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Romio's Pizza & Pasta

 16801 Redmond Way
Redmond, WA
 

Ok Pizza; Terrible Online Service

In hindsight, I wish I had not accepted the delivery.

The pizza itself was Ok (I had the Romio’s Special), and the garlic bread wasn’t great but not too bad. The problem is that they offer online ordering, but the prices don’t match up with their actual menu. My order came to just over $18 after taxes and a $1 delivery charge, so I had $21 ready to cover a tip. The delivery person gave me a bill for $23 which was over 30% more than the original, and shrugged off the difference due to out of date online menus.

I paid the $23 (after going back for my wallet) only because I had been travelling all day and this was my first real meal. I wish I had sent it back because it’s sleazy (and probably illegal) to advertise one price then charge another.

To make it worse, I called to voice my complaint and was put on hold when I asked to speak with a manager. The call was eventually disconnected before I spoke with anyone. I filled out the online feedback form, and my e-mail bounced back because their address was invalid.

If you order, I reccomend you don’t do it online. Call and get confirmation on the actual price. I won’t be going back myself.

2. 10 Inch Small Romio's Special 6 Slice Pizza

The pizza wasn’t too bad. With better service I would have ordered from them again.

Garlic Bread

Drenched in butter and cold. I guess you expect it from a random pizza restaurant, but I prefer real garlic, moderate butter or oil, and hot.

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Shanghai Garden - Issaquah

 80 Front St N
Issaquah, WA
 

Try the Noodles

By far the best of Issquah’s three “Garden” restaurants, Shanghai Garden has fast, friendly service. Most of the menu isn’t bad nor is it particularly noteworthy. If you turn to the last page, however, you see the list of dishes made from their homemade, hand shaven noodles. These noodles make the restaurant worth trying, even if Issaquah is a little out of your way.

Chicken with Hand Shaven Chow Mein

 

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Coho Cafe

 6130 E Lake Sammamish Pkwy Se
Issaquah, WA
 

Good Seafood, Great Desserts

While you’re waiting for your meal, they bring out slices of bread like many other restaurants. But at the Coho Cafe it is served with a dish of oil and vinegar for dipping. Simple, but really good!

My favorite meal, the Seared Ahi, is no longer on the most recent menu, but the soba noodles and prawns are a good second choice. It’s not the best seafood I’ve had, but it’s pretty good, and the menu has some unique choices that you won’t find other places. And if you like desserts, I haven’t found one I didn’t like yet. My only real complaint is the prices which seem a little high compared to similar restaurants.

Make sure you read the reviews for the Redmond location also. The food and service are very similar, so everything applies to both locations.

Wok Seared Soba Noodles with Grilled Prawns or Chicken

The grilled prawns are the way to go here. The tangy soba noodles are the perfect compliment.

Cheesecake

This was pumpkin when I tried it.

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Bangalore Cuisine of India

 317 Ne Gilman Blvd
Issaquah, WA
 

Another Reason to Visit Gilman Village

I didn’t give this five stars because I’m still looking for the perfect Daal Makhani somewhere in Puget Sound, and I didn’t find it here. I’ve really enjoyed the other dishes, though. A single meal can feed two people easily, once you throw in the Naan and Samosas.

The restaurant is rarely crowded, so service is fast. (And in the middle of summer, it’s air conditioned!)

Aloo Ghobi

This isn’t normally my favorite meal at an Indian restaurant, but in this case it is excellent.

Vegetable Samosa

It’s hard to screw up samosas,

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Nooner

 13804 Ne 20th St
Bellevue, WA
 

Bad First Impression

We should have turned back when we first stepped through the door and the smell hit us. I think they were making egg salad, but the eggs weren’t quite right. My sandwich had hair in it, which while disgusting, just happens sometimes. Unfortunately, the employees at the Nooner weren’t willing to refund my money. They would have made me another sandwich if they weren’t out of ingredients, I wasn’t in a hurry, and I wanted to risk more hair. Needless to say, we left and haven’t been back since.

