Review of Vesuvio’s

Ask anybody in New York who has the best pizza, and you’re likely to get a different response every time. There’s about a million different pizza places, they’re constantly opening and closing, and everybody has their own style that they prefer. Here in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn, our neighborhood, we’ve tried a lot of the pizza places, and today I’ll be doing a review of Vesuvio’s, located at 7303-07 3rd Avenue, just a few blocks away from us. Vesuvio’s has an extensive menu of Italian favorite, pizza, pastas, hero sandwiches, etc, but our favorite thing to order is the Family Meal, which we get delivered to us. It costs $18.95, and it comes with a large plain cheese pizza, ten garlic knots, a large garden salad, and a two liter of Coke or other Coke brand product. Without a doubt, it’s the best deal we’ve found around here. I don’t eat the salad, needless to say…nor do I have a picture of it to show you guys, since if I ever showed a salad on here, I’d feel compelled to change the name of the site! The pizza, garlic knots, and two liter are all fine with me, though. A picture of the garlic knots are below, and they’re the best way to start the meal.

Vesuvio Garlic Knots Looks pretty tasty, no? The only thing I would recommend is that when you call to order, you ask them to go light on the oil. If you don’t, these things will be pretty much drowning in them. Too much oil can kind of ruin your garlic knot experience. Other than that, these are great, fresh baked, smelling of garlic and oil, a little crunchy, a little chewy, a perfect comfort food indulgence. Below is a shot of the large pie.

Vesuvio Whole PizzaEverybody’s idea of what constitutes pizza perfection is going to be different, but this is a pretty good entry in my book. The crust is not too thick, not too thin, kind of medium, chewy rather than crispy, but not excessively doughy. There is a generous portion of cheese, it’s greasy but not too greasy, and there’s a good ratio of sauce to crust. As I’m sure you’d agree, too much sauce or too little ruins a pizza.

So overall, yes, I recommend Vesuvio’s, for it’s high quality and value. Whenever it comes, I think about Kevin McCalister inĀ Home Alone, sniffing appreciatively as he inhales and says “Ah, a lovely cheese pizza, just for me.” There’s something about pizza that brings out the child in all of us, and Vesuvio is our go-to spot around here. The only drawback is that, of course, it’s pretty unhealthy, high in total and saturated fat, loaded with carbs. So this shouldn’t be an everyday food…but if you’ve been sticking to your diet, everybody deserves an occasional treat. This sure fits the bill nicely. Till next time, fellow picky eaters.

Walgreen’s Nutritional Shakes Review

Hey folks, today I’ll be reviewing Walgreen’s Nutritional Shakes. Last week I needed to get something to supplement my work lunches in the few days before our next scheduled grocery shipment from Amazon Fresh. I was doing a little shopping in the area of my work, and I went to Walgreen’s, to see if they had anything that looked good to me, and which also satisfied my dietary preferences. I decided to try a six pack of the vanilla bean flavored nutritional shakes, which cost me $8.79, plus tax. A picture of one is below.

Walgreens Shake Front

It said on the package that the nutritional content could be compared to the Boost line of shakes. I like Boost. Back in 2000, when I had surgery on my jaw, I couldn’t eat solid food for two weeks, and I pretty much lived on them. I lost more than fifteen pounds, but I thought the shakes were good. They actually tasted not far off from an actual milkshake, just a small one, since each shake is only eight ounces.

The Walgreen’s nutritional shakes were eight ounces as well, and they were good from a nutritional standpoint, as each one had nine percent total fat and five percent saturated fat, and only eight percent of your daily recommended sodium, as well as plenty of protein. Unfortunately, where these ones were lacking were in the taste department. At first sip, there was a taste of vanilla bean, but then, as I swallowed, there was an odd, chemical kind of aftertaste. It happened each time I took a sip: first it would taste pretty good, and then that chemical taste would be left on my tongue. I thought it might have been just that one shake, but then as I opened each of the other ones in the package and drank them, the same thing happened. Based on that unpleasant aftertaste, I can’t recommend this particular product, and I won’t be purchasing it again. Maybe Walgreen’s might choose to alter its formula at some point to counteract that nasty chemical taste, but until then, I’ll be searching elsewhere, or maybe just going back to Boost, a quality-proven product for me. That’s it for now folks, more next week!

Big Daddy’s Diner Review

Recently I went to Big Daddy’s Diner in the Flatiron District of Manhattan, at 239 Park Avenue South. I went with Megan and two of her friends, a couple, so it could be considered to be a double date, which sounds like about the most middle-aged and domesticated thing I can think of. At any rate, Big Daddy’s is just a few blocks from my work, and I had noticed it in the past, and wanted to check it out. They have some good, Steven-friendly stuff on the menu, fried chicken, chili, tator tots, and other typical American diner food. Not a lot that’s very healthy, unless you wanted to go the salad route, and, as you can probably guess, that wasn’t too likely with me. I was pretty hungry when I got there, after having worked a full day, so I got a bowl of chili, some teriyaki chicken tenders, and tator tots. Below is a shot of the chili.

Chili

As you can see, it came with melted cheese and tortilla strips on top, which isn’t the way I’d usually expect to see it prepared, but I didn’t mind. The problem came when I dug into the chili, and found that it was full of onions and chunks of tomato. If you come to the site regularly, you know that I hate onions. They’re the bane of my existence, and you never know what dish they’re going to pop up in. I’m not a big fan of the tomato chunks, either. I’d much prefer the chili be just meat and beans, essentially. Alas, you never know with chili what the recipe is going to be, and in this case, it was not to my liking.

The good news is that the tots and chicken strips were just fine. It’s kind of hard to mess up those two things, and I found the tots to be crispy and portion size to be generous. The same could be said for the teriyaki tenders, and they had some other good sounding flavors too. Next time the buffalo style might be the way to go. Megan got one of the many alcoholic milkshakes the diner has on offer, and she said it was very enjoyable. She also went with the cheeseburger sliders. A pic is below.

Sliders

Really, the best to thing to mention about our experience at Big Daddy’s, though, has to be the happy hour specials. So there are specials nearly every weekday (we were there Friday, and fried chicken is half off that day), but also every weekday until seven all appetizers, cocktails, and beer are half off. We got there at six, and since we ordered almost exclusively off the app menu, our bill was very reasonable. The tots, tenders, sliders, and chili were all half off, and I got several Blue Moons at three dollars each, normally six. Because of that, I would say that my experience at Big Daddy’s Diner was more than satisfactory, despite the slight disappointment of the chili. Next time I’ll know not to get that, and if you go, which I recommend that you do, I strongly urge you to go during happy hour, when you can take advantage of the specials. If you don’t, you’ll be paying Manhattan prices for food, which are, needless to say, a bit pricey. As far as looking for a healthy meal, try elsewhere, unless you opt for the salad, and if you’re likely to do that, you’re pretty much on the wrong website. Overall, because of it’s not being too healthy, I wouldn’t go to Big Daddy’s every day. It’s a dietary splurge, but one that I fully enjoyed on this occasion, along with good company and good conversation. Now I’ll just have to jog a couple of miles to work off some of those tots!