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Fantastic Cafe Mulino in Ewing

My wife and I visited here yesterday, using a discount coupon. We were very pleasantly surprised to find it is run by an Ecuadorian chef we knew many years ago. The food is the best Italian food I have had in a very long time. He uses premium ingredients and knows his cooking. I had some fluke, which was an extraordinary piece of very fresh fish. It came with first rate spinach, some pasta and fresh artichoke hearts. I finished with a zabaglione, not on the menu but he made it for me.

Here is a link to their web site. I can't say enough good things about this place.

Mar 14, 2014
bankcello in New Jersey

Has anyone tried Shing Kee on Washington Avenue

My wife and I had lunch there today. It is not the old owners. We had three dished, with a vast amount to take home. They were Watercress with Preserved Bean Curd (haven't had it before, very nice with good crunchy watercress stems), Beef Chow Fun (good, but not as good as the original place) and Braised Bean Curd (remarkably good, better than before). I suspect we will be eating there whenever we are in Philadelphia.

Oct 09, 2013
bankcello in Philadelphia

Has anyone tried Shing Kee on Washington Avenue

I hope that is true. I will be trying it on Wednesday.

Oct 06, 2013
bankcello in Philadelphia

Has anyone tried Shing Kee on Washington Avenue

The place seems to have opened in the spot where the Hello Cafe, my favorite Hong Kong style restarurant was. They have a very similar menu.

Oct 03, 2013
bankcello in Philadelphia

Pollo Campero in Trenton

508 Hamilton Ave
Trenton, NJ 08609-2612

Sep 16, 2013
bankcello in New Jersey

Pollo Campero in Trenton

I hadn't heard of this chain before, though I see that many other ChowHound people have. This place goes to show that a chain can serve very good food. The fried chicken was super, as were the yucca fries. It is also nice to have a choice of beverages other than soda. At the very least they have horchata (a favorite of mine), Jamaica and Tamarindo. I will be back when I want a quick meal with a minimal of ambiance.

Sep 16, 2013
bankcello in New Jersey

Farnsworth House, Bordentown, NJ

My wife and I ate there last night. It was the first time in a long while. It will be the last time. It was barely acceptable, and with the prices being what they are there are many other places in the area that are better.

Aug 05, 2013
bankcello in New Jersey

Mings Noodles and Dumplings, Hatboro

My wife and I ate there last night and were very disappointed. We ordered the combination dumpling platter (steamed) and the Peking noodles. The dumplings were OK. The noodles, which were made in house were good noodles, but the dish itself was basically unseasoned. It had a thick gloppy tasteless sauce. I understand that this place is run by Korean-Chinese and was expecting good seasoning.

Jul 30, 2012
bankcello in Philadelphia

Lunch in Willow Grove

Even though it sounds nothing like the Giant in my area, which is just an ordinary supermarket, I think I will give it a try. What can I lose?

Apr 11, 2012
bankcello in Philadelphia

Lunch in Willow Grove

Do they actually serve lunch there, or is it all take out, which wouldn't work for me.

Apr 11, 2012
bankcello in Philadelphia

Lunch in Willow Grove

I find that I will be in Willow Grove at lunch time every two weeks. I am hoping to find somewhere to eat. I have tried Pho & Beyond which was not terrible, though the choice for pho was very limited. I also tried Mandarin Gardens, which was terrible.

When in Willow Grove I am near Mandarin Gardens and get there from the Turnpike. Any suggestions for that area?

Apr 11, 2012
bankcello in Philadelphia

Hello Cafe is gone!!!!

I liked almost everything. They had a very large menu and very good cooking. I loved the Shanghai noodles, the chow fun, the various hot pots, the rice dishes, etc. The wok hei of the chow fun was as good as it gets. There were dishes I had not encountered previously. An example being a hot pot of sole filets spiced with black pepper. It was a restaurant where any difficulty in ordering was because of the variety offered, rather than the paucity.

When visiting a Chinese friend in San Francisco I was struck by how much better Hello Cate's food than most of the SF places at which we ate/

Any comments on the New Golden Palace?

Golden Palace
2623 S Delsea Dr, Vineland, NJ 08360

Nov 12, 2011
bankcello in Philadelphia

Hello Cafe is gone!!!!

The place is there (it can't go away), but new owners and new cuisine. I miss Hello very much!!!

