Posts Tagged ‘Indianapolis’

Izakaya Review – Indianapolis

April 14, 2009

Restaurant:  Izakaya
Locations: Indianapolis, IN
Address: 7325 East 96th Street  Indianapolis, IN 46250
Menu: Restaurant currently has no website
Type: Japanese Hibachi and Sushi
Loyalty Program: None Known
Today’s Meal: Lunch Menu Soup, Shrimp, Fried Rice, Veggies, and Soft Drink
Cost: Less than $20

Monday through Friday between 11a.m. and 2p.m., Izakaya serves the hibachi items from a lunch menu.  Several of the menu items were priced between $10 and $15 and came with fried rice as well as the vegetables.  Some of the items to choose from where the shrimp, scallops, chicken, and steak (not positive these were all in the $10-$15 range, but they would have only been a few dollars more being they were on the lunch menu).  They also had combos of chicken and steak or shrimp and steak.  The experience at Izakaya was very enjoyable.  The staff were very friendly and attentive, making sure all drinks were promptly filled and our orders accurately taken.  The cook was talented, displaying his skills on the hibachi grill in front of us.  The meal was very good.  All of the items seemed like they were a little salty, but perhaps this is the standard taste of this type of meal.  It’s been a while since I’ve eaten this type of food.  A person who was dining with me ordered the sushi, and they really enjoyed it.  They mentioned that it was the best sushi they had had in a while.  This was a very enjoyable dining experience.  I was with a large group and therefore we took up a whole table by ourselves.  It would be worth noting, if it was just a couple people dining together at the hibachi tables (where they cook your food right in front of you), you would likely be seated with other people you didn’t know unless you possibly went at a time of day when it wasn’t very busy.

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YogoKiss Review – Indianapolis

April 7, 2009

Restaurant: YogoKiss (website currently not completed)
Location: Indianapolis, IN
Address: River Ridge Crossing  4825 East 96th Street Suite 300  Indianapolis, IN 46240
Menu: currently not provided on their website
Type: Frozen Yogurt & Smoothies
Loyalty Program: Punch Card “Buy 9 frozen yogurts and get 1 small frozen yogurts with toppings free”
Today’s Order: Small Blueberry Pomegranate Smoothie
Cost: $4.63

YogoKiss must not be a chain because when I went to their website, only the 96th street location was listed.  When you go in, there is a list of smoothies you can get, or you can choose the frozen yogurt.  When I was there, there were three different flavors of frozen yogurt to choose from.  One was plain (which I was told doesn’t really taste like vanilla), the other was chocolate, and then there was a third.  There were quite a few toppings that could be added to the top of the frozen yogurt…everything from breakfast cereals to more traditional toppings.  You were able to sample the different frozen yogurts, and I wish that I would have.  Instead I opted for the Blueberry Pomegranate Smoothie.  They made the smoothie as I was waiting, and it took a few minutes to make.  I was a little disappointed in the taste.  It seemed like maybe there was too much ice that was used because it had a very watered down taste for containing blueberry and pomegranate.  I was really looking forward to a strong, fruity taste.  However, it tasted more like a Popsicle, with a subtle fruit flavor.  I also felt that the smoothie’s cost was a bit high.  For a comparable price, I could have gotten a frappucino at Starbuck’s, and I would have enjoyed it more.  The Ikea (from what it appeared) decorated YogoKiss had several areas for sitting down and chatting with friends or enjoying your treat alone.  There were several couches as well as several round tables.  There were also many magazines in which to browse along the walls.

Ruby Tuesday Review 4/5 – Indianapolis

April 7, 2009

Restaurant: Ruby Tuesday
Location: Indianapolis, IN
Address: 8133 East 96th Street  Indianapolis, IN 46256   Map This Location
Menu: Ruby Tuesday Menu
Type: American Sit Down
Loyalty Program: None Known
Today’s Meal: Lunch Ruby Mini’s, Salad Bar, Soft Drink
Cost: Less than $15

Today I had lunch at Ruby Tuesday.  I started with the salad bar, which was very clean and fresh.  I created a large salad along with the pasta salad, Waldorf Salad, and the potato salad.  The salad bar actually was included with the Ruby Mini’s on the lunch menu for $8.99.  Next up were my mini hamburgers.  If you’re in the mood for a big burger, this is probably not what you’re looking for.  The lunch portion comes with two of the small hamburgers with small little beef patties.  They are nice and light and are a good amount of food if you take advantage of the salad bar.  The little hamburgers were good, but they weren’t amazing or anything.  They each had a tiny amount of condiments on them, such as ketchup and little onion strings.  There isn’t a whole lot of taste to them like on a regular sized burger.  Also, about a handful of fries comes on the plate.  I really do like their fries, as they have a bit of seasoning to them.  The service was very good today, with our drinks being constantly filled and our orders and requests coming back accurately and timely.

