Jan 082012
 

Cuisine: Asian, Mongolian
Restaurant Features: Bar, Lunch Buffet, Dinner Buffet, On-Site Parking
Locations: Coon Rapids,  Richfield, Roseville
Addresses and Maps:
Coon Rapids– 2085 Northdale Blvd NW Coon Rapids, MN 55433 (763) 767-3018
Richfield– 500 E 78th St Richfield, MN 55423 (612) 861-7991
Roseville- 2720 Snelling Ave N. Roseville, MN 55113 (651) 631-3398

Hours: Daily 11am-9pm

Atmosphere: At the Roseville location there are several small dining areas situated around the restaurant, which are made a little more private with the creative use of live plants.  The dining areas all surround the centrally-located meat and vegetable buffets.  All seating is limited to tables, but there is at least one dining space that allows for tables to be pushed together for larger parties.

Within the restaurant there is a small bar area to accommodate patrons who may have to wait for a table on a busy night, or for those who would like to try one of the specialty tropical drinks or wines.

Menu: The concept of Khan’s is one that allows diners to customize their own stir-fry dishes.  Guests choose from a buffet containing a variety of sliced frozen meats (beef, chicken, pork, lamb, shrimp and imitation crab).  You take a bowl, fill it with the meats and noodles of your choosing, and then move down to the vegetable line where you can choose from a large selection of fresh vegetables to be used in your custom stir-fry.

After filling your bowl with your preferred meats and vegetables, you then add sauces to flavor your stir-fry, such as Garlic Sauce, Cooking Wine, House Sauce, Dragon Sauce, Teriyaki, Curry, Lobster Sauce.  There is a sign over the sauce bar that suggests which sauces and flavorings you should choose, depending on how spicy you would like it.  After you have your bowl filled with meats, noodle, vegetables and sauces, you take it to the Barbeque Area, where  your stir-fry is cooked right in front of you.

Price guide: Lunch (1 bowl) $10  Dinner (unlimited bowls) $14

What we ordered: It is true, Khan’s has changed their appetizer.  Each table now receives a plate of crispy fried wonton chips with a sauce that is a combo of sweet, sour, spicy and garlicy.  They are great but I miss the chicken wing and hot and sour soup that it used to come with.

At first it may seem overwhelming what to include in your stir fry but I have been to Khan’s enough to have my combination down.  I always get beef and the very fine noodles at the bottom of my bowl.  For my veggies I get broccoli, purple cabbage, onions, bok choy, bean sprouts, pineapple, zucchini, red and green bell peppers, mushrooms and a ton of fresh cilantro.  Its the sauces that can get tricky and impact the flavor of your stir fry.  I like sweet, savory and spicy all together so I usually follow the recipe for the spicy and add a scoop of garlic, fresh jalapenos, chili oil, teriyaki, and Thai peanut sauce.  Yum!

My companion made a stir fry that had beef, lamb, shrimp, noodles, mushrooms, bok-choy, green pepper, water chestnuts, crushed red pepper, garlic, and curry.  Much more savory than my dish and quite spicy. Very good!

Service: I have eaten at Khan’s a handful of times each year for the past decade and while they once had very good service, the service at the Roseville location has really gone downhill this past year.  On this particular visit we especially had bad service from the moment we arrived.  There is a big sign that says “please wait to be seated” but there wasn’t a host present and we waited several minutes before someone acknowledged us.  Once we were finally seated, we had to wait several more minutes before seeing our server and then it was an even longer wait before initial drinks as well as refills were brought to the table.   On most visits a server will ask us if we have been to Khan’s before so they can explain the procedure.  On this particular visit, our server did not ask us this.  I can imagine that if we had not been to Khan’s before, we still would have figured it out but its easy to see that newbies might not know how it works.  We went ahead and got in the buffet line fast and efficiently since we both know exactly what we want.  Sometimes Khan’s will have someone available to offer help with sauces, but not on this visit.  The line for the Barbeque goes rather quickly.  We sat down and started enjoying our dinner but then the server brought our check out to us before we had finished our first plates!  I thought this was strange, but I guess I would rather have it now than wait forever later.  I haven’t had anyone to help me with my sauces in the last 2-3 visits either.
Overall Impression: I go to Khan’s for the food and definitely not for the service! The make-your-own stir fry at Khan’s can be varied thousands of ways, depending on what combination of ingredients and sauces you use.  Be prepared because it can take some time to create the stir-fry to your liking, at least it did for me. If you’re lucky, there may be an employee helping customers with their sauces.
Khan's Mongolian Barbeque on Urbanspoon
Khan's Mongolian Barbeque on Urbanspoon

