Thursday, May 31, 2012

Norman Love Confections: Artistry in Chocolate

As a sculptor with his clay or a fine artist with his paint brush, Norman Love and his skilled team of pastry chefs create their culinary art out of only the purest of ingredients.  Norman Love Confections chooses to use only the finest quality of chocolates, spices, butter, nuts, flavors, and purées  Each of the individual pieces of chocolates that are created each day is tenderly handmade for that one exceptional instant when the flavors, texture and aromas explode in a moment of pure, unadulterated pleasure.
These are quite possibly the best chocolate confections any epicure can lusciously indulge in.

Norman Love Confections on Urbanspoon

Friday, March 30, 2012

Fulton's Crab House at Downtown Disney

This review is going to be short and simple. I really didn't like this restaurant too much. Now don't get me wrong, the service was attentive and the setting was unique (a ferry boat that didn't move), but the food was unspectacular and uniqueness was nowhere to be found. I can honestly find better seafood choice at the frozen food section of my local supermarket. However, there was one thing that I did enjoy, the calamari. This lightly breaded appetiizer was fresh, chewy, and delicious. Overall, other than the calamari strips, this is a restaurant that I will probably never go to again. I'm going to go ahead and check this off my list of "never to go" restaurants. But this is strictly my opinion and you can go ahead and give it a try. Maybe I'm just a little picky these days...who knows.

Fulton's Crab House on Urbanspoon

Monday, March 26, 2012

Grand Floridian Resort and Spa and a Dinner Filled with Many "Characters"

The past week, I was at possibly the “Happiest Place on Earth,” Walt Disney World. Although this was my fifth trip to Disney World, the excitement for me was still there. I don’t know if it’s the great customer service, the thrilling rides, unique resorts, entertaining character meals, or all the fantastic characters, but something about Walt Disney World makes me so jubilant. On this trip, we decided to stray away from Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort and try a new deluxe resort called the Grand Floridian Resort and Spa. Now let me tell you that this resort was amazing. When you first glance at it, it has a very neat and luxurious Victorian charm. This huge resort is very clean, spacious, and very well kept.  The Victorian theme was prevalent throughout and the employees or “cast members” were so helpful from check in to check out.

The Rooms

We booked a lagoon view room that had 2 queen beds and a sofa. Our room also had a partial view of the Magic Kingdom, more specifically Cinderella’s’ Castle. Now the rooms were OK. They we clean and well kept, but it just seemed a little out dated. After seeing the resorts opulent lobby, a little more luxury was expected in the hotel rooms. However, the rooms were big and the beds were comfy. The only complaint I had with the room was that it was near the water so literally all day and night we heard the horns of boats passing by constantly. However, this was just a minimal inconvenience.

The Service

Possibly the best impression that this resort left on me was the fact that once our Magical Express Bus arrived to the hotel from the airport, a concierge/check-in desk representative personally greeted us upon arrival and escorted us to the main lobby to get checked in. That was pretty cool if you ask me. Another thing that I really found to be very convenient was the check out service. The resort offered a baggage service that allowed us to print our boarding passes as well as check in our bags all the way to our final destination. What I mean by this is that we basically checked in our bags at the hotel, and didn’t see them until we got to our home airport’s baggage claim. This service was so helpful and hassle free that essentially allowed us to skip the checking in process at the airport and skip right to the security check in area.

Dining Options

Now to the good part- the food. This resort is home to Disney World’s finest restaurant, Victoria and Alberts. Unfortunately, I didn’t have the proper attire (suit jacked and slacks) so I couldn’t make a reservation to dine there.  However, there were other good options that I tried.

Grand Floridian Café

The first place I tried was the Grand Floridian Café. This casual sit down restaurant offered a simple menu of delicious fare. The first time I went here, I tried the Shrimp and Grits. The shrimp was plentiful and the grits were creamy and flavorful. This dish truly was a very nice meal. Now the next night, we ate here again and I tried the Grand Floridian Burger. Now this burger was possibly one of the best burgers I’ve ever had in my life- honestly. This juicy burger was topped with red onion marmalade, fresh grilled onions, a special lettuce, and juicy, succulent lobster meat. It was fantastic. Our waiter was also pretty cool. Although during our second visit to this café we had a different waitress, our waiter from the previous night came over to greet and conversate with us for a little bit. It was a very nice touch.

