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Joined: 23 May 2008
Posts: 1616
Your hometown restaurant recommendations.  Reply with quote  

So I know they are much more rare here nowadays, but occasionally the "What to do/eat in your city?" threads pop up, so I figured it'd be nice to have one that just addressed where to eat in everyone's hometown. So what are some of the can't miss places where you are from? What absolutely has to be tried at those places? We can also add bars to this list, especially if you know of a local watering hole that serves up some extra special cocktail or brew.
Post Wed Jul 23, 2014 1:08 am
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Sage Francis
Self Fighteous

Joined: 30 Jun 2002
Posts: 21790
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I have championed Meeting St. Cafe in Providence for over a decade. I've written many songs between their walls. I'm sad to say that they no longer deserve the recommendation.

East Side Pockets on Thayer St. in Providence still make the best goddamn felafel wraps in the world though. Been going there for 15 years and I've yet to have a better felafel anywhere else on the planet.
Post Wed Jul 23, 2014 1:36 am
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Joined: 25 Aug 2006
Posts: 8547
Location: Third Coast
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I don't really have a hometown, but there's a place in Lansing, Michigan called Golden Harvest. They open at the ass-crack of dawn and serve food until around 2pm. There's always a line, as the place is really small and cramped. But the wait is worth it. It's all organically grown food purchased from local farmers, and I'll be damned if it isn't the best breakfast I've ever had. And they play some really great and eclectic mixes in their too, from Atmosphere to Molly Hatchet to the Zao all in one sitting.

There's a really great sushi place in East Lansing called Sansu. If you come out to the university for a sporting event or concert, stop by there. It's honestly the best sushi I've ever had, and everything seems to get made very quickly, even when they're super busy. If you're feeling Indian food instead, there's a restaurant in the same plaza called Sindhu. I think it's phenomenal, but my Indian food experience is much more limited.

If, for whatever reason, you find yourself up in Traverse City, there are two great places to eat. Blue Tractor is in town and serves up the best mac 'n cheese in the state. If you drive a little north to a place called Elk Rapids there is, almost inexplicably, a Cajun place called Pearl's where you can get your red bean cake and fried green tomato fix, as well as meatier things like gumbo and jambalaya.
Post Wed Jul 23, 2014 7:23 am
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Sage Francis
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Joined: 30 Jun 2002
Posts: 21790
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Pizza Luce in Minnesota. Never a bad experience there.
Post Thu Jul 24, 2014 1:42 am
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Joined: 29 Jun 2005
Posts: 9288
Location: london
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Where i live in london - wood green, has a massive turkish population, makes for some amazing turkish food, gokyuzu and kervan - is amazing, and super cheap, loads of good, fresh shit. love it. Open til 12pm everyday, :')

Curry in london, fuck brick lane. seriously. Bunch of bandits down there. Tourist and drunks trap, you're asking to get ill. I found a pube in my curry once, i was drunk, I was young, I eat the pube. There you go.

Get out of zone 1/2 a bit and find one thats survived on the local people for 20 odd years only, everyone will have their favourite local, for me - taste of raj in palmers green is the daddy.

Best pizza in london I've had is at S'ole D'oro, just around the corner from there - small family run place, not many tables, menu is full of spelling mistakes, just how it should be.

Thai food, 'yum yum' in stoke is delicious, won a bunch of awards, bit pricy so i can't got there very often and im not vegetarian or vegan, but they've got this spicy green apple and tofu salad starter that I usually dream about for at least a week after every trip there.

Central london is full of chain places, shit places and places that serve amazing food, but you're going into debt if you go there
Post Thu Jul 24, 2014 9:04 am
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Mark in Minnesota

Joined: 02 Jan 2004
Posts: 2112
Location: Saint Louis Park, MN
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Twin Cities:
Tilia - in the Linden Hills neighborhood of Minneapolis. Ridiculously creative food, decent craft beer selection.

Butcher & the Boar - Charcuterie in downtown Minneapolis. Amazing steaks, sausages, chops, etc. Even more exotic stuff; last time I was there the party shared chicken fried veal brains, foie gras torchon wrapped in duck pastrami, oxtail terrine, turkey braunschweiger, head cheese, and more. Go with 4 to 6 people and eat everything family style. Killer bourbon selection.

Heartland - Farm to table restaurant in downtown St. Paul. Focus on fresh local ingredients, the menu changes almost daily. Lots of interesting food, including a consistently appealing three course vegetarian meal.

Brasa - Locations in NE Minneapolis and St. Paul. Rotisserie cooked meat with a soul food twist. Side items like black beans and cornbread, fried yucca, collard greens, red beans & rice, etc. Great for takeout, okay for sit-down if you've got the time to wait for a table.

Campiello - Eden Prairie Italian restaurant, I've been going there at least once a month since 2006 to sample their rotating "regional specials" menu featuring four to five courses based on a specific region's cuisine. Consistently good, although I tend to skip the courses involving rabbit or sweetbreads.

Most interesting cocktails: Saffron, in downtown Minneapolis. Decent food, killer Turkish coffee, but mostly some truly creative mixology.

Honorable mentions:
- Mandarin Kitchen, Bloomington
- Pizza LucÚ, particularly the Hopkins location
- The Freehouse, North Loop district of Minneapolis
- Kramarczuk's, NE Minneapolis
- Sea Change, downtown Minneapolis
- Red Cow, 50th & France section of Edina
- Hotel Sofitel grand buffets for Easter, Mother's Day, Thanksgiving, and Xmas

I also spend a fair amount of time in chain restaurants, dive bars, sushi bars and steakhouses, but none of that is anything I would recommend to an infrequent visitor.
Post Thu Jul 24, 2014 10:53 am
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Joined: 30 Nov 2004
Posts: 4931
Location: Hous of Gaga
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There is this little Thai restaurant I found called Thai Gourmet- its in a strip mall, they always have lights out inside, they only accept cash, and almost every time I've gone to pick up food there has never been anyone inside dining. If you were to just waltz in off the street, you'd probably think that eating there would give you the shits. It won't. I promise.

Its the most glorious Thai food I've EVER had, every thing is made to order from scratch including all of the sauces. Its a family that runs it, and after talking with the waitress about how much I love taro, coconut, and ice cream she came back a little while later with this heaping platter of ice cream. She said that her grandma made it and that she really wanted me to try it. She pointed to grandma who was sitting on a chair eyeing me, smiling nodding her head like "Yes, yes...that's right. Eat that ice cream grandma made you." So I did and yeah, it was out of control.

Reading Yelp reviews are always...horrible. There's people complaining about the father there "And he like, bows all the time, like, when he brings you water or your check or whatever. Just like, stop bowing and give me my food, its too much." Ugh.

A few months ago my body decided that it was deathly allergic to shellfish and I have to carry around a fucking epipen... fuck you, shrimp. You and your mud vein. No Thai until I learn to re-navigate myself through a delicious world filled with things that are trying to kill me. My favorite food is Thai, so this is disappointing to say the least.
Post Tue Jul 29, 2014 10:48 am
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Mikal kHill

Joined: 29 Jun 2002
Posts: 6849
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Neither of these are exactly in my home town, but Pinky's in Charlotte. Diner food, but with weird twists (like they have a siracha peanut butter hamburger). Lots of vegan and vegetarian options, so I take anyone I know who passes through on tour there if I have a chance.

Also, M&K BBQ in the middleof nowhere NC is a place I take people who stay at my house, usually. It's a little mom & pops NC BBQ place and it's a personal favorite. They have a big smoker outside that gets ashes on your car sometimes. Not a ton of vegetarian options, though.
Post Tue Jul 29, 2014 10:44 pm
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