One Year Ago

It was one year ago today that my daughter has started my in the world of blogging while we sitting down to a Mother’s Day brunch.  She set it up on my IPhone and I was amazed.  I have not blogged in a while and have lots to blog about, as I have visited many restaurants. Sometimes life gets in the way of finding that time to blog.  Between all my responsibilities and obligations, little time is left for the pleasures, blogging. 

So I want to thank my daughter for showing me this new world, and can’t wait until the end of August when I am not so overloaded with school work and my Masters will be complete. 

I will try to blog when I can, I am gone but not for long….thanks all who have been following me and I promise to be up and blogging soon 🙂

Enjoy and Happy Mothers Day to all, may your day be filled with happiness and may you be with the ones you love the most in the world, your children. Lunching with Lori


There’s no place like home!


Recently I redid my dining room in hope of entertaining again.  My dining room used to be filled at holidays and special occassions when my kids were home or would come home.  I wanted a room that reflected the good food that came out of my kitchen and was cooked by my children, son in law (who is a trained chef) and me.  I love cooking meals for my family and love when all my kids help out.  With the holidays coming I knew my new dining room would get some use and was excited as I planned a Christmas Eve and Christmas night dinner.  

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The color of the dining room was important to me. I wanted an environment that was fun, and would entice conversation and good eating. 

For Christmas dinner my daughter wanted chicken so I decided to make Cornish Hens, carrots cooked in an orange honey sauce with dill, and sweet potatoes cooked with cinnamon, butter, nutmeg, pecans and brown sugar.  I needed to find something that was also a good meal for a vegetarian so my daughter made a recipe I have for a corn casserole that is yummy and like the famous green bean casserole, needs to be on family tables during the holidays. 



The cornish hens are moist and tasty. They were stuffed with lemon and rosemary and seasoned on top with oil, salt, pepper, and a few of my special seasonings. The herbs are fresh, the carrots fresh, the sweet potatoes fresh, and the corn casserole recipe my family loves. 

My daughter and her significant other make our family traditional Hungarian cookies along with a cheesecake. 

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What a great job they did with the cookies. These cookies were gone within 2 days! The cheesecake was delicious, moist, and just right! I was proud of my family for putting together such a great meal with traditions that will follow them through their lifetimes!

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Sometimes the best meals can be the ones we cook at home with our loved ones and the company is the best thing of all! 

Happy Holidays and Happy Dining to all!


Lunching with Lori

Mama’s Hot Spot, New Milford CT


Once there was a little pizza joint that was located right on Rte 7 in New Milford, then it was gone.  In it’s place a restaurant called Mama’s Hot Spot popped up.  They had placed menu’s on cars while parked in a local shopping center and I thought I would try it someday.  Well that day had come and I decided to check it out. 

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I was quite surprised when I walked in. The place was decorated country style and the owners were friendly and full of information. They talked with pride about their new venture and noted they would be soon adding pizza to the menu.  They both noted that all the food was made fresh on the premises and they were known for their ribeye sandwich.  So, we decide to try that and their eggplant grinder. I order an appetizer of fried raviolis and french fries along with sweet potato fries. 

The women owner talks to us while her husband prepares our lunch. She talks about the decor is notes she is changing it in preparation for Christmas. 

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Our appetizer comes out and the fried raviolis are delicious, along with the marinara sauce to dip them in.  The portion size is nice and they reminded me of eating on the Italian section of the hill in St. Louis. 


I really like the feel of this place and find it to be a good lunch spot.  The owners  are friendly and the place is clean, bright, and decorated county style.  The service is great and the food is good for lunch. 

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The Rib Eye sandwich is tasty but the eggplant parmigiana was outstanding! We shared the sandwiches and enjoyed them both. The french fries were good but the sweet potato fries were even better. This was a nice lunch in a new place.  Overall I would rate this place a 3.5 due to the place being so new and needing time to find what they want to specialize in.  It is a place I have gone back to a few times and have done take out.  Mama’s Hot Spot grows on you and it is worth the trip down 7 to give it a try.  There hours vary so give them a call, as they do close early on weekends.  Again, I would suggest them for a great lunch spot.  You can eat in or take out!


