Samuel Mancino’s – Frandor

7 01 2010
  • 401B N. Clippert Street
  • Lansing, MI 48912
  • (517) 351-7492
  • Website
  • Menu

I’ve blogged a few times in the past about how much I love grinder’s.  I’ve also gone over the whole spiel about my Mancino’s memories.  For those of you joining me at SWM-Dining, here’s the short story. 

Growing up, a new pizza joint moved in to Bourbonnais, Illinois near where I grew up.  My family, not being very adventurous, almost always ate at  fast food and chains…actually, this is something they still do.  Anyway, a shop called Mancino’s Pizza & Grinders opened up.  We ate there often.  All four of us were fans of these new toasted sandwiches.  When I moved to Peoria, there was a store called Bellacino’s…..that served the same menu.  Again, I ate there a few times and loved every minute of it.  When we moved to Lansing, we found more stores with the Mancino’s name on them.

Now, I’m going to be honest.  I’ve never been able to figure out if all them are connected or, if they are, how.  They all have the same name, the same food, and the same menu, but I cannot find one stinking website that lists all three cities.  Hell, all three stores have a different name.

Now, enter a fourth store under the Mancino’s name.  Read the rest of this entry »





Scalawags White Fish & Chips – S. Cedar

1 01 2010
  • 6260 S. Cedar Street
  • Suite A
  • Lansing, MI 48911
  • (517) 394-7700
  • Website
  • Menu

I had a real hard time finding lunch.  It seems like everywhere I wanted to go decided to close.  My first attempt was Conrad’s College Town Grill.  Since the kids are on break, they weren’t opening until 7 PM.  My next attempt was Ramon’s, but they too were closed.  I was frustrated at this point and just started driving.  Somehow, I ended up in South Lansing near where we used to live.  I was just going to hop back on the Interstate and go find fast food or something back near MSU.  As I was making my way down Cedar, I noticed a new restaurant behind the Pizza Hut.  Yay!  New restaurant.

Scalawags White Fish & Chips is a small Northern Michigan chain.  They have three stores now in the Lansing area.  The newest location is on Cedar Street in the strip mall at the corner of Edgewood Boulevard.  It has to be a fairly new joint.  It wasn’t there when we moved from Lansing three months ago and there was no indication that anything was moving in to the space.

All of the other Scalawags locations have a pretty nice looking storefront.  The South Lansing location is in kind of a rundown strip mall.  They really stand out with the blue banner that boasts their logo and name that wraps around their corner of the building.  The inside of the store is actually pretty nice.  I don’t remember what was in the location before, but everything inside is new for Scalawags.  The feeling I got was sort of like dining on an old wooden fishing boat.  It was a pretty typical quick service restaurant set up.  There were booths and tables in the front of the store.  The small order counter was in the back. Read the rest of this entry »





Julie Joe’s

11 12 2009
  • 2515 E. Jolly Road
  • Lansing, MI 48910
  • (517) 977-9415
  • Website
  • Menu

Well, I made it to Lansing.  It only took me about 45 minutes longer than it normally does.  I left quite a bit earlier than I needed to….just in case.  I got to Lansing about an hour before I needed to be there, so I went looking for lunch.

For quite some time, I’ve tried to stopping at Julie Joe’s on Jolly Road near the Dunkel Road intersection.  It seems like every time I try, it’s closed.  They close for three and a half hours between lunch and dinner during the week, they don’t open until five on Saturday, and they’re not open on Sunday.  It seems like every time I’ve pulled into the small strip mall, it’s been one of those times. 

This time, I made it in time for lunch, so I knew they would be open.  The previous business in this location was 2Fer’s.  I never made it there before it was closed, so I have no idea how much has changed.  Both on their website and on an insert in their carry-out menu, they make note of the fact that they used to be 2Fer’s.  I have no idea what that means or why, but since they make a point to mention, I thought I should to. 

The menu at Julie Joe’s is much larger than I expected.  As expected, they have tacos and pizza, but they also do deli sandwiches, salads, and soups.  The shop is not very big.  There are a couple tables, but I have a feeling not many people dine in.  There was a counter area that I assumed would be filled with pizza, but when I walked it up to it, there was no pizza.  They do have ads for pizza-by-the-slice at lunch time.  Not sure if they have it keeping warm somewhere else or how that works.  I wasn’t in to pizza, so I didn’t ask. Read the rest of this entry »





The Original Big John Steak & Onion

5 12 2009
  • 3490 Okemos Road
  • Okemos, MI 48864
  • (517) 381-2465
  • Website
  • Menu

Back in East Lansing and there’s a little bit of nostalgia this weekend.  I had to be in town a couple days, so I went looking for the cheapest hotel I could find.  Usually, the two Red Roof Inn’s are the cheapest and recently, I’ve been staying out in Delta Township because it’s five bucks cheaper.  This weekend, however, I decided to stay at the East Lansing Red Roof Inn. 