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Khan's Mongolian Grill

 831 Nw Gilman Blvd
Issaquah, WA
 

Quick, Healthy Meal

We eat lunch here a lot on the weekends. In what is presumably typical of Mongolian grills, fill a bowl with your selection of vegetables and noodles from the buffet. They add your choice of meat and sauce, and grill it up for you quickly. We enjoy this because it doesn’t take long to get your meal, but definitely much better then fast food.

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Subway

 15001 Ne 24th St
Redmond, WA
 

Go Across the Street

There’s nothing particular about this Subway that I don’t like, but I’m not a huge fan in general. As long as you’re considering buying a sandwich from a chain, take a few minutes to cross the street and buy your sub from Georgio’s. The bread is better, and the soup actually looks appetizing. (There’s also a Quiznos a block away on 20th Street.)

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Dixie's BBQ

 11522 Northup Way
Bellevue, WA
 

I met "The Man"

Dixie’s BBQ has a lot of character. The food is good, but the real reason to visit is to try “The Man”; a painfully spicy sauce that Gene (the owner) brings around to customers as they dine. If you like spicy food, try a toothpick dipped in the sauce. If you’re really adventerous, let him put a very small amount on your meal. Have plenty of water and peanuts on hand to put out the flames!

Don’t go here for a quick lunch. They are interested in serving good food, not in doing it quickly. Realistically, you can plan to spend 5 minutes in line for each person in front of you (yes, you will wait an hour for 12 people). Gene will help keep you entertained.

Dixie's Special

The sandwiches with a hot link are the way to go, and beef is my favorite choice of meat.

Corn Bread

The corn bread is excellent, especially if you happen to get it straight out of the oven. Homemade with real corn baked into the bread.

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Chuck's Donut Shop

 5335 Se 4th St
Renton, WA
 

Get There Early

If you aren’t into the mass-produced Krispy Kremes, you might head a little further south and give Chuck’s Donuts a try. They aren’t open Sunday, and you have to get there early (before 12pm for the best selection) on Saturdays. Unfortunately, I’ve never seen them serve powdered sugar donuts, but the boston cream, and the cake-style donuts are great! Definitely worth going to if you like a more homemade taste.

There is a small cafe right off of I-90 on Front Street in Issaquah that advertises Chuck’s Donuts. I’ve never bought any from there, but it might be worth trying if you don’t want to go so far out of your way.

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Tortilla Sam's Fresh-mex

 107 Highland St
Worcester, MA
 

Fresh Tortillas and Black Beans

Tortilla Sam’s is a unique Mexican restaurant specializing in black bean dishes. This place kept me fed while attending college at nearby WPI, and really made me a fan of black beans. The carry-out area provides quick fast-food style service with restaurant quality food, and is typically how I ordered. If you have time, however, it’s worth dining in the Cantina. It has a much larger menu, with many of the same dishes you find at other Mexican restaurants, cooked Sam’s style.

Other then the black beans, a few things separate Tortilla Sam’s from the average Mexican restaurant in my mind. Flour tortillas are pressed and grilled fresh in the take out area, while you watch. I assume most restaurants buy their tortillas in bulk, because you just can’t beat the taste and texture of the ones from Sam’s. If you’re planning to consume alcohol, be aware that Sam’s has a BYOB policy, and doesn’t serve any of their own alcoholic beverages. There is a liquor store nearby if you need to stock up before dinner. Finally, if you like spicy food, try the “napalm” salsa. Despite the gimmicky name, it’s actually a very flavorful addition to your meal.

P.S. They had a cream-based pumpkin soup as the soup of the day once. If they happen to have this while you’re there, order it. It tastes like hot, liquid pumpkin pie!

Black Bean

The combination of beans and spices make this simple burrito one of the best dishes Sam’s has to offer.

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