Sunday, September 30, 2012

Crepe Bar : Tempe, AZ

The amazing thing about Arizona is that it houses MANY, and I mean countless, strip malls. If you drive into one, you will probably be surprised by the various businesses that are housed in that small corner block.

A small unsuspecting strip mall in Tempe, AZ, that is where we found Crepe Bar. They were formerly know as "Truckin' Good Food," and a food truck. Given their success on wheels they moved into a more land locked location in July 2012, I am sure glad they did. I rarely have time to make it out to our local food truck functions so I am thrilled to be able to taste this amazing food on my schedule.

This establishment justifiably boasts about their local/regionally fresh ingredients and beverages. That is a great thing about local small businesses, they support other local small businesses, and that is the #1 reason I love to know about these little places. Support Local! 

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When we first arrived, we quickly pushed two tables together because we were having a Sunday breakfast with our great friends, The Kims (Bri and Tim). This is a seat-yourself kinda joint and the atmosphere is very casual, in fact, customers are to order at the counter. (You all know how I feel about that). But, because the traffic in this establishment is constantly moving, the line doesn't take long and the food comes out fairly quickly so it doesn't seem to bother me so much. Keeping the counter ordering must be an homage to the ol' food truck days. It would be easy enough to have one, maybe two, servers work the floor. Which they pretty much already have, as some very nice gals deliver your grub and beverages and check back with you frequently. The service is really great there. I also love the lack of uniforms. All the staff is dressed in their own hipster way.  

This was Bri's and my second time at the Crepe Bar, last time we came with the lovely  Mandy from Dash it All. We all enjoyed it so much I had to bring my husband along for another go 'round. I may be addicted to the lovely and light crepe.

But let's get down to the nitty gritty. The food.

I ordered the "vanilla bean custard *| berries + chocolate." I really enjoyed it but I ordered the berries for a little bit of freshness. To my disappointment, there was some sugary syrup on them that just wasn't fitting with my palate this morning. The crepe was amazing on its own, so I saved the berries for Pat. Last time I ordered the "“strudel” *| chocolate fudge ~ candied walnut ~ pure maple syrup ~ maple butter" which I HIGHLY recommend. But I have a bit of a sweet tooth in the morning.

Pat and Tim Kim ordered the manly, savory choice of the "breakfast burrito| chipotle crêpe ~ egg & bacon ~ queso ~ avocado salsa" which was also outstanding. I will most surely order that next time we visit. The gal that delivered our plates pointed out a "side" of chipotle salt that one can put on the crepe to spice it up a little more. Pat devoured that.

Bri ordered the "first time| Nutella ~ banana brûlée," same thing she ordered last time (contradicting the name entirely). She didn't eat the whole thing, and the baby inside me was still hungry after finishing mine, so I happily volunteered to finish hers. It was really quite amazing. The brûléed bananas are fantastic! I love anything brûléed, put it with breakfast and I say you have an A+ meal! The hipster in all of us was intrigued by the Nutella.

The freshness and the lightness of this breakfast (or lunch) is enough to make me want to return. The way we could sit and talk for as long as we want really makes us want to return. Pat says there are a few kinks they could work out, but I think they are really pretty great. (Keep in mind, they do not have a bathroom, so tinkle before leaving the house).

We collectively give the Crepe Bar !!!

I really hope this gem takes off and is able to stay open in their hidden little location. Try out the Crepe Bar and let us know what you think! Trust me, you won't regret it.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Chandler, AZ : Pittsburgh Willy's

There have been several weeks now that Pat has wanted to go to Pittsburgh Willy's but something has always been holding us back. Their closing time. PW is known around these parts for their amazing hotdogs and insane Steeler decor. (They also happen to be attached to one of my all time favorite antiquing joints!)

Now, you may say to yourself, "I thought you were pregnant? I don't think you should be having hotdogs." Well, little do you know, they have things without hotdogs there! (I accidentally ordered something with hotdogs anyway.)

While we waited for our food we played some table games which was great! I dominated in Tic-Tac-Toe.

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Pat ordered "The Pittsburgher" $5.25, and you can add peppered bacon for a measly $0.75 - which I will definitely going back for after our little guy is here!


I ordered "The 3 Legged Chili 'n Cheese" $6.75, which I mis-read the description to all together. Apparently, the "3 Legs" are hotdogs. Didn't know that. But, I wasn't upset. The beanless chili and melty cheese was yummy with the bun and Pat didn't hesitate to jump in and eat some of the untouched dogs.

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We had a snickerdoodle for dessert ($0.75), but I ate it that so fast I forgot to take a picture! Needless to say, it was delightful.

This is definitely a family establishment and the whole family was there making sure things were going according to plan! Everyone was very nice and eager to make sure we were satisfied. It is more than you expect from a hotdog stand... but still very easy going and casual, thus the paper plates and plastic utensils.