Feb 062011
 

Cuisine: American, Barbeque, Dessert, Ribs
Restaurant Features: Catering, Counter-Service (at many locations), On-Site Parking
Locations: Apple Valley, Bloomington, Burnsville, Coon Rapids, Duluth, Forest Lake, MOA, Mankato, Maple Grove, Minneapolis, Minnetonka, Plymouth, Rochester, Roseville, St Paul, St Cloud, Stillwater, Woodbury
Addresses:
Apple Valley – 7593 147th Street Apple Valley, MN 55124    952-891-6400
Bloomington- 5101 West 98th Street Bloomington, MN 55437  952-832-0500
Burnsville-  2721 County Road 5 Burnsville, MN 55337 952-882-9933
Coon Rapids- 3211 Northdale Boulevard  Coon Rapids, MN 55448  763-421-9467
Duluth- 355 Lake Avenue South Duluth, MN 55802    218-740-3180
Forest Lake- 43 19th Street SW Forest Lake, MN 55025  651-464-4400
Mall of America- 320 South Avenue, Mall of America Bloomington, MN 55425 952-854-0225
Mankato-  291 St. Andrew Drive Mankato, MN 56001  507-385-1223
Maple Grove- 7825 Vinewood Lane Maple Grove, MN 55369  763-416-4600
Minneapolis- (Calhoun BBQ & Blues Club) 3001 Hennepin Avenue Minneapolis, MN 55408 612-822-9900
Minneapolis-  4264 Upton Avenue South Minneapolis, MN 55410  612-929-1200
Minnetonka-  14601 Highway 7  Minnetonka, MN 55345 952-933-9600
Plymouth- 11308 Highway 55 Plymouth, MN 55441  763-525-0500
Rochester- 431 NW 16th Avenue Rochester, MN 55901  507-282-4200
Roseville- 2131 Snelling Avenue Roseville, MN 55113 651-633-4800
St Paul- 1930 West 7th Street St. Paul, MN 55116 651-699-8800
Stillwater-  14200 60th Street North Stillwater, MN 55082 651-439-5200
St Cloud- 310 3rd Street NE Waite Park, MN 56387  320-217-5900
Woodbury- 1940 Donegal Drive Woodbury, MN 55125 651-501-1900

Hours: Daily 11am
Links: Famous Daves Website * Famous Dave’s Facebook Page * Map to Famous Dave’s Locations

Atmosphere: Most of the Famous Dave’s locations around the Twin Cities look very similar in decor, where the entrance leads you right to the counter where you order your food.   Wooden structures are built to resemble old shacks around the kitchen area.  Tables are spread throughout the space (pictured below is the Forest Lake location), all covered with red and white checkered tablecloths. Antique memorabilia adorns the walls.

The Famous Dave’s BBQ & Blues at Calhoun Square has a stage for live performances.  Cool place to see a small, intimate show!

Menu: Appetizers at Famous Dave’s include Smoked Salmon Spread, Chicken Fingers, Catfish Fingers, Ribs Tips, BBQ or Buffalo Chicken Wings, and Onion Strings.

Side dishes at Famous Dave’s include Wilbur Beans, Coleslaw, Potato salad, Dunkin Apples, Fries, Garlic Mashed Red Potatoes,

Famous Dave’s has salads! Options include Smoked Salmon Caesar, Grilled Chicken Caesar, Crispy Chicken, and Dave’s Sassy BBQ Salad.  Soups include Chili or Wild Rice.

Sandwiches come with one side and include Beef Brisket, Chopped Pork, Barbeque Chicken, Texas Manhandler, Hickory Chicken, Cajun Chicken and Char-Grilled Chicken.  Burger options are the Char-Grilled Burger, Cheeseburger, Ultimate BBQ, Devil Spit, and Bacon & Jack Favorite Burger.

Barbeque Classics at Famous Dave’s are the Texas Beef Brisket, Georgia Chopped Pork, Barbeque Chicken, Rib Tips, Chicken Tenders, Country Roasted Chicken and Sweetwater Cajun Catfish.

Award-Winning Ribs are smoked in the pit then finished on the grill.  Size options  are 1/3 slab, 1/2 slab or full rack (12 bones).

Kids Meals include Roasted or BBQ Chicken, Chicken Tenders, Chopped Pork, Hamburger or Cheeseburger,  Ribs, and Mac & Cheese.

Dessert selections include Famous Bread Pudding, Pecan Pie, Hot Fudge Kahlua Brownie, and Ice Cream, Sundae with Hot Fudge or Pecan Praline Sauce.

Famous Dave’s has a variety of different sauces that are sure to please just about anyone!

