Friday, July 29, 2011

Chameleon Fusion Bistro in Palm Bay, FL

I had dinner at Chameleon Fusion Bistro in Palm Bay, located just off of I-95. This restaurant was really nice on the inside, but unfortunately they were really understaffed. Chameleon seemed to have plenty of people standing around doing nothing, but the single waiter that was helping all the tables was way overwhelmed. This resulted in the meal being far too long and tedious than necessary...
Chameleon Fusion Bistro
I ordered a California roll and salmon roll. These two rolls were pretty standard, served with wasabi and pickled ginger. The rolls were good sized, tasted good, and were a good price!
Chameleon Fusion Bistro Sushi
Someone else ordered from the fusion part of the menu which didn't turn out as well. While Chameleon made good sushi, they couldn't figure out a hamburger. The burger, ordered medium-well was served cold, completely pink, and bloody. The bloody juices had dripped down from the meat, completely saturated the bun, and had started pooling on plate. This was definitely not medium-well, and after being sent back the cooked burger was served on the same bun that had soaked up all the meat-juices like a sponge...

So in the end, Chameleon Fusion Bistro had good sushi, but bad service and improperly cooked burgers. I doubt I'd return...

Chameleon Fusion Bistro on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Jeremiah's Italian Ice in Orlando, FL

Jeremiah's Italian Ice
Everyone seems to love Jeremiah's Italian Ice, and for good reason too. For the longest time they were the only place to get Italian ices is town. Although there's much more competition for them now, their ices are still really good. I visited the always popular Jeremiah's across from UCF, sandwiched between Lazy Moon and Millie's Jamaican Cafe. On this visit, I decided to get a gelati with half black raspberry ice and half strawberry-lemon. Besides melting really fast on the horribly hot summer day, this Italian ice lived up to my expectations!
Strawberry-Lemon and Black Raspberry

Here's a hint too: Jeremiah's does buy one-get one free coupons pretty often. Keep an eye out before you go.

Jeremiah's Italian Ice on Urbanspoon

Monday, July 25, 2011

Zorba's Restaurant & Pizzeria in Debary, FL

I ate dinner at a Greek/Italian restaurant in Debary called Zorba's. There's no connection to the Zorba's in Longwood as far as I know...
My meal started with a Greek salad. Shredded iceberg lettuce was topped with feta, ham, olives, cucumbers, green peppers, and tomatoes. This was a decent side salad, although the ham reminded me a bit of the salads from the nearby Stavro's Italian restaurants... (and after seeing the reviews on Urbanspoon, I get the feeling that Zorba's used to be a Stavro's at one time)
I had the spanakopita for my main course. This long and skinny spinach pie seemed larger than what I've been served at other Greek restaurants. While the pie was a whole lot to eat, I found it to be kind of dry, especially towards the ends. It wasn't bad, but I doubt I'd order it again based on how dry the spanakopita was...

The Greek food at Zorba's was alright, but it seemed almost everyone else in the restaurant was being served meals from the Italian half of the menu. With my dry spinach pie, perhaps Italian food is the thing to get at Zorba's...

Zorba's Restaurant & Pizzeria on Urbanspoon

Friday, July 22, 2011

NYC Street Food #1

Everyone seems to love food trucks, so why not do a post about the trucks in place where they were popular long before other parts of the country? That's right, this post is all about some of the various food trucks that I came across in New York City. Didn't get to try many, but I can only eat so much...

Taco truck in Manhattan's Meatpacking District...
NYC Taco Truck

Mister Softee in Flushing Meadows Park ($5 for a cone is kind of pricy).
Mister Softee @ Unisphere

Lots of food trucks seemed to park near the High Line in Chelsea. Here's an Organic Soft Serve Ice Cream Truck...

Mexican Ice on the High Line...
Mexican Ices

I had a sour cherry shaved ice from The People's Pops. I liked their hand ice shaving system...
People's Pops
Sour Cherry Snow Cone on the High Line
People's Pops (Chelsea Market) on Urbanspoon

New York has food truck events too. At the north end of the High Line there was something called Rainbow City with lots of inflatables. Moon walks are fun, but not as fun as food trucks. Here's Kelvin Natural Slush Co.
Custom ice cream sandwiches from the Cool Haus...
Cool Haus
Totally RAD (Rickshaw's Awesome Dumplings)...
Rickshaw's Awesome Dumplings
Red Hook Lobster Pound:
Red Hook Lobster Pound

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Belmont Diner in Elmont, NY

Belmont Diner is located in Elmont on Long Island, right across the street from the Belmont Racetrack. I ate breakfast here about a week before the Belmont Stakes...