I say there’s a little bit of nostalgia because two years ago, J and I made a frantic, last-minute trip to Lansing to find a place to live.  We had been in Bristol, TN for the Nextel Cup Race the weekend before.  She got the phone call on Tuesday that she had been hired in Lansing.  We were at her parents in Chicago because we didn’t have to be back to work in Peoria until Thursday.  We packed up the car again on Tuesday and drove to Lansing to find a place to live.  We only had a week and a half to make the move. 

We had stayed in a Red Roof Inn in Johnson City, TN and were happy with it, so we found one in Lansing and we spent our first night in what would become our new home at the Red Roof Inn on Dunkel Road.  This recent trip was the first time I had stayed at that hotel since that first night.

We were given a pretty long lunch break, so I decided to go check in and drop my stuff off.  Before that, I wanted to grab a sandwich or something somewhere so I could eat while watching ESPN in my room.  I couldn’t really think of much other than fast food chains along Jolly Road so I started driving towards Okemos.  Read the rest of this entry »





Arby’s – Frandor

23 11 2009
  • 622 N. Homer Street
  • Lansing, MI 48912
  • (517) 351-6340
  • Website
  • Menu

Call me lazy.  I’m not completely proud of the fact that I’ve now eaten two fast food meals in a row, but once again, I’m trying to make as much money as possible, so going cheap on the lunch is a necessary evil.  I would much rather eat like this alone and be able to spend a little more when I go out with J.

Work day number two in Lansing started around 1:30.  I didn’t eat before going to work because I knew our lunch break was going to be pretty soon after we got to the job site.  Once we were released around 2:45, I headed to Frandor because I wanted to look at Staples for something.  After that was complete, it was on to lunch.  Sure, I had a bunch of options in Frandor, but since I was going to eat fast food anyway, I decided to go to a place I really like.

The Arby’s near the Frandor Shopping Center is located on Homer Street.  Because Homer is a one way street, there is also a back entrance from Clippert Street which is where I was coming from.  The building sits pretty close to Homer.  There is a huge parking lot in back and a few slots on the sides.  I took one of the side spots

Eating alone at Arby’s must have been the thing to do.  There were a number of solo diners in the restaurant when I got there.  Like almost every other fast food chain, I have a predictable order.  I get the sandwich they used to call “The Big Montana.”  Now, it’s just a large roast beef.  I got the combo and made it a large.  That’s not something I usually do, but I didn’t know if or when I would get to eat again, so I needed to load up.  Read the rest of this entry »





Fish & Chips

22 11 2009
  • 2418 E. Michigan Avenue
  • Lansing, MI 48912
  • (517) 487-5774
  • No Known Website
  • Menu

Back when we lived in Lansing (a whole two months ago), I accepted a lot of work at MSU thinking I was only going to have a five-minute commute.  Things changed suddenly and I really didn’t want to give up the work, but now, my commute was going to be over an hour.  When I work multiple days in a row, it’s not really worth driving back to Kalamazoo.  By the time I get home, it’s bed time then I have to turn around and drive back. 

I tried Pricelining hotels, but that’s impossible on a football weekend, so I just went to Hotels.com and took the cheapest room I could find.  I was staying two nights, so that was a good chunk out of my pay for the weekend.  When it came to meals, I did my best to get by as cheap as I could, but still leave satisfied. 

When lunch rolled around on Thursday, I immediately thought of a desolate shack on Michigan Avenue that I was always interested in trying but afraid to drag J to.  I didn’t really know what I was going to find, but I assumed it would be cheap, quick, and it put off one of the fast food chains for one more meal.

Fish & Chips is on East Michigan Avenue in Lansing right at the corner of Foster Avenue.  It looks like the building was a fast food chain in a previous life, but I really couldn’t tell you which one.  It’s a pretty cookie cutter building with a sun room that was a popular feature in the 80′s.  I read somewhere that it may have been an Arthur Treacher’s Fish & Chips from the 70′s. Read the rest of this entry »





Dolly’s Pizza

9 11 2009
  • 719 Brookside Drive
  • Lansing, MI 48917
  • (517) 327-0077
  • Website
  • Menu

Another weekend on the road back in East Lansing for work.  I was on my own for a hotel, so I was on the look out for the cheapest I could find.  That’s not an easy task on a football weekend, but I was able to find one for under $50/night.  It was the Motel 6 on Saginaw Highway.  Not a five-star hotel by any stretch of the imagination..hell, lucky if it was one, but all I really needed was a bed for a few hours and it did serve that purpose and I’m sure I’ll be staying there a lot this winter.

