Finding Favorite Places One Unique Restaurant at a Time!

By
Real Estate Agent with RE/MAX Elite 513.265.3004 www.LizTour.com SAL.2002007747

Finding Favorite Places One Unique Restaurant at a Time!

Some restaurants you know what you're going to get coast to coast.  Ruby this, Olive that, the menu, the decor, everything evokes consistency.  But the true gems aren't found in some mass produced, franchised conglomerate governed enterprise. 

The diamonds are the mom and pop places doing what they do best.  The Triple D category as Guy calls them. They're often not much to look at, in fact you might be inclined to drive on by if you weren't feeling adventurous or someone hadn't tipped you off to the secret.

We've traveled a decent amount over the years, and we've got our own collection of favorites! 

Big Oak Drive In Salter Path, NC

Heading to the Emerald Isle in North Carolina?  A visit to the Big Oak Drive-in in Salter Path.  Blink and you'll drive by the entrance.  The usually full to the gills parking lot and the line waiting to order?  That's the sign you've found the right place.  Sandwiches we can't get back home, shrimpburgers, scallopburgers, clamstrip burgers, oyster burgers, NC style Q, they've got that and more.  Now you may ask WHAT is a shrimpburger?  LOTS of shrimp, coleslaw, tartar sauce and ketchup on a bun.  Pretty tasty!

Big Oak Drive In Salter Path, NC

If I'm in Buffalo, I'm disappointed if I can't get by Charlie the Butcher's for a Beef on Weck.  Some of the best roast beef I've ever had, a pretzel salted bun, some horseradish to open up your sinuses....good stuff!  And another place looking at from the outside you might drive on by.

In Salt Lake City love the Mexican food at Red Iguana.  There's just one MAJOR problem!  Analysis paralysis....they have SO many great sounding things on their menu that it's tough to make a pick!  But the good news?  You can't go wrong!
Red Iguana in Salt Lake City

In Old Mystic, CT there's a little place called Kitchen Little.  Breakfast food, sit out back next to the water on picnic tables and just enjoy the food and the environment.

In New Orleans, or Nawlins, or The Big Easy, you need to visit the Central Grocery Company, order a muffeletta sandwich and wander over to Jackson Square, park on a bench and just soak in the sun.  It's been 30 years since that day and I still want to go back!

Locally we're blessed with similar places to enjoy.  The Wildflower Cafe, Aponte's Pizza, Sichaun Bistro, The Village Ice Cream Parlor and plenty more.  The key is bypassing all those national chains and finding those small business owners in YOUR backyard.  And when you travel, skip the Golden Arches and the like, there's great stuff to be discovered!  You might want to check out www.RoadFood.com to help find some of those special places.

Serving Warren County's residential real estate needs,
Liz and Bill aka BLiz

P.S.  Just like these restaurants, sometimes you can't judge a home solely by it's cover.  Sometimes there are some real gems just past the door.  Give them a chance.  If you're considering  buying or selling an area home, please give The Liz Spear Team of RE/MAX Elite a call for a no hassle, no pressure consultation.

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REALTORS(S) Serving Warren County Ohio & Adjacent Areas

The Liz Spear Team of RE/MAX Elite
Elizabeth & William Spear
Ask for us by name if you visit the office!

EHO Two locations: Lebanon & Mason, OH
Liz direct:  513-265-3004
Bill direct: 513-520-5305     
Fax: 866-302-8418

MailTo:  LizSpear@Go-Concepts.com

Our Website:  www.LizTour.com

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Ambassador
1,438,725
Liz and Bill Spear
RE/MAX Elite Warren County OH (Cincinnati/Dayton)
RE/MAX Elite 513.265.3004 www.LizTour.com

Richie, Shrimpburgers are most excellent :)

Joan, Happy to take our AR friends on our own culinary tour!

June 16, 2012 08:24 PM
Ambassador
1,159,281
Tammie White
TW Realty Group, Franklin TN, South of Nashville
Benchmark Realty, LLC (615) 495-0752 or www.TWRealtyGroup.net

Bliz, I hope you get a chance to visit Franklin TN one day. They have lots of these places--no chains for me.

June 16, 2012 08:30 PM
Rainmaker
647,035
Evelyn Kennedy
Alameda, Real Estate, Alameda, CA
Gallagher & Lindsey, Alameda, California

Bill and Liz:

It is a good thing I am reading this post near midnight or I would be running out the door for some of my favorite meals.  They all sound so good.

June 16, 2012 11:21 PM
Rainmaker
941,782
Bob & Leilani Souza
Placer County, CA: Foreclosures, Auctions, Rentals
Souza Realty - Roseville, Rocklin, Lincoln, Loomis, Granite Bay, Penryn, Newcastle, Auburn, Meadow Vista (California)

Bliz, what a coincidence...I just wrote a blog post about a hidden gem of a restaurant we found that happens to be located in the woods (literally!) where dad is the cook, mom is the server and daughter is the bartender and server. Wonderful service, excellent food and well worth the drive (or ride, as we were on the motorcycle), so we'll be going back soon. :)

Leilani

P.S. The shrimp burger and scallop burger you mentioned both sound delicious! :)

June 17, 2012 12:56 AM
Ambassador
694,240
Amy Hahn
Realtor - Crystal Coast, NC
Pine Knoll Shores Realty
Wonderful post! As you know, I am a bit partial to the Big Oak. The Mayor of Indian Beach owns it and operates a mighty fine biz. Can't wait to meetup with you guys... Let me know when and where would be best for you!
June 17, 2012 02:29 AM
Ambassador
694,240
Amy Hahn
Realtor - Crystal Coast, NC
Pine Knoll Shores Realty

Oh, and while their burgers are AWESOME, their Hushpuppies, Onion Rings and Shakes aren't too shabby either!  And with this gorgeous, cooler weather we're having this week.... It's even better to enjoy the meal outside!