Happy Dining!

Lunching with Lori 

Joey’s in New Milford, CT

I have always passed by Joey’s in a bright red house before the WalMart.  Even though I have been living here for about 7 years now, never thought to go in.  Thanks to my mom not being able to navigate stairs well, we had to find a place that didn’t have stairs or many stairs and had to have steak, because she wanted steak.  My husband checked the menu and they offered steak and only had one step to navigate.  Score, we had somewhere to go to take her out for her birthday dinner.  IMG_0254


We are greeted promptly and seated.  I get my mom settled in a nice cozy corner and we both order a drink, a toasted almond to wait for my husband to come.  The place is in a old house and is cozy in a dive sort of way.  The menu consists of steaks, seafood, chicken and pasta. The menu is small but sounds delicious.  We all decide on the steaks and settle in the corner.  We are seated by a picture that has what looks like flames in it moving.  I guess a fake fire place but it does at warmth.

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I have to say, I almost forgot about blogging about this restaurant. It wasn’t until after I downed my drink and devoured the appetizer of stuffed clams we all shared that I thought about getting some pictures so I can rate this place!  The stuffed clams contained a whole clam with stuffing on top and man were they good!! Sorry, I didn’t get a picture of them and I am sorry I missed that opportunity.

Our steaks come and they look delicious, served with fresh cooked veggies and a side. I chose a baked potato. My mom and husband chose to add onions and mushrooms with their steaks.  I got the sirloin.  I was pleased with the presentation, as it was clean, neat, and showed off the star of the meal, the steak.  I ordered a side order of stuffed shrimp to go along with my steak. Of course I order my steak rare. It was done to perfection! The seasoning was perfect and the vegetables were crisp and full of color.  I add butter and of course sour cream to my potato!

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We ask for pepper and the waitress bring us a pepper mill and leaves it on the table for us.

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This meal is really good and I am so surprised by it.  We all are happy with our meals. The food portion size is good.

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We are all full and can’t finish our meal.  The waitress comes and asks if we want dessert but we are full but can’t resist one dessert and we decide to share.  We order an ice cream ball rolled in pecans and covered with Caramel.  It sounded to good to pass up and we all share it.

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There dessert menu is nice and offers something different then your normal restaurant.  Needless to say we all finish the dessert!

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I have to say I really enjoyed this meal! I rate this place a 5, as the service was great, the food was outstanding, and the place was cozy in a unique sort of way.  I am excited to go back and try their fresh made Bolognese sauce. The waitress says it is incredible.  She noted the chef makes every order fresh and takes pride in what he serves.  Nothing is made ahead of time. This is nice to know.  She if full of knowledge and said the restaurant has been open for 30 years! I think this is the best kept secret in New Milford!  I cannot wait to go back and try the Bolognese sauce! Try it, you be glad you did!!

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Happy Dining!

Lunching with Lori





Tufelo Honey Cafe, Charlotte NC

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Tucked in a little shopping center in Charlotte, NC is a place called the Tupelo Honey Cafe that was recommended by the locals.  Again it is has southern cuisine.  For those of you have read my posts, you know by now I love good Southern cooking.  The place is located upstairs and has a sitting area on a wrap around porch outside with couches. Reminded me of my sons frat house with the couches outside.  When I walked in, the place was big, airy and open.  I was seated right away and was not put in a corner.  The staff was friendly and I was waited on right away.  I went at lunchtime and the place was packed. IMG_0071    IMG_0088

I order their meatloaf and it comes with mac and cheese along with asparagus.  I also order a side of coleslaw. The biscuit is really good and served with jam and honey.  The meatloaf has gravy and the mac and cheese is just the right portion size.  The meatloaf is good, I have had better, but is good. The biscuit is really good and there is no need to add the honey.  The coleslaw is incredible delicious and I could have eaten more of that.  The food comes out quick and I even order a hard cider with lunch.  I wanted to relax and enjoy a nice lunch for a change.

