Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Pringles Thanksgiving?

As I actually haven't been able to find this in any store in my area, I will just leave these two images for y'all to ponder. More details can be found here. If anyone is able to taste test this potato crisp cornucopia, please let me know your thoughts. And Happy Thanksgiving!

Friday, October 27, 2017

French Fry Diary 783: Shake Shack Plushies

Now this sort of thing doesn't happen very often, but believe it or not, it does happen. Stuffed French fries, and no, I don't mean being stuffed with fries, I mean stuffed animal-ish things in the style of potato-ey products. One such occurrence included the tater tot superheroes at Sonic some years back.

Recently, a couple weeks ago at the New York Comic Con, a new plushy arrived that was just as cool - Shake Shack Plushes from Yummy World and Kidrobot. They have burgers, and fries, and they are adorbs. While I have yet to actually get to a Shake Shack, at least I can play with them. Seriously they are awesome.

Special thanks to friend Pixie for the signal boost and kind words when I was looking for images of these goodies, and to her friend Karina Hamalainen for the second pic seen here, thank you! You rock!

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Halloween at MoonDog Grill

Don't forget to get over to the Moorestown Mall Food Court to try MoonDog Grill's Walking Dead Dog, an all-beef Sabrett hot dog topped with chili, cheese sauce, spicy red pepper relish, atomic BBQ sauce, jalapenos, onions, and sriracha… oooh, hot and scary. They also have new Italian sodas in ten assorted flavors, but the real reason to visit MoonDog at any time, not just Halloween, is the fries, and now there's a twist.

You can not only get MoonDog's fabulous fresh-cut and twice-fried French fries, but you can get them as a Fry Bowl. They start with eight ounces of fries and come in four varieties – Chili Cheese: all beef chili, cheese sauce, and onions, Barbecue: pulled pork, shredded cheese, and BBQ sauce, Mexican: salsa, jalapenos, tomatoes, onions, and shredded cheese, and Buffalo: buffalo wing sauce, jalapenos, blue cheese dressing, and celery salt.

Stop in and check them out, some of the best fries and dogs in South Jersey!

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

French Fry Diary 782: Wise Finger Lick'n Ribs Potato Chips

I love Florida, and I'm glad we moved down here from South Jersey.  Florida has many awesome things going for it like Disney, sunshine, and grilling - but it's not all good.  There are also alligators, sand hill cranes, Trump supporters, and a seriously sad variety of potato chips.

I was very surprised by that last one.  Tom's is a company we didn't have in NJ, and generally Wise chips are easier to find - except for that elusive potato chip grail, the Wise BBQ Ridgies - but other than that, it's pretty pitiful.  It's so bad that sometimes on a late night snack run, you'll just skip the chips.  Yes, it's that bad. 

These chips, the Wise Finger Lick'n Ribs BBQ Flavored Potato Chips (crazily not even shown on the Wise website), were found in a Dollar Tree.  A dollar for a 4.5 ounce bag of BBQ meat chips?  What could I lose?  I could only gain a review for the blog, right?  The bag promised no preservatives, gluten, MSG, or transfat, awesome. 

Upon opening the bag there was a faint BBQ aroma, but nothing as pleasant or strong as the Wise BBQ or Honey BBQ.  The chips are good and thick, but not as darkly seasoned as the two mentioned above, if anything they appeared sparsely seasoned, maybe a dozen flecks per chip. 

There is that meat flavor, but not overwhelming or unpleasant like some meat flavored chips.  This is more barbecue than ribs, but it's good, and if I'm being honest, a bit addictive.  And that's kinda the problem, in that the more you eat, the more cumulative the ribs taste is.  Still, I would definitely get these again, good chips. 

Tuesday, October 03, 2017

The Big Belly Burger Commercial

We've talked about this fictional burger chain in the DC Universe before (here and here), and now it's moved from the comics to your television screens in the last few years. In the comics, a favorite of heroes like Superman in Metropolis, and on the small screen, beloved of the characters from "The Flash," "Arrow," "Legends of Tomorrow," and "Supergirl."

