Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Gyros and Kabobs

I enjoy eating food from different countries. It gives you a chance to get to know a culture through your taste buds. You can tell a lot about anyone by what they eat. Take for instance your close friend who always eats fast food, odds are they live a busy lifestyle and don't have time to prepare fresh food for themselves. Then you have your Suzie homemaker friend who is always baking something scrumptious and cooking full three course meals, this person has time on their hands and enjoys the art of cooking fresh more than likely. Japanese food is largely based on sea as it is an island nation. America with it's large plains enjoy their meats, grains, and corn.

Greece on the other hand is too small to use its limited resources to farm large animals. They specialize in lamb. Yuuummmyyy! They enjoy their grains and seafood as well since it is a coastal nation. But today we are talking lamb. I recently went to a hole in the wall, no flash, don't blink or you'll miss it little Greek restaurant. This place was immaculately clean and had one of the smallest dining rooms I've ever seen. I was told that it was "No good, no one goes there" and that I should probably steer clear of this little place. My first question was "How long has it been there?". I got just the answer I was looking for. "As long as I can remember". No one stays in business "As long as I can remember" if they are serving horrible cuisine.
It was on as far as I was concerned. I could not find much on the web about this place but the few reviews I did find were all good. Just as I had thought. One review said they have eaten there for over ten years, again a good sign. When you pull up it's nothing fancy, and easy to miss in the clutter of flashy business signs. The dinning room is basic fast food booths along two walls. Lots of Persian photos on the wall, giving you the feeling of stepping into a European Subway (the restaurant). I went with my Mom who says she loves food and eats it all but when it comes down to it she is quite picky.
This is where the whole experience of the place kicks in. We where greeted immediately by a nice young woman who obviously loves her job. I had my mind set already of course, for me I was eating lamb, no ifs, ands, or buts, about it. My Mom on the other hand was out of her element. She "Hates lamb" she said, and asked about the chicken. The young woman gave the most honest answer I've ever heard from from a restaurant employee. "It's no good, it's processed chicken, you need to try the lamb." We explained that my Mom "Hates lamb" and the server went that extra mile and asked if my Mom would like to try a bite, then make up her mind. I've been to few places that would be so honest and so helpful when it comes to new customers. After trying a bite my Mom had to admit defeat, this lamb was good!
I ordered a Lamb plate which consisted of seasoned lamb strips, a salad, and pita bread. It was awesome. The lamb was cooked perfectly, the salad was fresh and the sauce it is served with was outstanding. My Mom had a lamb salad that was served with the best olive oil dressing I've ever tasted. It was fresh food and great service, the two things that will keep people coming back and has kept them in business for over ten years. Nothing on the menu was over seven dollars and featured a lamb burger which I'm dying to go back and try. My Mom even intends to go back, score one for awesome service! And good food!
So take it from me when someone tries to tell you whats good, get online and do some research. Five minutes and you'll get reviews from people like you and me. Average Americans who are accustomed to average food and give honest opinions. Try new things whenever you can. Who knows you just might like it, just ask my dear ol' Mom.
Love food, Live life!
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Saturday, March 20, 2010

Gene's Tasty Burger

    Gene's Tasty Burger. The name dose not do this old fashion fast food joint justice. This is the kind of place I dream about. When you drive up it's obvious that this place has been here for years. The building is not the most beautiful, but that's not why we dine out is it. It's the food. And Gene's dose it right.
As far as I can tell they have been in business for over 30 years! Any foodie knows that to stay in business in this industry for that long is quite and accomplishment. I was led here by my mom who has been a fan as long as she could remember. I also checked out as many reviews from people as I could find and it was consistently rated four and a half stars. I give it a Five!
To me service and cleanliness are just as important as the food. Go wrong with one of those and you can destroy the customers experience and give them a biased opinion before the food hits the table. And most people wont admit or realize that the food was awesome, it was the service that turned you off. The service at Gene's is among the best I've seen. They work as a team and that's what it's about! The kitchen is open so you can watch your food being prepared. There is a mini counter in front of the line, about four stools I think, I took a moment to hang out there and watch the cooks in action. They fresh peel whole potatoes for their fries! One thing I'm not used to coming from California and Nevada. This gives the fries a different texture and big flavor.
The menu is simple American fast food cooked fresh. There is something for everyone. But I have not got past the "Frisco Burger". It's heaven between two buns plain and simple. The Frisco is a basic chili cheese burger, meat, chili, diced onion, and cheese. I'm sure to go back again and again and determined to try something else but when they do something so well it's hard to resist.
So that's Gene's in a nut shell. A five star classic fast food done right hangout. If you get the chance to stop in do so. You wont be disappointed.
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