Went and saw a “rock and roll band” at Bostonz

I guess you would have to know Boston’s songs to get that super punny and creative title. Look it up if you didn’t the reference. Yesterday was St. Patty’s day and Omar’s sons band was playing at Bostonz Bar and Grill in Eastpointe. They were playing early, but we felt we were up for some day drinking. We checked out the menu prior to heading out as we always do, and were surprised to see a fairly large menu and preliminary reviews were pretty positive. We decided that as this was our “cheat” day we would enjoy some of their offerings.

The bar was a little “rougher” than we expected and our thoughts of a delicious dinner were questionable. We decided to get some appetizers and snack while we enjoyed our Guinness Beers and watched the band. We decided to call an audible and eat dinner at Green Lantern (which we have reviewed and LOVE). So for snacks, we chose to order what they called their delicious fries, which were described as “skinny and delicious, just think McDonalds” and a combo platter which consisted of chicken tenders, chicken wings and cheese sticks.

The fries must have changed since the website was last updated, as the fries that came out were very unexciting. Average fries, cooked in probably aged oil and served slightly salted. The chicken tenders were pretty good, seemed to be homemade but needed a bit more flavor. The cheese sticks may have been homemade, as they had that floury taste that comes with some homemade cheese sticks. The chicken wings came out completely naked and although  they brought out some ranch, they were embarrassingly under-dressed.

The beer was cold, the band was good and the waitress rocked it, even though she said it was her first day. She was friendly and attentive. The owner even gave us a free Guinness t-shirt as we ordered the first Guinness of the day (apparently more of a bud light/MGD kinda place). We probably would not intentionally head out just to visit this establishment, but if Omar’s sons band played again, that would be fine. Probably though, just sticking to the cold beer and entertainment.

We did head to Green Lantern after with our friends Steve and Mary who came out to support the band. If you want a review of Green Lantern again its simple, great pizza (remember the pools of grease)?, great salad, cold beer, great subs and yummy bacon. You can read all about it HERE.

To summarize, don’t be afraid of Bostonz, we had a great time and go to Green Lantern. Go now. Nom nom nom.

 

Did I Mention I Love Johnny Cakes Cafe?

Jamie stopped over and we have a mom/daughter morning and we went to breakfast. I suggested Johnny Cakes. I haven’t been there for a while and last time it was so good. You probably read our previous blog about Johnny Cakes. Sorry, I feel like it needed a second review. Wait, are you the ONLY one who hasn’t read that post? No worries, you can read it HERE.

The place was jumping as usual. People just line up for this place. We grabbed a couple seats at the bar to avoid a long wait. As usual, the menu was vast and eclectic. Jamie was intrigued by the fruity pebbles french toast that was the daily special but boy, it just seemed too sweet. After pondering the menu, Jamie opted for the plain pancakes, as after all she rationed, they had better do those well!

I decided to get a breakfast that gave me the allusion that I was sticking to my diet, as it did have some healthy ingredients. I ordered the Florentine Eggs Benedict, perfectly poached eggs on a bed of spinach and tomato, covered with a perfect hollandaise sauce atop a fresh english muffin. Paired with a small bowl of fresh melon and grapes. It was delicious and different than any eggs benedict I have ever had. Very good and would definitely order again.

What I noticed this time, since I was sitting at the bar, was the fresh orange juice squeezing machine.  So cool, a see through machine with wheels and cogs that take whole oranges and continuously squeeze fresh juice for the happy diners. Although as i mentioned previously, the cost is a bit more than other restaurants, with an average of $10/meal and $3.5o for a small juice, it is for sure worth it.

Did I mention that you should try Johnny Cakes?

  

The Luck of the Irish (Craft) has Run Out

Omar and I began hearing about a local pub our friends started frequenting and had great things to say about. Irish Craft on Mound, just South of 16. We were apprehensive at first due to the multiple reincarnations of the restaurant. Previously Rosie O’Gradys, and many other failing restaurant/bars we didn’t have a lot of confidence in its success.

Our first visit was a welcomed surprise! The burgers were fresh, tasty and really lived up to the “best burger in Detroit” rating they claimed they achieved. The fries, although still battered were better than most. Onion Rings crispy and flavorful, not too greasy. I ordered potato skins, rarely anyone does those well, but we were pleased to find they were cooked well, lots of cheese, fresh crispy bacon and green onions. Not the typical “yesterdays leftover baked potatoes reheated with some greasy cheese and bacon bits” that other local venues have to offer. The beer menu is extensive, with multiple craft offerings including IPA’s, stouts, lagers and porters. Most recently Omar tried the Rochester Mills Blueberry Pancake Milkshake Stout, 5.25% apv, this alternate version of the standard Milkshake Stout has all the characteristics of the classic, with aromas of blueberry and a bready, creamy almost pancake flavor. The blueberry seemed more pronounced in aroma rather than taste, but an interesting accompaniment to the classic. Although Omar enjoyed his beer, he will stick to the classic in the future.

