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Category Archives: Restaurants

LaScala’s Birra – Pennsauken, NJ

LaScala’s Birra – Pennsauken, NJ

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I remember the Lobster Trap being here and it was not in good shape. What a difference a few years can make. On the waterfront LaScala’s Birra is a gorgeous eatery that really enhances the dining experience on the Cooper River. We had just the basic margherita pizza here and really enjoyed it. Cooked perfectly with fresh ingredients while also the service was top notch. Will definitely come back to try some more items whenever in the area again.

Umi Sushi Japanese Restaurant and Sake Bar – Somerdale, NJ

Umi Sushi Japanese Restaurant and Sake Bar – Somerdale, NJ

This place is quiet an experience with delicious food, impeccable service, and really nice ambiance. Below is an an amazing meal I enjoyed there. I had miso soup, pan fried pork dumplings, grilled bbq squid, crispy spring roll, G-W ROLL Lobster tempura with apple, mango inside, all tuna on top, SWEET HEART ROLL with Spicy sweet shrimp inside with crunch, white fish tempura and mango wrapped with soy paper, chicken teriyaki,  SCOTT ROLL with Eel avocado inside,searl white tuna and seared scallop on top, unagi sushi, king crab sushi, maguro sushi, and MOCHI pounded sticky rice with vanilla ice cream filling.

Hearthside – Collingswood, NJ

Hearthside – Collingswood, NJ

You are wondering about Hearthside, but you can’t ever land a reservation even though you check dates for a possible reservation three months in advance. They have received quite the press and accolades from being named one of the top 50 restaurants in Bon Appetite, rave reviews from Philadelphia Inquirer, Philadelphia Magazine, other local media and blogs singing their praises, and also being known as a hot destination to see many Philadelphia Eagles players dining there regularly.

Well here the meal I had there:

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Gulf Prawns with garlic, chili, lemon, and parsley with homemade grilled bread

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Orecchiettee with fennel sausage, broccoli rabe, and roasted long hots

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Campanelle with san Marzano, baby octopus, pepperoncino, and black olive

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40oz 30 day dry-aged porterhouse with salsa verde, fried potatoes, leeks, and mixed mushrooms

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Carrot cake

Here is what I can tell you. The food was phenomenal. The service was out of this world. By far one of the better dining service experiences from the staff I have had in South Jersey in quite some time and on par with high end Philadelphia and NYC dining destinations. Sadly, I forget her name, but our server stated she was there since they opened, and I can see why. She was definitely a great asset to the team. The ambiance is really tastefully done. Sleek and modern, but not being too over the top. Last but not least, the hearth is wide open for all to see and it was an enjoyable time watching the cooking brigade prep and prepare the meals. The highlights for me were the Orecchiettee and Campanelle, both being top notch in every way. It was an enjoyable night out and a well-executed meal. Give them a try yourself and let me  know your thoughts at smallbitesradio@gmail.com

The Boiling House – Cherry Hill, NJ

The Boiling House – Cherry Hill, NJ

This is an interesting place with a nice menu filled with seafood selections. The garlic noodles were really good and prices were reasonable for seafood. Pictured is calamari appetizer, garlic noodles, and bowl of shrimp, crawfish, snow crab, dungeness crab, corn on the cob, and red bliss potatoes in the Boiling House Seasoning with a side of hot sauce.

El Negro De Oro – Hamilton, NJ

El Negro De Oro – Hamilton, NJ

This place is a GEM!!! What a find if you have already been eating here, and to everyone else, you need to go ASAP. This is a family run operation serving Ecuadorian cuisine that really hit it out of the park. I started the meal out with the Tostones Rellenos con Hornado that were AMAZING. Delicious pulled pork piled high on a fried plantain topped with marinated red onions and a little salsa. Then the Bandeja Al Negro De Oro which is shrimp, beef, and chicken sautéed in a light cream sauce served with rice, sweet plantains, and salad. This cream sauce was SOOOOOO good. This was quite a surprise and really a flavor explosion in every bite. Also had the Chaulafan with is Ecuadorian fried rice with shrimp, beef, pork, eggs, chicken, and soy sauce. The level of deliciousness that this place is putting out is amazing and the service was so friendly and made me feel at home. I don’t know how I have not heard of this place, but it is on my radar now and I will certainly be back to try more on the menu.