Inside, there were plenty of horse racing themed paraphernalia...
A huge plate of whole wheat toast was served first.
Soon followed by my Spinach & Feta Omelet with homefries. This was a good omelet with plenty of fillings. The potatoes were also really flavorful, with no need to add salt or ketchup. With most of the nearby diners being insanely overpriced for what the food is, this breakfast was really affordable and the food was above average!

Belmont Diner on Urbanspoon

Monday, July 18, 2011

Fresco Creperie & Cafe in Long Beach, NY

I visited Fresco Creperie & Cafe for lunch one afternoon before going on a unicycle ride along the Long Beach Boardwalk.
Fresco Creperie + Cafe
I had the Smoked Salmon Crepe, filled with lots of fish, mascarpone cheese, and chives. The crepe tasted good and was kept really moist on the inside with the melted mascarpone. A salad was served on the side. I personally thought it was a little on the pricy side compared to other crepes I've had at $9.95, but it was still tasty regardless.
Smoked Salmon Crepe
Everyone shared an Orange & Caramel crepe for dessert. This sweet crepe was filled with sliced oranges and topped with caramel and powdered sugar. It was good, but I preferred my savory salmon crepe.
Orange Crepe
Nice looking foam on this Macchiato...

Fresco Creperie & Cafe on Urbanspoon

Friday, July 15, 2011

Family Bagels in Floral Park, NY

When it comes to the subject of bagels, Central Florida is pretty much a bagel void except for chains like Einstein Bros or Dunkin Donuts. There are a few independent places, but they are few and far between. Long Island, NY on the other hand seems to have so many bagel shops that it almost seems like oversaturation of the bagel market. Regardless, it leaves plenty of bagels to choose from on my visits up north. This time I chose Family Bagels in Floral Park...
Family Bagels
Family Bagels above average selection of cream cheeses.
Family Bagel's Cream Cheeses
I had an everything bagel with scallion lox cream cheese. The bagel was good and they were really generous with the cream cheese. There was lots of lox bits and plenty of scallions and it was all about $3. Not bad...
Everything with Scallion Lox
Family Bagel Cross Section

Family Bagels on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Traditional Xinjiang Barbeque Cart in Flushing, NY

I've been to several Chinatowns around the United States but the one that was most unexpected was in Flushing, NY. Possibly because it's overshadowed by Manhattan's more famous Chinatown, or maybe because the Chinatown in Flushing is relatively new in the big scheme of things. Flushing's Chinatown was the largest of any other Chinatown I've visited and also felt the most immersive. It felt like I really could have been in some exotic Asian location while walking through the streets. After eating at Joe's Shanghai for some soup dumplings, I came across some street food vendors to really make the experience feel like an episode of one of Anthony Bourdain's shows...
The cart called Traditional Xinjiang Barbecue had the biggest crowd. This small, open air cart sold nothing but meat on sticks.
Everything on the menu was really cheap with most skewers costing $1. Some of the stuff was pretty exotic too. Most places don't serve chicken kidney or lamb tendon on a stick.
I ordered the most expensive thing on the menu and got a quail on a stick. Soon enough, it was on the grill and I was being asked if I want the quail spicy. Of course...
Soon enough, my quail was done cooking. I received the whole bird, cut in half and put onto two skewers.
The delicate little bird was really tasty. The outer skin was crispy while the meat inside was nice and moist. There was a nice amount of spice, but nothing overpowering. My conclusion: Quail from street vendors is delicious...

Xinjiang BBQ Cart on Urbanspoon

Monday, July 11, 2011

Joe's Shanghai in Flushing, NY

I had dinner at Joe's Shanghai in the huge Chinatown neighborhood located in Flushing, NY based on a recommendation from Tasty Chomps. After reading all of the newspaper clippings hanging on the walls, the restaurant is apparently famous for their soup dumplings. I knew what I'd be getting...
We all shared an order of the pork and crab meat soup dumplings. Served on a bed of cabbage over bamboo steamer, these dumplings were unlike anything I've had. While most dumplings are just filled with meat, these soup dumplings were filled with a delicious broth in addition to the meats. It took a few dumplings to figure out how not to spill the broth all over, but that's all part of the fun. I did notice that the majority of the restaurant patrons were eating only soup dumplings for their entire meal.
I also ordered scallion pancakes, being one of my favorite Chinese food appetizers.
For an entree, everyone also shared an order of chicken and broccoli. It wasn't very exotic, but it was affordable and provided some vegetables. It was pretty average, equivalent to what most Chinese restaurants serve.
For dessert, Joe's Shanghai served a plate of orange slices. Can't go wrong with fresh fruit...

Joe's Shanghai on Urbanspoon


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