Monday, December 20, 2010

Taipei 101- Restaurant of the Year!

Rainbow Roll
 I have been a sushi aficionado for the past 5 years now. I thought I had found a sushi joint that I wanted to settle down with. We were happy together and getting along fine. Then one day, I was driving down Greensprings Highway and there was Taipei 101 Sushi & Asian Bistro.... it took my breath away. I confess, I  cheated on my steady sushi joint and eventually broke up with it. I left it for Taipei.
Recommendations: The Lettuce Wrap appetizer, The Miso Soup, Any of the bento box lunches, the hibachi dinners and most of all the sushi. They also have a wide variety of Asian dishes for the "not-so-adventurous" diner.

Crispy Intestines
Atmosphere: Moderately lit, modern and organized. There is a small waterfall display against the wall and a catfish tank. This is a great family night out place as they do have an awesome kids menu. Also a great "date" restaurant.
Staff: Pretty friendly. The sushi chef puts a lot into presentation for sure. Most of his creations are picture worthy.
What I had: On my most recent visit to Taipei, I was feeling adventurous and tried the crispy intestines w/ a sweet & spicy sauce. This appetizer is not for wimps, LOL!!!
I also had the rainbow roll.
Price: $16.00 this time, but my average meal is around 10 dollars or less w/water.
On a scale of 1to10 I give Taipei 101 Sushi & Asian Bistro a 9.99.
No one is perfect!
*They are open for lunch and dinner. For more info go to

O'Carr's Homewood-The Best Chicken Salad in the Universe!!

When I arrived at O'carr's in Homewood for lunch on 12/11, I saw a packed parking lot, a packed restaurant and a line of people waiting. I assumed that the food had to be superb. When my friend arrived we went inside and were fortunate enough to get a 2 seater amongst a mob of diners. The menu stated that they sell 2,000 pounds of chicken salad per week. And so, a decision was reached: Gotta try the chicken salad. This was the BEST chicken salad ever.... forget your mom's home made recipe.

Atmosphere: This is a small restaurant. So leave your "personal space" hang ups at the door.
Staff: Very swift, helpful and friendly. Check out the menu and be ready when they come.
What I/we had: We both had the chicken salad w/ fruit plate- a very hearty helping of chicken salad with a variety of "not-so-average" crackers. The fruit was seasonal fruit, a slice of apple, grapefuit & orange wedges, a huge raspberry, kiwi slices, grapes & more!! Lots more.
Price: $7.75 before tax.
On a scale of 1-10 I give O'Carr's in Homewood a 9.9. They would have received a perfect 10 if the space was larger. The food & presentation are excellent!
The Homewood & downtown  locations  are only open for lunch Monday thru Saturday. The Cahaba location closes at 8 p.m.
For more information & ordering info go to:

Friday, December 10, 2010

Uncle Sam's Barbecue- One of Hueytown's Finest

Make no mistake, anyone can barbecue. But not everyone can make GOOD barbecue. I like Uncle Sam's because they are not a big chain that puts more into presentation than taste and value. They serve a variety of items such as chicken, ribs and beef & shopped pork. If you have any room left after a hearty meal, be sure to get a delicious slice of pie. The lemon ice box is amazing.
12/10/10 (Lunch)
Atmosphere: Moderate sized, can fill up pretty quick at lunch time; fast paced
Staff: These people could read the menu blind folded. They know the products and that's what you want when you go to a restaurant. They can help you  maximize your meal for the money. Just ask.
What I had: Jumbo Baked Potato w/ chicken & no BBQ sauce  (available with/ pork, beef, or chicken)
with Cheese, Butter, Sour Cream, Chives
Price: $7.35
On a scale of 1 to 10 I give Uncle Sam's BBQ in Hueytown an 8

The Jumbo Baked Potato w/ chicken

To find out more go to

New York Pizza- You gotta try this place!

12-1-10 ( Dinner)
I have a friend that absolutely LOVES Italian food. To impress this guy, you really gotta have your Italianism together (yes, that is a word).
In an effort to try something new, we opted for dinner at New York Pizza and NO WAY are we going to eat pizza.
The walls near the cash register are covered with articles of critics reviews. I couldn't wait to see what all of the fuss was about.

Atmosphere: Sporty, spacious, dimly lit
Staff: WONDERFUL, attentive and helpful
What I/we had: We shared the cheese bread roll w/ marinara, my friend had the standard spaghetti & meat sauce. I had the Broadway calzone. Stuffed with a blend of spinach, sun dried tomatoes, mushrooms and melted feta & mozzerella cheese. ABSOLUTELY THE BEST CALZONE IN THE UNIVERSE!!!
Price: $20.70 before tax & we still had plenty to take home. 
On a scale of 1to10 I give New York Pizza a 9.
You can find more info at

Kaylyn's- Home Cooking At the Price You've Been Looking For!

First of all, let me start by saying I LOVE THIS PLACE! I have never had a bad meal here.

December 1, 2010 (Lunch)
 Kaylyn's Food For The Soul, is one of the best home cooked meal places in Bessemer. It sits across the street from the sheriff's department and is usually frequented by cops, judges, lawyers and other court personnel. Even if the food wasn't as great as it is, I would eat there just to feel safe, LOL!

You will be able to find a variety of meats and vegetables each day. The menu choices change daily. Some of the main course items you can find at Kaylyn's during the week are: baked & fried chicken, turkey and dressing, beef ox tails, tilapia, beef short ribs, beef tips, meat loaf and pork chops just to name a few.
Atmosphere: Steam table service, moderate sized, organized and modern.
Staff: Very friendly, accommodating with reasonable special requests
What I had: griddle cooked cornbread, mashed potatoes w/ gravy, hamburger steak, mac & cheese, candied yams.
Price: A meat & 1 veggie- $5.85, Meat & 2 -$7.15, Meat & 3- $8.15.
On a scale of 1 to 10 I give Kaylyn's an 8
Kaylyn's is open Monday through Friday 10:30 -5:00 p.m. & Sunday 10:30- 4:00 p.m.
 306 18th Street Bessemer, AL 35020
(205) 436-2600

November 30, 2010 (Lunch)

If you are looking for authentic Mediterranean fast food, this is definitely a good option. They serve a variety of sandwiches, wraps and an infamous gyro. Everyone that I asked about this place before I went (with lust in their eyes) reccommended the gyro.

Atmosphere: very quaint, quiet but busy in the kitchen,
Staff: Extremely friendly and helpful with first timers
What I had: The Chicken Kabob Plate - a healthy portion of tender, grilled chicken chunks on a skewer, over a bed of wild rice and sauteed veggies, accompanied by hummus dip, pita bread, a fresh garden salad w/ a house vinaigrette dressing. There is also a mixture of fresh fruit on the side.
Price: $8.95
On a scale of 1 to 10 I give Pita Loco a 7.5. This rating would have been higher but due to the time it took to get my order they received a 7.5. However, I highly recommend calling ahead. 
Pita Loco is located at 2000 2nd AVE North, Birmingham, AL 35203 (205) 252-4899