The Bayou Boil — Another Visit

Clams On The Half Shell

A Dozen Clams On The Half Shell

Tender, sweet and fresh…

Mignonette, lemon wedges and other sauces were on the side.

Shrimp & Grits

The shrimp wer tender and the grits were creamy.  This might not have been our favorite dish of the day.  But, it was quite nice.

Fried Shrimp & Fries

The shrimp were lightly breaded, seasoned, and crispy on the outside.  Each shrimp was properly cooked and tender on the inside.  And, a mildly spiced remoulade was on the side.  (On another visit, we were given tartar and cocktail sauces.  If you want the remoulade, you might have to request it.)

Late lunch, quite lunch…

This was another enjoyable meal at The Bayou Boil.

The Bayou Boil
5091 Buford Highway NE
#B
Doraville, GA  30340
770 733 1460

Glenfiddich Highland Whisky Cake

Glenfiddich Highland Whisky Cake
(Infused with 12 year old Glenfiddich)

It’s sealed to stay moist.

It’s small, but seriously dense.

So, it’s about the size of a jumbo muffin or cupcake.

It’s very buttery and chock full of plump, tender raisins.

Lots and lots of raisins…

We were surprised by how much we actually enjoyed all of those raisins.  We’ve both been rather ambivalent towards raisins, in general.  In sweet or savory dishes, we could take them or leave them.  But, we both enjoyed them in this cake.

There are some cherries in there, too.  But, it’s predominantly a buttery raisin cake brushed with whisky, dotted with a smattering of cherries and six almonds to decorate the top.

We divided the cake into quarters the first night.  Honestly, that was just too much.  So, we ended up sharing a quarter.  A little goes a long way with this densely rich cake.

Would we buy it again?  Yes, definitely.  It’s was pretty good… quite good for a mass produced cake.  The only real negative would be a rather heavy handed use of butter and vegetable oils.  And, we would’ve enjoyed a more generous use of their 12 year old whisky.  (Note to us:  Buy a bottle.  Now!)

We love to buy seasonal food for the holidays and around the holidays.  (We nibbled this as a New Year’s Day treat to ourselves.  It might be old news.  But, we didn’t want to forget it.)  It wouldn’t be Christmas without new treats to taste and enjoy.  Next year, we’ll try the Strathspey Rich Fruit Cake topped with marzipan.  We’ll probably be wanting to get an earlier start on the winter treats this year for a bigger sampling window.  Marzipan makes almost every sweet treat better.

Glenfiddich Whisky Cake

Not Your Father’s Ginger Ale — Small Town Brewery

Not Your Father’s Ginger Ale
Small Town Brewery

(5.9% alcohol by volume)

Here’s another seriously sweet one for the books.

It’s kinda sorta semi-interesting.  Though the sweetness tends to overwhelm, there is an interesting sugary sweet crystalized ginger flavor that’s present here.  So, on the one hand, we find this a bit interesting.  Yet, simultaneously, we find this to be our major problem with this ginger ale.  We were hoping for more of a fresh, spicy ginger beer bite.  A spicy bite would aid in cutting all of that sweetness.  Instead, we find the flavor to be more muted.  It’s a bit like long stewed ginger simmering in thick, sticky sugar syrup.  But, the taste of ginger is real and it has a really lovely complexity that you would expect ginger to bring to the party.  If you’re hoping for a spicy, bright ginger beer bite, you’ll probably be disappointed.  Then again, if you’re happy to drink a sweet (Full Sugar Soda SWEET) hard ginger ale… this might fit the bill.

Granted, it is labeled ginger ale… not ginger beer.

A splash in a cocktail, will be tasty.  We’re sure of that.  There is a high end quality to this ginger ale.  But, to drink straight, it’s very sticky sweet.  We shared one.  And, we were done.  We’ll be experimenting with the rest in cocktails.

We both prefer Not Your Father’s root beer.  (Those are super sweet, too.  We find all of that sweetness to be more fitting for a root beer.  Root beer is always sticky sweet.  We enjoy sharing one.)

Not Your Father’s Ginger Ale

Small Town Brewery

KFC — Nashville Hot Chicken

KFC’s Nashville Hot Chicken

KFC’s Nashville Hot Chicken
(8 Pieces)

KFC’s Nashville Hot Chicken
(3 Tenders)

The Problem Is Consistency

After one bite, we think “Hm, it’s not really that bad. ”  It’s spicy (slightly beyond mild spice), crunchy, and SALTY!  Actually, no, it’s ridiculously SALTY.  After about 3 bites in… it reaches “Oh my god this is so salty I can’t take it any more” salty.  The one and only breast in the box reveals tender white meat after the first bite.  By far, out of 8 pieces that one and only chicken breast was the best piece we ate.  The thighs and legs were breaded to extreme excess.  And, given nature of the dish (ladling hot, spicy oil over breaded chicken), this excessively breaded piece of chicken yeilds an inedible piece of chicken when it is sopping wet with salty, spicy oil.  Out of 8 pieces, one piece of chicken was edible…. barely.  For the other pieces, we removed about 85-90% of the greasy, salty breading.

