Whenever we think of aioli, we can’t help but remember a meal we had with a good friend of ours. We were two Canadians in Thailand sitting down with our English friend for some burgers and fries at this really spectacular burger joint owned by two Americans on the island of Koh Phangan and when our food came, our friend looked up at us with one of the biggest smiles we’ve ever seen and said “There’s garlic aioli!! I LOVE garlic aioli!” At the time it seemed random but when we look back we see exactly how significant that aioli was. Afterall, we were three people travelling abroad and were looking for a little taste of home. Sure, the burgers were the goal but that garlic aioli dipping sauce for our fries was symbolic of home for all of us, the owners included, in an even more powerful way than the burgers. It was simple, unexpected and a condiment we would never have expected during all of our lengthy stays in Southeast Asia.

Since then, we’ve explored much more of Asia and beyond and we now often cook dishes from our travels right at our own home in Canada to remind us of places we’ve been and cuisine we’ve tried. It’s always interesting then, that when we make a classically western recipe like garlic aioli (no matter what we pair it with) that we think of Thailand and that small, but memorable, burger shop.

Quick & Simple, Four Ingredient Garlic Aioli

This is our quick go-to garlic aioli recipe that we especially love to pair with our baked green bean fries recipe for a tasty snack! With only 5 ingredients, it’s a simple way to add a delicious touch to sides, meals and snacks.

Ingredients

  1. 2 cloves of garlic (we like extra garlic so we’ll often add about 3 cloves)
  2. 1/2 cup mayo
  3. 2 tbsp olive oil
  4. 1 tbsp fresh-squeezed lemon juice (we add a bit more to taste)
  5. Salt to taste (start with 1/4 tsp)

Steps

  • Mash cleaned garlic cloves by using a garlic press. If you don’t have a garlic press, a small holed grater will also work
  • Combine the mashed garlic with salt and use a fork to mash further into a paste
  • Whisk in the mayo, oil and lemon juice until combined
  • Taste and add more salt if desired

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Easy Garlic Aioli Recipe

We always love to find new ways to incorporate vegetables into our diet and sometimes veggie substitutions to traditional snacks and sides make it easy to do so. When we discovered baked green bean fries – a dish that can be either a snack or a side and that is both nutritious as well as tasty – we knew we had something that would be making a regular appearance in our kitchen. And it has.

This recipe is super simple, pretty quick, incredibly delicious and versatile. We usually have it as our side with our chicken Adobo recipe or with a good steak instead of fries (think steak frites with a twist). We’ll also make them as a snack on their own or with our garlic aioli recipe.

No matter what you serve them with (or if you eat them on their own) these are a great way to incorporate vegetables and check off some nutrients in your day and enjoy doing it!

Baked Green Bean Fries on Oven Tray

How To Make Baked Green Bean Fries

Ingredients

  • 1 – 1 1/2 lbs of green beans, washed and ends removed
  • 1 cup of Panko bread crumbs
  • 1/4-1/2 cup parmesan cheese (depends on preference). If no parmesan is desired, substitute with additional Panko
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour (additional just in case)
  • 2-3 large eggs, whisked in a bowl & lightly salted
  • salt and ground pepper to taste
  • optional: pinch of cayenne pepper or tsp of paprika depending on preference, to add a bit of heat or extra spice
Baked Green Bean Fries in Oven

Steps

  1. Prepare a baking sheet with light coat of oil or use a non-stick pan
  2. Preheat the oven to 425F
  3. In a bowl, combine bread crumbs, parmesan, pinch of salt and pepper and choice of additional optional seasonings.
  4. We usually spread out a sheet of foil and fold in all the sides and edges to form a lip. We’ll then place the bowl of beaten eggs at the top middle and pour the flour on one side on the foil and the bread crumb mix on the other to form a sort of assembly line. You can skip this and put everything in bowls instead.
  5. Take a handful at a time and roll in flour. Put into egg and, with a fork, coat completely.
  6. Take out of egg with fork and allow excess egg to drip off before placing in Panko mixture. Coat completely
  7. place coated green beans onto baking sheet in a single layer and bake in oven for 10 minutes or until golden brown
  8. Taste and sprinkle extra salt if desired
  9. Serve while hot.

