Fresh Seafood in Springdale

Recently after church, Larry and I decided to get some lunch. On the way home, we chose Pappadeaux's Seafood Kitchen. We've driven by many times and Larry was in the mood for why not?! 

It's a pretty cool interior - there's a loft with nets and boxes and such. I was surprised at how large it was inside!

The menu is huge - but because of the prices - we strictly stuck to the lunch menu. There were a lot of interesting options - many with a Cajun twist: alligator, frog legs, gumbo, etouffee and more!

As I mentioned - it's big inside! There are a couple of separate spaces for parties but for the most part - one giant open room.

The portion sizes are quite nice as well - the neighboring table had onion rings - it was enough for at least 4 people!

Larry is basically addicted to shrimp cocktail - so we got some of that to start ($8.95). They were really big and had some very fresh horseradish in the shrimp sauce. We liked them but at $1.50 a shrimp - they were a bit pricey (trend starting).

They also brought fresh baked bread with ice cold butter. Grrrrrr - long time readers know how I feel about this.

Larry went for the Ginger Salmon ($15.95). It was really good - he's not a big green bean fan and wished he'd swapped out for broccoli - but the salmon was cooked nicely.

I was a bit more adventurous and tried the Tilapia Lafayette ($17.95). I have to just list the ingredients because it was pretty complex: Grilled tilapia topped with fresh lump crabmeat, shrimp, tomatoes,
capers & basil in beurre blanc, with spaghetti squash.

I don't normally get tilapia because it's a fairly cheap fish - but all the toppings made it something I had to try. The tilapia was fine - cooked well but not overdone. The crab was really sweet and delicious - I do love crab. Then the sauce was so light but full of flavor - really paired well with the fish. It didn't overwhelm the delicate crab. And my favorite part was the spaghetti squash - it was really sweet! The texture was akin to mashed potatoes but so sweet and felt healthier. I really enjoyed this dish.

I also was conscious of serving size and kept half of mine for the next day - I heated it up for lunch with some of Larry's green beans and had a lot of drooling coworkers stopping by my desk!

We did also order garlic bread ($3.45) - not knowing they were bringing bread to the table at first. If we'd known - we wouldn't have ordered it. And shockingly for freshly baked bread - it was a bit stale.

Why Should You Go? Well - it's pricey - so I would definitely keep it as a special occasion restaurant. The seafood was well-prepared and unique. We didn't really try any of the Cajun fare and they also have a large selection of fried seafood. We might be back...after a bonus at work or something.

Pappadeaux Seafood Kitchen on Urbanspoon

Gotta Goetta!

I have decided I'm just not much of a festival person - I know - it's the Cincinnati thing - but I just don't love them. Overpriced food and drinks - kinda boring - blah blah blah. That said, I keep going to them. 

A couple of weeks ago, we all went to the Goettafest! Again - unless you're there to drink some beers - it's not that much fun - but it killed an hour of our lives - so it was fine. 

We had to get the Goetta shot - that's my sis on the left not getting into near as much as I did...she's such a party-pooper! And yes - that's Larry's thumb up in the corner...

That right there is a mobile zip line. I could just see me trying that out and then it toppling over. I'll wait until I'm in the wilderness for that one!

There were a LOT of food vendors - I was pretty impressed! This big ol' frying pan of goodness was screaming my sister's name. 

She wasn't brave enough to try the goetta (wuss) but she did have a sausage with onions and peppers. She enjoyed it but then wished she'd tried the goetta.

There was goetta mac & cheese, goetta burgers, goetta nachos, goetta brownies and so much more...

I went for the goetta philly cheese - I've really only had goetta once and didn't like it - so I was going for something covered in cheesy goodness just in case I didn't like the main ingredient.

Actually - I really liked it! It was pretty much like sausage and hash browns fried up together (taste-wise). It was crispy and salty and pretty darned good! I would definitely try goetta again - but not the mac & cheese - that stuff looked awful!

