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Mouseman_'s Profile

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Tried Chickpea Kitchen (Chipotle/Piada style resto) in Sterling Heights [DTW]

Thanks for the great review. I've been to Chickpea many times since it opened since it's very near my house. You're right, the owner is a great guy - when we first went there after they opened he explained the concept to us and let us try lots of things to make a decision. They also have adapted to customer requests, for example the biodegradable serving stuff.

But best of all, the food is amazing. The proteins are all tasty and you can customize in so many ways. The salads are very big for the price, and I've liked the two soups I've had (didn't try the chickpea), although I like my chicken lemon rice a little more lemony. This is great food for a low price, and a cool bunch of folks.

Jul 24, 2015
Mouseman_ in Great Lakes

Fresco Wood Oven Pizzeria in Rochester Hills Mi-closed!?‽ [DTW]

In that area, I'd suggest trying Tivoli's Wood Oven pizza on Van Dyke just past Hall Road. They are not as good as Tomatoes Apizza, which is one of my favorites, but still very good. They just reopened a few months ago after a fire, and have more seating now. Their food is very good, their weak point is the service, which can be slow at times (but not awful).

Of course, if we're headed that way, we're more likely to drive down the road to Las Tortugas for their al pastor tacos, which are addictive.

Jul 16, 2015
Mouseman_ in Great Lakes

Jamaican Pot [DTW]

Since I was at the hospital, utilizing my CPL was not an option. I'm not trying to say it's "Hamtramck after dark" sketchy, but my non-adventurous friends might not be up for a trip.

Jun 23, 2015
Mouseman_ in Great Lakes

Jamaican Pot [DTW]

I found the Pot this winter after my daughter was born at St John's. I went for the jerk chicken and a sampling of the meat patties (which I've been addicted to since a friend's Haitian family brought some for a party). I also tried two different sodas, loved the one with ginger in it. While the place is a bit sketchy, there were 4 cop cars in the parking lot and they weren't all getting lunch), I didn't care.

The food was awesome. Better than Hank's Caribbean Soul, which was much closer to my old house and was my baseline for local grub. I'm not sure how soon I'll be back in the area, but next time I am I'll stop. Actually, now I may have to go sooner and eat in my car in the Northland parking lot.

Jun 21, 2015
Mouseman_ in Great Lakes

New: El Guanaco Taqueria @ 139 Fourteen Mile, Clawson, MI

Is this the "new" location they moved to a year or so ago from that little location across from the now-defunct Kmart, or something else? I've been craving some papusas, and I'd hate for them to go to being a bakery and not be able to get them.

May 06, 2015
Mouseman_ in Great Lakes

Does Tony Packo's really do a hot dog? [Toledo]

Amen on the advice to go to the original location. Accept no substitutes. The one in Maumee at The Anderson's is particularly loathsome.

Having said that, if you go to Packo's and are expecting a coney dog, you won't get it. You will get a Packo's dog, which is different in very yummy ways. I stop there about 5-10 times a year (I have relatives in the area), and have to get 2 dogs and a side of paprikas noodles (which are yummy). Add some fried sweet hot pickles or just eat the ones that my family offloads to me, and I'm a happy camper. Don't forget to stop at the cheesy gift shop, too.

Will it ever replace Lafyette? Nope -- but I don't expect it to. It's a different kind of dog with chili and will always have a place in my heart (and stomach). It tastes like T Town to me. (And for those of you who swear your allegiance to Rudy's, you are nuts).

Mar 04, 2015
Mouseman_ in Great Lakes

Wisconsin "Pizza Fries"?

That's exactly what it looks like, although some places make it more rectangular. Also, depending on the pizza joint, some make it that thin but some/most make it thicker. I'm not sure what that sauce is, it looks like what Papa Johns gives you with pizza. We get pizza sauce or marinara with ours. Here's a picture of some that is medium thickness. It's usually at least mozzarella, sometimes also has Parmesan. Many places mix other cheeses in as well, even feta or Asiago (for more money). We also get a lot more cheese than your garlic fingers.

Feb 06, 2015
Mouseman_ in Great Lakes

Wisconsin "Pizza Fries"?

Thanks for the clarification. Wiki was only slightly helpful. Most, if not all of the places in metro Detroit do start with pizza dough, so I think we're talking about the same thing. Ours are generally flatter, with some exceptions.

Feb 05, 2015
Mouseman_ in Great Lakes

Wisconsin "Pizza Fries"?

In Michigan/metro Detroit, we call that cheesy bread (or other names based on the restaurant) and it's available at most every pizza restaurant. It's usually dipped in pizza sauce or marinara, though some places will give you ranch or other kinds of sauce. There are many variations with more kinds of cheeses, bacon, you name it. The place down the street even makes a version that is sweet with ricotta and fruit - obviously no garlic butter.