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Baked Green Bean Fries Recipe

We learned fairly quickly while travelling in the Philippines that we absolutely love Filipino food. From our first meal and our first bite (well spoonful as it was a soup) of the cuisine, we knew we had found another destination to add to our list of culinary delights. Though Carolann had grown up eating Filipino food during regular visits to one of her best friend’s houses, there is something different about being immersed and surrounded by the cuisine. The flavours are purer when one can find and use the traditional ingredients, as is not often the case when trying to recreate dishes from products purchased at your own local grocery store or market an ocean away.

We came home with a list of dishes we wanted to make sure to incorporate into our cooking arsenal as well as a new food vocabulary to take with us when trying out Filipino restaurants near our home. One of those dishes was Chicken Adobo or adobo manok.

Adobo is actually the cooking technique used to make this dish so you can prepare other proteins using this recipe, like pork. Adobo is also a term that’s used in other cuisines, such as Spanish or Caribbean, so you’ll probably hear it if you travel to those areas, though it means something different in each.

Since it’s basically the unofficial national dish of the Philippines, it’s a good place to start your culinary journey into Filipino food. It’s also a great dish to make any time as it’s a fairly uncomplicated and quick recipe that involves many staples and basics you probably already have stocked in your kitchen.

How To Make The Best Chicken Adobo

We usually use both drumsticks and thighs and will often modify the recipe depending on how “saucy” we are feeling (see optional directions and tips within the recipe).

We also love to serve our baked green bean fries recipe with the chicken adobo since the green beans add a layer of texture and crunch to the meal. Whatever sides you choose though, and however you decide to finalize the sauce, this dish is always well-received!

Ingredients:

  • 8 pieces of chicken (bone-in) – works best with thighs or drumsticks (or both!)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 4-5 cloves of garlic crushed or shredded extremely thin
  • 1 tsp whole black peppercorns
  • 3 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 2/3 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 green onion, chopped
  • 1/2 cup water

Steps:

  1. Put the chicken (we leave the skin on) in a large resealable plastic bag along with vinegar, soy sauce, 2 Tbsp sugar, peppercorns, bay leaves and water.
  2. Shake to mix marinade and coat the chicken and reseal. Refrigerate for minimum 2 hours (can be left overnight)
  3. Pour contents of bag into a large pot or Dutch oven and make sure the chicken is layered individually. Bring to a boil before turning to low and allowing to cook. Turn chicken every so often until it is tender and cooked through – approximately 25 minutes
  4. Line a baking sheet with foil, place oven rack to top position and preheat broiler
  5. Transfer chicken to baking sheet and broil in oven until slightly browned (approx 3 minutes) before flipping and repeating on other side. Transfer to a shallow bowl.
  6. As chicken is cooking, increase heat of the remaining contents of the pot and bring to a boil
  7. Add 1 tsp of remaining sugar and bring to a boil.
  8. Cook until reduced – you can leave it at a slightly thickened liquid for a sauce, strain it and pour over chicken in the bowl.
  9. Optional: You can reduce further to almost a glaze-like consistency OR modify the marinade before cooking by leaving out the water from the plastic bag initially. This will allow an even thicker glaze to be produced at the end but may impact the tenderness of the chicken during the cooking process.
  10. Sprinkle chopped green onion over the chicken and sauce in the bowl and serve with mashed potatoes or rice and your choice of sides.

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best chicken adobo recipe

By Kacey Mya of The Drifter Collective

From the bustling boardwalk to the smiling faces, there are plenty of things I enjoy about Ocean City, though I must admit my favorite part of visiting this pleasant beach town is the food. Ocean City has a broad range of fresh, unique savory options that make my mouth water just remembering them. I’m excited to share some of my favorites with you.

7 of the Top Places To Eat in Ocean City

Best in Brunch – OC Surf Café

This little café might be known for their beachy décor, but I know them for their sweet potato burrito. Each burrito comes with the perfect combination of black beans, guacamole, grilled sweet potatoes and cheese all wrapped together in a whole wheat tortilla for less than ten dollars. Make sure to roll out of bed before two in the afternoon, or you’ll miss the deliciousness. The café is open Thursday through Sunday from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m.

 
 
 
 
 
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Sweet Treats –Hobby Horse Ice Cream Parlor

I never make a trip to the beach without stopping by the local ice cream parlor for a sweet treat. Located on Ocean Ave, this family owned shop is hard to miss with the carousel horse out front. I have a tough time deciding between the 47 different flavor offerings, which range from maple walnut to rum raisin to traditional vanilla bean. The owners use real ingredients for all of their ice cream – it’s easy to taste the difference. The parlor is open seasonally from May to October.

