Friday, December 27, 2013

Winston's Grille-Raleigh, NC

Winston's Grill has been on my radar for quite some time.  My Christmas visit with my sister brought us together for a wonderful dinner at a very nice restaurant with a well recommended reputation.   The Christmas decorations were very festive.

Our server, Hannah, arrived promptly at the table with a smiling face and a festive Christmas spirit.   She took our drink orders and delivered home made bread to our table.  One of my favorites!!

Winston's Grille also has an open to the kitchen tasting bar.  
Looked like the perfect place to enjoy Happy Hour and enjoy 
some tasty appetizers.  

Hannah suggested the Chicken Asiago and I asked her for 
her Christmas Surprise for me.  She didn't let us down.  

The London Broil was perfectly prepared medium rare...and the 
mashed potatoes were velvet heaven.  Loved the Mixed Vegetable Medley
which obviously was prepared with fresh vegetables....not something from a purveyor.  
I was so disappointed that I lost the picture of Chicken Asiago....I had it somewhere but 
it vanished.  The plate was equally well prepared and beautiful to the eye.  

After our fabulous meal, it was time for coffee and desserts!  I requested decaf coffee and it was rich and robust. My sister chose the Peppermint Cheesecake and I chose the Bananas Foster Dessert.  The moment the Peppermint Cheesecake was set on the table, I could smell the delicious aroma.  Smooth and creamy and so very Holiday inspired.  My Bananas Foster was perfect...light flaky puff pastry and the home made ice cream was the perfect accompaniment.  

Peppermint Cheesecake

Bananas Foster with Vanilla Ice Cream

Winston's Grille is open for Lunch and Dinner
and Reservations are available via Open Table.
Full Bar and Wine Cellar should complete
your visit and leave you very satisfied!
Winston's Home Made Ice Cream is available 
for take home if you desire.   Pints and Quarts
are available in the cooler.  

Winston's Grille on Urbanspoon

Wisteria Southern Gastropub

There is nothing better than finding a 
locally owned restaurant on Urbanspoon.  
 I had never been to Morganton and it was lunchtime.   

While on the road traveling from Knoxville, TN to Raleigh, NC, the lunch hour put me at the Morganton, NC exit.  I looked around and saw all the familiar fast food chains and know that was not going to be my choice today.  My Urbanspoon mobile app helped me find Wisteria.  

I arrived about 11:30 and they had just opened.   It was Saturday and the Brunch was being featured.  My server, Cecil, approached quickly and offered a freshly made Mimosa or Bloody Mary.  Had to pass on that since I was driving, but they sure looked good.  He presented the Menu for my approval and brought out two very nice muffins to enjoy.  

I suggested that Cecil surprise me with his 
favorite menu items.   He didn't disappoint me.  

Wisteria Breakfast
The Wisteria Breakfast featured Eggs with Cheese, Stone Ground Grits, bacon and a biscuit.  The grits were outstanding....loved them.    Cecil also surprised me with something I have never heard of....LIVERMUSH!   I have had lots of different things to eat but this one stumped me.  As we talked, I found out it is a regional delicacy.   A combination of ground liver and cornmeal, pan fried.   At first, I thought it was a slice of pumpernickel bread.  It was a very different side dish, but I found out I did like it.  Always been a braunschweiger fan and this tasted just like it.    


Nice Interior

I enjoyed by brunch and would stop back again to
enjoy more of the menu.    Thanks for serving 
me a great local meal.  

Wisteria Southern Gastropub on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

The Grand ReOpening of Red Lobster in Knoxville

My last visit to Red Lobster in Perry GA was a great treat. This trip brought us to the newly revamped Red Lobster in Knoxville.   The restaurant has had a complete renovation reminiscent to Bar Harbor, Maine.  

We began our evening with Crab and Seafood Stuffed Mushrooms, 
Coconut Shrimp, Spicy Buffalo Chicken Bites and Sweet Chili Shrimp. 

Each Appetizer was nicely presented and very tasty  

Our second feature was the Spicy Chicken Tortilla Soup and Caesar Salad.    Nice...very flavorful and enjoyable.   This soup really could be a filling main course.    Another new menu item is the Bar Harbor Salad featuring dried berries and honey roasted pecans with blueberry balsamic cheese crumbles served upon request.  

Spicy Chicken Tortilla Soup

Classic Caesar Salad

Our capable servers were ready for the entreé orders.   As usual, I asked my Server to surprise me with their favorites.   I was served the new Salmon New Orleans...blackened and topped with shrimp and a spicy Tabasco beurre blanc sauce.   Also we enjoyed sampling the Wood Grilled Pork Chop with Mashed Potato,  and the Wood Grilled Lobster, Shrimp and Scallops.  All were nicely prepared and full of flavor.   Nice presentations.   

We were also treated to Tilapia with Roasted Vegetables
prepared in a parchment bag.   This dish was very good.  

After finishing our great meals, we couldn't leave without trying some of 
Red Lobsters new desserts.  

The Strawberry Cream Shortcake, The Chocolate Wave and
their Key Lime Cheesecake with Raspberry sauce.  

I really enjoy Red Lobster and would dine here regularly.   But I have to admit we were invited guests from the Darden Corporation, owners of Red Lobster, Olive Garden, Capital Grille and Seasons 52 among others in their restaurant family.  A special Thank You also to Costa Communications Group in Winter Park, FL.   Vanessa Tostes and Summer Walker were so nice to provide this evening's dining and entertainment.  Along with Vanessa, Crystal, District Manager and Christina General Manager welcomed us.   Thank you again for a wonderful evening and we look forward returning to explore the  new items featuring the Bar Harbor theme.  