Feb 05, 2015
Mouseman_ in Great Lakes

Dinner at El Asador, drinks at Sugar House (SW Detroit)

I went to El Asador a few weeks ago with my better half, and we were blown away. Sure, the area is sketchy as hell, but we will be back. Everything had a lot of thought put into it, and had layers if flavor. Even the soup and salad dressing were awesome, and I'm not easily impressed. Next time I might try the steak or the stuffed shrimp.

Tip: there is a liquor store across the street if you need some cerveza or wine.

Oct 12, 2014
Mouseman_ in Great Lakes

DTW: Better Made Rainbow Chips

I was excited to try them when I first heard about them, and my first-bite reaction was about the same as yours -- "yuck!" I'm not sure why people think they're any different than burned chips.

Jul 21, 2014
Mouseman_ in Great Lakes

Ernie's Market; Oak Park (Detroit)

I'll second that. The sandwiches are good, but not gourmet. They are, however, enormous for $5. But you don't go there for the sandwiches as much as you go there for Ernie -- you will never meet anyone who loves their job (and their customers) as much as him. I will challenge anyone to leave Ernie's without a smile. If you do, you're a miserable person. If you've never had the experience, do yourself a favor and get there. Warning -- as a newbee, Ernie will not cut your sandwich.

Not sure why it was so busy. I've been there around 11:30 and not had much of a line. Lunchtime *is* nuts, though.

Darn, now I need to get back there.

parrot cove - Madison heights, MI re: specifically prime rib

I guess as I get older, 3 or 4 years seems like a "long time." I can't remember what was in that space, at Rochester and Stephenson, last time I drove by.

So you killed my prime rib? That definitely explains it.I can't keep track of where Utica ends and Clinton Twp starts. That whole Lakeside area is a mess and I avoid it at all costs.

Jun 17, 2014
Mouseman_ in Great Lakes

parrot cove - Madison heights, MI re: specifically prime rib

Just as an FYI, the Mt. Jack's in Madison Heights (may have been just over the border into Rochester) has been gone for a long time. If I remember correctly, it burned down. They did have some decent prime rib, although it depended on the location. There was one in Utica that I took my mom to for either her birthday or Mom's Day, and had the most inedible piece of meat I'd ever been served (yes, worse than Ponderosa). It took them 45 minutes to redo and was still awful.

Jun 16, 2014
Mouseman_ in Great Lakes

Det/Mich Peruvian food

They usually roast it with black basil and some other spices. It does taste different than supermarket chicken. But the magic really comes with the green and white sauces. I think I ate the styrofoam container because it had the sauces on it. :-)

In all seriousness, I wondered what the big deal was until I had it. Now it's something I look for when I travel to new cities.

May 13, 2014
Mouseman_ in Great Lakes

Pilar's Tamales & Salvadoran Kitchen; Warren & Ann Arbor

I tried the Warren location a month or so ago, and had a long chat with the owner while he was getting my food ready. It's obvious that he loves what he's doing, and for those who are gluten-free (not me), this restaurant is a godsend.

The papusas are enormous (much bigger around than El Guanaco in Troy), and very tasty. The curtido was a lot different than I'm used to, not as spicy. The tamales were pretty good, but I'd probably stick to the papusas next time. All in all, a very good experience. I will be back to try other selections since it's so close to home and work.

Apr 29, 2014
Mouseman_ in Great Lakes

DTW. Dead chef estate sales

There are several search engines for auctions/estate sales that will let you specify the area and keywords. I've used them to find local sales and look at the listings. I can't look them up now because I'm at work, but they should be easy enough to Google.

Apr 07, 2014
Mouseman_ in Great Lakes

Toledo Visit in january for one night

Hammb - Has Tekela gotten better? I went there about a year ago and had one of the worst service experiences of my life. On top of that, once we got the food (after a wait that I only endured because we had a 1-year-old and a 93-year-old in our party, otherwise I would have gotten up and left) it was incredibly underwhelming for the price. We've tried the Mexican place down by Churchill's twice and I'm in no hurry to go back there.

I'll have to put Nagoya on the list to try next time I'm down.

Jan 13, 2014
Mouseman_ in Great Lakes

Toledo Visit in january for one night

In Perrysburg, right across from Levis Commons, is a relatively new gastropub called Social (Toledo Blade review is at I haven't been there yet, but my folks have and they raved about the food.

You also can't go wrong with Tony Packo's for lunch -- there are several locations and the original (Consul St.) location and the one by the ballpark aren't terribly far from the airport.

If price isn't a concern, Mancy's has a location called Bluewater Grill that's in Maumee (fairly near to where you're staying) that is quite good. There are some new places in downtown Maumee that have really interesting menus.

I can't really help with Whitehouse, other than to steer you away from the Whitehouse Inn. I had a lousy meal there and will not be back.

Jan 08, 2014
Mouseman_ in Great Lakes

24 hour restaurants in Metro Detroit!