Peaceful Surfing – 4th Street Café

Going wrong with art, coffee and free Wi-Fi is hard. I like to stop in 4th Street Café before heading down to the beach to soak up some sun. The cafe offers free Wi-Fi for guests and a frequently changing assortment of food and artwork available at affordable prices. I find it impossible to get bored with the selections here. Though hours vary in the winter and summer, the café is open year-round.

Fresh Seafood – Spadafora’s Restaurant and Clam Bar

When dining alone, I prefer to head to casual, low-key restaurants with the best food I can find. Spadafora’s Restaurant and Clam Bar doesn’t disappoint. My favorite selections here are the Cape May Sea Scallops and the Blackened Tuna Taco. It’s no surprise Spadafora’s is known as one of the best restaurants on the Jersey Shore. Make sure to stop by during the summer months as they are only open seasonally.

Guilty Pleasure – Cathy’s 14th Street Bakery

After a morning workout, I savor nothing more than biting into one of Cathy’s 14th Street Bakery’s famous white cream donuts sans guilt. Located on the corner of Asbury Avenue and 14th Street close to downtown, Cathy’s is easily accessible. While it’s hard to pick a favorite bakery in Ocean City – there are at least three others throughout town – the fresh ingredients and warm service are, to me, what set Cathy’s apart. Before visiting, call ahead or check their Facebook page, hours can vary.

Traditional Fare – Manco & Manco

More times than I like to admit, I don’t have a chance to sit down for a meal. Other times I prefer to grab a quick bite on the go rather than take a break from what I’m doing. Regardless, Manco & Manco offers the perfect solution with their single slice pizza options. The price tag is a bit higher compared to some of the other local fare, but it is well worth it for the quality. My personal favorites are the spinach or the plain. Manco & Manco is open year-round from 11:30 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.

 
 
 
 
 
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Change of Pace – Yianni’s Cafe

Yes, it is possible to continue eating healthily while visiting the Jersey Shore even though I don’t always like to. Yianni’s Café makes it easy to stick to any diet. Stop in and try the Greek Island Ahi Tuna with lentils and grilled zucchini, it’s divine. Not a fan of fish or seafood? The portabella mushroom sandwich, topped with sautéed spinach and red peppers is packed with flavor. Yianni’s is open year-round.

Ocean City, New Jersey has many eating options which will please the palates of even the pickiest eaters. Excuse me while I order a pizza, I worked up an appetite recalling all those mouth-watering choices.


 Kacey Mya Profile Picture                                           ABOUT THE AUTHOR                                                           

Kacey is a lifestyle blogger for The Drifter Collective, an eclectic lifestyle blog that expresses various forms of style through the influence of culture & the world around us. Kacey graduated with a degree in Communications while working for a lifestyle magazine. She has been able to fully embrace herself with the knowledge of nature, the power of exploring other locations & cultures, all while portraying her love for the world around her through her visually pleasing, culturally embracing & inspiring posts. You can find her on Twitter & Pinterest.


 

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Where to Eat in Ocean City New Jersey

We’ve partnered with Sabra Canada to bring you this perfect pop-up platter idea but, as always, all opinions are our own and our enjoyment of Sabra hummus is as real as our passion for football!

There is one day of the year that perfectly combines two of our favourite things: sports and hosting a gathering. That day is Super Bowl Sunday. Most years we entertain at our place, working in the kitchen together to prepare all the eats for the big day, though we’ve been known to whip together something to bring with us to Super Bowl parties at friends’ houses as well. And though we like to spend time together in the kitchen, we prefer to keep our time there on the actual game day to a minimum so we can enjoy our guests and, most importantly, the game!

Over the years we’ve come up with different ways and different recipes to make entertaining simple, help us focus on each other and the day itself and yet still create with some crowd-pleasing food choices. We’ve also had some health issues that have led to some dietary restrictions and that’s really put a focus on incorporating clean and healthy options into our food choices when possible.

There’s one must-have that we recommend to anyone looking to put together their Super Bowl party menu because it not only offers an incredibly healthy yet tasty option but is pretty much a three step process on game-day and ends up looking great, tasting great and offering something for everyone.

Super Bowl Pop Up Party Platter

Best Super Bowl Food? Sabra Pop-Up Party Platter!