See my past Ruby Tuesday Review.

Ruby Tuesday Review 4/2 – Indianapolis

April 7, 2009

Restaurant: Ruby Tuesday
Location: Indianapolis, IN
Address: 8133 East 96th Street  Indianapolis, IN 46256   Map This Location
Menu: Ruby Tuesday Menu
Type: American Sit Down
Loyalty Program: None Known
Today’s Meal: Parmesan Shrimp Pasta, Salad Bar, Soft Drink
Cost: About $20

Today’s meal at Ruby Tuesday was very nice.  I started out with the salad bar.  You can add it to your entree for a few dollars.  Every time that I have gotten the salad bar, the items have been fresh and pretty full in their dishes.  I’ve also seen workers cleaning around the bowls of food, and they do keep it very clean and fresh looking.  It’s a small salad bar, but they do have quite a few different things up there.  They have a few different types of lettuce to chose from along with many things to put on the lettuce such as eggs, ham, broccoli, mushrooms, a couple different cheeses, croutons, sesame seeds, and several different dressings.  I also usually see a pasta salad, a potato salad, a very creamy Waldorf salad, and a few other things.  I had a salad, pasta salad, potato salad, and the Waldorf salad.  Everything tasted very fresh and was quite good. 

Next, my Parmesan Shrimp Pasta came.  The first thing I noticed was the abundance of shrimp that came on it.  I would estimate that I had about 15 decent sized shrimp on top of the pasta.  The second thing I noticed was that there wasn’t a whole lot of the Parmesan Cream Sauce on the noodles.  However, when I was eating it, it was enough, it just would have been nice to have a bit more.  The sauce was very tasty though and the shrimp had a nice subtle spice.  One thing that the dish was missing was a piece of garlic bread or breadstick or something. 

The meal was very good, and the service was pretty good.  Overall, it was a very good dining experience.

Panda Express Review 12/29 – Indianapolis

December 29, 2008

Restaurant: Panda Express
Location: Indianapolis, IN
Address: 7035 E. 96th Street  Indianapolis, IN 46250   Map This on MapQuest
Menu: Panda Express Menu
Type: Fast Chinese Food
Loyalty Program: None Known (Although for quite a while now, they have been giving opportunities on the back of the receipts where you can call in and answer survey questions about your Panda Express experience.  After you answer the questions, they give you a code to write down on the back of the receipt, and you can redeem this for a free entree when you purchase a two entree meal.)
Today’s Meal: 2 Entree Plate- Orange Chicken, Mushroom Chicken, Fried Rice, Fortune Cookie, Soft Drink
Cost: About $8

Panda Express Meal

Panda Express Meal

Today the Orange Chicken seemed as if it had been sitting a little bit too long.  Some of the areas under the orange glaze were starting to get a dried appearance.  The mushroom chicken was very good.

See my other post on Panda Express.

Olive Garden Review – Indianapolis

December 13, 2008

Restaurant: Olive Garden
Location: Indianapolis (Castleton), IN
Address: 6130 East 82nd Street  Indianapolis, IN 46250
Hours: Sun – Thurs 11:00a.m.-10:00p.m.  Fri – Sat 11:00a.m.-11:00p.m.
Menu: Olive Garden Menu
Today’s Meal: Zuppa Toscana Soup, Breadsticks, Fettucine Alfredo, and Soft Drink
Cost: About $15
Type: Italian
Loyalty Program: None Known

Today was lunch at Olive Garden.  I was anticipating that there could be quite a long lunch wait since this location is close to the mall, which would be extremely busy being so close to the holidays.  Upon entering, they told me it would be a 5-10 minute wait, not bad at all!  It ended up being about 10 minutes (perhaps a little longer), but the wait was very reasonable.  The table I set at ended up having a weird placement.  It was situated right by some little closet-like room, where from my seat, I could see a yellow industrial mop bucket with a mop in it and the clay-colored tiled floor with black grout.  It reminded me of a floor from the 80’s, like you would see in Pizza Hut or something.  The ambiance was a little ‘off’ from the Old World Italy (or something like that) they try to recreate from my seat! 