New York City – Winter 2019

New York City – Winter 2019

A blog post doesn’t do New York City justice in the least. There are websites dedicated to the wonders of NYC, thousands of books have been written, and endless amounts of shows available to watch for those interested to learn more. What this post is going to try to do is go give you a glimpse of a fantastic base camp to have an easy to access, affordable, but yet wonderful NYC family oriented weekend and a few places to eat that taste good and won’t break the bank while there for a few days.

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We stayed at the Stewart Hotel which is literally just steps outside of Penn Station. They have a variety of rooms to fit every budget while still feeling luxurious throughout the facility and offering every amenity you could possibly need during your getaway. We were lucky enough to stay in their 2 Bedroom Penthouse Suite that has enough room to sleep 8 people, full kitchen stocked with all the utensils, two full bathrooms, large living and dining room area, and a breathtaking view of the New York City skyline overlooking the Hudson River. They even spoiled us with a gracious gift plate of fruits and cheeses, and a award winning bottle of wine. With Stewart Hotel being just steps from Penn Station, almost any destination you are trying to reach in NYC is easily accessible via subway for you to leave the car at home.

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The amount of shows to see on Broadway is staggering. Some are better than others, and it is sometimes difficult to find something that the entire family can enjoy. We went to see King Kong on Broadway; and I must admit it was spectacular. Now the Broadway purists may poo-poo this play with the fancy video screens shown for the background at times, a few special effects dabbled in, and nothing new regarding a storyline, but for pure entertainment and excitement you can’t beat King Kong. It is a story that transcends generations and with this new platform to see the story, the producers did a fantastic job to make it still feel fresh and relevant for all who come. The puppetry of King Kong and the emotions and feelings that they were able to portray with the puppet were truly breathtaking and groundbreaking.

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As far as good food goes, below are a few decent places that we enjoyed with decent ambiance, quality service, and a delicious meal. Hope you enjoy.
John’s of Times Square – NYC, NY

 


Sicilian Wings – chicken wings tossed with crushed red pepper, fresh garlic, and rosemary and a Traditional Pizza.
Niles NYC – NYC, NY

 


Really good French Onion Soup, Filet Mignon with crispy onions, pink peppercorns, mashed potatoes, and grilled asparagus, and Madagascar Vanilla Bean Crème Brulee
Chop Shop II – NYC, NY

 


Pork Pan-fried dumplings, Half Rack Thai Marinated St. Louis Spare Ribs, and Three Cups Chicken with organic baby chicken, sesame oil, soy sauce, rice wine, and Thai Basil that was REALLY delicious.

Special thanks go to the following individuals for making our stay so wonderful:
Mark Pandaleon – Director of Rooms for Stewart Hotel
Skylar Siminovsky – Assistant Director of Housekeeping for Stewart Hotel
Jessica Muniz – Director of Front Office for Stewart Hotel
Sarah – Front Desk for Stewart Hotel

Peking Buffet – Glassboro, NJ

Peking Buffet – Glassboro, NJ

I needed somewhere quick to eat before a Sunday night visit to Rowan University, and I saw Peking Buffet in passing and decided to give them a try. My expectations for buffet food is pretty low, but I must say this place really hits it out of the park with an extremely affordable price point, variety, freshness, and the overall size of the place. This place is HUGE inside and works like a well oiled machine with almost every type and style of food available to eat on the buffet or stations next to buffet . The Sunday night I visited, they were packed, but trays of food, sushi, hibachi orders and other food just kept on flowing seamlessly. If you’re in the area, you really can’t beat the value and selection here.