Price guide: Appetizers $6-9  Sandwiches $9-10  BBQ Meats $12-13  Ribs $13-22 Desserts $6

What we ordered: I had the two-meat combo with Catfish Fingers and Texas Beef Brisket.  The four medium-sized catfish fingers were hot and crispy, fresh out of the fryer and seasoned with semi-spicy Cajun seasonings.  It  comes with to sauces to dip in, a sweet & sour type of sauce and a seasoned mayo tartar.  I thought these were especially yummy with the seasoned tartar.  The Texas Beef Brisket was also pretty good.  This combo came with corn, a corn bread muffin and two sides.  I love the corn bread at Famous Dave’s! It is more moist than typical corn bread and slightly sweet.  I am not a fan of the overcooked boring corn, which is a far cry from the sweetcorn we harvest in Minnesota.  The two sides I got were the garlic smashed potatoes and coleslaw, both very good.

My companion ordered the XXL Rib Platter, a 12-bone rack of St Louis Style ribs.  The ribs were meaty and quite tender, full of smokey flavor from the Pit.  The two sides were fries and cinnamon apples.

Service: The Forest Lake location of Famous Dave’s offers counter-service, and we were able to order within minutes of arriving.  We got ourselves drinks at the self-service station and waited approximately ten minutes before our food arrived.  Staff walk the dining room and check with guests from time to time to determine if they need anything, and bus tables when necessary.

Overall Impression: I really like the variety of menu choices at Famous Daves, although I think their prices are slightly high for the amount of food you get.  They have several great choices of sauces and despite being a large chain-restaurant, I think they do have pretty decent barbeque (you can’t go wrong with the ribs!).  If you register to be a part of the P.I.G. Club you can get special offers, so go sign up here
Famous Daves on Urbanspoon

Sep 182010
 

Cuisine: American, Burgers, Dessert, Pizza, Pasta
Restaurant Features: Bar, Delivery, Flat Screen TVs, Kids Menu
Locations:

Albert Lea, MN
Bemidji, MN
Blaine, MN
Bloomington, MN
Coon Rapids, MN
Duluth, MN
Eagan, MN
Eau Claire, WI
Eden Prairie, MN
Fairmont, MN
Fargo, ND
Grand Forks, ND
Hastings, MN
Minneapolis-Uptown, MN
Hudson, WI
Lakeville, MN
Overland Park, KS
Plymouth, MN
Rochester, MN
Roseville, MN
Shoreview, MN
St. Cloud, MN
St. Paul, MN
Wausau, WI
Wichita, KS
Willmar, MN
Winona, MN
Woodbury, MN

Address: 57 So. Hamline St. Paul, MN 55105 651-698-0353
Hours: Mon-Sat 11am-1am Sun 11am-12am
Links: Green Mill Website * Green Mill on FacebookGoogle Map

Outside Green Mill

Outside Green Mill

Atmosphere: The  St Paul Green Mill on Grand Ave is the original restaurant location, where it was once the Green Mill Inn for almost four decades.  The Green Mill as we know it today has been around since 1975 and has been very popular since it became a franchise in 1990.

The inside of the Green Mill has the standard wood-paneled walls that you see in many of its locations, along with padded wooden booths and wood tables.  The bar area is located on one side of the space, the dining area on the other.  There are multiple TVs hanging from the ceiling.

Menu: The Green Mill recently updated its menu in the summer of 2010.

Appetizers include Red Pepper Hummus and Pita Chips, Mozzarella Sticks, Walleye Bites, Sweet Potato Fries, Asian Pot Stickers, Coconut Chicken Fingers, Chicken and Bacon Quesadilla, Crispy Chicken Chipotle Wontons, Chipotle Chicken Nachos, Fried Green Beans, Buffalo Bites, Thai Eggrolls, Spicy Chicken Quesadilla, Spinach Dip and Onion Ring Cyclone.  The Green Mill is also famous for their Chicken Wings, which can be served with bone or boneless, drenched in any of the following sauces: Jim Beam, Diablo, Sesame Teriyaki, Garlic Parmesan, Peking Zing, Dixie or Extreme Jamaican.

Salads at the Green Mill incude Warm Smoked Salmon, Coconut Chicken, Bangkok Chicken, Chipotle Chicken Chopped Salad, Blackberry and Grilled Chicken, Chicken Stir Fry, Thai Chicken Salad, Cilantro Lime Shrimp Salad, Cobb Salad with Chicken, Caesar salad, or House Salad.

Sandwich offerings are the Asian Chicken Wrap, French Dip, Cashew Chicken Salad, Parmesan Walleye, Millhouse Club, Greek Gyro, Crispy Chicken, Chicken Caesar Wrap, Buffalo Chicken Wrap, Turkey Bacon and Avocado Wrap, and Italian Ciabatta.  Burger s are 1/2 lb and served with fries, fruit, or chips.  Options include Build-Your-Own, Black Angus 1/4 lb, Summit Bacon, Blaze Burger (jalapenos and pepper jack), 4-Cheese Bacon Burger, Western Mill Burger, Cheeseburger and Veggie Burger..

