Sweet Adventures of Candiapple Smith

I love food!!! Does this make me fat ?!? Come follow along on my journey as I discover delicious delicacies and treats!!

Center City Philadelphia Restaurant Week

Center City Restaurant Week is due to begin September 7–12, 2014 and September 14–19, 2014. I am absolutely excited to attend and try new restaurants as well as done at old favorites. I plan on dining during Lunch. Possible restaurants for me include:

  • Buddakan
  • Davio’s Northern Italian Steakhouse
  • Del Frisco’s Double Eagle Steakhouse
  • Devon Seafood Grill
  • McCormick & Schmick’s Seafood
  • Seafood Unlimited
  • Square 1682

If you plan on dining out during restaurant week, where do you plan to dine?

Grand Lux Café
2000 Route 38, Suite 1072
Cherry Hill, NJ 08002
856.486.7232
www.grandluxcafe.com

Hours:

  • Monday—Thursday: 11am –– 11pm
  • Friday: 11:30am –– Midnight
  • Saturday: 11am –– Midnight
  • Sunday: 10am –– 11pm

I went to Grand Lux Café with a good friend of mine. We went thinking that we would have breakfast, yet when we arrived was told Brunch is served on weekends ONLY!! I was sad because I was really in the mood for French Toast (or something “breakfasty”. I know that’s not a word!!) We decided to order lunch instead.

The decor is grand. The restaurant has really high ceilings and impressive lighting. It looks like a place that “bourgeois” people would eat. Really hoity-toity! However, there were a mix of people. People dressed up and people like my friend and I, who was dressed in tees and shorts.

Service was impressionable, if we had time. Which we didn’t due to my friend needing to return to New York. Our server took really good care of us. The wait for our food and drink orders were superb. I didn’t feel rushed to eat and make room for the next diner. I would definitely eat here again.

For lunch I ordered:

  • DeLux Peach Bellini –– Champagne, Peach Liqueur and Peaches. Blended to an icy smoothness
  • Pasta Carbonara with Chicken –– Imported spaghettini tossed with smoked bacon, peas, a touch of garlic and Parmesan cream sauce.
  • Butter Cake –– Warm buttery vanilla cake with a rich, creamy center, served with fresh strawberries and vanilla ice cream.

The food was delicious!! I ordered the Lunch special (which was a smaller portion). The drink was fabulous and peachy. You could taste the Champagne, yet not get drunk. The pasta was not overly dressed in Parmesan cream sauce. I’m used to dressing with an Alfredo sauce consistency. It was still delish!! The butter cake was a piece of heaven in my mouth. I’m definitely glad I ordered the meal that I did. Can’t wait to return to try something new on the menu.

Center City Philadelphia’s Restaurant Week is coming!!

Center City Philadelphia’s Restaurant Week is coming!!

Buddakan
325 Chestnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19106
215-574-9440

Lunch:

  • Monday-Friday: 11:30a-2:30p

Dinner:

  • Sunday: 4p-10p
  • Monday-Thursday: 5p-11p
  • Friday-Saturday: 5p-12a

Center City Philadelphia’s Restaurant Week 2014 is still underway. Even in the aftermath of a snowstorm!!

I always wanted to try Buddakan. Buddakan is an Asian Restaurant. It’s not overly Asian-themed decor wise. The food speaks for itself.

Due to the snowstorm, I didn’t think that the restaurant would be opened, but I decided to try. If not, at least I got out of the house for some fresh air.

Buddakan was open and ready for business. It appeared that I wasn’t the only one out enjoying the fresh air and food. There were a couple of diners that had started to pour in.

The atmosphere is very warm and welcoming. With the exception of the huge Buddha statue, watching over you as you eat, the majority of Asian culture is hidden within the decor.

The staff are friendly and knowledgeable of the menu. I’m quite sure that everything on the menu is sure to please even the pickiest of eaters.