We absolutely love putting together pop-up platters that burst with colour and flavour and creating one that involves only 3 steps when you’re getting ready for your guests to arrive? Priceless.

The steps?

Step 1: Plate your pre-prepared dippers (see below for our recipes for fresh-baked pita & homemade crackers)

Step 2: Pop the lid of your favourite Sabra Hummus dip

Step 3: Enjoy!

 

Whether you’re making a larger platter for home or a smaller one to take with you to a party, these steps stay the same though you can choose from a variety of dippers and sides to plate – the options are almost endless. We also love how fitting it is that Sabra is The Official Dip of the NFL! Add to that, it’s a vegan/vegetarian, gluten-free and kosher dip and you’ve got something pretty much anyone at the party can enjoy!

We start with the dip as a focal point – picking up a variety of their flavours that we want to include. We love that we don’t have to worry about the dip at all as it is creamy, tasty and made by hummus experts so we know we’re offering our guests something great every time.

best super bowl party food ideas

Next, we we choose dippers that we know are fan favourites. We love to match the quality of ingredients in Sabra dips and include a variety of fresh vegetables like tomatoes, carrots, celery, cucumbers and broccoli and will often through in some sides like nuts or fresh and dried fruit. It’s a healthy option that speaks to any type of diet or restriction and since Sabra’s hummus is an amazing protein-source it serves as a great centre to these veggies, fruits and nuts, creating a well-rounded party treat.

We’ll make sure to clean, chop and refrigerate the veggies the night before we need to put the platter together so we don’t have to worry about it before the party starts.

Best Party Tray to bring to a party

Upping Your Sabra Super Bowl Party Platter Game

Our love of cooking also lets us get creative with the types of dippers we can plate and so we’ll often make some fresh-baked pita and homemade seed crackers to go along with other dippers like tortilla chips. Both the pita and cracker recipes are also simple but absolutely delicious and round out this platter nicely.

Take a look at our homemade multi-seed cracker recipe for a healthy, gluten-free dipping option or see below for a super simple, 6 ingredient fresh-baked pita recipe – our favourite Sabra hummus dipper!

Best Hummus for a party platter

Like the veggies, we’ll also prep any dippers like the pita bread or crackers a day or two before as they can easily be stored and the pita re-heated when it’s game time ensuring you’ve got a truly quick and easy, pop-up platter on game day!

Tip: When we bring a platter with us to a Super Bowl party, we’ll often use a handled tray with our veggies around the Sabra hummus and bring our pita and crackers with us to put in bowls once we get there.

Want to make your own Sabra party platter for Super Bowl Sunday? Enter our giveaway by filling out the form after the recipe below to WIN your own handmade ceramic Sabra hummus bowl and coupons for free Sabra dips of your choice! It’s the perfect start to a quick pop-up platter for your game day celebrations!

6-Ingredient Fresh-Baked Pita Recipe

fresh baked pita recipe

We’ve broken down the directions for these pitas, step by step but the overall process is incredibly simple and only requires 6 simple steps!

Ingredients:

  • 1 packet active dry yeast
  • 3 cups flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp sugar
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 cup warm water

Steps:

  1. Add yeast and sugar to a bowl and mix
  2. Add water and stir to combine
  3. Stir in olive oil, salt and two cups of flour until dough starts to form
  4. Use a little flour and your hands to knead in the bowl until a ball is formed (roughly 1 minute)
  5. Place dough on a floured board and knead for two more minutes (add flour as needed)
  6. Cover dough for 10 minutes
  7. Knead for 2 more minutes and then place in a clean mixing bowl, cover with plastic wrap and a towel
  8. Let sit for one hour until dough has doubled in size
  9. Place pizza stone or baking tray on bottom rack of oven and heat oven to 515F
  10. Divide dough into even portions – roughly 8 – and roll into balls. For small sized pitas, divide into approximately 32 portions and roll into balls
  11. Cover and let sit for 10 minutes
  12. Roll each ball into a disc keeping it to a minimum as to not press all the air out. Each disc thickness should be 1/4″ or thinner
  13. When first ball is rolled out, flip onto pizza stone (if smaller pitas are being made, multiples can be placed at one time).
  14. Bake for 2 1/2 minutes. Flip and bake for an additional 1 1/2 minutes or until pitas are slightly golden. Remove from oven.
  15. Repeat for each pita until finished.
  16. If you’d like them to be browned further, place all on a baking sheet and broil until desired colour, flip and repeat on other side.
  17. Enjoy!