Pizza options are extensive, with four crusts including Thin N’ Crispy, Pescara, Classic, and Chicago-Style Deep Dish.  You can Build-Your-Own from a variety of ingredients or order a pizza from the menu like the Margherita, Chipotle Chicken, MVP (Pepperoni and Canadian Bacon), Romano, Low-Cal Chicken, Extreme Supreme, Triple Meat and Cheese, and Il Primo (sausage, pepperoni, mushroom and 4 cheeses). Thin N Crispy Pizzas include Positano, Jalapeno Bacon and Garlic Chicken, Pepperoni, 4-Cheese Spicy Italian, and Sausage and Pepperoni.  You can also Build-Your-Own Calzone.

Pasta Options include Seafood Cannelloni, Five Cheese Lasagna, Mostaccioli, Butternut Squash Ravioli with Asparagus, Spinach Tortellini, Desert Fire Pasta, Wild Mushroom and Chicken Penne, Spaghetti, Lobster and Shrimp Linguine, and Fettuccine Alfredo.

Entrees include Bourbon Flat iron Steak, Summit Battered Fish and Chips, Chicken Parmesan,Chicken Marsala, Chicken with Crab Stuffing,  and Pan-Fried Walleye.

Desserts at Green Mill include Chocolate Pyramid, Chocolate Molten Martini, and Skyscraper Cheesecake.

Kids Menu items include Hamburger, Mac N Cheese, Quesadilla, Spaghetti, Personal Pizza, Corn Dog, and Chicken Strips.
Price guide: Appetizers $5-10  Wings $7/10 Salads $5-10  Burgers/Sandwiches $8-11  Pizza $9-18+   Pastas $10-14  Entrees $10-16  Desserts $6-7

Happy Hour: 3-6pm and 9pm-12am

  • $5 appetizers include Red Pepper Hummus and Pita Chips, Mozzarella Sticks,  Sweet Potato Fries,  Coconut Chicken Fingers, Chicken and Bacon Quesadilla, Crispy Chicken Chipotle Wontons, Buffalo Bites, Thai Eggrolls, Spicy Chicken Quesadilla, Spinach Dip and Onion Ring Cyclone.

Weekly Specials:

  • M-F 11a-2pm  Bottomless Soup and Salad or Salad and Pizza $8.99

What we ordered: We started with an order of Boneless Wings with Sesame Teriyaki Sauce.  These were delicious! The pieces of white-meat chicken were very lightly breaded and fried to a golden brown.  They were lightly tossed in the sweet yet tangy sesame teriyaki sauce and topped with sesame seeds, served with both ranch and bleu cheese dressings for dipping.  Excellent choice!

I had no doubt in my mind I was going to order the Deep-Dish Pizza, so that is exactly what I did.  The crust of this pizza was indeed thick, chewy and crispy on the bottom.  The cheese was baked directly on top of the crust and then topped with a generous amount of pizza sauce.  I love the sauce at Green Mill, it is sweet and zesty and has small chunks of stewed tomato mixed in. The 8″ small was more than enough for me, I even had half a pizza leftover to take home! So yummy!

Deep Dish Pizza @ Green MillDeep Dish Pizza @ Green Mill

One of my companions ordered the Chicken Cashew Salad Sandwich.  This sandwich looked great; so fresh and light!  The salad itself  had chunks of white-meat chicken mixed with cashews, diced green onion, red grapes and mayonnaise.  It was served on toasted cranberry bread with shredded romaine lettuce.

Chicken Salad Sandwich @ Green MillChicken Salad Sandwich @ Green Mill

Another companion ordered the Chipotle Chicken Nachos and an order of Sweet Potato Fries.  The Nachos were served on a long plate, with crunchy chips topped with shredded chipotle chicken, pepper jack, mozzarella and cheddar cheeses and topped with fresh pico de gallo, salsa, guacamole, shredded lettuce and sour cream.  These were also very yummy but slightly overcooked.

Nachos at Green MillNachos at Green Mill

The Sweet Potato Fries were served in a large cone, very good!

Sweet Potato Fries @ Green MillSweet Potato Fries @ Green Mill

Service: My party of 3 adults and one small child arrived shortly after opening on a Sunday and we were the first customers of the day.  Needless to say there was no problem getting a parking spot or a table!  We had great service, our server was very accommodating to our needs.  Food and drinks were brought promptly; service with a smile.
Overall Impression: Green Mill is a great restaurant with a varied menu that appeals to just about anyone. Their Deep Dish Pizza is awesome.  Many locations to choose from!
Green Mill Brewing Company on Urbanspoon

Jan 172010
 

Cuisine: Pizza
Restaurant Features: Bar, Flatscreen TVs, On-Site Parking,
Location: St Paul, MN

Address: 421 East 7th Street  St Paul, MN 55101 651-227-1437
Hours: Mon-Sat 11a-11p  Sun 11a-10:30p
Links: Google Map

*Red’s Savoy Pizza in Coon Rapids, Hugo, St Paul, and Uptown are all Delivery/Take-out Only

Savoyinn-outside

Atmosphere: Red’s Savoy Inn is the original Savoy location, found just on the edge of downtown St Paul at the corner of 7th St. and Lafayette.  There are two entrances into Savoy’s on the west side of the building, one near the parking lot in back and one one the side near the front.   The restaurant is divided into two sides, with the Bar Area being what you see when you first enter.  The bar stretches the length of the room, which has tables and booths as well.