Country Boy on 9 Mile in Hazel Park is a 24-hour standby, with a decent menu. Brayz Hamburgers (9 Mile and Dequindre) is also open 24/7 for your greasy slider fix.

Nov 12, 2013
Mouseman_ in Great Lakes

Palette Dining Studio at MGM and Assembly Line Buffet at Motor City

I've only eaten at the MGM buffet, have never been to MotorCity. The Ms. and I were quite impressed -- the quality of the food was excellent and they had a broad selection that was more than just basic buffet food. They have a seafood section, Asian food, meat and comfort food, salads and soups, and sweets. It's not cheap, but I think we got our money's worth.

Apr 01, 2013
Mouseman_ in Great Lakes

Kalaja Burek Restaurant, Sterling Hts [DTW]

Stopped by after an appointment at the vet to pick up some lunch. The qebapi and other sausage dish would have taken 10 minutes and I didn't want to leave the dog in the car that long, so I settled on a slice of cheese and a slice of meat burek, with some "gojurt". Got them home and was mighty impressed -- both were really tasty in their own way. The yogurt was used 1/2 on the bureks and half as a drink, and it tastes just like Olga's sauce used to taste before their downhill slide of food quality.

I'll be back there for some of the other dishes when I have more time and no excited Lab in the car. I'm a little confused as to why they have Italian food on the menu, but I guess it gives them some variety.

Feb 11, 2013
Mouseman_ in Great Lakes

IzaBela's Kitchen - RIP [DTW]

I tried to stop last week and saw the hand-printed sign, didn't know if it was temporary or permanent. I emailed them, but never got a response. So sad, they had awesome dill pickle soup.

Jan 25, 2013
Mouseman_ in Great Lakes

DTW: R.U.B. great underappreciated BBQ

Not to pile on, but I have to second this with regards to the Warren location. I went there twice and had the second most miserable BBQ I've ever had (worst was at a place by Lakeside that is long gone). The meat had no flavor other than overwhelming saltiness from the rub. The pork was tough and the brisket was fatty, and the sides were pretty lousy. The sauces were nothing special.

My mother-in-law loves their burnt ends, but her grading scale is pretty easy. I have a hard time believing that any of their other locations could be that much better.

Jan 03, 2013
Mouseman_ in Great Lakes

Filipino in Metro Detroit

I'm confused -- since when is Royal Kubo closed? They moved locations, but I wasn't aware that they'd closed. I tried their food years ago and was sicker than a dog the next day, so it's not like I'm concerned either way. It was always a fun place for karaoke.

Nov 20, 2012
Mouseman_ in Great Lakes

Lebanon Bologna in DTW area?

Holiday Market in Royal Oak carries it, I got some last weekend. My mom tells me that she knows it as "German Bologna."

Nov 20, 2012
Mouseman_ in Great Lakes

Detroit - Central American restaurants

I really dig El Guanaco, which is Salvadoran. They're located in Troy, at 15 & Livernois. The papusas are heavenly, especially when you pile on some of the spicy slaw and the house-made salsa/pico mix. They have some other Salvadoran food on the menu, as well as some Mexican fare.

Now if we could only get a Peruvian place in town so I could get my fill of Peruvian chicken....

Aug 20, 2012
Mouseman_ in Great Lakes

Onion Roll Deli - Royal Oak, MI - DTW

Nooooooooo!!! I haven't driven by in a few weeks. This is the end of the deli world -- Al's is terrible and I haven't found any other places locally that have pastrami sandwiches as luscious as Onion Roll. I know the guys were tired, but they seemed to be pushing forward. Now I'm going to be in mourning all weekend....

Jul 13, 2012
Mouseman_ in Great Lakes

'Que Alert. Detroit, eastside.

This is pretty close, so I'll have to give it a try. I'm always on the lookout for good BBQ. I'm not sure why Lazybones is still getting so much love, though -- their quality slipped a while ago and while I've tried it recently, I don't think it's back to the top or even close.

Just had Q from the new Bad Brad's, and was very impressed. Only thing that I didn't like was the wait (which I expected since it was new) and the uncomfortable tables with the sharp metal edges. Will definitely go back there, and may try carry-out to skip the wait. I also need to try the pizzas -- they looked great.

Jul 02, 2012
Mouseman_ in Great Lakes

Mai's Thai restaurant on 12 Mile east of Mound in Warren [DTW]

Mai's was pretty lousy when I tried it about a month ago. I had high hopes after it changed from the terrible Chinese restaurant it used to be, but no such luck.

If you're looking for good Thai in the area, I'd suggest Thai Smile on Van Dyke, just north of 12 Mile on the east side of the street. It's not much to look at and I prefer take-out rather than eating there, but the staff is friendly and the food is fantastic. Heat levels are what I expect and the portions are generous with lots of protein (one of the problems I have with Thai Spicy further up the road) and the prices are low.

Jan 31, 2012
Mouseman_ in Great Lakes