Il Forno took over the location of the Kyoto Bowl at McKellips and Power Road, and they clearly are trying to move the place upmarket. The tiled floors are still there, but they’ve neatly marked their logo on all the windows, and added some attractive, rustic-looking tables and a large “booth wall” leather seating surface. Our party of ten was seated immediately, once enough tables were wrangled to handle us. Background music was relatively subtle, but when the wood-fired oven is going, there’s the unmistakeable smell of its activity.
Silke’s is crammed next to a closed WaMu branch beside a likely soon-closed Basha’s. It formerly held Florodino’s, a low-end Italian place, and some of the general look– leather booths, nicely done up tables– seems left behind. The walls have a small scattering of Cracker Barrel style doodads, making Silke’s seem a little higher up-market than other American places.
It seems Hot Dogs and More has become our default “penalty choice” when alternatives aren’t given. It’s still a narrow location stuffed with local business’ advertising cards.
As a self-service location, our orders were taken reasonably quickly, but we simply can’t seat 8 in one group.
Wasn’t this place Monte Cello’s last week? Or a Mexican place a year ago? A lot of places have come and gone from this location in the Target centre at Brown and Power.
The inside is much more elaborately decorated than you’d expect from the strip-mall surroundings: tiled floors, faux-finish internal walls, and formica tables to look like marble. Even the necessary LCD TVs were out of the way and looked tasteful.
Today we went to Pisa Pizza Ristorante, and it was absolutely delicious. Instead of digging into the separate pasta dishes, we decided to eat a few pizzas as a group. We also had a couple of great appetizers. The one that sticks out in my mind is the plate of bruschetta. The juicy tomatoes were mixed with a cheese that made for a perfect start. We received our food in a timely matter, and always had full glasses.
During our stay, we heard more than once that the pizza at Pisa Pizza was perfect for when you wanted a pizza dish with a little bit of something extra or different. That’s exactly what we got. Pisa Pizza was the perfect cure for the unoriginal pizza you find at other pizza parlors. I would recommend Pisa Pizza Ristorante to those looking for a pizza dish upgrade.
The Iowa Cafe is a small, crowded breakfast-and-lunch place near a large pensioner’s community. You enter a small room, but it’s the overflow room– you’re actually directed to sit in a slightly larger main room. This room seemed surprisingly unkempt– loose newspapers on the tables, and the only table large enough for six still having a tip on it from the last party.\ (more…)
After passing the Iowa Cafe on McKellips the other day, I figured I would suggest it for lunch. Upon arrival, you enter a room that has a lot of chairs and post cards for sale. After asking the man on the chair where to go, you follow down the hallway to what seems like a nursing home dining hall. The tables and chairs seem to be from a doctors office waiting room. The dining area walls are covered in Iowa trinkets and photos. Most of the photos are from a serious flood that took place in Iowa a few years ago. FYI they are still collecting donations.
After waiting for a bit, our waitress finally brought out our drinks and took our orders. Three of us got lunch special sandwiches and three of us got omelets. I ordered the pulled pork BBQ sandwich. To my surprise, it wasn’t half bad. The bun was somewhat soaked in sauce but the meat was very tender. It was served with french fries and pickle slices.
Although the food wasn’t a 5 star culinary masterpiece, for the price you pay it was adequate. The portions are fair and the menu offers traditional selections and breakfast all day. Considering it is a quite small cafe, it actually seemed somewhat busy. Our group seemed to stand out considering we were probably the only table that consisted of people under 60 years old.
On the negative side, there was a slight moth ball smell that seemed to linger throughout the cafe. The tables, chairs and carpeted floor did not give a good memorable experience.
Overall, the Iowa Cafe offers simple dishes at a fair price. Maybe next time we will try some of their homemade fruit pies!
Is that fish staring at me? - I’ve only eaten Thai food a few times in my life so it’s hard for me to compare PaPaYa Thai with other Thai restaurants. I have to say, I thought I wouldn’t be able to eat much, because I’m such a conservative eater. But I found myself finishing all that I dished. That may have been because I wanted to focus on anything other than the hundreds of fish staring at me from the huge tanks that lined that back wall. Nevertheless, I did end up enjoying the food. We had service that was at our sides whenever we needed anything. The only negative was the vibe I was getting from the atmosphere. Though the food may have not been sub par, the fish surroundings and decor made the experience feel so. It definitely was unique!
Just like the many Mexican Restaurants in Mesa - Everything about Chilero’s Mexican Grille was ordinary and exactly like any other Mexican food joint you find in Mesa. I thoroughly enjoyed my dish (Pollo Asado lunch special), chips, and salsa, but not enough to steer me away from my Mexican food restaurant regulars. Our group received great service. The inside of the restaurant was nice, clean, and well decorated, but again, there was nothing original. The one thing that that had me wanting to return over and over again were the delicious sopapillas. Now those treats are something to make the trip for!
When we first got into the dining room we were brought to a booth. First of all, buffets and booths don’t mix, especially with an 11 person group like ours. Every time someone went back for seconds, the entire row had to move. Next is the food. It was split up between salads and the entrees, pretty standard, but the food was terrible. Other than the fact that they were simple, make-at-your-home foods, they were cooked poorly. The only two things that were decent were the Caesar salad and the fried shrimp. Both of which could be bought for less money at Costco. Overall, the meal was disappointing but what do you expect from a casino buffet on the Indian reservation?