Before bed though, I needed food.  There aren’t many places in Delta Township where J and I didn’t eat.  That area of Lansing is one of the major shopping districts and we made trips out that way once a week.  We almost never did pizza on that side of town though, so I pretty much had my pick.  There was only one chain out there that wasn’t on the south side where we lived.  Even though I read a so-so review a year or so ago, I decided to give it a shot. 

Dolly’s Pizza is a chain out of White Lake, Michigan and most of their stores are in the Detroit area.  They were voted Best Pizza in Michigan at some point by the Michigan Restaurant Association yet they never say what year that was. 

The only Lansing location is in Delta Township on Brookside Drive.  It’s in a strip mall anchored by an Outback Steakhouse on Saginaw Highway.  Like most chains, Dolly’s is a strictly carry-out/delivery business.  The store front is mostly kitchen with a small waiting area that included a couple chairs and some old Sports Illustrated magazines.  Read the rest of this entry »





Menna’s Joint – East Lansing

24 10 2009
  • 115 Albert Avenue
  • East Lansing, MI 48823
  • (517) 351-3827
  • Website
  • Menu

Another weekend, another trip back to East Lansing for work.  Fortunately, we still have control of the apartment in Lansing, so I could bring an air mattress, the laptop, and a little TV and be comfortable for a couple days. 

My weekend started early Saturday morning amongst the gloomy, rainy conditions.  By the time lunch rolled around, I needed to get someplace warm. 

I was working near the IM West Building at MSU which means there isn’t many options within walking distance.  That’s my only complaint about the MSU campus.  I work mainly at the athletic facilities and I can’t walk anywhere to get a sandwich, so I hopped in my truck and headed to Grand River Avenue where I found lunch.

Menna’s Joint in East Lansing is on Albert Avenue near Abbot Road just a block of Grand River Avenue.  It took a long time to find parking.  There isn’t much street parking in this part of downtown and the public lot across the street was full.  I finally doubled back to the public lot near Dublin Square Read the rest of this entry »





Pixie

9 10 2009
  • 302 N. Mission Street
  • Mt. Pleasant, MI 48858
  • (989) 772-7494
  • Website
  • Menu
Pixie on North Mission in Mt. Pleasant.

Pixie on North Mission in Mt. Pleasant.

Back before we had any idea we were moving to Kalamazoo, I took a job in Mt. Pleasant for this weekend.  From Lansing, it’s not so bad, but it gets to be a long way from Kalamazoo.  Fortunately, my employer got me a hotel for Friday night, so I was able to travel during the afternoon.

When I got into town, I checked in then went looking for food.  I tried a BBQ place recommended in the hotel book, but they were closed.  I then went to a restaurant downtown I saw a billboard for on the way in.  Luckily they had a menu outside and it wasn’t quite what I was looking for. 

By now, I was hungry and a little annoyed.  I just wanted to eat. 

As I was driving to my first two locations, I drove by an old drive in on Mission Street.  I knew I was close so I went looking for it again. 

Pixie is on North Mission and East Chippewa Street in Mt. Pleasant.  I would say it’s a retro 50′s style diner, but they actually got their start in 1948 when Norman LaBelle decided to open a restaurant.  The Pixie has been in business ever since. 

At one time, the Pixie was a drive in with carhops and a complete menu.  Today, they’re a cross between fast food and casual dining.  Read the rest of this entry »





Celia’s Corner Cafe

8 10 2009
  • 437 W. Stewart Street
  • Owosso, MI 48867
  • (989) 725-7051
  • Website
  • Menu
Celias Corner Cafe on Stewart Street in Owosso

Celia's Corner Cafe on Stewart Street in Owosso

About a month ago, J decided she wanted a new car. We did the usual Internet research and found a couple cars she liked. The first car we test drove was at the Ford dealership in Okemos. We were kind of turned off by the salesman and didn’t feel like we were getting a fair price, so we left. She was mad at me for a few hours until she found something better in Owosso.

The next morning, we make the trip, test drove the car and bought it. We were really looking for something comfortable for the honeymoon since we were going to be in the car for two week straight. We put pretty close to 2500 miles on it in a week and a half, so when we got home, it was time for an oil change.

The dealer we bought it from gave us the first oil change free and any service it needed after the trip, so we really wanted to take it back there before we moved to Kalamazoo.

After the service was done, J and I started to drive back towards Lansing to do some packing. Before we dove into that, we decided to get some breakfast/lunch.

On the way into town, we saw a billboard for a cafe. We passed the building on the way into town and decided that was going to be our place. Read the rest of this entry »








Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.