Friday, January 28, 2011

Zingerman's Roadhouse - Really Good American Food

I went to this place with my book club group on Wednesday January 25, 2011.

This place not only has a large inside area, but a drive up trailer outside to order (I think) the same or at least similar food to what you can get inside. Pretty awesome.

The restaurant was kind of loud, so it wasn't the greatest place to be talking about books, but that wasn't a problem.

I was very impressed by the waiter we had. We was very knowledgeable about the food, where their ingredients come from, the drinks etc. I was impressed to hear about how they acquire a lot of their foods locally.

While we were sitting around talking and deciding what to order, the waiter brought us a free appetizer. We were all surprised and flattered. What he brought us was a plate of sweet potato fries with a side of sauce. The sauce was a combination of mayo and Frank's Red Hot Sauce (which is my favorite). Now, I don't normally like sweet potatoes, but this fries have almost turned me into a believer. With the sauce, it was perfection. So delicious.

For our meal, I ordered their original mac and cheese. I wish I could remember the ingredients, but I don't. While it was a smaller portion (and my original thought was "this is is?") the portion size was perfect. I ate it all, and was satisfied. The other ladies in my group really enjoyed their meals as well.

Finally, the waiter brought us a free dessert!! It was a chocolate pudding with raspberries and a little whip cream on it. Also yummy. He was pleasant when we asked to split up our bill into 5 separate bills, and I know I tipped well. I'm sure the others did too.

I loved this experience and would recommend it to anyone who loves American food, and more importantly, wants to support a place that buys their food locally.

Zingerman's Roadhouse
2501 Jackson Avenue
Ann Arbor, MI 48103

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Harper's Bar and Grill- Lansing, MI

One of my best friends, Lisa, and her boyfriend Tim, wanted Mike and I to come out and visit her at her apartment near Lansing. So we headed out there (half the drive being consumed by snow). We ended up going to a place called Harper's Bar and Grill.

We got there around 8pm. At that time, it wasn't too busy. Like any college town bar, the music was loud and the drinks were pretty cheap. We went on a Friday, which meant $2.50 pints, bombs, Svedka, and Jack. We ate there as well.

The place looked like a regular old bar, but also was it's own micro brewery. I don't like beer, but I took a sip of Mike's raspberry wheat, and I thought it was okay- mostly because it didn't really taste like beer at all.

Our group had a mixed selection of food, and mixed opinions. I had a hamburger, to which I added Ranch, as usual, and tomato, lettuce and bacon. The size of the burger itself was really small, and it was over cooked for my taste. No pink at all. Also, they charge an extra $1.50 for fries, so I didn't order any. A mistake because I got hungry again quickly.

Mike and Lisa got two different pasta dishes. While I was not super excited about my meal, Mike and Lisa's dishes were actually really good. Lisa got a sorta of lasagna type thing, which was thick, but good, and Mike had a genius combo of pasta, three cheese Alfredo and bacon. That too was really delicious. Tim had a hamburger like I did, but he said his was alright. That can be accounted for through differences of taste.

I think the best part of our evening was our waiter. He looked like his was miles above Earth. He was very forgetful and looked like his probably didn't know he was actually at work. Poor kid, but sadly, not surprising. He was, however, a source of entertainment for the night.

The night we were there, the bar had a band who played 80's covers, afro wigs and everything. I don't know the name of the band, though. They were actually decent, and were a nice break from the overly loud Top 40 songs.

The last aspect of the night was the pool tables. It cost $1.50 to play pool, but they at least had a change machine right next to the tables. The cues were okay. And the felt on both tables were stained from games of beer pong (they had a big wood slab that could be placed over the pool tables for the game).

Overall, I'd probably go again, but not order the hamburger. And hope that I would get a waiter who didn't decide to get high before work.

Harper's Bar and Grill
131 Albert Ave.
East Lansing, MI 48823

Monday, January 10, 2011

Ruggles Cafe- Milford, MI

**UPDATE** I'm not sure when, but Ruggles Cafe has closed. From what I could tell, they tried to gain a liqueur license, and didn't quite make it. There are now signs in the window for a Mexican style restaurant.

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Mike and I went to Ruggles Cafe a couple of days ago. It's new in Milford, and we just wanted to see what they were about.

First impressions upon walking in: the wait staff seemed really unhappy. They looked up at us as we made our way through the double set of doors with the most depressed and unmotivated looks on their faces. Not the best way to instill confidence in a customer.

Our actual waitress was a little happier, but you could tell that she probably felt the same way as the others working there. Now, as a retail worker, I can relate to how much it sucks doing that stuff. I really can. But even though it's not my favorite job ever, I still have to pretend I'm happy for the customers.

The atmosphere of the place was kind of dreary as well. The walls are painted a sort of purple-gray color. There's some art on the walls, and lots of windows. We were placed by a window that obviously has some leakage, cause neither of us took our coats off the whole time we were there. It was too chilly. The room has a lot of open space, and the ceiling and pipes are all painted black (understandable) but the rest of the space just felt cold.

As for the food, however, it was really good. Mike had a hamburger and he thought it was really good. I had a turkey club with bacon and avocado which was too big for me to eat, so it became more like a salad than a sandwich, but it was alright. I also had chicken noodle soup. I did find a thick piece of chewy skin, but other than that, it was good soup- more than just soup from a can, it had veggies, thick noodles and real chicken.

The prices are reasonable. An average of $8-13 depending on what you order. The restaurant is open for lunch and dinner.

I would still recommend checking this place out for the food. Maybe we went on a fluke day when the wait staff were having a bad day- but really, the food is worth it.

Ruggles Cafe
525 N. Main, Ste. 200
Milford, MI 48381

Ruggles Facebook

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

New Year, New Post, Same Blog

I had an interview today with a financial services company. I don't want to say much about it, except that I found it really ironic that the man said he's not a high pressure sales person, but the way I felt in the interview made me feel like I couldn't leave until I said "SIGN ME UP!" And to top it all off, not an hour and a half after leaving, the person I interviewed with TEXTED me (mind you, this man is old enough to have grandchildren) to thank me for coming in and asking if a certain day was good for coming to meet with my parents... (I had told him I wanted to talk about it with my parents.) I feel really uncomfortable right now.


It's been a crazy year, and thank goodness it's a new year. But if that interview is an indication of how this year is going to go... then maybe I don't want to do this year.

Let's see... had a break up, several months of partying, got together with a guy who just blows the last few out of the water, got a job (but not one I want), still living with my parents, no car- among other things.

But I suppose we shouldn't be starting the year off with a negative attitude.

In a glass half full sort of mind set, here's what has happened already: Lions won four games in a row, thus keeping themselves from being in last place for their division, I did, after all, get an interview, work has finally slowed down after the holidays, and I'm trying to write in this blog again.

So let's see how this year goes and maybe I can be more consistent about writing in here.