Dining during restaurant week, I chose the Bento Box that included:

  • Cantonese Spring Rolls — Chicken | Shrimp
  • Chicken & Ginger Dumplings — Sesame Dipping Sauce
  • Kobe Beef Sliders — Toasted Sesame Brioche | Thai Basil Aioli
  • Dessert:

    • “Dip Sum” Doughnuts — Five Spice Sugar Doughnuts | Blackberry Jam | Chocolate Sauce | Gingered Cream Cheese

    Drinks:

    • Joy — Smirnoff Orange | Riesling | Kiwi
    • Passion Fruit Lemonade — Passion Fruit | White Peach | Lemon | Sugar

    Everything was served at the same time excluding the dessert. Delicious!! It was sooo good and I ate EVERYTHING!!

    As I was dining, I discovered that the Bento Box normally is just the THREE items and if I hadn’t ordered from the Restaurant Week menu it would have cost me $15 plus the cost of dessert and the two drinks (one alcoholic and the other non-alcoholic).

    I thoroughly enjoyed my dining experience. Buddakan seems like a nice date night or girls night dining restaurant.

    Check out Buddakan during Restaurant Week (or any other time). You’ll absolutely love it.

The Capital Grille 
1338 Chestnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19107 215.545.9588

Lunch:
Monday-Friday: 11a-3:30pDinner:
Sunday: 4p-10p
Monday-Thursday: 3:30p-10p
Friday: 3:30p-11p
Saturday: 4:30p-11pCenter City Philadelphia’s Restaurant Week 2014 is upon us!! A lot of the restaurants that participated last year have returned!! 

My first stop was at The Capital Grille. I made reservations via Open Table. (MUST MAKE RESERVATIONS!!  It’s just easier!) Once again as my earlier posts about dining out: NEVER make reservations for when a restaurant is just opening. When you have a child that needs to picked up from school at 3pm, sometimes that’s your only option, though.

I arrived ten minutes earlier than my reservation time and walked around like an idiot trying to enter the restaurant. I called and was told, “We haven’t unlocked the doors yet.” (Reservation time for me will now be 12 Noon).

My waitress was excellent!! Ask for her when you visit the Philly location. Monique was beyond exceptional. I like cocktails and she helped me pick a drink: The Bohemian. It was nice and light, yet still packed a punch. It also went wonderfully well with my meal.

I chose to try the Restaurant Week Lunch Menu:
First Course: Caesar Salad
Second Course: Citrus Glazed Salmon and Sam’s Mashed Potatoes
Third Course: Classic Crème BrûléeMy meal was delicious!! The salmon was seasoned just right and was juicy!! It fell apart on my fork just the way I like. I was absolutely disgusted by how delicious it was :) The mashed potatoes were everything!! The Crème Brûlée was just like I imagined it. Very tasty!

The Capital Grille’s ambience was an extra bonus. The employees were nice and they paid attention to me, even if they were not my server. It has a romantic feel to it, so you can just imagine how enjoyable a dinner date is.

Monique checked on me throughout my meal and didn’t make me feel like I was being rushed for a larger group. She was a BIG help to me (it was my FIRST time dining there). She (and the food) is a reason that I would return (alone or with a date)

Check The Capital Grille out (during Restaurant Week 2014 or any other time) for an enjoyable dining experience.

The Capital Grille
1338 Chestnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19107
215.545.9588

Lunch:

  • Monday-Friday: 11a-3:30p

Dinner:

  • Sunday: 4p-10p
  • Monday-Thursday: 3:30p-10p
  • Friday: 3:30p-11p
  • Saturday: 4:30p-11p

Center City Philadelphia’s Restaurant Week 2014 is upon us!! A lot of the restaurants that participated last year have returned!!

My first stop was at The Capital Grille. I made reservations via Open Table. (MUST MAKE RESERVATIONS!! It’s just easier!) Once again as my earlier posts about dining out: NEVER make reservations for when a restaurant is just opening. When you have a child that needs to picked up from school at 3pm, sometimes that’s your only option, though.

I arrived ten minutes earlier than my reservation time and walked around like an idiot trying to enter the restaurant. I called and was told, “We haven’t unlocked the doors yet.” (Reservation time for me will now be 12 Noon).