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I order banana pudding, I guess a Southern thing. It is OK but I make better.  This place had a nice young, hip crowd. I didn’t notice if they had a bar, but I am sure they must.  It is a great place to hang out with friends or go on a date. I would love to hang out on the outside porch sometime and have a few drinks.

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IMG_0080 IMG_0089 IMG_0075IMG_0073So, if you find yourself in Charlotte, NC and are looking for a good place to eat, check out Tupelo Honey Cafe either for lunch or dinner. You won’t be disappointed. I rate this place a 4, atmosphere is great, dress is casual but I can picture women with flowery summer dresses during the summer, the food is good, and the service is good. They even treat parties of one with respect.

Happy Dining!

Lunching with Lori

The Red Rooster, Harlem NY

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While working in Manhattan recently, I had the opportunity to stay in Harlem.  I heard about a place called the Red Rooster and was told the food was good here.  So I set off on foot to find this restaurant and grab a bit to eat.  It is about a 20 minute walk from where I am staying but it was nice out.  I find the place with the help of my friend Siri, ok sometimes Siri is not my friend but tonight she was behaving.  I get inside and the place is jamming and was there crowds and lines! There were no seats at the bar and a wait to be seated so I decide to get my order to go.  The atmosphere is really great and I enjoy the music they have playing.  There is an artist doing caricatures.

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I make an order to go at the bar, fried chicken, mashed potatoes, greens,  a side of carrots and parsnips along with a side of corn bread.  The order takes about 15 minutes and I order a sangria to enjoy while I am there.  This is a place that I would love to sit and eat in.  I loved the crowds and the variety of people. They do have outdoor dining when the weather permits.  I take my food and head back to the hotel.  I open up the cartons and I am not disappointed.  This is nice southern comfort food in Harlem.

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The fried chicken is really good but the mashed potatoes are incredible!  The roasted root vegetables are just OK and are a bit dry. But that cornbread, man was that delicious!!! I could have eaten just the potatoes and cornbread! This is a place I would rate a 4, only because it was so crowded and I didn’t get to enjoy a meal sitting there at the bar drinking some more sangria.  Next time I will see if they take reservations or go a bit earlier.  The service was good at the bar, the music playing was awesome and I would have loved to have a caricature done.   If you find yourself in Harlem and are looking for a fun place with good food, check out The Red Rooster, you won’t be disappointed you did!

Happy Dining!

Lunching with Lori


Loveless Cafe and Motel, Nashville TN

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Tucked about 20 minutes outside of Nashville is the Loveless Cafe and Motel.  Although there is no longer a motel, there is a cafe. It is supposed to be one of the top 7 eateries in Nashville noted as one should visit.  I took the drive out there. The place was a home that was turned into a restaurant. There are interesting stories about the place and how it was started but I will save that for another time.  The food is down home comfort food.  They are known for their fried chicken and homemade biscuits. So that is what I order along with a side of fried Okra and their cheesy grits.  The service is good but again, being a single person dining out, I get a seat near the mens bathroom and near the wait station.  They seat me in the Rooster room in the corner and out of the way.  I really don’t like when places do this to us folks who come in as a party of one.

The food comes out quick and they start you off with the biscuits and fresh made jam.

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The fried chicken is OK, I have had better, the grits aren’t that warm or smooth and creamy and the fried Okra was just warm and bland.  I wasn’t impressed by the food.  The service was OK but again, being a party of one sometimes you get forgotten about in the corner.

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I order dessert and the pie is good and fudgy and helps raise the seratonin levels.  I ask for my check and have to wait a bit for it. The waiter didn’t come back much to see if I needed something.  I was disappointed in the service as well as the food. But, there is plenty of nostalgia in the place and it seemed like a tourist trap.  The place wasn’t very busy when I arrived but by the time I left, there were lines of people waiting to come in.  I look at it as a tourist trap.  I would rate it a 2.5 and don’t think I would go back there, as once was enough.

