Saturday, April 14, 2012

Full Moon Cafe, Lambertville, NJ

In a word, mediocre. In two words, bland and mediocre. If you want more words, keep reading.

We stopped by the Full Moon Cafe in Lambertville for lunch on the way home from Pennsylvania. We were looking for a Mexican place but didn't find it so as we wandered we stopped in front of The Full Moon and looked at the menu which held about a half-dozen varieties of eggs benedict. I like a good eggs benedict and I figured that any place that offered so many varieties should do a good job of it. Inside it has an eclectic look to it and the restaurant would feel at home in New Paltz or Woodstock. In fact some of the crowd looked like they'd feel at home there too. 

The menu was interesting and I ordered the special eggs benedict with salmon and spinach. My son ordered the steak sandwich and Teresa got a chicken wrap. It took a very long time to get the food. A very long time, but they did apologize a few times for the delay.

I expected my dish to have smoked salmon on it, but instead there was a rather large piece of salmon. When I tasted it I realized it was overcooked, not to the point of being inedible, but rather to the point of not really being worth eating. I'm certain that fish had spent some time in a freezer. The eggs were overcooked as well, with one of them being closer to the consistency of a hard-boiled egg inside. Nowhere near a poached egg. The hollandaise sauce was flat and flavorless. In fact the only thing that had any taste was the leaf spinach sautéed in oil and lemon juice Greek style. I guess I was wrong in my earlier assumption about a restaurant that features eggs Benedict being able to produce a good one. It wasn't terrible, I did finish it, but it wasn't good. It was just there, total mediocrity. 

The other two dishes were similar in quality with the steak sandwich being tough, like someone cut up (more like hacked with a machete blade) some leftover roast beef. Thirty-four bucks plus tip for medicre food that took forever to make. Too bad as there is potential there in location, menu and decor. They probably do well enough with the tourist trade but I seriously doubt they have a loyal local clientele. As for me, I'll pass by next time and go to the Lambertville Station or try someplace else.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Our Crepes and More, Wilmington, NC

I like French food. There is a certain simplicity to it in elevating a few flavor notes to create a masterpiece. Unfortunately there is a mystique to French food which makes people assume that it should be snobby and expensive, often perpetuated by French restaurants. Not so for the noble crepe which is the ultimate in simplicity. Crepes can either be savory or sweet and are really nothing more than a slightly sweet, thin pancake.

I've not yet been to Paris, but I have had some very good crepes in Montreal. I've even tried to make them myself. Once they were terrible and were really pancakes and the second time they were edible. Since then I leave it to the experts to make my crepes. The amount of heat required and the skill in spreading the batter are an art form.

I'd heard that Our Crepes and More in Wilmington was good so we decided to swing by to see for ourselves. The restaurant is in a strip mall on Oleander, just up from another favorite, Flaming Amy's. Outside it is rather unassuming, but inside it is a bright and cheery place with French music playing. You order at the counter, pay, and find a table. In about five minutes your food arrives. We took menus to our table to look over them. 

I usually can't decide which I like better, sweet or savory, so I often try to opt for one of each. In this case I decided on the Quebec (bottom photo) which is smoked salmon, a sour cream and chive sauce and a dollop of whipped cream with a lime in it. It was quite tasty with the smokiness of the salmon, the hint of lime and the sweetness of the whipped cream blending nicely.

Teresa opted for the OCM breakfast special (second photo) with eggs, bacon, sausage and a crepe of your choice. Also quite good. We shared a desert crepe, the Cayenne which had bananas, chocolate syrup, vanilla ice cream and whipped cream (top photo) and it was delightful, and filling. All three, with two coffees, was less than thirty bucks.

The owner, Sylvain Marguerat, waited on us and he was quite gregarious with his heavy French accent. Overall a lovely meal and we will certainly go back again. This is one of my new favorites in the Port City.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Bacon Soda

Yes folks, the label is correct. This is a bacon flavored soda. It is called Lester Fixins and is made in California by Rocket Fizz Soda and Candy Shops. I picked it up at Fizzy's Soda Pop and Candy Shop on Racine in Wilmington, NC for $2.45 a bottle. It is sweet (it has pure cane sugar) and tastes a bit like imitation bacon bits. Not bad, but you should plan to share the bottle with a couple of people as it is a little too intense for one person to finish alone. Maybe in a small juice glass at breakfast, or with chocolate covered bacon for desert. Would I have another? Probably. Would I be running out to pick up a few to take home? Probably not.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Chick-fil-a, Cullpepper, Va

I like Chick-fil-a. I'm not a huge fan, but I do like it. What I don't like is the limited menu (yes, it is a chicken restaurant but they could add wings, legs, thighs and such) and the waffle fries (they always seem to be too undercooked). What I do like is that the chicken tastes fresh, the restaurants are always clean, and the employees always seem pleasant. 

I usually get the spicy chicken sandwich which isn't all that spicy. The chicken is moist, but without the spice there would be little flavor.

Chick-fil-a is a restaurant that caters to families, especially young families, and offers an alternative to the king and the clown. Perhaps a healthier alternative. As a Christian organization they are closed on Sundays.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Lambertville Station Fish Sauté.

I just liked the picture, as well as the dish. Shrimp, mahi-mahi, shark and lobster over spinach greens.