Have you been to Goettafest? What's your favorite way to eat goetta? Did anybody actually buy anything out of the Goetta vending machine????

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Buying a car was ENJOYABLE??????

Okay - I'll tell you - this has nothing to do with food...but hey - when I have a platform like this - sometimes I like to share other things that aren't food-related because I can. So here's the big statement:


Can you fathom that? I know I couldn't. Seriously - I hate buying cars - I dread the dealerships. I dread the smarmy sales people and the pompous "finance" hoops you have to jump through. It's just awful! 

But yesterday - we went to Carmax. Why? Because it was on the way home. Best. Decision. Ever. 

First thing I loved is that while you're looking at cars - they appraise your trade-in. Then they provide you a written appraisal that's good - even if you don't buy your car from them. So you can go find your dream car somewhere else and they'll still buy your car! 

The appraisal was not only fair - it was a little more than I was even hoping for. We went to a traditional dealer a little over a year ago and were offered $4k less than Carmax gave us yesterday! 

Secondly - the finance process was a breeze! They don't actually have a finance manager in the building - it's all done in a computer program. Dump numbers in, spit answer out. No judgement. No waiting. No haggling. We got a better interest rate and it was done in less than 15 minutes! 

So here it is. I said goodbye to my Tonka Truck and hello to a Hybrid! 

I am going to miss the short bus - but I would much rather save $300/month in payment & gas! Wouldn't you?

So if you're thinking of trading cars, I urge you to check out Carmax and ask for Neal Gray - he was awesome! (that's him putting on the license plate). I will NEVER buy a car anywhere else. 

New Tater Chips from Mikesells!

I got another surprise a couple of weeks ago when a box from Mikesells showed up on my doorstep!

They sent me two bags of their new chip flavors - Sweet Chili & Tuscan Spice. 

Both bags actually tasted pretty similar - the sweet chili had a little more of a powdery texture with all the seasoning. The Tuscan had a pretty thick sun-dried tomato flavor. I liked both - lots of crunch and even more flavor!

Are you a big Mikesells fan? Did you know you can order a box of them and mix the flavors up? How cool is that!

They carry Mikesells at Kroger and Speedway but if you're having trouble finding them - you can always use their Store Locator.

Mediocre Diner Food

We're all about dirty diners - and have found quite a few initialed diners in our new neighborhood of Forest Park/Mt Healthy/College Hill. We'd driven past the P&T Family Restaurant many times as it's right across from our gym on Winton Rd. 

It's in a strip mall near Tire Discounters...pretty unassuming...

Inside it was definitely not fancy - haha - wood paneling and 30 year old carpet...

We tried a variety of breakfast items - although none were too good. They were fine but nothing to write home about. The "biscuits" and gravy was the oddest since they were actually dinner rolls. Didn't love that.

I got an omelet and it was meh. There wasn't much cheese inside and I just didn't like the sprawlingness of it all - it was huge but not very flavorful.

I also got hashbrowns with cheese and they were fine...but meh again.

Why Should You Go? All in all - I wouldn't bother. Maybe they are better at dinner food. We weren't too impressed with breakfast. Service was fine - it was pretty dead too. P&S was better on Springdale.

P & T Restaurant on Urbanspoon

Burgers, Horses, Flea Market Fun and Lemonade

One of my favorite events of the year is the Backroads Farm Tour - I would love to see more local businesses band together for events like this. Thirteen businesses group together through the Campbell County Conservation District and put on the event - it's a great time! 

You get a map and head out on your way - there are animals, vegetables, lots of grills going and just a great time. You can get tours and learn a lot too! Here's the map from this year - in case you want to still check out some of the businesses - many are open to the public throughout the summer/year. 

One thing was that we saw a LOT of horses! It was great - I love horses - so it was fun petting them. 

My beautiful cousin Jewel was also able to spend the weekend with us. She was in town from Connecticut and hung out with us. We'd never actually met - so it was really fun to have her around!