Savoy-bar

The main dining room is adjacent to the bar area with an open walkway in between.  Also between the two rooms is a giant aquarium with live tropical fish.  It is quite dim inside Savoy, there are no windows and the only lighting comes from the soft yellow glass orbs overhead.

Savoy-dining ea

Menu: Appetizers at Savoy Inn include Buffalo Wings, Deep Fried Cheese Ravioli, Mozzarella Sticks, Jalapeño Poppers, French Fries, Onions Wings, Garlic Cheese Bread.

Sandwich options are the Meatball Dip and Hot dago with Cheese.

Pizzas come in two sizes, 10″ or 14″, Hand Tossed Thin Crust. Topping options include Sausage, Pepperoni, Hamburger, Mushrooms, Onion, Green Pepper, Green Olive, Black Olive, Sauerkraut, Pickles, Canadian Bacon, Banana Peppers, Jalapeños, Pineapple, Bacon, Shrimp and Anchovies.

Price guide: Appetizers $5-7  10″ Cheese Pizza $8.45  Toppings $1-2/ea 14″ Cheese $11.40  Toppings $1.50/2 ea (premium toppings more)
What We ordered: My companions and I started with an order of mozzarella sticks.  They were just as mozzi-sticks should be, crispy golden brown on the outside and hot melted mozzarella inside.  It came with a side of sauce.

Savoy-mozzarellasticks

Our group ordered a variety of pizzas.   The pizza has a very thin crust at the base of each creation, then covered with spicy pizza sauce, toppings and mozzarella cheese.  This was a 10″ Pepperoni, Mushroom and Shrimp.  I have really come to enjoy shrimp on pizza over the past couple of years and this was the first time I had tried it at Savoy.  The shrimps were very little and there were plenty of them covering the pizza.   The not-too-thick-not-too-thin pepperoni had great flavor while not being too greasy.  We ordered our pizzas “well-done” so the cheese on all the edge pieces was browned and crispy.

Savoy-pepperonimushroomshrimp

Another pizza was a 10″ Pepperoni, Banana Pepper and Onion.  Great combo of toppings! The banana peppers spiced it up a notch and the onion added a touch of sweetness, perfectly complimented by the zesty pepperoni.  The crust is very thin and crispy, but not at all chewy.  Overall the Savoy pizzas were a success and a few of my companions even declared Savoy pizza to be their favorite or “the best”.

Savoy-pperonibananapepperpizza

We also had a 14″ Special Pizza with Sausage, Pepperoni, Mushroom, Onion, Green Pepper and Green Olive.  This pizza was loaded with ingredients and cheese.

Savoy-specialpizza

One of my companions also ordered a side of Rigatoni with sauce.  I thought the portion size was just right for a side order.

Savor-siderigatoni

Service: It wasn’t very busy on the late Wednesday evening of my visit, so we had no problem getting a parking place in the small lot in the back of Savoy’s and easily found a table inside the restaurant.  Our server was nice but took her time checking on us even though there were very few other customers.  Food was prepared in a reasonable amount of time.
Overall Impression: Savoy pizza is one of the better thin-crust pizzerias around St Paul, especially if you like a spicier sauce and pizza loaded with toppings and cheese.  The prices are comparable to many other local pizzerias but you get a hefty amount of toppings for the money.
Red's Savoy Pizza on Urbanspoon

Feb 052009
 

Cuisine: Greek, Mediterranean, Middle Eastern

Restaurant Features: Counter Service, On-Site Parking
Locations: Coon Rapids, Edina, Lakeville, Roseville (Falcon Heights), Plymouth,  and Woodbury, MN
Addresses & Maps:

Coon Rapids
3179 Northdale Blvd. Coon Rapids, MN 55433
(763) 422-2003
Edina
6539 York Ave. S Edina, MN 55435 (612) 866-6363
Lakeville
17701 Cedar Avenue (Cedar Avenue & Dodd Road) Farmington, MN 55024 952) 431-3466

Roseville
1700 Snelling Ave. Falcon Heights, MN 55108 (651) 645-8800
Plymouth
3355 Plymouth Blvd. Plymouth, MN 55447 (763) 553-2040

Woodbury
10060 City Walk Drive  Woodbury, MN 55129 651-738-9757

Dinos-outside1000

Links: Dino’s Website * Dino’s on Facebook
Hours: Daily 10am-10pm

Atmosphere: Dino’s offers counter-service and is about the same size as a typical fast-food restaurant.  The entire restaurant is furnished with your basic hard-top tables set close together, without a booth in sight.  There is a beverage station near the front counter with two large soda dispensers.  A couple of TVs hang from the ceilings and there are also some paintings adorning the walls.