I've never been able to pinpoint exactly what kind of fries they've had until now - it's regular cuts and curly fries just in case you were wondering - when they have debuted their own commercial. Here it is, the Big Belly Burger commercial, enjoy!

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

French Fry Diary 781: Lamb Weston Super Crispy Crinkle Cut Fries

Last year ConAgra Foods, one of the world's biggest French fries manufacturers, acquired Lamb Weston, another of the world's largest fry manufacturers. Recently they spun Lamb Weston off as its own frozen product line, and they're just now starting to show up in stores. 

Any fry from Lamb Weston should be great, as most fast food franchise fries probably originally came from them anyway.  Ideally it should be a superior product as you're cutting out the middleman, right?  I've seen four different varieties of frozen grocery fries with the Lamb Weston name on them - Crinkle Cut, Hand Cut, Thick Cut Hash Browns, and Diced Hash Browns, the last two obviously breakfast selections. They also have Steak Cut, Shoestring, and Potato Puffs.

I picked up a bag of the Super Crispy Crinkle Cut Fries.  There's a giant Grown in Idaho symbol on the bag that also proclaims 100% Real Potatoes.  Upon opening the bag I was surprised to see natural cut fries.  The skin-on crinkle cut French fry is indeed a rare beast.  And even though I have become accustomed to almost exclusively air-fried fries, I put a serving of these babies on a pan to bake, per their official cooking instructions.

The fries needed a minute or so more cook time than the directions indicated, but in any case they came out great, super crispy as promised, hot and soft inside.  I really enjoyed them, and they were just as good when air-fried.  Thumbs up.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Gordon Ramsay's Fish Fingers and Chip Butty

From "Gordon's Ultimate Home Cooking" on YouTube, here Chef Gordon Ramsay gives us a quick lesson in a British classic - Homemade Fish Fingers with a Chip Butty. Fish fingers, obviously are what we might call fishsticks, although much bigger and seasoned here a little differently, more like tenders, or fingers, because of their size. The chip butty is actually a bit of a French fry sandwich, and it just doesn't get much better than that, does it?

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Random Tater Pic of the Day #286

Today's Somebody Else's Fries comes from dear friend and frequent FFD contributor Robin Renee. Crinkle cut French fries with garlic powder, cayenne, and truffle salt (plus a tomato and peppers from the garden and volunteer dandelion greens).

Monday, September 18, 2017

McDonald's Bacon Potato Pie

There's been a lot of talk recently about whether or not McDonald's really has a secret menu, officially or unofficially, but here's something that we can't get here in America, secret menu or not - the Bacon Potato Pie. Only available in Japan, this is bacon and mashed potatoes inside a deep fried baked pie covering. Not sure if that would be good or not, worth a trip to Japan? Maybe, maybe not... what do you folks think?

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

French Fry Diary 780: BurgerFi Appetizer

BurgerFi is one of those places I have been meaning to go to for quite some time. When I saw one nearby on a business roadtrip with The Bride, I had to stop in, while she did other important stuff.

The first thing that struck me about BurgerFi was the prices.  This place doesn't play, it's expensive, or at least more expensive than other comparable places. Any size single order of fries or onion rings border on around five bucks.  I was startled, only happening upon the place by chance and just wanting a snack.  This was an expensive snack.  I settled for the Cry + Fry, being a combo of fries and rings... at $5.47. 

I had been meaning to go to a BurgerFi for some time since one opened in the Philadelphia Convention Center but that never happened while I lived in New Jersey.  I was happy to find one here in Florida.  It was nice with an open-air patio, Coke Freestyle machines, and a pager to take to your table so they can bring your order out.  They also had Mexican Coke in bottles and Boylan Sodas as well. I thought the latter was a bit odd as it's a Pepsi product.

The Cry + Fry was almost exactly as advertised in the pictures in store and online - three gigantic onion rings atop an order of natural cut fries.  They came out fairly quickly and we're very hot, so probably cooked to order.  All things considered, the portion size was very generous so perhaps I shouldn't have bitched so loudly about price. 

The fries were on par with, if not better than, Five Guys, and yeah, that impressed me too.  They were more than a little addictive as I ate more than I intended without realizing it.  The rings were crunchy and juicy and battered with an orange color.  I was expecting a spicy kick based on the color but it wasn't there. 

