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Everything posted by hitmanoo

  1. Hey there! We're talking about ice cream here...and I just happen not to love Holsten's. I found there sauces to be really corn syrup-y, etc and the chocolate chunks weren't the good melting kind. (To be honest, Breyer's has the WORST chocolate chunks, so you got me there). Anyway, Breyer's makes a nice vanilla. No need to try to insult me with talk of Magic Fountain or Carvel. And certainly not Cold Stone. or Cold Cash creamery as we call it. I cannot abide the place. And, while we're talking: Gruning's was one of my favorites growing up. I still dream of the toasted pound cake sundaes with their stellar hot fudge sauce. ← What can I say? I have a passion for ice cream!
  2. The absolute best ice cream parlor in the Montclair is Holsten's on Broad St. in Bloomfield. There is just no other place in the area that is remotely on the same level. What they lack in variety of flavors, they more than make up for in the quality of their homemade product. Holsten's is on Broad St. in Montclair, just off the south west corner of Broad St. and Watchung Ave. I can no longer recommend Applegate Farms on Grove St. as the quality of their product has diminished in recent years. I have no doubt this is due to the mass production of their product for distribution in grocery stores. Edit: Having gone back and reread your original post, I can't believe you would knock Holsten's. To say that you could get better ice cream from Breyer's is an insult. You're not really looking for quality ice cream, but rather a place to take your kids. For you, I'd recommend Magic Fountain or Carvel. Perhaps you'd like to take a ride over to Essex Green in West Orange and hit up Cold Stone Creamery. Not since Grunnings went out of business long ago has there been a top quality ice cream parlor in the area, but Holsten's comes the closest to any in the area that I've tried.
  3. I'm hoping so too! But it's a pretty stiff, thick plastic card so do they have hand punchers? Or machine ones? And I'm wondering how the punch card will work for merchandise -- what if your total when paying is not a multiple of $7 or whatever? Same goes for seminars. Last year, I used up the money I had leftover on Blue Smoke Magic Dust. The stuff is addictive, especially on popcorn. ← On popcorn?!? I never considered that. Don't knock it till you try it, I suppose. I would think they'd have some kind of hand hole puncher for the cards. I'd also assume that everything sold is some kind of even dollar multiple to make the process as smooth as possible.
  4. I think that this is the key. Last year's fast pass lines were held up tremendously due to computer errors at the check-out counter. Perhaps if they can eliminate that part things will flow much more smoothly for fast-pass holders. At least that's what this pass holder is hoping! Another nice thing about getting the pass is that it's good for merchandise as well as food. There are several items of interest that any of that left-over card money can be used for. I like to sample some of the sauces and spice rubs. There are also books available for home enthusiasts. In all, it's a great event. Just not for the impatient because of the crowds.
  5. For the kind of burger you seek, you're just not going to find a better version than White Manna in Hackensack. Pal's makes a decent 1/2lb burger. The Franklin Steakhouse in Nutley does it better. Michael's Roscommon House tops both Pals and Franklin. However, I do prefer the fries at Franklin to Michael's, especially because I really enjoy sweet potato fries that to my knowledge are not offered at Michael's. I have not tried The Hearth.
  6. This is a separate thing all together. There are some people who are flat out average cooks, with the exception of a few dishes at which for whatever reason they just excell. Be it a family recipe, a special interest dish, what have you, the specific creation can be repeated and is with little exception consistant and delicious. However, stray from that comfort zone just a little bit, and it's right back to average at best...
  7. I like to finish my ribs over direct heat. I use this opportunity to sauce them. I sauce them and sear them over direct heat for about 30-40 seconds per side. This gives them a nice char.
  8. When making a Caesar, 5 minutes is way too long for your egg. The idea is using a slightly boiled egg vs. a completely raw egg. No, it's not 160F, but it's safer than raw and still very usable for a Caesar.
  9. Instead of using a raw egg, I'd recommend coddling your egg--boiling it in water for about 45 seconds. This will add to the safety of your dressing without compromising flavor. That being said, I wouldn't save a homemade Caesar dressing for any more than 3 days tops.
  10. In the spirit of outdoor cooking, I had considered a technique for the grill where I'd sear a porterhouse over direct high heat for about 2 minutes per side. I would then place my steak into an aluminum pan and let it roast over indirect heat until it came to temperature (130 F), thus allowing the steak to roast in its own juices. Not sure what anyone thinks of that technique--without getting into the merrits or debate over grilling vs. broiling.
  11. I've potted my tomato plants! I'm very excited, as this will be my first effort at growing tomatoes. Can anybody offer some useful advice or point me in the right direction as far as resources for more successful growing?