My waitress was excellent!! Ask for her when you visit the Philly location. Monique was beyond exceptional. I like cocktails and she helped me pick a drink: The Bohemian. It was nice and light, yet still packed a punch. It also went wonderfully well with my meal.

I chose to try the Restaurant Week Lunch Menu:

  • First Course: Caesar Salad
  • Second Course: Citrus Glazed Salmon and Sam’s Mashed Potatoes
  • Third Course: Classic Crème Brûlée

My meal was delicious!! The salmon was seasoned just right and was juicy!! It fell apart on my fork just the way I like. I was absolutely disgusted by how delicious it was :) The mashed potatoes were everything!! The Crème Brûlée was just like I imagined it. Very tasty!

The Capital Grille’s ambience was an extra bonus. The employees were nice and they paid attention to me, even if they were not my server. It has a romantic feel to it, so you can just imagine how enjoyable a dinner date is.

Monique checked on me throughout my meal and didn’t make me feel like I was being rushed for a larger group. She was a BIG help to me (it was my FIRST time dining there). She (and the food) is a reason that I would return (alone or with a date)

Check The Capital Grille out (during Restaurant Week 2014 or any other time) for an enjoyable dining experience.

What’s better than beer?!? How about bacon?? Enjoy them together 

What: Philadelphia Beer and Bacon Festival
Where: Philadelphia’s Hotel Monaco
When: Sunday December 8th, 2013
Why: Because Beer and Bacon are awesome but even more awesome together :)

What’s better than beer?!? How about bacon?? Enjoy them together

What: Philadelphia Beer and Bacon Festival
Where: Philadelphia’s Hotel Monaco
When: Sunday December 8th, 2013
Why: Because Beer and Bacon are awesome but even more awesome together :)

Devon Seafood Grill
225 S. 18th Street
Philadelphia, PA 19103
215.546.5940

Hours:

  • Sunday-Tuesday: 11a-10p
  • Wednesday-Thursday: 11a-11p
  • Friday & Saturday: 11a-12a
  • Brunch Sunday: 11a-2p

I was stoked about this solo lunch date (during Restaurant Week of course) simply because it was a seafood restaurant. I LOVE seafood.

As I stated before— Note to self: NEVER make a reservation for as soon as a restaurant opens. It feels awkward to watch employees set up. The other reason being: it was 11:15am and I didn’t want the staff to think I was an alcoholic because I wanted a cocktail right then and there.

The decor is very nice!! Lots of arches. Being as though, I was the FIRST customer, I was able to watch the restaurant fill with patrons who seemed to enjoy being there irregardless of the fact that it was Restaurant Week.

I ordered as follows:

  • First Course: Lobster Bisque: Cream, Sherry, Tomato, Lobster
  • Second Course: Linguine with Shrimp: Prosciutto, White Wine, Garlic, Cherry Peppers, Olive Oil
  • Third Course: Strawberry Shortcake: Lemon Pound Cake, Strawberries, Whipped Cream, Roasted Strawberry Ice Cream
  • Drink: Caribbean Hard Lemonade: Cruzan Guava & Mango Rums, Malibu Rum, pineapple, fresh-squeezed lemonade, Firefly Sweet Tea Vodka float

My waiter was wonderful and he even laughed with me about my cocktail situation!!! I would definitely return.

The Lobster Bisque was to die for!! I had to contain myself from picking up the bowl and slurping it down, while licking it and the spoon clean. My drink was delicious and fruity, not too strong, but possibly a drink that could sneak up on you if you had a few too many.

This is definitely a Girls Night | Romantic Date | or on your Dolo for Solo type of place. I enjoyed myself immensely.

Butcher and Singer
1500 Walnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19102
215.732.4444

Lunch:

  • Monday-Friday: 11a-2:30p

Dinner:

  • Monday-Thursday: 5p-10p
  • Friday and Saturday: 5p-11p
  • Sunday: 4p-9p

As I’ve stated before, dining in Center City Philadelphia always feels so upscale and classy. It’s one reason, I anticipate eating there more often.

Dining at Butcher and Singer is like stepping into a “Mad Men”-esque atmosphere. You find yourself looking around in hopes of seeing Don Draper.

