El Sombrero Mexican Cuisine

 

Rating: 4 out of 5 Skulls

 

Date: 3/5/17

Time: Early afternoon

Overall appearance:  The restaurant was clean and well decorated.  They did not seem busy and appeared to have several tables open.  There were already 2 couples waiting to be seated.  We walked up to the hostess station to give her our name since we were not greeted.  She looked flustered.  She didn’t greet us but instead shrugged us off.  One couple was seated and after waiting a few more minutes decided to sit down in the chairs up front.  Once the second couple was seated we stood up as we knew we were next.  We were disappointed that there were so many open seats and it took them so long to seat us.   We were also not offered a booth and instead seated at a table.

Once we were seated at our table the experience started to improve.  We were quickly asked for our drink orders and some good suggestions were made.  Rufo ordered a Heineken and I ordered a Frozen Mango Margarita.  My drink was delicious but the outside of the glass was a little sloppy with sugar.   We were also given water with lemon without prompting.

I ordered 2 chicken enchiladas and one pork tamale.  Rufo ordered 2 Chimichangas.  The food came out very hot and looked very authentic.  Both dishes came with refried bean, cheese, and rice.   I was able to finish one enchilada and part of the tamale.  I did eat a good bit of the rice and beans as well and opted to take the rest home.  Rufo finished part of one Chimichanga and a small bit of the rice and beans.   Both dishes were delicious.

We also ordered a fried ice cream for dessert.  Vanilla ice cream with cinnamon and honey and crunchy corn flakes in a crispy crunchy bowl and smothered with whip cream and chocolate sauce and a cherry on top.  We managed to finish the ice cream but left the bowl.  It was delicious and despite the wait we would like to go back there again and try more of their dishes.

 

 

@Pizza – Hammock Landing – Review

 

 

Rating: 5 out of 5 Skulls

Date: 3/5/17

We placed our order using Doorstep Delivery
; a company that delivers food from restaurants that do not offer delivery.

We honestly didn’t do much research on the pizza place
before we decided on them.  Their menu seemed interesting.  All of the pizzas are $7.98 but the menu online didn’t seem to obviously reveal the size.  I read through the pizza options an
d soon we had decided on one for each of us.

 

Rufo’s pizza – Melb-a-Mia Cheese pizza

Traditional dough, Olive oil, Garlic, Fresh Mozzarella, @Blend, Roma Tomatoes, and Fresh Basil.

 

Kiva’s pizza – Pombay – Indian pizza

Wheat dough, Classic Tomato sauce, @ Blend, Tikka Masala Seasoned Chicken, Red Onions, Tomatoes, Peppers, and Cilantro.

 

The pizzas arrived earlier than expected.  The expected wait time was well over an hour and our food arrived in about 45 minutes.  I’m assuming they were really busy since they aren’t far from where we were.

The food arrived hot and delivered by a very pleasant male delivery man.  Rufo took the pizzas and we looked at the outside of the boxes.  They are rectangular which we thought was interesting.  When we opened the boxes to our delight were perfectly crafted, amazing smelling, flatbread pizzas.

We both described the pizza as similar to a Pita pizza.  Both pizzas were amazing and we would recommend them both.   This is a place we will be trying again.  They use amazing fresh ingredients in a non-traditional way to make/eat pizza.  I’ve never had Cilantro on a pizza before but I think it should be on every pizza!

They have a variety of Signature pizzas like: Aloha Onie, Farmer’s Market, Goofy Foot, Instant Karma (Classic with a Kick), Mediterranean, Mexicali, The Carnivore, and The Jeffrey (Ring of Fire). You can check them out on Facebook or on their website by following the links below.

Pizza@Facebook

Pizza@Website

Local Metalworks Artist Shout out!

 

I am blessed to have the opportunity to work with this amazingly humble artisan.  Kim is a 3rd generation metal artisan.  Her amazing creations are unique, witty, and absolutely amazing.

She told me she was creating a Raven for a special order.  I’m so glad she brought it to work!  It is stunning!

She told me that it’s made of metal knives, a bell, pliers, and some other wonderful parts.  I especially love his fluff and wisdom highlights (hair/feathers).  She takes great care in her designs and it shows.  This is a pretty tough bird! I’ve seen other creations she has made and it’s amazing how she comes up with these things.