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There are some stores on the property that push all sorts of touristy items to those who want to take home a piece of the Loveless cafe and motel. I enjoyed going through these shops more than I enjoyed the dining experience at the cafe.  Again, the atmosphere was OK, the service was just OK, the food was edible but I have had much  better fried chicken. The biscuits were the best part of the meal.  This is somewhere I wouldn’t go back to eat at but would go back in the daylight to walk around the little tourist stores that suck you in.

Happy Dining!

Lunching with Lori



Fresh to Order, Nashville TN


It was a rainy night when I arrived in Nashville, I skipped lunch and was really hungry when it came to dinner time.  I asked the hotel for suggestions and they recommended a place next door that I can walk to. It appeared to be a combination of a Panera but was fresher and offered a variety of nice cold teas and lemonades.  You walk in, grab a menu, go up to the counter and order.  They give you a number, you have a seat and they bring you your order. I ate here twice, once for dinner and once for lunch.


IMG_9974 IMG_9971For dinner the first night I had grilled bourbon steak with a Balsamic Cebernet reduction with mac and cheese with served with garlic toast and I ordered garlic jack grit cakes on the side.  I choose to take the items back to my room and eat in.  The mac and cheese was delicious and made with a nice roux.  It was nice and cheesy.  The steak was tasty but tough. Even tougher to eat with a plastic for and knife!  The reduction on the steak was delicious and I could have had that all over the meal.  I was really surprised by the taste of the reduction, the mac and cheese as well as the grits.  The place was friendly, clean, and the staff were really friendly and helpful to newbies.

I did order dessert, key lime tart and it was delicious also!


I went back my last day there to grab lunch before i had to fly out and decided it would be better then airport food. The lunch did not disappoint! I ordered the Asian Chicken Crunch sandwich coated with an almond rosemary crusted chicken, served on top a ginger apricot coleslaw and a avocado aioli.  I had it with some corn chowder and mixed some tea with lemonade. I have to say this is the best sandwich I have had in a while! Delicious!!!



The place has an area you can eat outside with heaters. They slide open the doors and you can choose to eat inside or out. The place is a good size and was busy at lunchtime. You didn’t have to wait long for your food and again, the staff were helpful and really nice.

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If you find yourself in Nashville near Vanderbilt University, check out Fresh to Order. You will be happy you did. I rate this place a 5 and if I had one close to me, it would be my go to place. It is fast, fresh, and delicious with a nice variety to choose from. Friendly staff and great atmosphere.  I rate this place a 5 and again, check it out should you find you need a great inexpensive meal in Nashville.

Happy dining!

Lunching with Lori

El Agave Mexican Restaurant in Cheektowago, NY

IMG_9208IMG_9204When in Buffalo my second night, I was craving some Mexican food. So, being the savvy person I am, I sought out reviews from Yelp on my smartphone. El Agave came up with some really good reviews so I thought I would give it a try.  I always try to go into a restaurant on the early side of dinner when it is a bit slower since I am only one. I find the restaurant located in a convenient location on the main strip.  I was greeted when I first walked in and was seated after a few minutes.  The waiter took a bit to come over and didn’t look to happy to have a table of just one. I really hate when wait staff feel parties are one are not worth their time.  I am a good tipper, very good tipper and take offense to wait staff that feel single patrons are a hassle.

I am given chips and salsa a few minutes after I arrive and also order a margarita. The chips are good as well as the margarita.



I truly enjoy sipping on the margarita and notching on my chips and salsa while looking out the window and watch the cars pass. I see there is an outdoor patio but it is a bit chilly out there to eat today.


The menu is your usual Mexican restaurant menu.  I order a combo platter, Chile Relleno and a beef tamale with rice and red beans.  I love chili relleno’s and am excited to have a really good one given the Yelp reviews.

I notice while there that I am basically ignored by the waiter and he pays little attention to me. My meal arrives and it looks good.  it is topped with nice Mexican cheese.  I am excited to take a bite and it looks good!