First up was the soup, and I really do enjoy the Zuppa Toscana.  It has sliced potatoes, sausage, and some greens in a white broth.  While I was there, I heard some customers raving about the new Chicken and Gnocchi soup with chicken, dumplings, and spinach.  I did not try it though.  I also had breadsticks with my soup.  The breadsticks are plain, and they are best eaten with other parts of the meal.  For instance, I really enjoy dipping them in a bit of the broth from my soup, and they are also good when I use the sauce from my meal to dip them in.  For some weird reason, one of my favorite places for bread sticks is the fast food Italian place, Fazolis.  They are so buttery, and when they come out warm, they almost melt in your mouth, delicious! 

My meal was the Fettucini Alfredo.  The pasta was cooked to perfection, and the alfredo had a nice, creamy taste to it.  It was served nice and warm.  My only complaint would be that I only had about two bites of my soup before the meal came out.  Therefore, I didn’t even get to enjoy most of the soup.

I happen to like a plain Fettucini Alfredo without meat or anything, but you would have to ask if you were interested in getting anything added to this dish.  It does not list anything available for add-ins such as broccoli or shrimp or chicken on the menu.

Make your own Fettucini Alfredo at home with this recipe from Kraft!  It only needs 8 ingredients, or which half you probably have around your kitchen.

Don Pablo’s Review – Indianapolis

December 7, 2008

Restaurant: Don Pablo’s
Location: Indianapolis, IN
Address: 3824 E. 82nd St.  Indianapolis, IN 46240  Map This on Mapquest
Menu: Don Pablo’s Menu (Must Click on “Menu” Link on Home Page)
Today’s Meal: Create Your Own Combo – Pick Two – Two Cheese and Onion Enchiladas, Mexican Rice, Corn Meal Spoon Bread, and Soft Drink
Cost: About $10
Type: Mexican Food Chain
Loyalty Program: Habaneros Club (Must Click on “Habaneros Club” link for more information.)

This was a very good meal at Don Pablo’s today.  I munched on chips and salsa and was asked if I wanted more when they were gone.  Also, refills of drinks were brought when needed without having to be asked if I indeed wanted more to drink.  (I never understood why someone would ask if you would like more to drink when you aren’t even half way through your meal and the refills are free.  Of course I would!  I don’t intend to choke on the rest of the food.  I intend to enjoy my meal and this typically means a drink.)  The enchiladas came out warm and the only thing that I would have changed would have been to add more onions to the cheese and onion enchiladas.  The rice was pretty good, and once again, the corn cake was delicious!

I will definitely go back!  Read my review from my last Don Pablo’s experience.  (It also has a way to make the Corn Meal Spoon Bread at home!  Yum!)

Don Pablo’s Review – Indianapolis

November 8, 2008

Restaurant: Don Pablo’s
Location: Indianapolis, IN
Address: 3824 E. 82nd St.  Indianapolis, IN 46240  Map This on Mapquest
Menu: Don Pablo’s Menu (Must Click on “Menu” Link on Home Page)
Today’s Meal: Create Your Own Combo – Pick Two – Two Cheese and Onion Enchiladas, Mexican Rice, Corn Meal Spoon Bread, and Soft Drink
Cost: About $10
Type: Mexican Food Chain
Loyalty Program: Habaneros Club (Must Click on “Habaneros Club” link for more information.)

Today was a very good experience at Don Pablo’s.  The server was very friendly and was very attentive.  They stayed on top of drink refills and my meal came out exactly how I had ordered it (even with a special request).  The enchiladas were very good, the rice okay, and the corn meal spoon bread was great.  I always save mine until the end, and it is a sweet way to end the meal without having to get dessert. 