Dinos-inside1000

Menu: Side Items include French Fries, Seasoned Fries, Pita Bread, Pita Chips, Hummus, Greek Olives, Pepperoncini Peppers, Falafel, Spanakopita, Onion Petals, Spinach Puffs and Greek Meatballs.

Dino’s offers a Greek Salad ( lettuce, feta, Greek olives, cucumbers, peppers, onion, pepperoncini peppers, and Greek dressing) with choice of meat.

The Sandwiches at Dino’s are served on fresh pita bread and include the Gyro (meat with raw onion, tomato and tzatzini sauce), Jr. Gyro, Spicy Gyro, Chicken Gyro, Jr. Chicken Gyro, Greek Chicken Breast, Greek Philly (sauteed peppers and onions and melted Swiss), Greek Meatball, Falafel (deep-fried patties made of a mixture of ground chick peas and seasonings), Steak Souvlaki, and Chicken Mushroom Swiss.  **Any sandwich can be mega-sized for an additional charge. Any sandwich can be ordered as a Value Meal, which comes with soda and either fries or side salad.

There are also a couple of Wraps including Greek Chicken Caesar, Hummus, and the Gyro Bacon Cheddar Wrap.

Entree Plates offer meat choice with Fries, Greek Salad or Rice, and Grilled Pita.  Meat choices are the  Gyro, Chicken Gyro, Steak or Chicken Souvlaki (kabobs), or Spanakopita (spinach, onions, feta and ricotta cheese wrapped in filo dough and baked).  Combination Plate includes each of the meat choices.

There are also two Family Packs available.  The Family Pack comes with 1 lb gyro meat, sauce, toppings, and 5 pitas.  The Mega Family Pack is the Family Pack with an additional two orders of Fries and 1 large Greek Salad.

Desserts include Baklava, Cookies, or Ice Cream.

Price guide: Side Items $1-2 Sandwiches and Wraps $5-6  Value Meals $8-9 Salads $6-9  Plates $7-9
What I ordered: The Greek Chicken Breast Sandwich with Spicy Feta and side of Seasoned Fries.  Normally this sandwich comes with regular feta cheese, but I LOVE the spicy feta and have them substitute the regular feta for the spicy.  This particular sandwich came with both, which was a little too much.  The chicken breast was marinated and tender, cut into strips.  The sandwich was big and messy, so I opted to eat it most of it with a fork.  The onions were plentiful, sliced thin and the spicy feta had a nice kick to it and was full of flavor.  The Seasoned Fries were delicious!  Dino’s adds their own Greek Seasoning which is pretty salty and garlic-y, but so so SO good!

Dinos-greekchickenbreast1000
One of my companions ordered the Spicy Gyro Sandwich.  It is similar to a regular gyro except the spicy comes with the spicy feta instead of tzatziki sauce and also has romaine lettuce.  My companion enjoyed it but prefers the traditional gyro.

Dinos-spicygyro1000
Another companion ordered the Souvlaki Plate, with one chicken and one beef kabob, Pita Triangles and Onion Petals.  The meat was very good, but there were just five bites of meat on each skewer.  The Onion Petals were crispy brown and the portion was rather large.

Dinos-kabobs1000

Service: Ordering is done at the Counter and it usually takes less than ten minutes for the order to be ready, at which point they will either call your name or bring the food out to your table, depending on how busy they are.  There are often staff members who will walk around to bus tables or ask you if you’d like a drink refill or anything else.  Definitely a step above most other fast-food type restaurants.
Overall Impression: I really enjoy Dino’s, it is fast and the food is good (especially anything with spicy feta!).  The seasoned fries are AWESOME.  Dino’s is more expensive than other fast-food restaurants but less expensive than most sit-down restaurants.  I wish there was a Dino’s in Hugo or Maplewood!

Dino's: The Greek Place on Urbanspoon

Sep 152008
 

**A newer review of Khan’s Mongolian was published on 1/7/12 and can be found here**

Cuisine: Asian, Mongolian, On-Site Parking
Restaurant Features: Bar, Lunch Buffet, Dinner Buffet, On-Site Parking

Locations: Coon Rapids,  Richfield, Roseville
Addresses and Maps:

Coon Rapids2085 Northdale Blvd NW Coon Rapids, MN 55433 (763) 767-3018
Richfield500 E 78th St Richfield, MN 55423 (612) 861-7991

Roseville- 2720 Snelling Ave N. Roseville, MN 55113 (651) 631-3398

Khans-outside1000

Atmosphere: There are several small dining areas situated around the restaurant, made a little more private with the creative use of live plants.  The dining areas all surround the centrally-located meat and vegetable buffets.  All seating is limited to tables, but there is at least one dining space that allows for tables to be pushed together for larger parties.