Both the fries and rings were very good, thumbs up, I'll have come back when I'm hungry for a burger.  Until then, BurgerFi is highly recommended. 

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Random Tater Pic of the Day #285

I love when two things I love come together, as with this cartoon sent to me anonymously of the Legion of Super-Potatoes.

For those who know me, I'm a semi-regular writer over at the Legion of Super-Bloggers, dedicated to Legion of Super-Heroes fandom.  Links to some of my Legion reviews and articles can be found here, check them out.

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

French Fry Diary 749: Bobby's Burger Palace 2017

We recently flew up to North Jersey for the wedding of a friend, and with time on our hands, and empty stomachs from the flight, we went in search of a quick snack. The intent was to find some place that we had not been before so I could write about it, and also some place not readily available in our new home in Florida, for much the same reason.

Our search was becoming fruitless (and fryless) between the time restraint getting tighter and not finding anything in the Bergen NJ area, when suddenly we came upon a strip mall with a Bobby's Burger Palace in it. It was getting late, and I had always intended to give the place a second chance and also try the onion rings, so we figured why not?

We wanted just a snack so The Bride ordered the bacon cheese fries with scallions, and I got the buttermilk onion rings. We also got shakes. They were thick and good and small, but while there were some very interesting flavors, we noticed there wasn't a chocolate or vanilla on the menu, so I got a black and white. They were small, but expensive, and had real whipped cream that really could have used a bit more whipping, but there you go.

I should note that the seating did not improve at this other location. Be forewarned, the booths are small and the counter seats are tight. Whether it's Cherry Hill or the Bergen, Bobby Flay does not like bigger folk, which based on the menu suggests there are not many return customers. I guess a lot of people must 'outgrow' this place.

Based on our order the girl at counter asked if we were getting any food. Even if that wasn't rude, it did not instill confidence in our sides for snacks since they weren't food. You can see into the kitchen through the pick-up window, it should be noted, and I could see our 'food' there for quite some time. When it was finally brought to us, we got a tutorial on sauces while our food got even colder. Not cool.

My order of onion rings was big, in a misshapen paper cone containing five rings total, but they were huuuge (as the big dumb Ooompa Loompa might say), big and thick, with a bit of a spicy kick to the batter. They had a big onion taste and were very good, but I wish they had been hotter - and they probably were, just not when they were in front of me.

The Bride's fries were just as warm, natural cut fries with bacon, cheese, and an awful lot of scallions - probably more scallions than bacon or cheese.  Maybe they should have been called scallion bacon cheese fries?  

This was not a bad snack, but it could have been so much better. I might try Bobby's Burger Palace again, but they should keep in mind, three strikes and that's an out.

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Random Tater Pic of the Day #284

A shelf in a store in the path of Hurricane Harvey. What does this really say about how people feel about Chicken & Waffles Potato Chips?

Image sent from reader, but originally from Tyme Powell on Twitter.

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Random Tater Pic of the Day #283

 From the June 2017 Disney Cruise on board the Dream, these are bacon roasted potatoes, with chicken schnitzel, and buttered green beans, from dinner at the Enchanted Garden.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

French Fry Diary 748: Cabanas, Disney Dream, June 2017

On the last day of our June 2017 Disney Cruise on the Dream I hit Cabanas for lunch. While it's not always my first choice, we were close and both The Bride and I were hungry. Cabanas, as you can see from this search of the blog, is primarily the best place for breakfast, and not necessarily for lunch… but I was in for a shocking surprise.

Expecting of the favorite fried food the usual fare of Disney natural cuts, as by the last day they are usually out of steak fries, I came upon a glorious oasis in the buffet line… perfect British chips, or perfect French fries, depending on your perception. These were ¾ inch thickness square, and three to four inches long. They had been under a heat lamp for a bit, but still hot and soft like baked potato inside, and crispy on the outside.