 

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Super Bowl Pop Up Platter

We absolutely love Japanese cuisine and when we say that, we literally mean all things Japanese cuisine. There hasn’t been a thing we’ve tried that we don’t enjoy. Okay, you caught us. There was a brief period of time where we avoided natto but we’re over that now. So you can imagine our excitement when we heard there was a new restaurant opening nearby – Supermoon Japanese Style Cheesecakes – that specializes in Japanese cheesecake. That excitement only increased when we were invited to their soft launch to try out what they would be serving up… and what it is, is a whole bunch of delicious.

What is Japanese Cheesecake?

Japanese style cheesecake is much different than the western kind in that it is lighter, fluffier and doesn’t come with a base (like graham crumbs) that other cheesecakes typically have. It’s also a little less sweet and a little more melt-in-your-mouth (cue the drool now).

best japanese cheesecake in toronto

Japanese cheesecake is often described as a combination of the flavour of a light, creamy cheesecake and the texture of a fluffy souffle. For us, it is more like an airy angel food cake meets flavourful cheesecake but regardless of how you choose to describe it, what really matters is that it is absolutely delicious.

It’s something you’ll find easily if you travel to Japan but has begun to gain popularity elsewhere as Japanese chains and independent restaurants are opening around the world and as it’s a lighter dessert option, its desirability is guaranteed to continue to grow.

Where You’ll Find The Best Japanese Cheesecake in the GTA

You can find Supermoon Japanese Style Cheesecakes baking up delectable treats in unit 19 at 128 Queen St. South, Mississauga, Ontario.

When searching for a great Japanese cheesecake restaurant, we’re basically looking at several important things: first and foremost, the taste, texture and overall cheesecake experience. After that we look at the atmosphere of the restaurant, other menu options and any extras. We found that Supermoon Japanese Style Cheesecakes checked all the boxes for us and easily slid to the top of our Japanese Cheesecake list. (Phew, how many more times do you think we’ll be saying ‘cheesecake’ before this is done?)

Supermoon Japanese Style Cheesecakes Mississauga

Their cheesecakes have an ultra light and fluffy texture, with a brilliant flavour profile and perfect browning on the top. What makes this place so special is not only the amazing composition and culinary skill in creating these cakes, but also the unique flavour options like their chocolate or red velvet cheesecakes (with seasonal flavours to be added, well, seasonally). The recipe for these cheesecakes was meticulously developed for fluffy perfection and involves 3 different cheeses, but don’t expect the executive chef (and part owner), Mona Kustantini, to tell you all of the components. It’s those secret ingredients that give these cakes a mouthwatering edge.

Their bubble tea also impressed us as we rarely find bubble-tea-shop quality anywhere that isn’t, first and foremost, a bubble tea shop. Though we love our regular milk tea, we also tried and enjoyed their taro and matcha flavours and intend on going back to try more.

Supermoon legend mississauga ontario

With a unique story (check out the wall in their shop for the ‘Legend of Supermoon’), regular size cakes, cheese tarts, bubble tea and some amazing deals (buy 3 bubble teas, get one free; buy 10 cheesecakes, get one free; or buy any combination of tart, cake and bubble tea and get 10% off) it’s a place we’ll be returning to time and again.

 

Supermoon Japanese Style Cheesecakes is located in Streetsville, Mississauga and is a perfect place to get your fix of both Japanese cheesecake and bubble tea. Sure, you can head downtown Toronto and find yourself amid the big city Japanese cheesecake craze but you’ll find some of the tastiest Japanese cheesecakes, with a great story and some amazing menu options, after a calmer drive to this Mississauga take-out restaurant.

El Paso is a city that manages to be both modern and sleek yet steeped in history and culture. Therefore, it’s an exciting destination for any traveler. It’s also an amazing place for couples to explore, with a variety of hotels in downtown El Paso to spark some romance while staying close to the action. What may be most surprising is what you’ll find when looking to add a little wining and dining to that spark. In fact, you’ll want to try several culinary experiences in El Paso if you’re looking for a little romance in this west Texas destination.

Journey Along The Wine Trail

Image via Flickr by uıɐɾ ʞ ʇɐɯɐs

Along the winding path of Highway 28, you’ll find an incredibly romantic setting as you make your way to one of the area’s most appreciated wine regions. Heading along the wine trail, you can hold hands and talk as you drive by stunning scenery, peaceful landscapes, and vineyards.

