madsdadus's Profile

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whats new and unique in Mid-Town?

Just in town for the night. Grew up here twenty years ago. Looking for something I cannot get anywhere else.

Dec 17, 2014
madsdadus in Manhattan

Best Chinese Food Christmas Eve near Coronado

Thanks DoctorChow. 20 minutes at 6pm or 8pm, or does it not really matter?

Dec 17, 2014
madsdadus in San Diego

Best Chinese Food Christmas Eve near Coronado

How about a 30 to 45 minute drive.

Dec 07, 2014
madsdadus in San Diego

Best Chinese Food Christmas Eve near Coronado

Chinese Food on New Year's Eve is a Christmas Tradition. What's a convenient drive from Coronado? Also any restaurants open on Christmas Day worth going to for lunch or dinner convenient to Coronado?

Dec 06, 2014
madsdadus in San Diego

San Diego Meal Planning

Thanks firecooked! Nice list.

Dec 02, 2014
madsdadus in San Diego

San Diego Meal Planning

Thanks DoctorChow.
So I am definitely renting a car. Prefer low to mid-range price points (under $20 for an entree), but will splurge for one meal during the week. "Authentic" is a bad word, I realize in hindsight, but I am NOT interested in overly Americanized Chinese, or heavy, cheesy Olive-Garden-ish Italian (some call it 'old school')- hope I am not being too snobbish.

We are taking trips to LaJolla and Torrey Pines, going to the Zoo, the Midway (am I getting my naval ships mixed up?), so will be in those places and able to explore the food scene near there, so lunch and dinner recos would be helpful.


Dec 02, 2014
madsdadus in San Diego

Coronado Island Dinner Recos?

I see you have quite a bit of experience here. Care to update the 9/11/13 post. Where would you go today?

Nov 29, 2014
madsdadus in San Diego

San Diego Meal Planning

Thanks Dining Diva and honkman. Staying on Coronado. Appreciate the tip on the car. Will definitely rent one, as you suggest, to access good food.

Nov 28, 2014
madsdadus in San Diego

San Diego Meal Planning

Coming into San Diego for the week of Christmas. Family of four with two teenage kids; one adventurous and one not-so-adventurous. Looking for good local, authentic cuisines, accessible to Coronado (not averse to taking a bus- not sure if we are renting a car):

Terrific breakfast places.
Open to Food carts, too.
Also, need recos for Christmas Eve and Christmas.
Ice Cream.

And as my adventurous older daughter says- really anything.
So what do you say hounds?

Nov 28, 2014
madsdadus in San Diego

Good Italian, Moderately priced, within reach of 1-2-3 trains, good for kids 7-13

Thanks ml77!
We ate at Serafina. Great atmosphere for the kids. We love going to restaurants that give you crayons and you can write/draw on the paper tops over the tablecloths. Makes playing tic-tac-toe and hangman easy. Plus, they were playing some great 80s music- Yaz, Tears for Fears, Depeche Mode, etc. which brought me back. While not the Italian vibe you get from good Italian accordian music, made it a bit more upbeat. Decor was good too- not too dark but neat red glass that complemented the room nicely. Bar area was hopping.

Service was good and friendly, although a little slow to fill the water glass.
Food- very good. Bruschetta nice and fresh and ample tomato. My older daughter's pesto was creamy although lacking a bit of salt. Other daughter's pizza perfect for kids. I enjoyed my striped bass. Accompanying mussels were small and tender and flavorful; calamari well cooked and tender. Bass could have been cooked a bit more, but cooked enough so it was not fishy. Accompanied the meal with an easy house Sancerre- spicy notes.
And to top it off, they gave us a sweet and creamy tiramisu on the house! Maybe not as liquory as tiramisu usually is, but a good enough finish that the kids enjoyed.
Meals were portioned well, not too much food (pet peave as I hate waste) and priced moderately for Manhattan.
I would definitely return to Serafina.

Oct 01, 2010
madsdadus in Manhattan

Good Italian, Moderately priced, within reach of 1-2-3 trains, good for kids 7-13

Hope the title spells it out but looking for good Italian (Northern or Sicilian preferred) that will not break the bank that my kids can enjoy. Was hoping for a place in Little Italy originally but disheartened to read some posts bashing LI joints as mediocre. Please help.

I should add we need to be able to walk in as a table of four on a Friday night, unless we can get a last minute reservation.

Oct 01, 2010
madsdadus in Manhattan

Denver's Venice Ristorante Recommendations

I am being taken to Venice Ristrorante & Wine Bar on Wynkoop. Does anyone have recommendations as to what I should try or what I should stay away from? Please note that I will eat anything, so interested in eating what makes this restaurant stand apart. Thanks in advance for your consideration and effort.

Mar 07, 2010
madsdadus in Mountain States

One Meal in City of San Francisco

Thanks Chuckles.
I did read the FAQ. Unfortunately, I rarely have cravings or set parameters. Always interested in either what's good or what's unique or truly local.