June 17, 2012 05:19 AM
Ambassador
1,438,725
Liz and Bill Spear
RE/MAX Elite Warren County OH (Cincinnati/Dayton)
RE/MAX Elite 513.265.3004 www.LizTour.com

Tammie, We love places like Franklin :)

Evelyn, Each of those places has a specialty that can't be beat!

Leilani, I think every one of the places we mentioned still has the founder involved in day to day ops.  Cool to have that personal touch when so much is mass produced.

Amy, Definitely good hush puppies at Big Oak, haven't tried the onion rings and shakes yet.  We'll see you soon :)

June 17, 2012 06:34 AM
Rainer
238,634
San Antonio Texas New Homes for Sale
www.sanantoniotexasnewhomesforsale.com

Hi Liz and Bill ...  What a great article !!!    To find a great restaurant is a real find ...Thanks for some great ones !!

 

As I find some that are sooo good ..I gotta give you a few

http://activerain.com/blogsview/3259860/jacala-restaurant-anguilla

http://activerain.com/blogsview/3185417/scilly-cay-restaurant-anguilla

http://www.utopiagourmet.com/

 

June 17, 2012 08:42 AM
Ambassador
1,438,725
Liz and Bill Spear
RE/MAX Elite Warren County OH (Cincinnati/Dayton)
RE/MAX Elite 513.265.3004 www.LizTour.com

Robert, I made some Caribbean stops in the Navy, but Anguilla wasn't one of them.  Amazingly beautiful waters down that way!

June 17, 2012 09:35 AM
Rainer
372,869
Bill Reddington
Destin Florida Real Estate
Re/max Southern Realty

Every area has their favorites. Thats what makes travel fun. New taste and experiences. Here it is the Red Bar or Graffittis or Dewey Destins. Making me hungry now! 

June 17, 2012 09:43 AM
Ambassador
1,438,725
Liz and Bill Spear
RE/MAX Elite Warren County OH (Cincinnati/Dayton)
RE/MAX Elite 513.265.3004 www.LizTour.com

Bill, It's past lunchtime here and I think I need something to eat too!

June 17, 2012 09:56 AM
Rainmaker
213,018
Tom Bailey
Crystal Coast Realty & Home Services, LLC

Bliz. Club Colony is about a mile and a half from our office on the Atlantic Beach Cswy. There is a white table cloth hidden gem very near Club Colony. Have you ever heard of or been to The Island Grille. It is on Money Island Drive. The food is not cheap but VERY good. You can see it from the west end of Club Colony. Are you guys coming to AB this summer? If so I would love to meet you.

June 17, 2012 09:56 AM
Ambassador
1,438,725
Liz and Bill Spear
RE/MAX Elite Warren County OH (Cincinnati/Dayton)
RE/MAX Elite 513.265.3004 www.LizTour.com

Tom, I'm not sure I've heard of that one, will have to check it out.  Amos Mosquitos is probably the family's favorite spot, but getting in there can be tough at times.

June 17, 2012 10:21 AM
Rainmaker
213,018
Tom Bailey
Crystal Coast Realty & Home Services, LLC

Liz & Bill, Below is a link to the Island Grille. It is at the corner of Money Island Dr. and Glenn right on the ocean. Money Island Dr. is about .2 miles back toward the causeway from Amos Mosquito's. FYI the Club Colony, Amos Mosquito's, Anchorage Marina, and Island Grille area is known as the Money Island Beach section of Atlantic Beach. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

http://igrestaurant.net/home/

June 17, 2012 11:07 AM
Ambassador
1,438,725
Liz and Bill Spear
RE/MAX Elite Warren County OH (Cincinnati/Dayton)
RE/MAX Elite 513.265.3004 www.LizTour.com

Tom, Thanks!  Will keep it in mind.

June 17, 2012 01:45 PM
Rainmaker
28,639
Bill Rozek
NMLS #214260
Embrace Home Loans, Inc.

Sounds like you are always searching for one of William Least Heat Moon's legendary seven calendar cafes.

June 18, 2012 12:10 PM
Rainmaker
628,719
Liz Wallace
Broker C21 Sherlock Homes, Rockville Centre, LI, N
Century 21 Sherlock Homes

Oh Lord it's almost 5 and I'm starving.  When I am going to travel I usually look up AR leader boards and email the Realtors.  We all know Realtors love to eat and know the best places.

June 18, 2012 01:52 PM
Ambassador
1,438,725
Liz and Bill Spear
RE/MAX Elite Warren County OH (Cincinnati/Dayton)
RE/MAX Elite 513.265.3004 www.LizTour.com

Bill, I'm not familiar with the seven legendary cafes, but I'd say I'm open to finding them :)

Liz, I've picked up some tips the same way, reading those Localism posts can help for sure.

June 18, 2012 02:09 PM
Rainmaker
28,639
Bill Rozek
NMLS #214260
Embrace Home Loans, Inc.

In William Least Heat Moon's book, Blue Highways, he spoke of searching for cafes, usually Mom and Pop places that had seven calendars on the wall, and this was a clue to how good the food would be.  It didn't matter what year the calendars were from or how old.  Another clue was a neon Air Conditioned sign in the window.

June 19, 2012 09:42 AM
Ambassador
1,438,725
Liz and Bill Spear
RE/MAX Elite Warren County OH (Cincinnati/Dayton)
RE/MAX Elite 513.265.3004 www.LizTour.com

Bill, Both items sound like great indicators that you've found a quality Mom & Pop kind of place!  Thanks for the enlightenment :)

June 19, 2012 11:22 AM
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Liz and Bill Spear

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