Category Archives: Atmosphere

Royal Caribbean’s Allure of the Seas: 150 Central Park

Royal Caribbean’s Allure of the Seas has more than enough dining venues on board to keep any passenger very well fed throughout their cruise. I recently reviewed their highest level fine dining restaurant, Chef’s Table. But what if Chef’s Table’s limited availability has made it impossible for you to snag a reservation? What if you want a more intimate fine dining experience with your significant other, without fourteen other strangers at the the table? Or what if you just don’t want to drop another $170 per couple on a dinner when there are cheaper options, including numerous free venues across the ship? Assuming you still want that fine dining experience, but with just you and someone else (or several others if you have a group you want to dine with), there are plenty of options. Continue reading Royal Caribbean’s Allure of the Seas: 150 Central Park

Royal Caribbean’s Allure of the Seas: Giovanni’s Table

When boarding my cruises, I prefer to avoid the masses that tend to swarm to the buffets on board. For Royal Caribbean’s Allure of the Seas, that would be the Windjammer venue. While the ship can hold over 6,000 passengers, for the most part the crowds are minimal as the ship itself is huge, and people are always spread about doing different things during their days at sea. There are a few exceptions to this, and one is during boarding day. During this approximate five hour period, all 6,000+ people are doing virtually the same thing; boarding the ship and heading to lunch. With limited dining venues open during boarding, the majority take the easiest route which leads them to the buffet, and allows them to begin their week of included (seen as free to many) food by indulging on all-you-can-eat grab and go options.

There are many like myself, that prefer to avoid the masses, and enjoy a quieter, slower paced meal. In the past I have chosen Park Cafe, but on this trip I decided to try something new. I went with a for-fee dining venue, Giovanni’s Table, which was open for lunch during boarding at a reduced rate of $15 per person. As with all fee based restaurants, this would include all the appetizers and desserts I wanted, and my choice of entrée. I could still feast, but the small fee would keep the area a little quieter than others on the ship. Continue reading Royal Caribbean’s Allure of the Seas: Giovanni’s Table

Highland Bakery, Part 3

It’s been a while since I last visited Highland bakery in Atlanta. You can find reviews of my last two visits here: Part 1, Part 2. I had been dying to get back and try a meal I had on my first ever visit, before I started doing these reviews. During my last meal that I reported, I ordered a plate of French toast, but made mention of their Peanut Butter French Toast. I wasn’t completely in love with the peanut butter version when I first had it, due to the brown sugar butter that was served in lieu of maple syrup. When I learned that I could order regular maple syrup for both French toast plates, I was ready to give the peanut butter another shot. Continue reading Highland Bakery, Part 3

Whispering Canyon Cafe

Disney. A place that’s built around fun. With well over a hundred restaurants on their property, there are dozens of choices that keep that fun going while you eat. Then there are a handful that go out of their way to provide antics specifically aimed and having child-like fun with the customers. One such place is located at one of Disney’s deluxe resorts.

Wilderness Lodge is a resort that simulates the Pacific Northwest. As you arrive, you are initially greeted by a grand sized building with a green metal roof. A large covered drop-off area hangs over the front entrance, with several employees waiting to help you check in or valet your vehicle. If you choose to self park, it is free of course, and after many visits I’ve never had trouble finding a spot in their expansive parking lot. Continue reading Whispering Canyon Cafe

Comprehensive Review: City Cafe, Part 5

You can find previous reviews of City Cafe here:
Part 1     Part 2     Part 3     Part 4

It’s time for another edition of City Cafe snacks, and this one is a feast. I picked up several treats from my favorite local bakery to bring home and eat. As this was a to-go order, I’ll get right down to business and show you my selections. After this run, I only have a few items from their case to try, other than the rotating cakes and pies that are constantly changing. Continue reading Comprehensive Review: City Cafe, Part 5

Royal Caribbean’s Allure of the Seas: Chef’s Table

Like most cruise ships today, Royal Caribbean’s Allure of the Seas has many specialty dining options for a nominal fee. The most expensive of the 26 dining venues is the exclusive Chef’s Table at $85 per person. By the end of this review, you’ll hopefully see the bargain in this price and what it brings you. There is only one seating per night, and each seating can only accommodate 16 guests. That means that on each cruise, only 112 of the approximately 6,500 passengers get a chance to attend this unique dining experience. It’s important to lock in your reservation as early as possible if you’re interested in participating. I’ve eaten at Chef’s Table twice, and both experiences were very similar in style, but differed in the food served. Continue reading Royal Caribbean’s Allure of the Seas: Chef’s Table

Broadway Diner Desserts

Located a couple blocks from the Fayetteville square in Georgia, a popular local restaurant is packed with diners every night of the week. At Broadway Diner, it’s not uncommon to see folks waiting outside for a seat, even in the middle of the week. Usually the wait isn’t any longer than twenty or thirty minutes, but that’s an indication of something. There must be something people find special about this place. After all, it is a diner, and people wait here like they would for the big chain restaurants.

Because of their exceptional gluten-free options, you will probably see a future review here on their meal options, but for today it’s just about the desserts.

Broadway Diner has a single dessert case that isn’t large at all. Fortunately, that doesn’t stop them from stuffing it with huge cakes and pies offering some of the most incredible flavors around. My wife and I stopped in after dinner to pick up a couple slices to bring home for dessert. Just like Frank’s at the Old Mill, the portions here are quite large, and to top it off, they’re only $5.95 a slice!

Continue reading Broadway Diner Desserts

Kona Cafe

It’s time for a very short review of one of my favorite breakfast spots located in Disney World’s first ever resort hotel, The Polynesian. Kona Cafe is one of the few places that my wife and I try to patronize at least once during every visit to the parks. So far, we’ve only done breakfast there, but have plans to try a dinner sometime soon.

Continue reading Kona Cafe

Comprehensive Review: City Cafe, Part 4

I recently made another stop at City Cafe while running errands. My wife and I stopped here on the way home to pick up some desserts to sample. Previously, I started this comprehensive review by enjoying a lunch, then I came back for some desserts, and then back again for another meal. I didn’t stay long enough on this stop to get any new information on the restaurant, so this will simply be a quick review of some treats we brought home to enjoy.

Continue reading Comprehensive Review: City Cafe, Part 4

Melt Bar & Grilled

Whenever traveling to other cities, food is generally a main focus when planning the trip. One thing I like to do is look up where Adam Richman from Travel Channel’s “Man vs. Food” has been. While I have little interest in the challenges themselves, I find that many times the food that the challenges are based on look really interesting, delicious, and often unique. One such place exists in Lakewood, OH, where a recent trip to visit family brought me to the area.

Melt Bar & Grilled is TripAdvisor’s #3 out of 113 restaurants in Lakewood, which was the original of five locations to eventually open. Melt is a very popular place in the Cleveland area, and many patrons are known to wait over two hours for a table. Based on the reviews, an hour or longer wait is not uncommon on most days. Maybe we were lucky, but my wife had taken me here once before, and both times we showed up as they opened and got seated immediately.

Continue reading Melt Bar & Grilled