We had some fun culinary experiences on our summer trip this year. We went to NC, KY, and OH to visit family. Our favorite find is called Chef and the Farmer in Kinston, NC. It felt like we were in the middle of nowhere - but it was fantastic! Above is a picture of my fried okra with ranch ice cream (it wasn't plated like that - I just didn't pause to take a picture until it was almost all gone). The whole experience was amazing. I ordered their Succotash and Carolina Rice Risotto. Delicious. V got the Berkshire pork. So great. It was just a lovely dining experience and no one gave us dirty looks for bringing kids - tho I will say they were pretty much perfect while we were there.
We also hit Los Fogones in Goldsboro. I wish I had a picture. The place was classic. And the chicken was amazing. I'm really not a huge fan of chicken lately but it was remarkably flavorful. And they had this purple drink that they make from scratch from stewed corn, cinnamon, sugar and random tropical fruits. It was surprisingly good. Like, I had to keep tasting it to figure out another layer of flavor.
We went to the Rundown Cafe after seeing Kitty Hawk and their soup was fabulous. I would really like to figure out how to recreate it here. I did find a recipe to try but I'm sure it was a white fish and not shrimp at the cafe. It was basically chunks of yam and veggies with a bit of fish in a savory coconut milk broth. Really good even though it was hot out. Didn't love the rest of what we ordered but I would love to figure out how to make that soup.
V made the trek to Hillbilly Hotdog while in KY and split the home-wrecker with his brother. And garlic ranch fries. Apparently it was spectacular despite being his nervous about some of the toppings. It comes on a platter with a chef's knife.
While in Cleveland, we went to Lola's. Very awesome. And a triple date with my siblings so it was super fun. I had the ribeye with the smoked garlic bone marrow butter. Yeah. Incredible. V had the quail and pork belly. The Lola fries were great and the 6am Special was whimsical but not particularly wowing. The Beef Cheek Pierogi had a ton of flavor and tho I'm not a fan of Ceviche, I recognized it was really well done. Note: it is a place you need to order appetizer, main, and dessert to come away feeling satisfied - which we did.
And we invaded The Melt with all the cousins. Seriously, we took up like 1/3 of the restaurant but they were super nice about it. Their portions were huge and apparently I was hungry cause I easily downed mine and most of the Monkey's servings. I had the Mushroom Melt, V had the Meatball, and the Monkey got the pbj. I did not love their coleslaw but the sandwiches were great. And huge.
V also did B Spot Burgers. Blew his mind. Apparently the best burgers he's had. I guess he ordered a TON of food though and was pretty full for like a whole day afterwards (the Fat Doug, the Stadium Brat, Chili Cheese Fries, Chocolate banana shake with caramelized marshmallows on top, and a taste of the Apple Pie Bacon shake - which seemed to be an actual piece of apple pie stuck in the blender with vanilla ice cream and bacon sprinkled on top). I'd definitely like to try B Spot next time we're in town. It just didn't work out timing wise for us both to go.