It’s here where you’ll also be able to spend some time as a couple as you visit El Paso’s only vineyard and winery, Zin Valle Vineyards, for a free wine tasting. You can also make a day of it and head over on a Sunday when live music is playing. Bring a blanket and some food and enjoy a picnic with whatever wine you both prefer.

Explore the Growing Brewery Scene

The beer culture in El Paso is rapidly growing, with more and more breweries opening. This scene offers the opportunity to explore El Paso in a unique way. There’s also a lot of fun and excitement to be had as a couple while exploring your palate and learning about the flavor profiles of beer.

You can keep date night within the heart of the city and head to El Paso Brewing Co. for a beer tasting, a snack, and a lesson in the area’s beer history. It’s a great place to enjoy each other’s company while learning something new and immersing yourselves in a part of the area’s culture, both past and present.

Indulge in Diverse Cuisines

While Mexican cuisine and Tex-Mex may be what first comes to mind when thinking of food in El Paso, the city actually boasts a whole host of different restaurants. They offer a variety of dining experiences for couples looking to enjoy a romantic meal together.

If you want to ignite that spark over delicious food, you can find pretty much whatever you both want, from Mexican cuisine at L and J Cafe to American-style dishes at the Mesa Street Grille. With patio options, live music, or candlelit tables, you’ll be able to find the perfect setting for you both.

 

El Paso is definitely a romantic destination for couples. While there are tons of different things to do throughout the city, you’ll find exploring the culinary scene together a special experience. There’s nothing more romantic and sensual than feeding each other bites of a great meal across a table, staring into each other’s eyes while sipping wine, or laughing at the foam clinging to your upper lip as you savour a craft beer.

We love it when we stumble across a town or city that has an unexpected culinary scene. That’s exactly what happened when we recently visited Orillia, Ontario and found an abundance of incredible food at every turn. Though we could put together an extensive list of restaurants, we’re going to highlight a few restaurants that will get you through a day (or weekend) trip to Orillia and have you licking your chops long after you’ve left!

Breakfast: Shaws Maple Syrup Bush Pancake House

shaws maple syrup bush pancake house

If you’re in Orillia from February to April, you’ll probably not want to miss the chance to try some freshly made maple syrup from Shaws Maple Syrup Bush. Their pancake house is pretty much a perfect breakfast place in Orillia where you’ll find fluffy pancakes, delicious french toast, fresh pork sausages and maple syrup galore! We also tried some of the maple baked beans which we were told was a must – and we agreed!

Lunch: The Grape & Olive

The Grape & Olive Dinner

Though The Grape & Olive is a great restaurant any time of the day, it makes for a great lunch spot if you’re out and about in Orillia. They have a variety of menu options, great service and some dishes that will leave you satisfied and full, ready for whatever the rest of the afternoon holds for you. We thoroughly enjoyed our meal there and, as a tip, if you like bread, you may want to ask for an extra order of theirs before you even start!

Dinner: Rustica Pizza & Vino

Rustica Pizza & Vino Dessert

Rustica Pizza & Vino has become one of our favourite restaurants, especially for pizza. The flavour profiles are phenomenal, the wood oven pizza is created to perfection and it has a great atmosphere. We’d pretty much recommend any of the pizzas on their menu and if you can, take a peek at how they make them – the extensive training to master the art and technique of creating such a delicious pizza is visible as they work. What’s great is that the rest of their menu is just as fantastic, whether you are ordering a salad, some arancini or dessert. While the photo above doesn’t show one of their pizzas, it does show their incredible culinary talent with these pieces of fried pizza dough, nutella and strawberries!

All of the above & late night: Casino Rama Resort

St Germain's Casino Rama Meal

Since Casino Rama Resort is an entertainment destination, you’ll find more than just one restaurant here and even if you’re not staying at the resort itself (Casino Rama has some incredible hotel rooms!) you can still stop by for some food at one of their eight dining options.

Whether you go for breakfast, lunch, dinner or a late-night meal, there’s pretty much something for everyone from their steakhouse to their pub. You’ll find a buffet with a huge assortment of food, a Chinese restaurant, a noodle house and more. We always find ourselves trying new dishes whenever we go and we’ve enjoyed every meal, no matter the time of day!