Please check out her website: Kim’s Junk Art

 

**If you are interested in a review of your work for our artist’s corner please email us, or find us on social media (Facebook, Twitter, Google +).  **

Soupa Saiyan Restaurant – Orlando, Florida

 

 

Date: 12/29/2016

Time: During Lunch

Rating: 5 out of 5 Skulls!!!

 

Outside:

Soupa Saiyan is located in a small plaza at 5689 Vineland Road with a few other restaurants and small businesses.  The parking was decent but we were not able to park directly in front of the restaurant. We parked in front of the Grill restaurant. It was clean outside and I loved the sign for Soupa Saiyan.

 

 

Inside:  There was so much to look at that it took us a minute to get to the front and order.  The decor was pretty basic but awesome.  Most DBZ fans would love the decor and honestly initially I’m sure that’s what most people come for.  We were no different.  We went in understanding the food theme but really we went to seethe DBZ stuff and totally geek out.

The restaurant is small.  It seems like a tiny hole-in-the-wall type restaurant.  Often these types of restaurants are the best.  As I look around the room I can see tons of Pop DBZ figurines, models,and action figures behind the glass partition around the kitchen.  Above nearly each table is a flying Nimbus that changes colors.  The walls are a hue of orange and the walls feature DBZ posters.

 

I also took time to visit the bathroom.  I will honestly say I was disappointed with the lack of DBZ memorabilia in the bathroom.  There was one single picture.  However, to my relief the bathroom still looked amazing, well kept, and very sanitary.  The bathroom honestly looks like you’ve stepped into another world because it is so different than the rest of the restaurant.

 

Menu:  The menu is simple and is mostly a mix and match ramen restaurant.  First you choose your broth (chicken, beef, or vegetable).  Then you pick your noodles (rice, egg/ramen, or Udon).  The day we were there they were out of the egg/ramen noodles.  After you pick your noodles you choose 2 items from the next section (veggies, chicken, shrimp, rare steak, fish balls, squid,and more).  You can add extras like a fried egg or lobster tail.  You can also choose from one of their custom soups like the Fire noddles.

Rufo, his sister, and myself all ordered different soups.  My soup consisted of Chicken Broth,Udon Noodles, Veggies, a fried egg, and Shrimp.  Rufo’s was rice noodles, vegetable broth, fish balls, and veggies. His sister’s dish consisted of beef broth, Udon noodles, rare beef, and veggies.

 

 

 

 

 

We sat down at a larger table near the glass partition while we waited for our soup.  On our table you could find napkins, spoons, chopsticks, and condiments like: Siracha, Soy Sauce, and Hot and Mild Chilies.  They called Rufo’s name and we were served 3 huge bowls of soup.

Price: $9.50 for each soup and an extra $2 for my fried egg.

 

Taste:

Kiva’s: I initially tasted the soup prior to adding seasoning so I could enjoy the base flavor.  The broth tasted like chicken and was sweet from the carrots.  The vegetables were perfectly cooked and were still crispy.  The shrimp was perfect and not over-cooked.  The noodles were chewy and perfect.  I sliced open the fried egg spilling the yolk into the soup.  I stirred the soup to incorporate the flavors.  The best addition to the soup was the cilantro.  After doing my initial assessment of the flavor I chose to add soy sauce and Siracha. The addition of these 2 flavors made the soup amazing.

Rufo’s: I also tasted his soup which consisted of vegetable broth, rice noodles, veggies and fish balls.  The initial flavor was sweeter than I expected. The noodles were light, the broth was well seasoned, and the veggies were cooked very well. The fish balls were small and cut in half.  They were breaded and fried balls of white fish that remained remarkably intact in the soup.

 

 

Sister’s:  Siracha and chili paste had been added prior to my opportunity to taste her soup.  Her soup consisted of beef broth, udon noodles, beef strips, and veggies.  The Siracha and chili paste were excellent additions.  They left the soup well seasoned with a bit of a bite to it.

 

 

 

Overall: Initially we went for the decor but we fell in love with the soup.  I fell in love with it so much that for my NYE/Birthday Party I choose to do an Asian Hot Pot.

I created a soup with chicken, beef,  chicken and seafood stock, garlic, scallions, cilantro, seasoned nori sheets, firm tofu,udon noodles, mushrooms, carrots, and zucchini.  Everyone loved the soup and enjoyed hearty portions.  The leftovers were even better the next day.