Nov 12, 2011
bankcello in Philadelphia

Hello Cafe is gone!!!!

Every second Wednesday in the non-summer months I go into Philadelphia from Trenton to play chamber music on Queen Street. After playing I have lunch a the Hello Cafe on Washington Avenue, a wonderful Hong Kong restaurant. Yesterday I found that it was gone and will replaced by a Vietnamese place. I am shocked and stunned, since it was my favorite restaurant.

Does anyone have a suggestion of a similar place in the area. Chinatown is not a good choice for me because of the parking difficulty.

Any and all suggestions will be welcomed.

Nov 10, 2011
bankcello in Philadelphia

Under The Moon, New Menu Now In Place

Seeing the nice reviews the place received my wife and I decided to try it. The place is attractive in an odd sort of way. I was, however, underwhelmed by the food.

I ordered the "French Pork Chop". It was a large chop, but I found ti to be tough and not particularly tasty. The lentils that accompanied it were good. My wife ordered a roast pork dish that was similarly disappointing. Both pork cuts would have benefited from brining.

The toast served at the beginning of the meal with chimichuri was nice. Some nice bread to go along with the meal would have been very welcome.

I tried their chocolate mousse. Very intense flavor, which is good. The texture was not. It was much too firm. After all, a mousse if a foam. The was more like a very good chocolate pudding.

While it wasn't a terrible meal, I won't be returning there.

Aug 19, 2011
bankcello in New Jersey


Seeing this post reminded me of the many great meals I had a Foo Joy when I still worked within walking distance of Chinatown. Since it has been so long since then I don't remember most of the dishes, however I do recall a nice pig's ear dish, as well as bean curd with preserved eggs. I think that the years that I was able to eat lunch in Chinatown very often (1969-1976) had some of the best eating that I have every done. That was when Szechuan cooking seemed to first arrive, with Szechuan Taste opening. That was before Szechuan Taste became a chain and the quality declined.

Jul 31, 2011
bankcello in New Jersey

El Mariachi Restaurant in Trenton

Not to be confused with Taqueria Mariachi in Trenton. This is a Mexican/Guatamalan restaurant in the Chambersberg area of Trenton, housed where formerly there was an Italian restaurant. They have retain all the old decor, including the mural of Italy.

I have found all of the food to be quite good, but what I have really enjoyed have been some of their soups. The first (whose Spanish name I can't quite recall) is made from trip and cow's feet. The broth is rich and spicy, the tripe wonderfully chewy and the connective tissue on the cow's feet is heaven for those who like gelatinous food. It is one of the best soups I have ever had. They make nice thick tortillas. The other soup (served only on weekends) is Sopa de Res, aka beef soup. A real country dish. Not spicy at all, full of vegetables, a broth that is unbelievably good (it compares favorably to good pho), along with pieces of oxtail and short ribs.

I haven't tried any of the other soups, but plan to sample them.

They don't have dessert, but make a great horchata which seems to very from time to time.

El Mariachi Restaurant
318 Smith St, Perth Amboy, NJ 08861

Jul 31, 2011
bankcello in New Jersey

Looking for best pho in Philadelphia

My wife and I tried it today. They serve an Americanized version of Vietnamese food. Admittedly we only order a few items, but we were disappointed.

An order of summer rolls contained a lot of iceberg lettuce and very few herbs. The rice paper was OK, but far too much lettuce. My feeling is that the right amount of lettuce in this dish is none.

Something called "Roman Salad" sounded as though it would be the nice dish of raw beef with a fish sauce dressing. It wasn't. Again, a lot of lettuce, some cooked beef and a pleasant sweet vinegarette, along with some pickled carrot and daikon.

A Bahn Mi had nice bread, but a not very Vietnamese taste.

If I didn't know how Vietnamese food can taste I might have found the food acceptable, but it was not what I was looking for.

Jun 11, 2011
bankcello in Philadelphia

Hello Cafe on Washington Avenue

This is by far my favorite restaurant in Philadelphia. It is a Hong Kong style restaurant in an Asian mall between 6th and 7th on Washington Avenue.

The menu is very large and everything has been very very good. The prices are reasonable. The only dish that disappointed was duck tongue and duck feet. My problem with that dish is that the tongues have a bone and they are therefore rather tedious to eat.

