Sunday, May 3, 2009

Barney's Beanery-Pasadena-friday, May 1st

Mike and I were pleasantly surprised at our recent visit to Barney's Beanery in Pasadena.
We walked in to the typical friday night party scene at this noisy, reataurant/bar to meet a friend of mine for her birthday. It was too crowded for me to even visit with my friend, so Mike and I crossed our fingers that we would find a small table to eat at. We found a table and waited to be greeted. Waiters passed us by, attending to tables and responding to pool players ordering more drinks, so I finally got up and found an available server.
Once we placed our order, we were very pleased. Our food was out in 5 minutes, it was presented very well, and delicious. I guess I don't come to expect much from bar food. But when you look at their extensive menu, plus, they fact that they've been around for a handful of decades, it makes sense that the food is tasty. Looking forward to visiting again, maybe on a more relaxed afternoon.
Barney's Beanery-Pasadena


no time for pictures, give me delicious food.
Okay, so this was one of those weekends where we needed to eat, had some extra time, so we drove out to Ontario, met up with a friend and enjoyed another delicious Chevy;s dinner.
This night was particularly spectacular. I think I counted at least six separate people that helped us that evening. It was golden.

Il Forno-Azusa-Sunday, April, 19

One easy sunday, I brought Mike along for a ride up Azusa to run some errands. Once that was done, and I suddenly realized I needed to eat, we looked around for somewhere interesting to dine.
The Il Forno cafe looks conspicuous from the outside, shady windows, and no easily visible door. Granted, it was not lunch or dinnertime, so at 3pm, we got the entire restaurant to ourselves. We were very pleased once we walked in the door. We took some notes and pictures. Enjoy.
Il Forno-Azusa
Free bread. Small pieces. Warm and slightly crispy. Tasty homemade flavor. Olive oil and vinegar mix was quite entertaining for me (Mikey).
Il Forno
Clean dishes, linens and utensils.
Lovely setting. Small but spacious. Full bar. Very polite and attentive staff.
Il FornoIl Forno

Monday, April 13, 2009

TGIFriday's-West Covina, Friday April 9

Sadly, Mike and I had finally come upon our very last gift card(Not that, that could stop us from dining out).
At TGIF, we are almost always greeted by a rowdy restaurant, with people pouring out from the bar, and young busboys making cat calls to a group of overly dressed girls on their way out.
Nevertheless, we had a very cool server who got us our food and drinks on time, so we dealt with it.
One of our favorite appetizers, mozzarella sticks, at this restaurant are hot and cheesy and come in a very convenient dipping shape. We both enjoyed two large margaritas, I decided to try a low fat option, it very good(kung pao chicken pictured below)and Mike had his usual which he said was delicious.
Enjoy the pics.
TGIF-West Covina
TGIF-West Covina

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Chili's-La Verne-April 4, saturday

Another weekend approaches, and after a long week of work, Mike and I are ready to eat out. We have exactly $135 dollars worth of gift cards left(thanks to Mikey's Discover points) to use in support of our eating/blogging endeavors.
We chose Chili's, but opted for a new location, La Verne.
Our overall experience here would have to be described as fair.
While our server was pleasant and our drinks came out in time, small mishaps and a general feeling of 'rather not be here' exuded from her actions.
I ordered the BBQ ribs, which I thoroughly enjoyed last time, but chose different sides for a change of pace.
Chilis-La Verne-Mikey's plain burger
My fries were on the cold side, and I was given pinto beans in a salsa mix instead of baked beans. Simple mistake, yes, but one that can throw off the entire meal.
One thing that was pleasing were our drinks. Mikey ordered a tasty Presidente margarita, that you self pour from a shaker, and I tried a new beer which hit the spot.
I had my eye on the dessert menu, but when our server dropped the check silently, mid-meal, I decided that I had had enough of an experience there, and that I would more likely enjoy a dessert elsewhere.
Goes to show, by neglecting simple issues that arise, one can really create a worse experience for the customer that he/she had intended.

El Conquistador-Silverlake-March 29th, sunday

Mike and I recently found ourselves in LA on a cool but comfortable Sunday night. We decided to visit Barragan's, after having had such a pleasant time there before. Sadly, they had just closed their doors for the night and there are not a lot of options at 9:30pm on a Sunday Night. So, with bellies rumbling and a severe hankering for some Mexican food, we coasted down Sunset Blvd on a mission.

Much to our delight, a large OPEN sign hung in the window of one of our favorite hangouts, El Conquistador in Silverlake! It has a reputation for its friendliness, festive settings and surprisingly strong margaritas.
El Conquistador -the best margaritas in LA!
They sat us right away in a soft-lit section decorated with a new theme for spring time. I was delighted to take photos of the walls and our romantic table. Our margaritas were served quickly, but our main server took a few moments to work his way over to us. At first it was frustrating, but then much less so once we noticed that he was having a friendly conversation with another table. Once the order was placed, everything that followed was delightful. We were quickly greeted with chips, salsa and soup.
El Conquistador-my meal, taquitos
The presentation of our food was festive (like the surroundings) and quite tasty. Our server came back to check on us several times, and assured us to not rush even though they were clearly closing up for the evening.

Mean margaritas and a full menu aside, what is most refreshing about dining at a place like this is the fact that the staff are like family and you get the sense that they truly enjoy being there. That makes for a perfect dining experience that is hard to replicate.

Applebees-West Covina-March 28,sat. nite

This outing was a short one; just a quick meal and drink to celebrate my completion of one week of work at my newest job. The food, presentation, service and taste were all up to par with our last experiences at Applebees, with the exception of one major area of neglect.
We stood at the door waiting to be greeted/sat for at least 4 minutes, until some employee in the back took notice and rushed to help us.
It seemed to me that since restaurants are not flourishing in these times that they staff a smaller amount of employees than normal.
Applebees Mikey's burger
Once we were sat, everything ran smoothly, but had it been earlier(more restaurants open), we would have walked right out and dined somewhere else.