Grand Floridian Café on Urbanspoon

1900 Park Fare

My best meal experiences occurred at the popular 1900 Park Fare.  This is one of the few restaurants on Disney property that had a character breakfast. The character breakfast featured Winnie the Pooh, Tigger, Alice from Alice in Wonderland, and the Mad Hatter. All the characters came around to each table and spent individual time with us to pose for pictures and conversate. This meal here was also pretty good. The breakfast was a buffet that featured a carving station, Mickey Mouse Waffles, pancakes, eggs, fresh fruits, breakfast pastries and breads, lobster eggs benedict, smoked salmon potatoes and more. It was honestly one of the better breakfast meals that I enjoyed at Walt Disney World.  This restaurant also featured a dinner buffet called 1900 Park Fare Cinderella Happily Ever After Dinner. Now let me tell you, this restaurant is one of the those places that you have to make a reservation months in advance just to get a table, but lucky me, I was able to go to the extremely helpful concierge desk and make reservations for the next night. I truly was SO lucky.  This character dinner was one of the best dinners I’ve ever experience at Walt Disney World. Not because of the food which was quite mediocre at best, but primarily for the character interaction. First of all, I got to meet and take pictures with Cinderella and other guest posed with Prince Charming. But second of all, I got to have long and interesting conversations with the Evil Step Mother and the Step Sisters. Let me tell you, these characters were something else. They were loud, obnoxious, funny, and so similar to characters in the movies. The Evil Step Mother came to our table and started telling me how wonderful her daughters were and that I should choose on of them to marry. She then grabbed me and escorted me across the dining hall to show me her available daughter. Then each sister came to the table to pose for picturing while also interrogating me to see if I was “husband material.” They then capped off the conversation with “Mother, I found my husband!” This was a very funny experience that I had so much fun with and I believe this kind of thing happens to all “available” men at the table. So ladies, watch out! Overall, this was a great restaurant filled many characters and fun, unique interactions throughout out. Highly recommended.
Cinderella <3
Step Sister 1...Future Wife?
Alice in Wonderland
The Buffet

Step Sister 2...Future Wife?
Just Food....and the Smoked Salmon that I loved
Evil Step Mother....Future Mother In-Law? 

Tigger :)
Mad Hatter...I like his nose

Dining Room
1900 Park Fare on Urbanspoon

Gasparilla Grill and Games

This was one of the food places that I couldn't live without on my trip. This 24/7 quick service restaurant offered great croissant sandwiches for breakfasts, burgers, fries, sandwiches, and rice for lunch and dinner, and creamy soft serve ice cream and pastries all day and night. It was truly so convenient.

Gasparilla Grill and Games on Urbanspoon

The Complaints

Now I do have one huge complaint with the resort- the Wi-Fi. You see I’m a huge techie so I always need my phone, laptop, or iPad around me. Unfortunately the Wi-Fi signal at this hotel was awful. I could barely connect to it and when I did, the signal lasted for a measly 2 minutes. At first I thought it was just the signal in my particular building, so I went to the main lobby to try it out. However, the Wi-Fi still sucked.  However, this problem was resolved when I called the front desk and they added my devices’ IP addresses to the resorts internet connection. 

Final Thoughts

So overall, other than terrible Wi-Fi connection, this was possibly my favorite of all the Disney Resorts that I had the privilege of staying at. I would definitely be returning to the Grand Floridian the next time I take another great vacation to possibly my favorite vacation destination in the U.S., Walt Disney World.

Until next time Walt and Mickey!

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Ohana at the Polynesian Resort 2012

This was my second time to Ohana and I really enjoyed. Now the food wasn't as good as the first time, but the service was still pin point and the servers were nice and fast. The character breakfast was fun but wasn't as good as the one I went to at 1900 Park Fare at the Grand Floridian. However, the best thing about the character breakfast was being able to see Lilo, Stitch, Pluto, and most importantly, MICKEY MOUSE. I loved it. However, in terms of food, you can go ahead and pass on this for breakfast since there are a lot more better options out there. Now for dinner, that's a different story because it's a completely different set up and the food unlimited. So come with your stomachs empty and wallets full because this somewhat pricey buffet will have you leaving there in a food coma.

Best Dessert Ever!

