I’ve written some reviews putting down Americanized Chinese and hailing the authentic places. However, sometimes you just need a solid sweet and sour chicken, or hanker for an almond chicken done just the way you remember from your childhood. And when you do have this craving, it can be very difficult to find a place that does it right- not too much grease (though not too little), with the flavors you remember and fresh quality that won’t offend your adult foodie sensibilities. LC’s Kitchen accomplishes these checkpoints well, and even though I discovered them because my mom ordered take-out (they live a couple of blocks away), I’ve been back on my own and will drive a little farther to enjoy the goodness over the other Chinese places by my house.
LC’s has a few characteristics I have to laud: First, when I asked for extra spicy, they actually added extra spice that I could detect. This is incredibly rare in a Chinese restaurant, and wins points and return visits from me in its own right. Second, their vegetables are fresh and their meat tastes tender and high quality. Even their fried food isn’t swimming in grease, which makes their Americanized choices a fine way to go instead of an afterthought, like many more authentic Chinese restaurants. I usually enjoy the Szechuan chicken, and share with my friend who gets the almond chicken. Egg drop soup, wonton soup and egg rolls- usual suspects, but still necessary accompaniments (all good). If it’s in your neighborhood, go for your next craving.
LC's Kitchen Website
Yup. It’s a diner. Kinda like a National Coney Island, but so much more. My folks talked about Charlie’s for quite a while before I finally agreed to tag along one morning. I pictured it as the same old boring breakfast, Greek salads and pita sandwiches. Well, was I in for a very pleasant and delicious surprise. There are more reasons to go to Charlie’s than the fact that it’s two blocks away from my ma and pa’s house. It’s also delicious and unique in its genre, with large portions and fresh ingredients. With nice wait staff and owners to boot. So here’s the dish: We got a grilled chicken pita, Reuben sandwich, and Garden Crepes. Sandwiches = GIGANTIC! Tender meat, buttery grilled bread and fresh condiments. All this without being too greasy. And then there’s the garden crepe. A unique dish, consisting of scrambled eggs, tomatoes, asparagus and cheese wrapped in a crepe with hollandaise sauce poured on top. As this was my order, I was more than pleased- and so was my sister, who asked for one bite that turned into ten bites. (I was inwardly annoyed because I wanted to take it home to extend my joy to the next morning for leftovers). Moral of the story: Don’t judge a strip mall diner by it’s cover. You’ll feel the warmth when you step in and be pleasantly surprised by the quality of the food. I’ve been back since, and when I don’t get the crepes the lamb gyro is pretty great too.
Texas Roadhouse is like Chilis to me except for one big difference - happy hour. Texas Roadhouse has a better happy hour. If you come for 'early dining' they have meal deals that are 7 bucks. You get an insane amount of food for 7 dollars. I can eat a lot and I can't even eat everything. So that means you paid 7 dollars for dinner and you get lunch for the next day too! Bonus!
Their hot unlimited rolls are to die for. They come with a cinnamon butter ... that melts and seeps into the bread. If you wanted, you could just eat those as your meal and take your actual meal home. Whatever you want to do, but this is eating on the cheap.
Texas Roadhouse's Website
I'm definitely a fan of this place. I would give it five stars on food alone, but I thought some dishes were ok and not great. Most everything I have had at this restaurant (from the noodles to sushi) has been pretty good. I opt to go here instead of some place like Little Tree because it's more intimate. Intimate in that, it's smaller, and you'll see the same people there the next time you go in.
Service is fairly fast. The people are always friendly. I believe the person that owns the place used to be part owner of Little Tree at one point. I'm not sure if that makes a difference, but their sushi tastes better than Little Tree's to me.
Chilis has always been a childhood favorite. I remember having chicken crisper dates with my mom. That's when the chicken crisper meal was 7.99. Ah, memories. :) I still go there for chicken crispers because I just looooove them, but I sometimes crave the fajitas. If you get the two for twenty meal that comes with an appetizer and two entrees you can choose from a variety of great entrees (chicken crispers included). However, the fajitas are my goto second dish and they are pretty darn good. You get a lot of food so don't worry about the portions. You now also get a carousel of toppings to go on them! Which is great because I love toppings. Try the Texas fries for your appetizer. They are delicious. Melted gooey cheese, crumbled bacon, jalapenos, and green onions. Yum! You can subtract items off of them if you don't like something, but I think they are perfect just the way they are. Go get the Chili's deal while it's sizzling hot!
Giving you a taste of what I taste. From gourmet to everyday. No pretentious bull - just good food.