I bite into my Chili Relleno and the cheese is creamy and it tastes familiar. I can’t place the taste though.  The Chili Relleno is not crisp but also not soggy which is a nice change from what I have been eating.  I really know the taste of the cheese and find the waiter to ask him what it is.  He tells me that it is American Cheese!!! What, are you kidding me??? American cheese in Mexican food??? And this place was rated high on Yelp!


The place fills up rather quickly and I do have to say after getting over the shock of the cheese, the beef tamale is good and the rice and beans are typical of any Mexican restaurant. OK, now would I rate this place as high as those on Yelp did? No way, the service was mediocre at best and I felt like I was abandoned, especially when the place started filling up. To use American cheese in a Chili Relleno is unforgiving, and to make someone wait for their check is ridiculous!  I had to wait about 15 minutes before I got my check and was able to pay. I would have to rate this place over all a 2 for it’s poor service, American cheese in my Chili Relleno, but for atmosphere and the drink and chips, I would have to say it was a 3. This is a place I would go out and hang out to drink and enjoy the chips! Toss up on this one folks.  The place is casual, not very big and has that fake Mexican decor but after a few Margarita’s you would think you were in Mexico if they had a mariachi band!



Happy Lunching with Lori!

Famous Dave’s in Cheektowaga, NY


I recently went to Buffalo, NY and stayed in a Hampton Inn that was under construction.  Across from the parking lot there was a restaurant called Famous Daves. It is a BBQ place and they staff at the hotel said the food was decent. I thought I would walk over and give it a try. It is not crowded, as it is early and it takes a little bit for someone to greet me and seat me.

I was given a menu and noticed how huge this place is inside. The decor can use a little updating and the tables have all types of BBQ sauce on them with a roll of paper towel. What a good idea when it comes to BBQ.



There are so many knickknacks, I am not sure how they all get dusted! The menu is large and there is plenty of things on the menu for a BBQ lover.  I am not sure what to get and ask the waitress for guidance. She suggests the rib tips.  She notes they are well liked.  So, I agree and order them with a side of green beans an baked beans. I am not sure how big the sides are and order an unsweetened Arnold Palmer.


As I am waiting for my food, the waitress comes out and tells me the rib tips didn’t look good and she suggests I order something else. So, i go with my first instinct when I came in, the ribs. While I am waiting again, a group of three come in and sit down in the booth behind me. They are loud, rude, swearing, passing gas, and keep getting up and down in the booth so the booth shakes. I get up and go to the other side where no one can sit.  My food finally comes. I am disappointed in the size of the sides. They are small and only have a few bites.


I try the green beans and expect them to be good southern style green beans and they aren’t. They are a bit garlicky and I see no bacon.  I do not like them at all.  I try the baked beans and these are really good. They have a zip to them and there are not enough of them.  I try the ribs and they fall off the bone. They are tender and with a dry rub. They are really very good.  The corn muffin is just OK. I actually think there is not enough food for the price of the meal and I am still hungry so I order dessert.


Dessert is large and I order banana pudding with Vanilla wafers inside. It is topped off with whipped cream.  The dessert is underwhelming and disappoints.  I would have rather had a smaller version with a better taste. Needless to say I could not finish it and nor did I want to finish it.

I found my meal at Famous Daves to be disappointing to say the least. The waitress was nice and I thought it was great that she made the decision not to serve me food that didn’t look good.  I could only imagine how it tasted!  Needless to say, I did not enjoy this meal and felt the atmosphere was a bit over the top. There were too many knickknacks that can be filled with dirt and dust.  I may go back if I ever get back to Buffalo for the ribs and baked beans, but keep the green beans and the dessert.

I would rate this place a 2. I don’t think I really want to see what goes on in the kitchen and how long the food is sitting there.  This would be one of those places I would expect Chef Ramsey to come in and say “Shut it down”.   I would say skip the visit unless your really hungry and stick to the ribs.


Happy Lunching with Lori