Small Bites Radio on Sundays at 635pm on Wildfire Radio at:

https://small-bites.simplecast.com/

Thomas Murphy’s Pub – Gloucester City, NJ

Thomas Murphy’s Pub – Gloucester City, NJ

There are sports teams, organizations, and charities all around the country that depend on the generosity of local businesses in order to operate and survive. I find this connection interesting at the sports team level as it builds brand loyalty at a young age for many youth sports players. One such area establishment is Thomas Murphy’s Pub that sponsored a team for the Gloucester City Youth Soccer League and their team just so happened to win the 2019 Gloucester City Youth Soccer League Season Championship. Does a champion on the field equate to a winner in the dining room of the sponsor?

What I can tell you about my visit to Thomas Murphy’s Pub is that I was pleasantly surprised. From the décor, ambiance, service, and food everything hit it all the right notes and they scored a happy customer from me. I had low expectations entering, but I left with a feeling of them being a true gastropub with a well-executed meal and an extensive beer and liquor selection. They are one of the perfect examples of don’t judge a book by its cover. It may look like a nondescript local drinking establishment on the outside, but once inside they have a sleek modern look with generous amounts of seating. To complement a spacious first floor, the second floor has all the entertainment options you need to have a fun time with a pool table, foosball, golf arcade, and a pinball machine. This not only creates the atmosphere of fun for the adults, but they are certainly a family friendly establishment as well. My meal consisted of Guinness Irish Onion Soup and the Dubliner Burger topped with rashers, over easy egg, cheddar cheese, Guinness onions, and Jameson BBQ with a side of shoestring fries. The price point is extremely reasonable for the quality of product being served and everything was delicious and spot on. I hope they stay on the path they have carved out for themselves and they will continue to be a jewel in the neighborhood pub category.

As usual don’t forget to listen to the #1 listed “Food Radio Show Philadelphia” and the #1 listed “Food Radio Show South Jersey” Small Bites Radio on Sundays at 635pm on Wildfire Radio at:

https://small-bites.simplecast.com/

The Taproom & Grill – Haddon Township, NJ

The Taproom & Grill – Haddon Township, NJ

The Taproom & Grill is a big facility with a large bar, banquet area, as well as dining rooms and outdoor seating available. The menu is varied and pictured above is what I had. Crab bisque soup, fried zucchini, smokehouse wings, and burnt ends with old bay fries. Their beer selection is extremely diverse and they have many happy hour specials throughout the week. Dined here on a Friday night. Wanted to try the ribs, but they stated they sold out of them the day prior and maybe have them the next day. I may have ordered wrong as nothing really hit that sweet spot for me. Let me know your thoughts on their food if you go.

As usual don’t forget to listen to the #1 listed “Food Radio Show Philadelphia” and the #1 listed “Food Radio Show South Jersey” Small Bites Radio on Sundays at 635pm on Wildfire Radio at:

https://small-bites.simplecast.com/

Villari’s Lakeside Restaurant – Sicklerville, NJ

Villari’s Lakeside Restaurant – Sicklerville, NJ

 

With a lake view at many seats in and around Villari’s Lakeside Restaurant, you have a good probability for a scenic meal.  It is a large location with friendly service and a decent meal overall. I had a bowl of seafood bisque that was filled with many different types of seafood and was a very generous portion for the price, clams casino, and chicken saltimbocca. They are definitely well suited for large parties and events.

As usual don’t forget to listen to the #1 listed “Food Radio Show Philadelphia” and the #1 listed “Food Radio Show South Jersey” Small Bites Radio on Sundays at 635pm on Wildfire Radio at:

https://small-bites.simplecast.com/

Alex’s Bakery & Food Store – Woodlynne, NJ

Alex’s Bakery & Food Store – Woodlynne, NJ

If you blink you’ll miss Alex’s Bakery and Food Store. The parking lot is very tiny and once inside everything is mostly in Spanish, but the service really shines with friendly and helpful employees ready to help you. They are part bakery, part convenience store, and part restaurant. The prices are very reasonable no matter what part of the business you are shopping. I went with two Tres Leches cakes for a birthday party to try a little something out of the ordinary. One was vanilla and the other was chocolate. I really enjoyed the vanilla version and if you’re looking for Spanish/Latin styled food, treats, or sweets you should put them on your radar.

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