Khans-inside1000

Within the restaurant there is a small bar area to accommodate patrons who may have to wait for a table on a busy night, or for those who would like to try one of the specialty tropical drinks or wines.

Khans-bararea1000

Menu: The concept of Khan’s is one that allows diners to customize their own stir-fry dishes.  Patrons choose from a buffet containing a variety of sliced frozen meats (beef, chicken, pork, lamb, shrimp and imitation crab).  You take a bowl, fill it with the meats and noodles of your choosing, and then move down to the vegetable line where you can choose from a large selection of fresh vegetables to be used in your custom stir-fry.

Khans-meatbar1000

After filling your bowl with your preferred meats and vegetables, you then add sauces to flavor your stir-fry, such as Garlic Sauce, Cooking Wine, House Sauce, Dragon Sauce, Teriyaki, Curry, Lobster Sauce.  There is a sign over the sauce bar that suggests which sauces and flavorings you should choose, depending on how spicy you would like it.  After you have your bowl filled with meats, noodle, vegetables and sauces, you take it to the Barbeque Area, where  your stir-fry is cooked right in front of you.

Khans-saucebar1000

Price guide: $15 All-You-Can-Eat Buffet or $10 for a single plate
What I ordered: Everyone receives an appetizer as part of the cost of the buffet.  There is Hot and Sour Soup, a Fried Wonton, and a tender BBQ Marinated Chicken Wing.

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My first plate consisted of beef, thin noodles, peppers, zucchini, broccoli, onion, carrot, and pineapple.  I love spicy and flavorful food, so I used a ton of the garlic sauce, fresh cilantro, several scoops of the dragon Sauce, cooking wine, house sauce and teriyaki.  It was delicious!! I have been to Khan’s several times and have finally figured out the amount and combination of sauces that I like the best.  One thing i have noticed is that it seems safe to go a little overboard with the sauces, because a lot of the moisture is cooked out and the noodles also absorb a lot of sauce.  Despite how much spicy Dragon Sauce I added, it wasn’t as hot as I like it.  The best part is that if you don’t care for your stir-fry, you can always go back to the Buffet line and start over with a new combination!

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Sticky Buns are also served with dinner, a dough-like pastry filled with a buttery cinnamon/sugar sauce.  I did not try this because I was already too full from the other good stuff!

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Service: Our server was very friendly and prompt, kept drinks refilled and removed dirty plates in a very timely fashion.  It can get extremely busy on weekend evenings, so it is a good idea to call-ahead for a reservation, especially if you plan to have a party larger than four.
Overall Impression: If you enjoy stir-fry, Khan’s is your place! The endless trips to the buffet for only $15 is a great deal.

Apr 032008
 

Cuisine: Mexican
Restaurant Features: Bar,  On-Site Parking

Locations: Blaine, Stillwater, Coon Rapids, Woodbury, Maplewood
Addresses & Maps:

Blaine- 9360 Baltimore St. Blaine, MN 55449 (763) 795-0347

Coon Rapids– 12759 Riverdale Blvd. Coon Rapids, MN 55448 (763) 323-8772

Maplewood– 3069 White Bear Ave. Maplewood, MN 55109 (651) 748-0316

Stillwater-240 West Frontage Rd. Stillwater, MN 55082 (651) 351-9462

Woodbury-1795 Radio Drive Suite A Woodbury, MN 55125 (651) 739-6360

Links: Acapulco website

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Atmosphere: Festive, with the walls painted with murals and is somewhat made to resemble a  Mexican courtyard. 

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The Woodbury location also has a large bar area with several large-screen TV's playing different sporting events.
There were also several round tables for their weekly Texas Hold 'Em tournaments.  Seemed like a quite  a popular place!

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Menu: Appetizers include Acapulco's famous Cheese Dip, Guacamole, 5 Layer Dip, Taquitos, and Nachos.  Burritos include the Acapulco Burrito (steak), the Burrito National (smothered with cheese sauce), Creamed Burritos, Fajita Burrito, Wet Burrito (covered in enchilada sauce), and Chile Relleno Burrito.  Tacos include ground beef, grilled chicken, grilled beef, shrimp, mahi-mahi, and carnitas (pork).  Quesadilla include Queso (cheese), mushroom/onion/tomato, Relleno (stewed chicken or beef), or the Fajita Quesadilla.