  12. hitmanoo


    New owners too, or is it Top Notch retooled?
  13. Can't see the logic of that. It's legal to buy a cellphone, but many restos ban loud conversations or ALL conversations on them, as it disturbs the other patrons. It's also legal to buy a broom, but you can't start sweeping up the floors of a restaurant while you are dining there. those aren't good analogies because those are policies put in place by the owner, not by legislation. ← Exactly! Couldn't be said any better. Huge difference between owners deciding what goes on inside their private establishments vs. the government dictating what goes on. I find it quite obvious how Rich is both for and against the smoking ban. While he enjoys the effect it has had on the clean air, he doesn't like the fact that that choice is being forced upon restauant owners by our government. Smoke free air should be a matter of free will and ownership decision--not a matter of politics.
  14. This place has been an eyesore to that area for years. While I realize it's a poor location with limited parking, I've often wondered what the asking price was for rent. Surely for the right price, somebody can make a living there. There has to be something going on considering how long that location has been vacant.
  15. Personally, I've been to Zen twice and had bad experiences. The fish wasn't fresh, and to be as PC as possible I'll just say didn't agree with my wife and I. I felt it was only fair to give Zen a seocnd chance having heard read such favorable reviews about it, but I was disappointed. This was at least a year ago, so I may have to return and give it another shot, as it continues to be mentioned in a positive light.
  16. Went to Yoshi-Sono last night. My first dine-in experience. I had take-out there for the first time about 2 weeks ago. I don't think I'll return. It's not that the restaurant was terrible, I just feel that there are several better options nearby. I prefer Nori in Caldwell or Daruma in Montclair just to name a couple. A couple of things about Yoshi-Sono turned me off. I felt that the ginger dressing on the salad had a bit of a bitter/acidic taste. In addition, we ordered a roll called the New Roll. It was a shrimp temrura roll with cucumber, avocado, masago and spicy peanut sauce. The peanut sauce was tasty, but the way the roll was prepared was just frustrating. It was in a spiraling wrap of seaweed that just proved diffiecult to eat. Any positive flavor offered by the roll was overwhemed by my frustration in trying to chew it. I had some sushi and sashimi that was not bad, just nothing exceptionally fresh or exciting. Given the fact that Yoshi-Sono is less than 5 minutes from my house, I am quite disappointed.
  17. Really? Now I'll have to bite the bullet and try the burger at Copeland. Seeing that you were so on target about Michael's Roscommon House. I'll be sure to post my review! ← there's no comparison. a different league altogether. i posted about it at length on my blog here. ← I read your blob on the Copeland Burger. I didn't realize it was head and shoulders above any other burger you'd tried. Restaurant burger I should say to clarify.
  18. Really? Now I'll have to bite the bullet and try the burger at Copeland. Seeing that you were so on target about Michael's Roscommon House. I'll be sure to post my review!
  19. Tommy, I'm surprised you haven't recommended the Belmont Tavern...
  20. At Whole Foods yesterday, I came to a startling and disappointing realization. At the salad bars, where they charge for food by the pound, they do not have a single scale! This just isn't practical. I don't think that the majority Whole Foods clientele are going to break the bank at the salad bar, but I do think that you should have a better idea of how much food you are purchasing rather than just utilizing the "eyeball" technique. They really should have a scale or two by the salad bar rather than just hoping that the customers won't mind when they find out at the register.
  21. I forgot to mention, if you go, ask to try the bourbon maple pecans, they're spectacular! They taste like maple wallnut ice cream, without the ice cream.
  22. I couldn't have been more impressed with this store! The parking is plentiful, the aisles are spacious, the staff friendly and helpful... It's quite a facility. I was a little disappointed by some subtle differences b/w W. Orange and Montclair. Several of the items that are available as prepared foods in Montclair are kind of lumped together in the salad bar sections in West Orange. Take for example, Golden Sesame Tofu. In Montclair, it can be purchased for under $7 per pound. In West Orange, it is available in the salad bar section where everything is sold at a flat rate of $8 per pound. I suppose I don't car for this generalized pricing as opposed to specific pricing for specific items. This new location reminds me of the Edgewater location but just a bit... grander.
  23. That space would be way too small and the parking lot is way too small as well. ← Ok... I'll take your word on the size of the building, but there's no way that there is a parking shortage. That lot is HUGE.
  24. I'm surprised that Wegman's wouldn't use the space previously occupied by Office Max/Office Depot. Unless that space is too small perhaps.
  25. I had heard that Euphemia Haye had closed or gone out of business. I was hoping this isn't true. I'm a bit shocked to read such poor reviews of the place. I only dined there once, but I had my finest duck meal of all time there. I wonder if it's gone completely downhill...
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