By Taylor Schear of  SOFLOFOODFINDS

If you’re anything like me, then you revolve your trips around food! With so little time and so many great choices, there is so much pressure to choose the absolute best restaurant. Well, I have got you covered.

Best Restaurants In The South

Below you will find a list of the top restaurants throughout America’s southern states.

Miami, FloridaThe Salty Donut Miami FloridaThe Salty Donut

The Salty Donut is in the Wynwood area of Miami. Wynwood is known not only for the famous street art, but also the food. Salty Donut opened their permanent storefront this past month. Before this, they were primarily doing pop up locations on the weekend. But after great success the demand became so heavy that they established regular hours Tuesday-Sunday. This is for good reason; the donuts are fantastic. They carry the “usual suspects” along with some interesting combinations. My personal favorite is their apple cider bourbon spiked donut hole. What is even better, is the cold brew cider that pairs perfectly with the donuts!

Michael’s Genuine Food & Drink miami floridaMichael’s Genuine Food & Drink

Michael’s Genuine Food & Drink is one of the most buzz-worthy restaurants in Miami right now! It is centrally located in the Design District. The restaurants popularity is due to the amazing menu developed by head chef and owner, Michael Schwartz. The food is all based on seasonal fresh ingredients. Pictured above is the figs with burrata. It is very simple, but I think that is what makes it great. Every single ingredient is the star of the show without overpowering one another. Make sure to save room for dessert. All the pastries, ice cream, and chocolates are made fresh from scratch, in house every day.

Athens, GeorgiaLast Resort Grill Athens GeorgiaLast Resort Grill

Last Resort Grill serves contemporary Southwestern style food in a very modern environment. The restaurant started as a music club in the 60’s, but now serves as a great gathering to eat with the community. The restaurant believes in supporting local farmers and companies by primarily using ingredients sourced in Athens. The dish above is the Pilancillo & Black Pepper Crusted Hanger. It is a tender local sourced hanger steak served with salsa verde, chili parmesan dusted corn, and charred tomato butter potatoes.

Big City Bread

If you are looking for a more traditional southern meal, then Big City Bread is the place for you. All the food (including the breads and pastries) are made fresh every day. It is the perfect place to grab a scone and coffee during the morning rush or sit down and enjoy some grits on a Sunday morning. The chef and owner is a graduate of the prestigious Johnson & Wales and has worked at restaurants all through the South.

Nashville, TennesseeEdleys BBQ Nashville TennesseeEdley’s BBQ

Edley’s BBQ must be one of my top three favorite restaurants of all time. It is a very casual vibe; everyone orders at the counter and sits down at one of the wooden tables to wait for their food. Don’t let the adequate furnishings fool you! The food is so flavorful and packed with smokiness. Make sure to come hungry, the portions are huge. There are multiple locations throughout Nashville, so you are never too far from an Edley’s!

Biscuit Love

Biscuit Love has my love! Again, this is the type of restaurant where you walk up to order your food and then go sit down. They do this to prevent the wait for food from getting too long since it can get quite packed on the weekends! You can probably tell from the name that they are famous for their biscuits. The restaurant is new (opened in 2015), but originally started as a food truck. The owners are graduates from Johnson & Wales, but have always had a love for brunch. You can immediately tell this when you walk in the restaurant.

Sprinkles Cupcakes Nashville TennesseeSprinkles Cupcakes

So as many of you know, Sprinkles Cupcakes is a national chain. However, it was my first time trying it when I visited Nashville. The coolest part is that they have a cupcake ATM. Yes, you heard me right… A CUPCAKE ATM. In goes your money, out comes any cupcake your heart may desire. The cupcakes are delicious, but so are their cookies. My favorite was the traditional chocolate chip. It was soft with just the right amount of chocolate folded throughout.

 


Taylor Shear ProfileABOUT THE AUTHOR

Hey guys… it’s Taylor Schear! Thanks for reading! I always love being able to share my passion for food and adventure with others! If you have enjoyed joining me on my food quest throughout the South, then make sure to continue to follow me! I am @soflofoodfinds on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. For more food travel guides then check out soflofoodfinds.com!


 

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Naturally our quest for the best burgers continues in every destination we reach and Vegas, Nevada, home to a whole slew of restaurants, including burger joints, was no exception. With its vast array of celebrity chefs opening house along the strip and an ever-increasing focus on providing incredible culinary experiences, you’re bound to find a good burger around every corner. That makes the challenge even harder.