Entree specials include Grilled Beef or Chicken Fajitas, Carne Asada, Chile Colorado, Carnitas, Chimichanga (with stewed chicken or beef), Seafood Chimichanga, Grilled Chicken, Taquitos, Pollo Dulce (Marinated chicken with sweet salsa), Chilaquiles Pollo (Stewed chicken casserole), Green Chili Pork, Poblano Chili, and Chicken with Rice. 

If you're in the mood to try a few different items, Acapulco has 10 menu combination plates.  They also offer a build-your-own combo where you can pick-two or three or four items (tacos, enchiladas, burritos, chili rellenos, tostadas or tamales). 

Price guide: Appetizers $4-8  Burritos $7-8  Tacos 2 for $5-6  Quesadilla $5-8  Entrees $8-14  Combos $8-10
What we ordered: To start off, we had complimentary chips and salsa.  The chips were hot and crispy and the salsa was good for standard mild tomato salsa.

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My companion and I ordered several plates to share. We ordered a four-combo platter with a beef taco (for me), a chill relleno (for her), and two enchiladas.

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The beef taco was pretty good.  The crispy corn shell was filled with beef.  The chile relleno was also pretty good, with a nice crispy batter and delicious spicy pepper.  The enchiladas….um, how can I say this diplomatically?….were not to my liking. I did not care at all for the soggy stewed chicken mixture and the enchilada sauce itself did not seem to be the kind of homemade origins.  The beans and rice were served separately…the refried beans were thick but good.  The rice was not the custom Spanish rice, but rather a mild flavored rice with mixed vegetables.

The fajitas were pretty good. The chicken and steak were marinated and grilled and served with a ton of peppers and onions.  Our server happily brought us an extra side of tortillas and never charged us for them.

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Service: Pretty friendly and fast.  Drinks were served frequently.
Overall Impression:   The restaurant had a fun atmosphere, especially with the crowd that was in the bar area playing poker… I know that at least the Woodbury location offers Texas Hold 'Em tournaments a few nights per week, not sure about the others.  The food however, was nothing to rave about. Mediocre.  My suggestion is to stick with grilled meats rather than the stewed. 

Mar 052008
 

Cuisine: American, Bar & Grill
Locations: Bloomington(**Site of this review), Coon Rapids, St Louis Park
Addresses & Maps:
Bloomington-  1800 W 80th St  Bloomington, MN 55431 952-881-0013

Coon Rapids– 3590 River Rapids Dr. Coon Rapids, MN 55448 763-427-1888

St Louis Park– 6475 Wayzata Blvd St. Louis Park, MN 55426  952-593-5024

Links: Bennigan’s Website

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Atmosphere: Just beyond the host stand  in the center of the Bloomington Bennigan’s is a large bar area, with smaller dining areas scattered around the outer areas of the restaurant.  The small pockets of tables and booths gives this Bennigan’s location a nice, intimate feel

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Menu: Appetizers include Golden Chicken Tenders, Fajita Chicken Quesadillas, Mozzarella Cheese Sticks, Ultimate Nachos, Buffalo Wings, Boneless Buffalo Wings, Southwest Egg Rolls, and Broccoli Bites. 

Sandwiches include the Monte Cristo, Turkey O’ Toole, Buffalo Chicken, Grilled Chicken Club, French Dip, Reuben, Angus Melt, Chipotle Burger, Black & Bleu Burger, and Guiness Glazed Bacon Burger. 

Entrees include Guiness Glazed Chicken & Shrimp or Sirloin, Stacked Chicken, Chicken Fried Chicken, Grilled Chicken Platter, Cajun Chicken and Shrimp Pasta, Ribeye, Sirloin, Baby Back Ribs, Tempura Shrimp, Grilled Salmon, and Grilled Seafood Platter.

Bennigan’s also offers a variety of salads and soups.

Price guide: Appetizers $6-8  Sandwiches $8-10  Entrees $10-18
What I ordered: The buffalo chicken salad (layered bleu cheese crumbles, carrots, celery and pico de gallo on a bed
of greens tossed in a creamy Ranch dressing, topped with buffalo
fried chicken, and placed inside a crispy tortilla shell).  This salad was LOADED! The Buffalo sauce had a nice kick to it, the veggies were fresh and crisp, and the tortilla shell was light and crispy.

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One of my companions ordered a cheeseburger.  The beef was juicy and fresh, the bacon smoky and crisp.

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Another companion ordered the Turkey O’ Toole (Juicy turkey breast sliced thin, melted Swiss cheese and  Smoky
Honey Dijon dressing. Served hot on a Bennigan’s pretzel roll.)  Bennigan’s was happy to replace French fries with a bowl of their delicious Baked Potato Soup.

Service: Good and fast.  Our visit was on a Saturday at noon and it didn’t seem to be too busy.
Overall Impression: Good food at a reasonable price, fast service. Tucked back in an area that doesn’t have other restaurants, kind of hard to find.