.....and one more thing!!!  How could I forget.  
We were treated to a new lunch offering....Lobster and Grilled Cheese with Fries!  
Boy oh boy...that was really good.  

Red Lobster on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Apple Cake Tea Room--Knoxville

The One and ONLY!!

Apple Cake Tea Room has enjoyed a multi decade run of success and this is one restaurant I have never been to.  Their most requested item is their Chicken Salad and it is the best reason to drop in for lunch. 

The Welcoming Foyer
I arrived just about lunchtime and the place was 98% full of ladies.  This was to be expected after all.    While in the foyer, I read all the glowing reviews from the press and beautiful thank you notes that past guest had sent to Mary.   I didn't get to meet Mary, but I am sure she is a treasure.  

A Charming Apple Napkin Ring
I was taken to a nice table out of the main flow of traffic.   My server was immediately at my side with a frosty glass of water and a flavorful mini muffin and butter. 

The Complimentary Mini Muffin
I looked over the menu and decided to have my server surprise me since I didn't know exactly what I wanted.  She returned to my table quickly and presented me with their Chicken Salad on a Croissant and an what I thought was an unusual accompaniment.   She included a twice baked potato with cheese and bacon on top.  Somehow, I was expecting the usual fruit salad, but the potato added a nice touch and was filling for my appetite.  

The Chicken Salad with Twice Baked Potato

I enjoyed their food and would drop by again....
nice place with a real homey atmosphere.  


Apple Cake Tea Room is open 
Monday to Saturday for Lunch Only  

Apple Cake Tea Room on Urbanspoon

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Foothills Milling Company--Maryville

Without any doubt....

Last evening, our dining adventure surpassed anything in the past was that good!  

I have heard many people commenting on how good the Food and Service was at Foothills Milling Company.   After all...with a 94% overall rating, I expected them to surpass my every food dream.  

We arrived with reservation in hand.  I would highly recommend reservations and be sure to make them a couple of weeks in advance.  We arrived at 630 and the place was packed.  We waited at the comfortable bar while our table was prepared for us.  

Our server, Taylor was prompt to our table.  Although he was very busy, never missed a single thing.  An amuse-bouche was presented...a crispy bread square with black eyed pea pesto.   Very good!  

I asked Taylor to surprise me with his favorite choices

...and he did his job in expert fashion.  

Our Appetizers were amazing. 


The Salmon Cheesecake Appetizer

The Fried Oysters..Crispy and tender on the inside 

We condinued with a beautiful selection of Rosemary Focaccia and Potato Bread...both having just out of the oven freshness.   Also was a beautiful butter in a pool of olive oil.....a different presentation but so good with the bread.  

We were presented with the most wonderful Spinach Salad with a warmed dressing featuring Benton Bacon.  I had to eat every was that good. 

 Following our wonderful salad, we were served a 
very refreshing Berry Sorbet.  

 And now time for the Entrées!

 All Natural Lamb Chops with Creamy Orzo, Roasted Tomatoes, 
Kalamata Olives, Goat Cheese & Asparagus!  

My Surprise Entrée was Their Famous 
Hickory Smoked Pork and Shrimp served with
Pork Shoulder, Sweet Chili Shrimp, Black Rice, Soy Glazed
Baby Green Beans & Ginger Scallions.  

Raves with the Lamb Chops, but my Pork & Shrimp dish
had to be one of the best things I have good with
surprising flavors that came together with perfection.  

 To finish our birthday celebration, we chose desserts that were the perfect finish to any meal. 

Rocky Top Ice Cream Pie
Blackberry Streusel Tart

 The Foothills Milling Company
has become my guaranteed favorite 
to impress Family and Friends.   With the wide  
menu choices, you will want to return and soon!

Foothills Milling on Urbanspoon

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Red Lobster--Perry, GA

Returning from Tampa, the half way point back home is Perry, GA.   We have stopped here many times and have enjoyed many a meal.  Red Lobster, once again, is a dependable destination.

We began our dinner with drinks and the Sweet Chili Shrimp...a dozen 
hand-battered shrimp tossed in a spicy chili sauce. 

 On this stop, I noticed the Four Course Feast for $15.99.  

Other entreés included

Jumbo Coconut and Pineapple-Grilled Shrimp
Shrimp-and-Scallop Alfredo with fresh tomatoes
Hand-Breaded Shrimp
Wood-Grilled Fresh Tilapia
Cajun Chicken Linguini Alfredo
Wood-Grilled Chicken with Portobello Wine Sauce
Wood-Grilled Pork Chop* with apple compote
Roasted Vegetable Skewers with lemon-garlic beurre blanc
Garlic-Grilled Shrimp

Shrimp-and-Scallop Alfredo with fresh tomatoes

 The Lobster Fest menu featured Lobster/Shrimp Tacos and a Lobster tail.  
Loved the slaw on the tacos.....very bright flavor and 
the lobster tail was outstanding, though small.  

The Key Lime Pie served with TWO forks!!

Red Lobster is consistent and reliable.   This location
is what I would expect at any Red Lobster. 
I would return knowing a good deal will be enjoyed. 

Red Lobster on Urbanspoon