These French fries were perfect. I loved them. So if you're on the Disney Cruise, and on the top deck buffet, keep your eyes open, they were fantastic.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Random Tater Pic of the Day #282

This is Cabanas lunch from our June 2017 Disney Cruise on board the Dream. These steak fries were labeled as "steak frites," but were decidedly not that at all, still very very yummy though.

Wednesday, August 09, 2017

Random Tater Pic of the Day #281

Cabanas roasted red potatoes again, this time from day four of our June 2017 Disney Cruise, this time with red and green peppers added in. Mmmm... breakfast potatoes...

Friday, August 04, 2017

French Fry Diary 747: Borgata Breakfast Potatoes

Here's the first thing you need to know about the Borgata and room service. There are two hotels here in Atlantic City that most folks think are all the Borgata, and they are not the same. The Borgata is not the Water Club, and the Water Club is not the Borgata. Water Club has great breakfast potatoes, and the Borgata has crap. C-R-A-P. Crap.

This review is about the breakfast potatoes we got via room service at the Borgata, and the only reason we ordered them was because how fantastic they were at Water Club, but again, not the same place. We ordered bacon and potatoes, and what we got was two pieces of rawhide, crunchy dog chew toys, that they called 'bacon,' and this square thing they called potatoes.

This brownie-sized monstrosity was a big old square of shredded potatoes, nothing at all like what we got at Water Club. It was well done on the bottom, and on the top, but tasted rather processed and wet in between. Buttery, noodley, more like kugel than breakfast potatoes, and sadly disappointing. What a terrible breakfast. We went to McDonald's later if that tells you anything.

Thursday, August 03, 2017

Random Tater Pic of the Day #280

This is from dinner at the Royal Palace on board the Disney Dream on our June 2017 cruise. Chateaubriand Roasted Filet Steak, with crushed new potatoes with shallots, buttered green beans, and red wine jus. Sooo good and delicious. Sometimes the French do know their potatoes...

Wednesday, August 02, 2017

French Fry Diary 746: Charlie's Family Restaurant

Once settling into Lakeland FL, I of course started scoping out places with good fries.  One place that had been mentioned was Charlie's Family Restaurant on Lakeland Hills Blvd.  My first attempt to try them was foiled by their hours - they close at two PM on weekdays.  They are open later on Fridays however for their famous all-you-can eat fish fry. 

Charlie's is a small place but with a remarkable amount of tables.  Needless to say, they were quite busy the Thursday I came by.  I loved the friendly atmosphere and how everyone seemed to know everyone.  I had had a late breakfast so I got right down to business and just ordered the fries. 

The fries were pretty standard regular cuts, frozen the deep fried, but they tasted great and came in a rather large portion, just $2.25.  They were as perfect as this type of fry could be - the right combination of hot and crisp, and not at all greasy.  This was a great call.  I can't wait to come back for a proper meal.  Recommended. 

I returned with The Bride a couple weeks later for breakfast on a Saturday. The place was packed, but the friendly atmosphere was intact. She got an omelet and the hash browns, which were perfectly browned shredded potatoes. I got home fries, which one might think are the same thing, but not at all. These were various-sized chunks of potato (skin-on baked potatoes chopped up), very spicy and very good with onions mixed in. Good and homemade.

Both visits were like taking a step back to the seventies and that's a good thing. Charlie's Restaurant is recommended.

Tuesday, August 01, 2017

Random Tater Pic of the Day #279

Cabanas breakfast on day three of our June 2017 Disney Cruise. On this morning, shredded and carmelized onions were added to the mix, tasty.

Friday, July 28, 2017

French Fry Diary 745: Mix and Match

At the recent journey to Whataburger, it was brought up in conversation that sometimes folks, in areas where fast food restaurants are prevalent, folks will mix and match foods from different places to create sort-of-patchwork meals by hitting multiple drive-thrus. 

Now back when we were dating, The Bride and I would sometimes mix Burger King and Taco Bell, mostly because at the time I liked Burger King and didn't like Taco Bell.  We'd go through the Burger King drive-thru for my meal then we'd eat it at the Taco Bell where she got hers.  That's not what we're talking about though, that's just two different meals at one place. 