Best Burger Joints in Las Vegas

Where then do you go in Las Vegas to find that memorable burger? That sensational patty and bun experience that transcends the rest?

We’ve narrowed down the choices to three spectacular options both on and off the strip. Each offers a different style of burger and dining experience but each one will have you walking away thinking “wow”!

Hexx Kitchen + Bar

Burger at Hexx Kitchen + Bar Nevada

Located right on the strip at Paris Hotel, Hexx Kitchen + Bar is an adventure for the taste buds and though they have an entire menu of incredibly composed dishes, their Hexx Burger stands out not only for execution but also for their unique approach to the flavour profile of the burger itself.

As Hexx is also home to Hexx Chocolate + Confexxions, a chocolate factory and shop that produces some of the tastiest chocolates we’ve ever had (and their dark chocolate is a healthy option for chocolate lovers too!), it only makes sense that they extend that chocolate goodness over to their restaurant and they do this brilliantly with their Hexx Burger.

Though you’ll find some expected condiments on the beef patty – cheese, bacon, lettuce, and tomato – Hexx also adds fried onions and their own thousand island dressing and though the combination of these flavours and the perfect ratio of burger to bun and condiments makes it one tasty meal, what enhances this burger to extreme levels is the incorporation of white chocolate in the bun. The sweeter taste of the bun combined with the savoury of the rest of it creates a contrast to remember. Sweet and savoury, soft and crunchy, altogether delicious, the Hexx Burger is one of our favourite burgers and a must try if you’re on the strip in Vegas – especially as the restaurant is open 24 hours!

Bachi Burger

Shogun Burger at Bachi Burger Las Vegas

Though the current Bachi Burger locations are neither on the strip nor in downtown Las Vegas, the effort to get there from wherever you are is worth it… several times over. If Hexx is an adventure for the taste buds, Bachi Burger takes your taste buds on a fast ride through Asian flavours and sets you down gently in traditional American cuisine. The ultimate in culinary fusion, they’ve managed to create a whole list of burgers that are elevated from the classic to the brilliant with their combinations of toppings and ingredients.

Take their Shogun burger as an example. A thick Wagyu beef patty starts the collection of Japanese flavours and Asian ingredients as it is topped with grilled unagi, pan seared foie gras and miso butter. A beautifully poached Asian pear is also included which adds a layer of sweetness. The combination of it all, served between a thick and fresh bun will leave you savouring each vibrant bite.

Then there is their Bahn-Mi Burger. This time its a combination of angus beef, pork and shrimp formed into a patty that hosts a handful of Vietnamese-inspired toppings like pork pate, fresh herbs, and curry aioli with a side of pickled vegetables and nuoc mam sauce.

Though your mouth is probably watering just from the descriptions, nothing can quite do it justice until you experience the real thing and with several locations to choose from, there really is no excuse not to!

I Love Burgers

I Love Burgers The Patriot Burger Las Vegas

Sometimes classic is best and I Love Burgers is a prime example of taking a great thing and keeping it great. With two locations on either end of the strip, you’ll have the option of either one depending where you are when that burger craving hits!

Though they do have a variety of themed burgers and condiment combinations, what showcases their true talent for burger creation is their ability to make a good ol’ classic burger! The Patriot, advertised as the “All-American Burger”, is what you want to have at any BBQ or burger joint. Take that fresh bun and fill it with certified Angus beef then top that bad boy with shredded lettuce, tomato, onion, pickles, cheese, ketchup, and mustard and you got what every burger restaurant should be able to create.

Of course, they make some delicious alternatives to the standard if you’re looking to be a bit more daring. Something like their Steak Burger is bound to satisfy both a burger craving as well as any steak dinner urges you may be having with their certified Angus beef patty covered in caramelized onions, bacon, white cheddar cheese and Worcester aioli. It’s a steak dinner on a bun and it’s pretty darn good!

You Probably Won’t Want To Stop At One!

With these three options, you really will have all your burger cravings satisfied while in Las Vegas. Not only that, you’ll experience some of the best dining the city has to offer while tasting a range of culinary styles. From gourmet to fusion to “all-American”, a burger can be made a variety of ways with a selection of different toppings but there’s one thing that must ring true no matter what that patty-condiment combination is comprised of – it must have you thinking about it well after you’ve left the restaurant! Try one, or all three, of these restaurants and you definitely won’t be forgetting the burger experience any time soon!

 

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