Everything else that I have tried is wonderful. I eat there just about every time I am in Philadelphia. I think that if this place were close to where I live (lovely Trenton) I would make an arrangement to eat there all the time, taking what ever they chose to serve.

It is just about impossible to single out anything as the best. All the dishes are. They make wonderful noodle dishes and great hot pots. As a means of comparison, each year I visit a Chinese friend in San Francisco. Of course we eat in Chinese restaurants. Hello Cafe is as good as any and better than most.

The staff is friendly and the young cook from Malaysia really knows what he is doing.

Mar 19, 2011
bankcello in Philadelphia

Rouget in Newtown

My wife and I decided to try their weekday prix fixe menu. I had gotten a restaurant..com discount which make the cost of trying it a bit cheaper.

The place is attractive. We sat in a glassed-in area and had a nice view. However the food was somewhat disappointing. The first thing I noticed was that they served salted butter. I don't consider that appropriate for this class of restaurant. I was told it was Amish butter, but it was very heavily salted.

I started with a decent mushroom soup and my wife had shrimp. The soup was OK and the shrimp were not bad. The seasoning was good, but I have had better shrimp. We went on to a salad course. My wife had various greens with Roquefort cheese, grapes and walnuts. She enjoyed it. I had a Caesar salad. It was pretty good, but had a piece of toasted bread rather than croutons.

My wife had monkfish which she enjoyed. I had a somewhat peculiar combination of Hawaiian butterfish and beef cheeks. The fish was pretty good and so were the beef cheeks. However, they did not belong together.

Dessert was White Chocolate Bread Pudding with Amaretto Sauce which my wife enjoyed and a Chocolate Torte with Liquid Chocolate Center which was also pretty good, though not outstanding.

It wasn't a bad meal, but it did not come up to my expectations.

Mar 19, 2011
bankcello in Philadelphia

Wor Shu Opp in Philadelphia????

Does anyone know of a restaurant where I can get wor shu opp, made in the "old fashioned" way?


Feb 14, 2011
bankcello in Philadelphia

Boulevard or The House

I'm afraid I have to differ about the House. I am visiting a friend here in SF and we went to the House. What I was expecting and what we got were nowhere nearly similar. Their greatest failing was an amazingly bad server faux pas. My friend eats very slowly, I eat rapidly. I had finished my appetizer and he was still eating his soup. The waitress brought my main dish, which surprised me. However she then brought my friends dish and set it on the table next to his soup. I found that to be an unexcusable error.

I had a deef fried salmon roll as appetizer. The texture was fine and the salmon had almost no flavor. When asked whether the salmon in another dish was farmed or wild she said that "today is is farmed." I suspect that is was farmed the day before and will be so the future.

I ordered curry noodles with shrimp as a main course. The noodles (udon) and no texture, the sauce had very little flavor, and the less said about the shrimp the better.

Even realizing that SF is an expensive city I felt the restaurant was also a poor value. I am very glad that we didn't order dessert.

Sushi House in Morrisville?

I went there a second time last night, lured by a coupon ($12 off). I had their tempura platter. While ample, it was not good. The oil seemed old and the food was greasy. I don't mind greasy in the right setting, but not for tempura. I won't be returning for dinner, though I might try their all you can eat sushi on Sundays. At least it won't be fried.

Sep 05, 2010
bankcello in Philadelphia

Penny Bistro -- Liberian food in Levittown

I did contract them and they gave me a credit.

Aug 12, 2010
bankcello in Philadelphia

Penny Bistro -- Liberian food in Levittown

I had never had Liberian food before, and when I found that I could get a restaurant.com certificate for a place serving that, which was nearby, I couldn't resist. I called before going and found that they no long took the certificates. However, my wife and I went in spite of that.

It is a small place with a counter and tables in the rear. A fairly large menu with lots of unfamiliar dishes. We ordered two main dishes and an appetizer. The appetizer and one of the entrees were sold out. We reordered and had "palm butter with rice" and "plantain and gravy". The gravy was chicken. The palm butter came with some beef, chicken and very chewy morsels of bluefish. The flavor profiles of each dish were unlike anything I have had before. I look forward to trying the restaurant again.

No desserts, no interesting beverages and the credit card machine wasn't working, but who cares when the food is so good.

You can see a menu at http://www.restaurant.com/microsite-m..., at least until they remove it.

Aug 10, 2010
bankcello in Philadelphia

Great Filipino food in Hamilton.