I was quite pleased with my visit to this Don Pablo’s today as I have had a very unpleasant experience at the one in Westfield.  I had to wait there for about 20 minutes before my table even saw a server for the first time and was even asked what we wanted for our drinks.  Then it was another long wait before we actually saw our drinks.  That was just the start of the poor service.  The manager even came around after hearing about our situation but did not even seem that concerned about the whole ordeal.  This was at a very busy time of day for the restaurant, and I have had better experiences when coming to the Westfield Don Pablo’s at their off times when they are not busy.

Oh, and if you really enjoy the Corn Meal Spoon Bread like I do, the easiest recipe to get something really similar (although not a 100% match), is to go buy the Chi-Chi’s Fiesta Sweet Corn Cake Mix.  It is like a corn meal mix that comes in a pouch.  The back of the pouch tells you what ingredients that you also need to buy in order to make the Corn Cake.  At my grocery store, the Chi-Chi’s Fiesta Sweet Corn Cake Mix is located with items like taco shells and taco seasoning.  The Corn Cake makes a great accompaniment to a lot of the Mexican dishes that I make.  You can go to the Chi-Chi’s products site to see what the packaging looks like and to see what store near you carries their products.

Panda Express – Indianapolis

November 5, 2008
Orange Chicken, Chicken Eggroll, Fried Rice

Orange Chicken, Chicken Eggroll, Fried Rice

Restaurant: Panda Express
Location: Indianapolis, IN
Address: 7035 E. 96th Street  Indianapolis, IN 46250   Map This on MapQuest
Menu: Panda Express Menu
Type: Fast Chinese Food
Loyalty Program: None Known (Although for quite a while now, they have been giving opportunities on the back of the receipts where you can call in and answer survey questions about your Panda Express experience.  After you answer the questions, they give you a code to write down on the back of the receipt, and you can redeem this for a free entree when you purchase a two entree meal.)
Today’s Meal: 2 Entree Plate-Chicken Egg Roll, Orange Chicken, Fried Rice, Fortune Cookie
Cost: About $6

My ‘go to’ menu item here is almost always the Orange Chicken.  I change up the other items, but I almost always come away with Orange Chicken.  It is just so tasty.  It has a little bit of spice, not much spicinessat all, and just the right touch of sweetness.  It is quite delicious!  The good thing about Panda Express is that you can sample the different dishes to see if you like something before deciding what you want.  How the menu works, is you choose whether you’re going to get a 2 or 3 entree meal.  Each meal comes with your choice of rice (either steamed or fried), chow mein, or mixed vegetables.  Then, you choose either 2 or 3 entrees from the dishes that they have prepared behind the glass.  They put it on your plate as you’re going through the line, and you get to sit down with your meal right after you pay.

One thing that I noticed about Panda Express awhile ago was that they have all sorts of fresh vegetables and other ingredients in containers in a cooling area, visible from the dining area.  (You are also able to see the cooking area from the food line as well.)  This is nice to know that items are made from scratch with all these fresh ingredients as opposed to everything coming frozen or already mixed together.

The inside of Panda Express is quite small, and there is not a whole lot of seating.  I have never had a problem getting a spot to sit though as I’ve never been here when the place is very busy.  I’ve been here quite often, and I’m surprised that more people don’t frequent the place.  The food is very good and is priced decently.

Click here to find a Panda Express located near you.

McDonald’s – Indianapolis

November 2, 2008

Restaurant: McDonald’s
Location: Indianapolis, IN
Address: 9833 Fall Creek Road  Indianapolis, IN 46256
Menu: McDonald’s Menu
Type: Fast Food American
Loyalty Program: None Known
Today’s Meal: Sausage Egg and Cheese McMuffin, Hash Brown, Soft Drink
Cost: About $4.00

Sausage Egg and Cheese McMuffin with Hashbrown

Sausage Egg and Cheese McMuffin with Hashbrown

Rarely do I get up and about early enough to make it to McDonald’s on a weekend for breakfast.  However, this day, with the help of Daylight Savings Time and having to set the clocks backwards, McDonald’s was on the menu for breakfast this morning!  The Sausage Egg & Cheese McMuffin was just as good as I remembered it.  It’s one of those comfort foods that is not the most healthy things, but it sure does taste good!  The hashbrown was equally good with being warm and perfectly crispy on the outside.

Unfortunately, the cashier was not the most pleasant.  Perhaps they don’t like to get out that early on a weekend either.