I think I stumbled on what's good during that trip. Ended up eating at Gary Danko's. Terrific wine list (although who in SF doesn;t have a terrific list).

The White Winter Root Vegetable Soup with Duck Confit Terrine, Porcini Emulsion
and Black Truffles was the perfect start to the evening. The Branzini was surrounded by a good balance between navel oranges, fennel puree and nicoise olives.

Phenomenal cheese plate- excellent variety, to finish the meal.

My companions loved the foie gras.

Good chow on west side of Madison WI?

Chidad's suggestions are terrific, especially for good but not too expensive fare (Vin Santo serves some of the best Italian in Madison, although it may be a little disappointing if you have lots of experience in the NY metro area). Also near there is the Hubbard Avenue Diner for more ecclectic than your average diner fare (think black bean burgers and incredible turkey chile/corn bread, plus great pies and desserts- not greasy burgers and 10,000 other items on the menu). Roman Candle also serves good pizza with a good selection of beer. All of these restaurants are no more than 5 to 10 minutes ride from where you are staying (you may even be able to walk it).

I will second Otto's (good steak (strip and filet are favorites and chops (lamb) with a Mediterranean flair) http://ottosrestaurant.com/menu.aspx and Sai-Bai Thong http://www.sabaithong.com/odanamenu.h...

New Orleans Take-Out on the west side is 10 minutes from your hotel. Well worth a cab ride. Some of the best creole this side of New Orleans.

Since you will be around for fish fry on Friday, a Wisconsin must, try Sweeney's Oak Creast Tavern on 5371 Old Middleton Rd. About a 5 minute ride from your hotel.

Hope this helps.
Let us know where you ended up and what you thought.

One Meal in City of San Francisco

If you could have just one meal in the city of San Francisco (no going outside the city), what would you be eating and at what restaurant would you be eating it at?

Also, do we need to make reservations to eat there during the early part of the week?

Ella's Deli (Madison)

The Nitty Gritty in downtown Madison and I think Bluephies has tasty matzoh ball soup (at least they used to). Call first!

Holiday Inn Hotel & Suites West Madison, WI

Yup- No man's land is right.
But I think you are almost as far in the other direction to some spots in downtown Middleton like Vin Santo (tasty Italian, mostly Northern/Tuscan with good wine list), Hubbard Street Diner (ecclectic diner, good for breakfast), Louisianne's (pretty good New Orleans style), and Roman Candle (some of the best pizza this side of the Delaware River). For dessert, try Villa Dolce for gelatto (they also have some great desserts and interesting pizzas). You can always take a cab and the HI may even shuttle you to downtown Middleton. All of these are great locally owned establishments.

Eno Vino may be closer, offers great small plates, and an extensive wine list.

"Stuck" in south central WI - what to do/eat?

Hope the date has not passed.

Capital Brewery in Middleton (just west of Madison) has awesome local brew. Amber is their tried and true.

I second the Union for ice cream- some of the best in the States.

If you want Nepali, Himal Chuli on State Street in Madison is terrific. Some of the best Dal this side of Khatmanu.

Harvest and L'Etoile are terrific restaurants using local ingredients. Chef Tory from L'Etoile will be cooking for the big James Beard Dinner in NYC later this spring. And Harvest gets plenty of national recognition as well. Morel mushrooms are a terrific local delicacy and these restaurants have been known to feature dishes with morels in the past.

Best of luck and hope the post is not too late.

Dining near Trump- respond by Monday night please

Adventurous diners. Staying near the new Trump Tower in Chicago.
Looking for good cuisine (any kind) within a mile or two of the hotel.
Must have some decent vegetarian options. Must also be somewhat reasonable (we are not willing to pay for food at rate of $100 per person).
I have been to Blackbird and Il Molino in the past, both of which I love.
I also recall eating at a place within a block or two of Kinzie and State or Hubbard and Wabash (that general area), but cannot remember the name. Any thoughts? Thanks.

Apr 06, 2008
madsdadus in Chicago Area

Help ... Madison dining scene

I echo many of the same sentiments: Lombardinos, Sardine, Harvest, Murimoto, Old Fashioned (good breakfast), Cocoliquot (the homemade chocolate at Cocoliquot is priceless!). Another great place off the square is Nat Spiel (no phone, no reservations, may be cash only too, if I recall). Great clay pot tofu dish. Very fresh ingredients. Old pubby type atmosphere. Friendly staff. It is between the Great Dane and Cocoliquot on King Street. Very casual. Same owner as Barriques and Magnus.

Other great place to go is the Greenbush. Some of the best pizza this side of NYC. Crisp thin crusts and unforgettably fresh ingredients. I also have enjoyed their Smoked Trout salad. Great bar too. Casual. On Regent Street between Mills and Park Street.

Happy eating.

Where do you eat in Madison, WI?

OMG- did you mention Farrells? I remember Farrells in East Brunswick, NJ. We used to go there for the Zoo. And my brother worked there in high school. I can see the resemblance to Ella's. I am about to roll on the floor laughing.

Madison WI pizza - where do I go?