We’ve had great hot chicken in Nashville and otherwise (here, here, and here).  All three versions were great to fabulous in their own unique ways.  This isn’t great… or even good hot chicken.  The first bite or two are pretty decent to ok.  Then, it’s all downhill.

On the bright side, it makes for a quick meal.  After 3 or 4 bites,  you’re done eating for the day.  And, you won’t want to look at food for at least 12 and up to 24 hours.

The taste?  If you can ignore the excessive use of salt (which is quite difficult), the spices aren’t really that bad.  But, it doesn’t taste like Nashville style “hot chicken”… AT ALL.  The taste is more reminiscent of spicy barbecued potato chip dust.  No, that’s not entirely accurate.  It tastes like a very VERY salty version of barbecued potato chip dust that was combined with about 1000% too much oil of unknown origin.  Attention KFC:  If you’re ladling spicy oil over food to be consumed by human beings, that oil should be of superior quality.

Greasy Tenders, Barely Spiced

More notes regarding those levels of inconsistency:

The chicken tenders were actually worse… if you can believe it.  This seems to be due to the fact that more oil was ladled over the chicken with less of the spice in the mix.  So, the person ladling the oil directly effects the edibility of the chicken.

More oil + Less spice = Inedible fried chicken

Hey KFC!?! Given the greasy nature of all of your chicken, why not just sprinkle the hot spice mix on your already greasy chicken.  Ladling additional oil is entirely unnecessary.  Oh yeah and KFC, cut back on the salt!  More rarely equals better.  Thanks for your attention! :)

KFC

Aladdin’s Mediterranean Grill

Aladdin’s Schwarma Platter

Chicken & Beef

Aladdin’s Kabob Sampler

Lamb, Beef, & Chicken

The lamb was beautifully tender, delicious, and properly cooked.

Again…

Another incredible meal…

Aladdin’s Mediterranean Grill
Aladdin’s Mediterranean Restaurant
8725 Roswell Road
Atlanta, GA  30350
770 518 9288

Kinky

Kinky Cocktails
Kinky Beverage Co.

Labeled a malt beverage in the finer print, we bought these for fun…. and to mock.  We completely expected these to be absolutely and utterly horrible.  Oddly, they weren’t.  They were a bit too sweet, but, really not bad at all.  Mango adds the sweetness while passion fruit brings tart and blood orange brings the bitter.  It works if your expectations aren’t set too high and you can take a hefty dose of sugar in your “cocktail”.  (Though, cocktail would not be an accurate descriptor.  Make no mistake, these are a malt beverage.  Is Kinky Pink a premium malt beverage?  That’d be hard to say.  The word premium in front of the words malt and beverage makes both of us chuckle more than a little bit.) And, yeah, they’re shockingly bright pink.  So, there’s that.

Kinky Beverage Co.
Kinky Beverages

La Mei Zi — Another Great Meal

Braised Beef Scallion Rolls

Crispy wrappers were generously stuffed with beef, chives, and cilantro.

For two people to share, this was a generous serving.

Spicy Deep Fried Chicken Sichuan

Crispy bites of chicken get tossed with onions, scallions, spicy red peppers, and a tingly sichuan pepper sauce.  It was beautifully spicy in a way that let all of the flavors shine.

Another Great Meal

We can’t wait for another opportunity to visit.

La Mei Zi
5150 Buford Highway
#C-310
Doraville, GA  30340
770 676 0225

VN Tofu

VN Tofu’s Special Combination Banh Mi
(about $3)

The Special

Lined up and ready to go, it just doesn’t get any quicker than this.  You can grab this and be on the road in just a couple minutes (That is, if you can find somewhere to park, parking can be a challenge some days.  On our last visit, we had to park so far away that we were frozen to the core by the time we got in their door.).

If the line is short, it’s just an extra minute to have your sandwich made on the spot.

BBQ Pork Banh Mi

Best meal ever?  No.  Best fast food?  No, it’s really not. But, it’s a pretty darn good quick meal if you’re on the run (and you happen to be nearby).

AND…

 VN Tofu’s iced coffee ends the meal on a very sweet note.

Their iced coffee has been the main objective of our visits on more than one occasion.  Actually, the promise of an iced coffee tends to encourage each visit in this direction.  With plenty of strong coffee and sweetened condensed milk, it’ll perk you up in no time flat.  It’s incredibly rich, sweet, creamy and delicious.

VN Tofu
5495  Jimmy Carter Blvd.
Norcross, GA  30093
678 691 0628

La Mei Zi

Oysters With Deep Fried Basil

Small, crunchy nibbles with brittle herbs for added interest…

Lamb With Leeks & Cilantro

We both loved this dish.  Sweet leeks, tender lamb, and sautéed cilantro make magic together.  The sauce pulls it all together.

Love it.  Period.

Sesame Chicken

La Mei Zi
5150 Buford Highway
#C-310
Doraville, GA  30340
770 676 0225

Local 7

The Local No. 7

We love this burger…

…and the perfectly crispy sweet potato fries that come with it.

Local 7 Deep Fried Artichoke Hearts

Still an all time favorite…

Sometimes, they’re a very hearty snack.  Sometimes, we make a meal out of them.  And, other times we share them with a burger.

The Local No. 7
(TheLocal7)
2316 Main Street
Suite A
Tucker, GA  30084
770 674 1782