Some of the farms had other business guests as well - these zinnias from Overlook Farm were SO gorgeous - but it was our first stop of the day and we knew they wouldn't be able to withstand the heat.

Horses weren't the only wildlife around - this llama and goat were bonding!

I joked that we were going to see Larry's relatives as well! hahahahaha

There were vineyards on the stop too - we had a little white wine and found out how it's made...

Upstairs there was artwork from local folks on display - I really loved this sign!

And then finally - what Larry had been talking about for a whole year - Little Rock Farm and their freezer beef! Last year we had a plethora of burgers throughout the day - but these were the ones Larry couldn't stop raving about! So at about 10:30am - we all dove into burgers - with Land O'Lakes cheese of course and topped with fresh tomatoes and lettuce. So delicious!!!!

This is the look of a man who is busy eating a delicious burger!!!

More fun animals at various farms - I think this was at Neltner's - because I remember seeing my buddy Rick there!

Jewel had been a little skiddish around the livestock but got braver throughout the day and was petting goats by the end!

Of course there were lots of fruit & veggies throughout the day - we came home with some good stuff!

My favorite stop was the Saddle Lake Equestrian Center - mainly because of Lindsay - who you see in the photo. She was our tour guide and gave us so much insight and knowledge about all of the horses - it was really great! And she just got 3rd place at Nationals - congrats Lindsay!

It was great having her show us around because the horses really know her well and this guy wouldn't stop itching his head on her! He was so funny!

Many of the farms had cats too - this little guy was friendly enough for us to pick up and get to know a little better!

After the Farm Tour - we headed to the newly opened Washington Park where they were having a flea market of sorts.

It was a pretty hot day and the kids were all enjoying the fountains...

We also saw a parade of folks from the World Choir Games heading to the finale show...

And there's a photo of my cousin Jewel and I - so good to FINALLY meet her and get to spend the weekend with another kid in our house!

And this is just a fun story to wrap up the day...we were driving around the countryside of Indiana and came across a little girl running a lemonade stand. Now - as everyone knows - you NEVER drive by a lemonade stand without stopping. This little girl was soooo cute - I just didn't take a photo so I wouldn't come off like a creeper.

She sort of looked like a less redneck and older version of Honey Boo Boo Child. We ordered 3 lemonades and a rice krispie treat and said, "So how's business today?"

After quite a long pause, this 9 year old entrepreneur said..."PAUSE - Well, not too good - you're only my 3rd customer of the day - but I'll keep at it."

We all BURST into laughter - it was such an adult answer and so thought out - we were laughing about that for weeks! We gave her a big tip...

So - there's our day at the Backroads Country Farm Tour as well as Washington Park and some lemonade from a spunky 9 year old. That all adds up to a fun day in the 'Nati.

Get out and explore!

Have something other than Whisky at Whisky's!

A few weeks back we picked up my cousin for a weekend visit - it was so much fun! She's from Connecticut and we'd never actually met (2nd cousins) - but she was here working at a church camp for the summer and we were able to have her stay with us for the weekend. It was so much fun! 

After picking her up we headed to Lawrenceburg, IN for some lunch and came across Whisky's near the riverfront area. 

I got the Spicy Chicken Salad and it was really good - it's really large and there were a lot of ingredients. None of it was too unique but it was tasty.

Larry got the fish & chips - he enjoyed it - it was a big portion. I tried it as well - it's a light batter which is pretty nice.

I have no idea what my sister got - but it was a big portion! Chicken and pasta piccata maybe? She ate the whole thing - which is pretty rare.

Why Should You Go? Whisky's sort of has that old person vibe (do you see the placemats?) and is fairly dark. Reminds me a bit of the Greyhound Tavern in NKY. The prices are fine - it's about like a run-of-the-mill chain. There really wasn't much memorable about Whisky's but if you're passing through - it's not a bad option.

Whisky's Family Restaurant on Urbanspoon