I'm talking about when you want a Whopper but don't want BK's crappy new fries, so you go to McDonald's for their perfect golden fries.  Then you like to dip them in a Frosty, something you can't do any longer with Wendy's crappy new fries.  One meal, created from three drive-thru stops. 

I'm sure there are many other combinations.  Like for instance, wouldn't Chick-fil-A's waffle fries be awesome sandwiched in a burger?  Or does a Frosty have better dippibilty for burgers than Burger King shakes?  And does the fact Roy Rogers BBQ sauce would go well with anything count? 

What are your favorite mixes and matches?  Let us know! 

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Random Tater Pic of the Day #278

In my last entry here I talked about how bad cruise fries can be sometimes, but they (potato products) can also be fabulous as well. Here's the soft potato gnocchi appetizer from Palo on board the Disney Dream from our June 2017 cruise. Very tasty. Palo remains the place to beat on board. They even brought me fries last time. Palo just rocks.

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Random Tater Pic of the Day #277

Lunch on the first full day of our June 2017 Disney Cruise on the Dream, these are the standard Disney natural cuts from Cabanas.  You can see how tasty they were by how many I actually got.  Not many were eaten afterward either. 

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

French Fry Diary 744: Boulder Canyon Barbecue Potato Chips

Now I have reviewed Boulder Canyon potato chips here before, about five years back, and they looked quite different.  The packaging referred to natural rather than authentic and didn't make so much of the oil, as opposed to this current packaging which has 'Coconut Oil' taking up nearly a quarter of the bag front. 

These chips are again in the tradition of long-named potato snacks, properly titled Boulder Canyon Coconut Oil Kettle Cooked Potato Chips, Mesquite Barbecue Flavor - wow, that's a mouthful.  Hopefully it will be a good mouthful once I open the interesting new bag.

Previously Boulder Canyon made much of their healthy ingredients.  Their saying on the front, 'Live Better. Eat Boulder.' kinda still puts across the point in a clever way, and the chips are still gluten free, kosher, vegan, low sodium, with no GMO, MSG, transfats, or cholesterol, and are cooked in 100% coconut oil.  The problem with the chips I tried before was a lack of both salt and taste.  Hopefully now, especially with BBQ flavor, these'll be better. 

There's a nice mesquite aroma when the bag is opened, that's about where it ends.  The flavor is only okay with a sweetness so particular I had to check the ingredients for sugar. The chips are still a bit bland once you get past the BBQ. Disappointing.

Monday, July 24, 2017

Random Tater Pic of the Day #276

This one comes from friend Deb who saw these fries at the restaurant at Renaissance Baltimore Harborplace Hotel. Thanks, Deb!

Friday, July 21, 2017

French Fry Diary 743: Wendy's Breakfast

Recently before getting on a plane to back to New Jersey (North Jersey, and those who know know that it matters) for a wedding, The Bride and I had some time, and the hungries for breakfast.  I carted our bags to the gate while The Bride searched for breakfast.  I was quite surprised when she joined me a bit later with a Wendy's bag. 

Honestly I was unaware that Wendy's did breakfast, but after a moment's thought, yeah, of course they did.  It had just never occurred to me to actually go there for breakfast.  And here at the busy Orlando International Airport, I suppose they must do a brisk breakfast business.  Notably breakfast is not listed on many of their websites.  They need to get the word out.

The Bride got an Artisan Egg Sandwich sans egg, essentially a grilled cheese with bacon, which she thought was just okay.  For me she got a biscuit, also just okay, nowhere near Bojangles or even KFC in quality.  The Bride also got breakfast potatoes, which were at the bottom of the bag.  I was both happy and wary. 

I was happy because, duh, I love the favorite fried food, and wary because many fast food breakfast potatoes are notoriously terrible, as is the case at Burger King, Chick-fil-A, and Roy Rogers.  I opened the bag and was pleasantly surprised.

At first glance, Wendy's Seasoned Homestyle Potatoes look similar to Roy's Home Taters.  Flat potato wedges, sometimes halved, and covered with a seasoned light batter, these were so much better that Roy's bland fare.  These were quite tasty and I wanted more when these were finished.  Definitely a thumbs up.  I'm going to have try more Wendy's Breakfast based on this experience.