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Unkle Al's Profile

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Restaurants With Quiet Noise Levels

Does anyone have any new additions to this list of restaurants that are quiet during the busy hours?

Jul 19, 2014
Unkle Al in Philadelphia

Balsamic Recommendation

I have given Villa Manodori as gifts for the past few years:

http://www.pastacheese.com/villa-mano...

Jul 10, 2014
Unkle Al in General Topics

Me Again: Odd priorities: Tuesday Night, early

PHILADELPHIA RESTAURANTS WITH QUIET NOISE LEVELS:

http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/928136

Jun 30, 2014
Unkle Al in Philadelphia

Help! Great Resto in 'burbs

How about Han Dynasty in Royersford which is only about 25 minutes from Radnor.

Jun 26, 2014
Unkle Al in Philadelphia

Steak in Montgomery County

If you can live with prime rib instead of steak I highly recommend Richies Bar and Grill at 323 W. County Line Road in Hatboro (215 675 9935.

The prime rib is a fairly gigantic, thick, excellent cut of meat. It is an all-inclusive price of about $25.00 and includes salad, sides and dessert.

The drinks are very inexpensive too.

Jun 17, 2014
Unkle Al in Philadelphia

Paris on the Hill

+1

This place is a real winner. I've been there twice since it opened and enjoyed it both times. We really liked the following: liver pate, salad Nicoise, salad Lyonnaise, hamburger, cassoulet, coq au vin and potato frites.

The desserts could use some improvement. They are not quite as good as the other dishes. The chocolate mousse was very heavy and the profiteroles could have been better.

The bread was outstanding.

The service was excellent both times.

The noise level is a bit much but what else is new? If noise is a factor for you then I suggest that you go early say about 5:30 or 6:00 at the latest.

May 29, 2014
Unkle Al in Philadelphia

The dreaded steakhouse question....

How about Steak House at Circus Circus? It is very affordable and the steaks are very good.

May 21, 2014
Unkle Al in Las Vegas

Mina Cucina Redux

I am not sure but I think that Mina said they are doing a full dinner once a month and a pasta dinner twice a month.

It would be best to contact them to confirm if I have it correct.

May 18, 2014
Unkle Al in Philadelphia

Mina Cucina Redux

I was very surprised to have gotten a message that Mina, formerly from Mina’s Cucina Rustica in Springhouse, was serving a pasta dinner and asking, if interested, to call for reservations.

The dinner was being served in her store (Taste Of Italy) in Springhouse. The store already had tables and she has kept all of the crockery and glasswear and napkins from her days with the restaurant.

So, naturally I called and I did go last night. Apparently, she is accepting as many as twenty reservations for occasional dinners. Some of the dinners are pasta dinners while some are full - fledged dinners including fish and meat courses.

Last nights dinner was modest in both price and number of courses but not in quality or interest. The price was twenty dollars for:

An antipasto, for the table, consisting of slices of excellent soppressata, roasted red peppers and olives.

A mixed salad served individually with a vinaigrette dressing.

A large square platter served to each person that contained three very generous portions of different pastas and sauces.

One of the pastas was a mushroom pappardelle with Portobello mushroom sauce and I think I tasted a little truffle oil.

Another pasta was not cavatelli but kind of looked like it, the sauce was made with Mina’s fresh sausage (taken out of the casings), tomatoes and saffron.

The third pasta was cheese tortellini with the classic sauce of mushrooms, prosciutto, peas and cream.

For dessert she served a very small espresso cup of fresh berry sorbet that she told me she made in her blender.

This is a nice thing and for those of you who were fans of Mina’s restaurant I think that you would like it very much. As usual, the olive oil was excellent (Coluccio, I think) and the bread was killer.

It is kind of like going to someone’s house for dinner. Mina is a passionate cook and hostess. Service was done by Mina and Jackie (a very nice young woman that works with Mina in the store).

If anyone is interested in being notified of the next dinner you can call the store and have your email address added to the list of those wanting notification.

May 16, 2014
Unkle Al in Philadelphia
1

Dinner Near Garment District

Thank you for your help. Does anyone have any recommendations for Italian in this area?

May 05, 2014
Unkle Al in Manhattan

Dinner Near Garment District

I did not try Tagine although, having lived in Morocco, I do like tagine a lot.

May 05, 2014
Unkle Al in Manhattan

Dinner Near Garment District

I would appreciate help in finding a good restaurant ($$ to $$$) for a family dinner. The restaurant I am seeking is best located between 5th and 9th Avenues and from 34th Street to 44th Street.

May 04, 2014
Unkle Al in Manhattan

Carciofi Alla Giudia

Well, I made the dish last night from some beauties at Whole Foods. I selected the heaviest artichokes with long stems.

They took a lot of time to trim and I have cleaned them up many times before, still it was time consuming. It was also moderately messy as frying always is messy. But they were very good.

The downsides of making them at home encourage me even more to find a restaurant serving them.

May 02, 2014
Unkle Al in Philadelphia

Carciofi Alla Giudia

This is the beautiful dish that I am looking for:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-c1vJK...

Apr 30, 2014
Unkle Al in Philadelphia

Carciofi Alla Giudia

Thank you all.