Follow up visits to this bar brought still enjoyable experiences, with us branching out trying new burgers, French Onion Soup, chicken tenders (which you could tell were made fresh), wraps and more. We were never really disappointed.

We then discovered that Wednesday Nights they hosted a “Jeopardy” style trivia that we really enjoyed playing. On Wednesday nights Irish Craft got to be our “go to” place for date night where we could play trivia, grab a cold beer and have a nice night out.

We started a “healthier” eating lifestyle January 1st. For those opting for healthier fare we found that Irish Craft was not an easy place to eat well. The salads were mediocre and the rest of the menu was laden with carbs, cheeses and fat. Spitting Fajitas is really your best option, and at the time they were ok.

However, the quality of Irish Craft has gone down significantly. I don’t know what happened. A change in management? Lowering quality to increase revenue? Whatever the reason, they have made some very bad changes. Trivia on Wednesdays has been cancelled with no explanation, which is surprising because they only people there on Wednesdays were there just for trivia. The food quality has noticeably declined. The burgers are just ok now and tend to be overcooked and dry. Fries are no longer included, with soggy stale chips now substituting. The potato skins which were once cooked so well, now were under cooked and hard, with melted cheese, soggy, fatty, bacon and sorely lacking green onion. They have removed items from their menu like the French Onion soup. They have added a pizza menu which we have not tried. Sides like stuffed mushrooms, chicken tenders and onion rings which before were clearly made from scratch are now pre-made and bought in bulk and sadly dropped in the fryer. Looking for a nice fresh salad? You no longer will find that here. If you enjoy bagged salad with some chopped up lunchmeat from yesterdays sandwiches and some shredded cheese, then this is the place for you. The beer offerings are still vast, and served iced cold. The beer is really the only thing now that they have going for them.

It was a Saturday afternoon, and there was 3 patrons. Omar and I and some random dude at the bar, that clearly was friends with the bartender. I get that it wasn’t prime time, but that amount of people on a Saturday was not only sad but very telling. Do yourself a favor, and go somewhere else. I would have told you to go last year, but oh what a difference a year makes.

Used our Brain at Tavern on the Main

Valentines Day, how romantic. Wine, flowers, candy, fine dining. STOP! Valentines Day this year was on a Wednesday. The last thing I wanted to do was fight crowds to go some fancy dinner that we didn’t even feel like. Wednesday nights you can usually find us playing trivia at a local pub by our house which I won’t mention. We called said local pub who informed us that trivia wouldn’t happen that night or any other. Humm… interesting development. I searched the two local live trivia sites we frequent, Quizzo and Sporacle and found a local place that had trivia that night.

We headed to Tavern on the Main, in Clawson, on Main Street (duh!). We were not expecting much. Expecting a small bar-type atmosphere with a limited bar menu. What we found though was a nice surprise. The restaurant has two separate dining areas. The first in the front part of the restaurant, and the second through a door into an area where the bar was. The set up was a bit odd, but maybe families like to avoid the bar area? The entire place is very stylish, and well maintained. Clean, cute, welcoming the place had it all. Greek owned, has a very Greek inspired menu, and the management (and owner) were so helpful and friendly. We made our way to the bar area to settle in for some trivia. The place was hopping. I didn’t know, wish I did we could make reservations, but the staff was very accommodating in trying to get us a seat. Two seats opened up at the bar, so we opted to just sit there.  The bartender was immediately attentive and friendly. Answering questions and offering samples of the beers on draft.

We both ordered the Olympus Salad. A traditional Greek with slices of Gyro meat. The salad was large, fresh, ample amount of meat and warm pita bread to accompany. The salad was delicious. A far cry from the bagged salad swill that we received from the other local-trivia placed that I did not mention. I am sorry beer lovers, we are remiss and I forgot the name of the beer we drank. It was a draft stout that we had never heard of. My bad. Will follow up next time with a beer review. The trivia was fun, although we were up against not only a bunch of big teams but very smart ones as well. Our two “man” team has to really work to keep up with the combined intellect of a 8-10 person team, but we held our own and even managed to score third place and won a gift certificate for our next visit, which there most certainly will be!

Looking forward to warmer weather, makes me want to note that this place even has a charming looking patio out front for your outdoor dining enjoyment.

Overall a great experience. I even told Omar after a trip to the beautiful bathroom “I kinda love this place”. We will be back. Look for us on a Wednesday playing trivia, eating salad and enjoying a cold (they were cold) draft beer.