I have eaten twice at Golden Bread, in a strip mall at the corner of Flock Road and Quakerbridge Road in Hamilton.

It is both a Filipino bakery and an eatery. The food is dispensed from behind a counter and has proven to be quite good. I first had Filipino food in New York City about fifty years ago, and liked it then, but haven't had much recently.

What is served is, to my taste, quite authentic and very reasonably priced. I have had tocino and dinuguan (less spicy than I am used to). They are served with rice and a side dish. The portions are ample. There seem to be different choices on different days, along with items that are listed on a menu.

I have not tried any of the sweet baked goods, but the savory ones (pork and chicken empanadas, pork steamed bun, pork baked bun and a flaky pork pastry whose name I can recall) were all wonderful. I look forward to trying their sweet pastries as well as having many other meals there.

Note that the place closes at seven and many things are sold out in the early evening. You would best come for lunch.

Aug 10, 2010
bankcello in New Jersey

A good meal between DIA and the University of Denver

I will be arriving at DIA from the east coast in time for a meal. I will be travelling to the University of Denver. Any suggestions for a good place to eat en route??

May 02, 2010
bankcello in Mountain States

A great Polish restaurant in Trenton

For many years my wife and I ate at Julian's Bistro in Trenton, a very nice Polish restaurant. Sdaly, Julian's is no more and its replacement is no good.

Lately we have been frequent diners at Villa Polonia (at the corner of Mulberry and Brunswick Avenues). The food is wonderful, the service friendly and the prices more than fair. Most of the clientele is Polish.

Their soups are a treat. I have had sour soup, pickle soup, mushroom soup, borscht, tripe soup and others that I can't recall and they are all flavorful and hearty. The portion is large and the price is low.

The main dishes include many Polish specialties, again at reasonable prices.

Sometimes they have special desserts, which are basically homemade cakes. Nothing to look at, wonderful to eat. Their blintzes are different from what I am used to. Light crepes with a filling of cheese, folded in quarters. With some powdered sugar and sour cream it is blintz heaven.

Be aware that sometimes they are closed for dinner because of private paaties. It is a great restaurant.

Nov 23, 2009
bankcello in New Jersey

Problem in Morrisville and happy solution in Levittown

My favorite restaurant in Morrisville (JB's) closed without warning in April. It was a wonderful place and looking at my credit card records I saw that we had eaten there at least 250 times. The fook was excellent and the prices very reasonable.

Without JB's, looking for a place to eat became quite difficult. I did turn up a fairly decent BBQ place (Tennessee's), and had at least one totally disasterous experience (Hong Kong Pearl in Levitttown, I hadn't realized that there were still such dreadful Chinese restaurants).

While driving on Route 13 we notices a sign for the Istanbul Kabob House. There used to be a number of Turkish restaurants on Route 13, but they had gone away. We decided to try is last night.

The food was very good, and the portions very large. Ordering one appetizer, two mains and two desserts, we took home quite a bit. The appetizer was a garlic and dill flavored yogurt. Nothing of that remained. We also got a kabob dish (ground meat served with fabuous rice, salads and a very deceptive pepper). the other main was a pide with everything. If you are not familiar with pide, think of it as Turkish pizza. Great food. Desserts were an OK rice pudding and an absolutely divine caramel pudding, whose name I don't recall. The texture was similar to a very good creme brulee, but without the crust.

The service was friendly and we actually spent quite a bit of time chatting with the waiter. My only complaint is that I would have liked more items on the menu.

I intend to visit again soon.

Jun 27, 2009
bankcello in Pennsylvania

West side question from a former New Yorker

I used to live in Manhattan and knew my way around restaurants. However it has been over thirty years since I have eaten there.

I will be visiting Manhattan to audition for "Who Wants to be a Millionaire". The audition is at 2:45, so I thought I might have lunch. I will be coming in by train so Korean restaurants in the Penn Station area come to mind, but I wonder if there are any other suggestions. If there are any that have particularly nice "little dishes" at lunch, I would like to hear about them.

The audition is on West 66th street, on the park block. I don't want to spend a great deal on lunch. I looked at the menu at the nearby Picholine and found it much too pricey for me. Any suggestions in the neighborhood would be welcome, or has non-ethnic food in New York gone beyond the budget of a frugal Trentonite.

Thanks for any advice.

Jun 12, 2009
bankcello in Manhattan