Monday, May 25, 2009

Restaurant Review--Old City House Inn & Restaurant

We were in St. Augustine for a short while yesterday to do some shopping at one of the outlet malls and we decided to have lunch while there. We checked on to see what kind of gift certificates they had available. We found several for lunch that were normally $3 for a $10 certificate. We had a promo code though for a whopping 80% off the cost so were were able to get several different certificates for 60 cents each. What a deal. Makes trying a new place a bit less scary. Check the site for your area and prices.

We chose to go to the Old City House Inn and Restaurant and I think we made a wise choice. Despite the city being VERY busy we walked right in. Parking was on-site which was a blessing. The Inn is located on Cordova St. so it is near the main tourist areas but located far enough away as to not be really noisy. We were greeted promptly and sat immediately. The room was nice, well lit, clean, and had soft music in the background. While not an extensive menu it was quite varied and looks like it changes daily. Chris ordered the hummus plate which included several slices of what appeared to be homemade bread (the waitress did not know and did not find out for us), a red pepper, and a small green salad. She enjoyed it and was unable to finish it all. I ordered the jalapeno cheddar burger. It was a huge half pound burger that was cooked to perfection. I have taken to ordering burgers medium since a medium well burger means well to burned at most places. Medium usually gets me a well done burger but not this time. Like I said they cooked it perfectly. The slices of pepper on top gave it a good amount of additional flavor. The burger came with a mound of french fries. I was stuffed afterwards.

The bill came to about $20 including tip after the gift certificate. Not cheap by any means ($30 for two for lunch without alcohol) but the food was great, the surroundings wonderful, and it was nice to not be crowded out with all the holiday foot traffic. Based upon this visit I can easily recommend dining here and can see why it is award winning.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

All the rain cancels canoeing outing

For those that know me you probably realize the area I live in has been hit with massive amounts of rain this week. So far the estimates for my area are nearly 20 inches with some areas in the county nearing 30 inches in just under a weeks time.

We have been very lucky in that we haven't experienced any REAL flooding. Our backyard is about 1/2 underwater with some being up to about a foot deep. Our yard slopes off to the back left and so that is the worst area of course. It's not near the house and unless we have days and days of more solid rain I'm not concerned. The front yard is safe as well. The yard slopes down toward the road and forms a little ditch. It's a pain to mow the grass but keeps us dry. Many in the county are nowhere near as lucky and have water standing in their homes. Along I-95 on my way into work there are cow pastures that are solid water as far as you can see. Allegedly parts of Daytona International Speedway are underwater as well though of course they won't let anybody in to officially see and they are denying problems.

Well I'll thank the heavens the worst so far for us is we have had to cancel a canoeing outing this weekend. We were going to go with a couple of friends to Cracker Creek Canoeing on Spruce Creek. Chris and I went a couple weeks ago and walked around and had a good time. The photo to the left is Eganulti (a Native American word for "house by the water") built in 1907 by James Gamble of Proctor and Gamble fame. This house, a citrus packing house, and a "Snow White Cottage" are all on property. There are also walking trails that we didn't take since it was about 90 degrees when we were there. While the canoeing of course costs it was free to walk around the grounds. The buildings were closed and there are paid tours you can take. Despite not going in any buildings it was still a fun hour or so. Now it's just a matter of rescheduling!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Restaurant Review--Stonewood Grill

Okay so in some peoples eyes having a cat and two dogs doesn't really qualify as deserving a Mother's Day gift. I would disagree. That being said we had dinner last night at Stonewood Grill . One word comes to mind: Excellent! That goes for both the food and the service.

We decided against ordering an appetizer but the warm sourdough bread with fresh butter was more than enough. We did each order a salad. I had a half ceasar salad and my wife had a half tomato and mozzarella salad. Both were quite large and very tasty. For our entrees Chris had the pot roast with garlic mashed potatoes and fresh vegetables. I ordered the shrimp and scallop skewer with creamy corn risotto. Both were delicious though I might give the edge to the pot roast. If you like seafood though you won't go wrong. We were too full to order dessert but the temptation was there.

This is really a special occasion type restaurant with steaks running near $30. If you go all out with appetizer, entree, dessert, and drinks you are looking at serious money. Fortunately we had a gift certificate I won in a silent auction at work and also a coupon from their complimentary magazine Casual Flavors . Our bill still came to around $25 with tip but well worth it. The atmosphere is nice and like I said the service was excellent. If you get a chance to go I would say don't miss out!