The only downer of the place, I would say, is the drink selection. The canned/bottled sodas and water prove to not be enough when scarfing down these salty meals; but I would definitely stop buy again if we were heading to the antique shop. I think it would be the perfect hangover spot too, should that day ever come again. 

We give Pittsburgh Willy's !!!

Monday, August 20, 2012

The Raven : Prescott, AZ

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It is the middle of August, and this is about the time when cabin fever sets in. This August has been particularly humid and disgusting... some days reaching 117 degrees. There is no reason to hang around in that balmy garbage so Pat and I hit the road to go up north a ways to Prescott, AZ. (Pres-kit to the locals)

First we stopped at Cuppers Coffee Shop. It was a cute little place. Pleasant people and a nice little table outside to enjoy the cooler weather in the shade. We didn't stay long, we mostly stopped by for a potty break. Those have been more necessary lately.

Apparently, Prescott has a happening little courthouse. Every corner has a different band playing a different kind of music. Pat and I sat on a curb and listened to some blues for a while. I really enjoyed the scenery. There were people walking dogs, kids raising money for a school trip. It was truly everything one would expect of a small town.

After the band stopped playing Pat and I ran off to do a little antiquing... unsuccessfully. On our antique journey we saw The Raven.

I was really excited about this joint because they have a patio and boast local, organic plates and I was in the mood for something healthy... and a potty break.

Pat ordered us food at the counter while I found us a seat. I had no idea where the patio was, so we sat by the front door for good people watching. I am really not a fan of ordering food at the counter. I feel like I am back in a school cafeteria, without the immediate gratification of food on your tray.

We sat, watching people and finishing our drinks, for a half hour. This is when I really want a server to be strolling about. Perhaps get Pat another beer, or I could have a refill on my lemonade? But, this is what I have found counter restaurants to be... unsatisfactory in the service department.

Our food arrived and I was quite relieved. My hummus plate was perfect. It was a refreshing plate and the artichoke hearts were a great surprise.

Pat ordered the Corned Beef Sandwich with onion rings. I have really been on a corned beef, or pastrami kick lately, ever since our lunch at Cibo. Pat's sandwich has not only corned beef and cheese but also cabbage and Thousand Island dressing. The onion rings were delicious, as onion rings often are. The sandwich was good... but still cannot stand against Cibo's.

We give The Raven a !!
Perhaps if we would have sat on the patio we would have enjoyed our time there a little more. But, counter restaurants have to strive a little harder to get my vote. 

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Cibo: Phoenix, AZ

Today I took the day off to spend a little quality time with my Mister. So we made a trip into Phoenix to get some important stuff done, then it was lunch time! We love to have excuses to get into the City to eat some real culinary treats. We find very little of that out here in the burbs.

So, we headed to Cibo (chee-bo), not to be confused with another favorite, Ciro. We have been here once before, probably 2 years ago when we lived in N. PHX, but that time we visited for dinner. Cibo has an entirely different menu for lunch.

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The coolest thing about Cibo is that, like many Roosevelt District joints, it is in an old house. Therefore, you feel right at home when you sit down.

Uploaded from the Photobucket Android App


Patrick ordered the Pastrami Saltimbocca Caldi with the most beautiful House Salad I have ever seen. House Salads one usually comes across are full of iceberg lettuce and dried up shaved carrots, drenched in ranch dressing. Not this salad, it had fresh veggies and pine nuts. What house salad has pine nuts???


Because I am not only 15.5 weeks pregnant, but was also starving, I pretty much confiscated the entire sandwich. It was easily the best sandwich I have ever had, or very close to. The bread is made from the same dough they make their pizza with. I have never thought of that, but man it was OUTSTANDING.

Now, I, on the other hand, ordered Pesto Insalate. I was looking forward to the pine nuts, and the parmigiano cheese. Potatoes in a salad interested me, so I took the chance and kept them in.I was hoping for a crispy breakfast potatoes or something along those lines.

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Unfortunately, I didn't care for the potatoes. They were soft enough to eat, but still very much had the flavor of a raw potato. I am not sure I would order this salad again.Thankfully, Pat let me eat enough of his sandwich, and the salad came with bread, so I was plenty full by the time we got the bill.
We were eyeballing the dessert menu, which was filled with Nutella deliciousness, but  we were full to the brim.
Our bill was only $21.86 (including 2 sodas for the mister- not including tip). I feel pretty good about that!
Can I also say how much I love when restaurants collect various dishes to serve on? I freaking love it!  It really gives you that at home feeling I was mentioning. (Although, my mother would not be caught dead serving on mismatched plates).

We give Cibo !!!! 

Patrick promised to bring me back in the fall so we can eat on the patio, which looks lovely!