I called Va Bene and it sounded like their artichokes are what we call babies.

I am looking for this dish:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-c1vJK...

Apr 30, 2014
Unkle Al in Manhattan

Carciofi Alla Giudia

Since it is artichoke season I am wondering whether any restaurants are serving carciofi alla giudia (fried artichokes roman Jewish style). I am particularly looking for the dish made from long stemmed large globe artichokes NOT babies.

Has anyone eaten this dish in Manhattan made with long stemmed large artichokes??

Thank you very much for your help.

Apr 26, 2014
Unkle Al in Manhattan

Carciofi Alla Giudia

Thank you. I called them and they are, indeed, open. However, they are frying baby artichokes and I am looking for the fried large artichokes like in Rome.

Apr 24, 2014
Unkle Al in Philadelphia

Carciofi Alla Giudia

Does anyone have an update on this post? Apparently, Tiramisu is closed.

Apr 24, 2014
Unkle Al in Philadelphia

Blue Bell Inn Grand Reopening 4/7/14

+2

Apr 09, 2014
Unkle Al in Philadelphia

ATK / CI Beef Tenderloin Question

I don't think that you missed anything.

I think that she just felt the roast was a little bit "sloppy" and and wanted more structure to make sure that it maintained a solid shape.

Apr 08, 2014
Unkle Al in Home Cooking

Asparagus season

I like the very thick type and Whole Foods has some beautiful organic asparagus. I have bought them a few times this season. The last time I bought fine looking purple asparagus that are very, very thick. The price will require you to obtain a mortgage ($6.99 lb). They also have less expensive non organic which were not as nice but still looked pretty good.

Apr 07, 2014
Unkle Al in Philadelphia

Keeping Peeled Asparagus and Peeled Potatoes

Thank you so much, I appreciate all of your comments and advice.

Mar 27, 2014
Unkle Al in Home Cooking

Keeping Peeled Asparagus and Peeled Potatoes

The reason for peeling is that they are very thick and have a stringy outer layer.

Mar 26, 2014
Unkle Al in Home Cooking

Keeping Peeled Asparagus and Peeled Potatoes

To anyone that has worked in catering or restaurant kitchens:

I am having a large party in a couple of weeks. I would like to prep as much as possible in advance.

My questions are:

Can I peel asparagus the day before cooking them. Typically, I store unpeeled asparagus in the refrigerator in a container with a little water in the bottom?

Can I store peeled potatoes in cold water in the refrigerator? Since I am making mashed potatoes will storing them as noted reduce the starch in the potatoes?

Thank you for any help you can offer.

Mar 26, 2014
Unkle Al in Home Cooking

Shout out to Wegmans Montgomeryville

Actually, I had an unpleasant experience soon after the opening of Wegman’s in Montgomeryville.

I had purchased two boxes of crackers one was obviously stale while the other looked to have been tampered with. I did not keep my receipt for the purchase.

When I returned the items they initially were reluctant to give me either a refund or a store credit without a receipt. When they finally agreed to give me a store credit they insisted that I fill out the form for a Wegman’s card. I don’t use supermarket cards. They finally agreed to give me a store credit. What a hassle!!

From Wegman’s I went across the street to Home Depot and asked their policy on returns. They told me that they accept returns readily even without a receipt.

At Whole Foods in North Wales, I would not be surprised if you could just tell them that the product you purchased last week was not good and they would give you back the money!! Returns at Whole Foods are absolutely no problem and they are sorry that you were inconvenienced.

I am now not a big fan of Wegman’s, I guess that keeping customers happy is not high on their list of priorities.

Feb 07, 2014
Unkle Al in Philadelphia

Fun, NOT romantic, b-day dinner for four on 2/15

The Victor Cafe is a lot of fun. The food is decent but the waiters and waitresses are terrific singers.

http://victorcafe.com/live-opera/

I would also recommend Marrakesh which serves a Moroccan fixed price menu in a very unique setting, The food is good and you can request a belly dancer for entertainment.

http://www.marrakesheastcoast.com/ind...

Feb 04, 2014
Unkle Al in Philadelphia
1

Birthday Cake

I have had special cakes made at three terrific bakeries in your area. Each of them made what I consider really excellent cakes both in taste and beauty. They are:

Alice Bakery – North Wales
Night Kitchen – Chestnut Hill
Roma – Fort Washington (particularly their cream cakes or tiramisu cake or rum cake).

I don’t think that you can go wrong with any of the three above noted bakeries.

Restaurants With Quiet Noise Levels

My intention in starting this thread was to garner a list of restaurants that are quiet at the busy times.

Recommendation For Personal Chef - Allentown

Thank you for your help.

Dec 19, 2013
Unkle Al in Philadelphia

Recommendation For Personal Chef - Allentown

A family friend recently lost her daughter at a very young age. Her daughter’s family, with two young children, needs help with cooking meals.

Can anyone recommend a personal chef in the Allentown area that will cook meals and leave them in containers in the refrigerator to be eaten over the course of a week.

Any help or recommendations will be very much appreciated.

Dec 18, 2013
Unkle Al in Pennsylvania