The waitstaff are exceptionally knowledgeable of the menu. Brian (my waiter during my dining experience was extremely nice in regards to it being my first time there.) My waiter did not push the regular menu at me. He helped me understand the regular menu and explained the Restaurant Week menu with ease. He helped me pick out my drink.

Watching as the restaurant filled up with patrons, I was able to discover that this was fine dining at its best. The food was not bourgeoise and high maintenance. I had a burger for lunch. The burger was huge and I ended up eating it with a fork. It was too tasty to waste.

  • First Course: Caesar Salad
  • Second Course: Butcher Burger with English Cheddar, Caramelized Onions and Russian Dressing
  • Third Course: Chocolate Cake, brandied cherries
  • Vesper Martini: Gin | Stolichnaya Vodka | Lillet Blanc

I would definitely return. The food was perfect and if you like a nice stiff strong drink, this is the place for you. My martini was VERY strong. If I was on a date, my date might have gotten laid later on. I mean, what can you say about a martini meant for James Bond aka 007?!?

Bellini Grill
220 South 16th Street
Philadelphia, PA 19102
215.545.1191

Lunch:

  • Monday-Friday: 11:45a-2:30p

Dinner:

  • Sunday-Thursday: 4p-9:30p
  • Friday-Saturday: 4p-10:30p

My son’s father and I made a lunch date. He LOVES Italian food. I could care less. I LOVE all types of food. (That’s probably why I’m sitting pretty at 200lbs). As it was Restaurant Week, I made reservations via OpenTable for two.

When we arrived at the restaurant, they had just opened. We were the first customers. (Note to self and others: NEVER make reservations for as soon as a restaurant opens. It was sort of awkward watching the employees set up)

We ordered from the Restaurant Week Menu (which I later found out was the regular menu).

  • First Course: Insalata Di Cesare: Crispy romaine lettuce with a homemade Caesar dressing and croutons
  • Second Course: Gnocchi (Gorgonzola): Small dumplings made with semolina, ricotta and potatoes
  • Third Course: Tiramisu

The restaurant felt very tiny inside. It was, however, great to see that many people dined there during our lunch. You could tell that these customers weren’t just around for Restaurant Week. My son’s father loved his meal and stated that he would definitely return. The employees were very knowledgeable about the menu. No rushing us to finish our meals and were within earshot if we needed anything.

The restaurant is close to a parking facility, but if you want to save your coins, take Public Transportation (SEPTA).

Del Frisco’s Double Eagle Steakhouse
1426-28 Chestnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19102
215.246.0533

Lunch:

  • Monday-Friday: 11a-3p

Dinner:

  • Monday: 3p-10p
  • Tuesday-Friday: 3p-11p
  • Saturday: 4p-11p
  • Sunday: 5p-10p

I had always said that I wanted to dine at Del Frisco’s. It’s something about the restaurants located in Center City Philadelphia that feels so upscale. My opportunity arrived during Restaurant Week 2013. My girlfriend and I decided to have lunch.

During Restaurant Week participating restaurants offered THREE COURSE MEALS for $20!!! What’s better than that?!? I made reservations via OpenTable (you really should make reservations for Del Frisco’s). OpenTable makes making and keeping reservations soooo easy.

My friend was kind of bummed that there was no steak on the lunch menu, but it didn’t keep her from ordering from it. (Although, you could order from the regular menu.) I ordered from the Restaurant Week Lunch Menu.

  • First Course: Baby Greens Salad with Candied Pecans, Granny Smith Apples and Dijon Cider Vinaigrette
  • Second Course: Blue Cheese Meatloaf, Mushroom Madeira Sauce and Château Potatoes
  • Third Course: Warm Apple Cake Wild Turkey Crème Anglaise, Caramel Sauce and Whipped Cream
  • Drink: VIP Martini

I LOVED everything!!! The atmosphere was upscale but not so much. Very business casual when it came to dress. The staff were warm and friendly. They were very knowledgeable about the menu and options. We weren’t rushed to eat. I would DEFINITELY return for lunch or dinner.