Aladdin’s Mediterranean Grill

Aladdin’s Kabab Sampler

This platter was jammed full of meat with two pieces of grilled chicken breast, cubes of lamb, and two generous pieces of kofta.  Then, add a mountain of rice, a good-sized portion of Jerusalem salad and hummus topped with olive oil, herbs, a sprinkle of sumac and a green olive.  This was one fabulous king-sized meal.

Quality and quantity make a winning combination at Aladdin’s.

More Of The Kabab Platter

This cube of lamb was a bit closer to medium.  But, the other cube we devoured was medium rare perfection.

Don’t forget Aladdin’s Hot Sauce

This chili sauce made everything it touched even better.

Tabouleh

This tabouleh salad was a bright, refreshing blend of parsley, mint, garlic, diced tomatoes, a touch of lemon and green onion.

The Shawarma Platter

The tender, spiced beef truly shines at Aladdin’s.

Divine.

Warm pita bread makes the perfect vehicle to dip into that rich hummus beautifully laced with tahini.

The Combination Shawarma With Chicken And Beef

We could eat this harmonious blend of smoky meats, savory hummus and fresh salads any day of the week.

Baba Ghanouj To-Go

We had so many leftovers.  We had to grab some baba ghanouj to go with all of them.

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

Red Pepper Taqueria

Red Pepper’s Cuban Sandwich

Inside The Sandwich

Aside from the excessive use of condiment, this was a nice sandwich.  But, if we hadn’t ordered it by name off of the menu, we’d never know it was a Cuban sandwich.  In addition to the ham and shredded pork, there’s avocado, lettuce, tomato, a generous schemer of refried black beans, some sort of remoulade (possibly with red pepper) and a smoky cheese.

By any name, we’ll eagerly give this one another try.

Chicken Mole

The sauce was quite mild on the heat, yet, a bit too heavy on the sweet spices like cinnamon.

We’ll give this dish one more chance on another day, too.

Margaritas

And Other Drinks

Clearing Out After A Late Lunch

Red Pepper Taqueria
2149 Briarcliff Road
Atlanta, GA 30329
404 325 8151

Tipsy Pig

Tipsy Pig Barbecue

Another long drive was rewarded with yet another fabulous rack of ribs.  These ribs seem to be getting better with each new visit.

Tipsy Pig BBQ Ribs Are Offered On Friday & Saturday ONLY!

Tender, smoky meat is brushed with just the right amount of sweet & mildly spiced sauce.  The right touch of that sauce creates a gorgeous lacquered shell to cover the tender meat and hold in its juices.

Yes, this little barbecue restaurant with only two or three tables is located inside a Shell gas station.  But, don’t let that stop you from giving this place a chance.  These are some absolutely killer barbecued ribs.

Brunswick Stew & Pulled Pork Sandwich

That little bowl is so chock full of meat it could almost be a meal of its very own.  And, the giant chunks of tender pork you see in the background are hiding the nicely lacquered crispy bits of bark that accompanied every bite of our sandwich.

Tipsy Pig Spicy BBQ Sauce

And, that sandwich only gets better when you add just the right splash of this spicy barbecue sauce.  There’s a mild sauce, too.  But, this spicy version rules in our book.

Cajun Peanuts

We found these peanuts in a slow cooker near the little cluster of tables.  And, they’re pretty damn good.  Laced with red pepper flakes, they have  a nice little spicy kick.  It might be a little kick, but, it still makes these boiled peanuts better than many of the others we’ve tried.  What else makes them better than most?  They weren’t drowning in overly salty water.

And Breakfast, Too!

We’ll be back to try their biscuit sandwiches for breakfast in the very near future.  We hear there’s a talented lady who makes fresh biscuits every Monday through Friday during the breakfast hours.

Tipsy Pig BBQ
(Inside Shell Gas Station)
3020 Five Forks Trickum Road
Lilburn, GA 30047
770  885 5313

Java Indonesian Food

Keju Kacang Mede

At first glance, these might look like cookies.  But, they’re actually a light and crispy savory cracker.  Buttery, cheesy and a nice bit of roasted nut crunch from the cashews, we enjoyed these puffy crackers that melt away under your bite.

Keju Kacang Mede

Sumpiah

These mini fried shrimp rolls are filled with bits of dried shrimp and a touch of spice.  There’s a very interesting touch of sweetness that make these crispy bites unique.  So crispy and crunchy, if you like prawn crackers, you just might like these.

Kacang Bawang

These dark roasted nuts mingle with thin slices of fried garlic and a light dusting of salt and spice.

Very Tasty.

Coconut Egg Spread

For a quick weekday breakfast, whip up some toast slices, butter them lightly and add a schmear of this Nutella alternative.

Not only did we find some tasty nibbles, we were able to pick up an assortment of cooking and baking essentials.

We’re eager to return and sample more of Java’s Indonesian snacks.  There’s quite a generous assortment of handmade snacks for such a little shop.  Be sure to check out the folding tables hanging out just behind the register for a variety of recently made nibbles.

The charming gentleman behind the counter proudly told us his wife does the cooking next door.  So, we’ll be back for more snacks and a visit to Tempo Doeloe in the very near future.

Notes for Next Time:  Tempo Doeloe

Java Indonesian Food Mart
5090 Buford Highway
Suite 111
Doraville, GA 30340
770 216 8616

Chinese Dhaba

Dry-Spiced Manchurian Chicken

Bullet Chicken

Crispy Chili Paneer

This time we did take-out…

By the time we got home after an unfortunate detour, these tasty morsels lost most of their crunch.  (Totally our fault.)  But, we still enjoyed each dish.  And, leftover tidbits, sauce, and rice made a tasty version of Chinese-Indian fried rice for two.