To seem my previous post about Ohana during my first trip to the restaurants, click HERE

'Ohana on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Korean Style Jack Daniel Smoked Ribs and Some Delicious Sides

Here are just a few photos of my delicious meal that I had the privilege of enjoying when I went home for the weekend. My meal consisted of prosciutto ham infused green beans, tender Korean style Jack Daniel ribs, and some creamy 6 cheese macaroni and cheese. It truly was fantastic! (p.s. I know this post is super short but there really isn't much for me to talk about because I want the photos to do all the talking for me.) Cheers!
Korean Style Jack Daniel Smoked Ribs

Creamy macaroni and cheese

Monday, February 13, 2012

Just a Little Update

Hey what's up guys! I know it's been a while since I posted on this blog. I've been very busy with college work and other business ventures I am pursuing at the moment. Plus, I haven't been able to cook any delicious meals or even go out to any notable restaurants that I could photograph and blog about. I guess really the only food blogging related thing was when I went to Georgetown again and got cupcakes from three of Georgetown's most popular "cupcakeries"- Baked and Wired, Georgetown Cupcake, and Sprinkles. Now all of these cupcakes were delicious and the experience was very sweet, but I honestly forgot to take any pictures. I think I may have had just one pic at Baked and Wired and it wasn't even that great of a picture. Anyways, I hope that I will soon be able to blog about something very awesome so that I can share it with all of y'all. Thanks for understanding and I hope you guys have a fantastic day!

P.S. This picture of the awesome gelato I had at Vegas has nothing to do with the post!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Heavenly Hushpuppies

Last month, I took a trip down to South Carolina to see my family for Christmas. During one of the days, we decided to try a local seafood restaurant called Gilligan’s Steamer and Raw Bar. Now the food here was okay and nothing really special.  You can honestly go to a local Long John Silver’s and get the same meal for a lot cheaper. However, there was one thing that I truly fell in love with- their hushpuppies. These warm hushpuppies were crispy on the outside, and soft and chewy on the inside.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

The Buffet of Buffets: The Wicked Spoon at the Cosmopolitan Las Vegas

Sleek, hot, sexy, contemporary, dark, fashionable, and delicious.  These are all characteristics of one of the newest, trendiest, and best buffets on the Las Vegas Strip, the Wicked Spoon at the Cosmopolitan.

This ultra modern buffet emerge guests into a whole new buffet experience; one that strays from the typical buffet organization and set up, by serving food in individual sized portions that is jam packed with personality. You’ll find fried chicken in mini fryer baskets, macaroni and cheese in small serving pots, string beans in Chinese takeout boxes, and Asian chicken in mini woks. And this is only the tip of the iceberg.

The black and dark woods with dark yellow and amber lit glass accents throughout the serving areas, complimented with a fanciful and artful sitting area provides guests with a dining experience that is elegant, yet causal and relaxing. 

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

SKYBOX at the Aria Resort Las Vegas

During my vacation in Las Vegas, I stayed at the awesome Aria Resort and Casino at CityCenter. And let me tell you, this hotel is awesome. It's very modern, clean, beautiful, and most importantly, it has some amazing restaurants. If you didn't already know, I am a huge buffet fanatic so I always try to eat at buffets for brunch and dinner. But there are times when it gets a little too much so you just want to eat something light. And thankfully for me, there was this cool restaurant/sports bar called Skybox. This place has your typical burgers, fries, nachos, and finger food, all in a sporty and loud area with walls shrouded by large TVs. Throughout my stay, I got food from here about 3 times and I really enjoyed it. My personal favorites was there American Burger with their special spread and a side of sweet potato french fries. It's a very fulfilling me, yet a little pricey at $23. But either way, this is a great place to grab a quick meal, especially if you order from their to-go counter. So if you are ever at the Aria Resort and want some typical finger foods, be sure to check out Skybox.

(Photo from Jimmy Hoofa's Las Vegas Blog)

Skybox (Aria) on Urbanspoon

Saturday, January 14, 2012

In N Out Burger Las Vegas

If you're like me and live on the east coast, then you may have heard many west coast residents talk about this awesome burger joint called In N Out Burger. You see, I am a huge fan of Five Guys burgers and fries, and I was told that In N Out was a lot better. So I decided that it was time to see what all the hype was all about. And lucky for me, there was an In N Out Burger a few minutes from my hotel in Las Vegas. So my parents and I went on down to restaurant, and boy oh boy was I impressed. The food was so good! The burgers were juicy, the buns and ingredients were fresh, and the fries were out of this world (I just couldn't stop eating them). I also loved how the fries were peeled and cut on the scene which really tells you how fresh this food is.  Another thing I got that I really enjoyed was there chocolate shake. This shake was so rich and creamy that it took me a half hour to finish it. Overall, this was a very nice experience and I was very impressed with the food. Now I can truly say that I am a big fan of In N Out Burger.