Casa Bianca did close on Bassett but I think they are open out on Junction Road.
Isthmus does not show "CLOSED" for that location. Here's a link http://www.thedailypage.com/theguide/...;

While on the subject, do you have any recommendations for NYC in Chelsea/Flat Iron for dinner- any kind of cuisine.

Jun 15, 2007
madsdadus in Great Lakes

Blue Water Grill Update

Thanks. I did see it during my search. All it was was a which is better discussion, without calling out anything about better dishes- little substance, just a popularity contest. I really would like to know details- what is worth ordering, what should I stay away from, what dishes do the locals that go there usually order- those kind of things.

Jun 15, 2007
madsdadus in Manhattan

Chelsea Retaurants

OK- its your last meal, and you have been restricted to Chelsea to eat it. Where would you go? Why? What would you have there? And how expensive might it be?

Jun 15, 2007
madsdadus in Manhattan

Blue Water Grill Update

I have not seen any recent postings on Blue Water Grill- at least from the NY minute I spent searching. Appears it is all about seafood. Wiithin the seafood category, what do they do best? What do you recommend? What should I run from? I am eating there Monday night, so any replies will be appreciated.

Jun 15, 2007
madsdadus in Manhattan

How do you eat your smoked salmon?

Nothing like a good LEO- for onions use Vidalia's or Walla Walla's to complement the sweet, otherwise a Spanish onion for a slight contrast. And make sure you get lox, not nova as the salty lox works best in a LEO.

May 13, 2007
madsdadus in General Topics

Sensi, Tableau, Olive, Prime, Le Cirque, Bouloud Brasserie, and Breakfast in Vegas

More details on the rest of the meals in Vegas.

Sensi- great atmosphere with a friendly, if slow staff. So-so food. The satay was an ok appetizer. Not any better than my local Thai restaurants, although the mango chutney it came with was a sweet and slightly peppery foil to the beef and chicken- much better than the average peanut sauce it is usually served with (Sensi gives you three different ones but I loved that chutney so much I did not even bother tasting the others). Salmon pinwheel was underwhelming. If I could find one positive, the salmon was done perfectly.

Terrace Cafe at Wynne- went there for breakfast at 7am. The outside that everyone raves about was closed (I was told they shut it down sometime after 6am until 8:30am). Had the pancakes as recommended by others and found them to be underwhelming. Large and fluffy, but lacking significant flavor.

Boulud- loved it. Great view of the freaky waterfall. The cheese plate was phenominal. What a great variety- Manchego, aged Gouda, soft goats milk and sheep cheeses- at least 8 different varieites if memory serves me. Short Ribs were so tender- very good but not great. Cannot remember too much about the rest of the meal as the drinks/wine was fantastic and I took in too much (the Spanish Side Car with Star Anise is a terrific revision on a classic).

Buffet at Wynne- quantity but little quality. And at 17.95 for breakfast (I think?) a poor value.

Tangerine at Treasure Island- Nightclub. Great party atmosphere, especially outside overlooking the scenery at TI. Lots of young people, mostly male. Lot of friendly people. Wait staff look like Hooters girls but with slightly better outfits.

Happy eating.

May 11, 2007
madsdadus in Southwest

Sensi, Tableau, Olive, Prime, Le Cirque, Bouloud Brasserie, and Breakfast in Vegas

Thanks to all of you for the great comments. Let me update you on my progress as I ate through Vegas.

Tableau- fairly casual (lots of jeans, but many sportcoats and ties too) which seems pretty typical for Vegas anyway. I do not think that I tasted a mediocre dish all night. Started out with a roasted red pepper soup- subtle, made with cream but not too rich. Good starter. The Lobster prepared with morels was scrumptious, if a tad bit rich, but the Scallops with wilted spinach and beans served in a soy based glaze was a little better- fanciful flavor, with the sweet taste and firm, slightly chewy texture of the scallops contrasting nicely against the wilted texture and earthy flavors of the spinach. For an entree, the Halibut was terrific, perfectly flaky. Although I did not partake in the desserts, the chocolate tasting looked particularly good with an extremely aromatic variety of chocolate desserts (a friend skipped out on ordering his dinner just to have the dessert which he thought was worth it).

May 08, 2007
madsdadus in Southwest

Vegas dining challenge

What works the best at Sensi? I have a reservation there with some clients next week and know nothing about it.

May 03, 2007
madsdadus in Southwest

Sensi, Tableau, Olive, Prime, Le Cirque, Bouloud Brasserie, and Breakfast in Vegas

I am going to be in Vegas for a few days next week and am interested in only the following restaurants for dinner- what is good (I will eat anything) and what is unusual at the one's you have eaten at and where would you go again?

Sensi @Bellagio- I am going here for sure.
Tableau @Wynn- I am going here for sure
Olives @Bellagio
Prime @ Bellagio
LeCirque @ Bellagio
Daniel Bouloud Brasserie @ Wynn

Also what are my best options for breakfast in/around the Wynn and/or convention center?

Thanks in advance for your kind replies!

May 03, 2007
madsdadus in Southwest