Chinese Dhaba
(Patel Plaza)
1713 Church Street
Suite A2
Decatur, GA 30033
404 736 6453

Wing Factory

Fat, Crunchy Buffalo Shrimp & Battered Onion Rings

These are very scarf-worthy nibbles.

LOTS Of Onion Rings

Lemon Pepper Chicken Wings

Peppery with a nice touch of lemon, they were quite nice.

You like it hot?

Order the Habanero Wings.

During our visit, kids were attempting to run and play in every available inch of the very limited space that’s not occupied by tables or booths.  And, the noise level was (at minimum) shrill.  So, if you’re looking for a quiet dining experience, don’t go during peak kid-friendly hours.

Wing Factory
4279 Roswell Road
Atlanta, GA 30342
404 255 4460

Nam Phuong

Beautiful Fixin’s

From the richness of the broth to the refreshing dose of spice to the baby herb leaves picked off of the stems, this is one perfect soup to get you through these last grey days of winter.

Spicy Hue Style Noodle Soup

We’re already eager for more.

Salt & Pepper Squid Topped with Chopped Herbs And Diced Jalapeños

The light, yet, crisp coating evaporates under your bite to reveal perfectly tender pieces of snow white squid.

Divine.

This was one very generous serving.

Burnt Caramel Glazed Chicken Wings With A Touch of Fish Sauce

These could easily be habit forming.

Crispy, salty, savory, and touched with dark almost burnt (in a very good way!) bittersweet caramel, they have it all.  The flavors are simultaneously exotic and familiar.  The rich, satisfying nature of this dish makes one or two pieces the perfect serving.

Nam Phuong
5495 Jimmy Carter Blvd.
Norcross, GA 30093
770 409 8686

Lobster House

Sweet Corn Muffins & Rolls

Did we mention that those cornbread muffins are sweet?  They are VERY sweet.  Imagine, if you will, the type of sugar-crusted sweet corn muffin that you’d expect at a mother’s day brunch.  Well, that’s where our imagination took us, anyway.

Lobster Bisque

She Crab Soup

Lobster #1

Two Sauces

Each lobster is accompanied with a choice of drawn butter or a choice of listed sauces.  Given a do-over, we both would’ve opted for the drawn butter.  One sauce was a sweet creamy Jamaican inspired (loosely inspired) sauce.  And, the other was a very sweet cream sauce.  Both of these sauces were overpoweringly, distractingly sweet.  We were puzzled by all of this random sweetness during the course of a lobster dinner.

Lobster #2 With All Of Our Sides

Both lobsters were a bit overcooked.  With lobsters of this size, it’s not surprising.  The asparagus was nice.  It had a nice fresh snap.  But, the mushrooms were rather bland and soggy.  And, if those mashed potatoes are real, they’re absolutely the worst mashed potatoes we’ve ever experienced.  They tasted like out-of-a-box rehydrated potato flakes.

The Stuffing

We ordered both of our lobsters stuffed.  The option for stuffing was an added charge.  But, the lobsters at Lobster House never touched the stuffing.  Served barely warm, it was roughly 5 parts crumbled, buttered bread to 1 part crab.  Now, let’s just say that it wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that half of our family lives in one region or another of New England.  And, in our experience, we might say that one possible reason for the “stuffing” to actually touch the lobster would be for that lobster to retain some moisture and allow lobster drippings to flavor the bread crumbs.  But, hey, that’s just our take on it.

Each meal was $20.  (If you opt for the stuffing, it will be an additional expense.)  Each meal includes lobster, soup and sides.  Our meal was “fine”.

But…

You get what you pay for, right?

Lobster House
1555 Pleasant Hill Road
Duluth, GA 30096
678 788 8888

Alpha Soda

Old Bay Potato Chips with Bleu Cheese

These were fried to a shatteringly crisp state.  But, they were also very salty.

Country Fried Chicken with Fried Okra and Collard Greens

This giant chicken breast was nicely crisp on the outside and tender inside.  We would have appreciated less salt in the breading, though.  (That’s not something you hear every day, right?)  The okra was piping hot, dark golden brown (very close to burnt) and very crisp.  And, the collard greens had an unusual sweetness that was bordering on unpleasant.  Neither one of us enjoyed them.  As a matter of fact, we could only manage to eat a couple bites each.

Roast Chicken with Sweet Potato Casserole and Collards

While the chicken was tender and quite edible.  This whole plate had a hospital food vibe.  There was no color to the chicken skin.  This left it fatty and inedible.  This dish of collard greens was just as unfortunate as the last.  And, the sweet potato casserole was pureed to a fluffy mass that had the consistency of baby food.  This was one excruciatingly bland meal.

Sliced Potatoes

Barely brown and a bit greasy,  they were edible.  But, we didn’t eat them.  What would be the point?

Desserts

You’ve gotta love a hand written menu.

Sadly, we didn’t feel like spending even $2 to try one of these offerings.  That’s not a good sign.  We’d love to give them another chance.  But, quite frankly, we don’t want to waste our time.

Alpha Soda
11760 Haynes Bridge Road
Alpharetta, GA 30004
770 442 3102

Ass Kickin’ Peanuts

Ass Kickin’ Peanuts Variety Pack

Jalapeño Cheddar

These aren’t even ass tappin’.  But, they are quite cheesy.

These were sweet, smoky, and mildly spiced.

Out of the four, the original ass kickin’ peanuts MIGHT start kicking your ass after a few handfuls.  But, then again, they might not.

Bright side?

They’re all tasty.

AssKickin’