Skyline Chili – W. 86th St., Indianapolis

7 10 2009
  • 3524 W. W. 86th Street
  • Indianapolis, IN 46268
  • (317) 872-2266
  • Website
  • Menu
Skyline Chili on W. 86th Street in Indianapolis, Indiana.

Skyline Chili on W. 86th Street in Indianapolis, Indiana.

Our trip was winding down and we needed one more hotel before making our way back to Mid-Michigan.  We initially planned on driving the whole way back to Lansing because I was supposed to work on Friday.  That got cancelled so we decided to break the nine-hour trip into two parts with a stop over in Indianapolis.

 

I really didn’t want to spend a lot on a hotel, so I did Priceline.  I said I wanted a hotel for $30 and someone took the offer.  It wasn’t a four star in downtown, but all we really needed was a place to sleep. 

As we were driving to our hotel, we passed a Skyline Chili.  Neither of us had ever eaten at one and the only reason I had ever heard of it is because of the Big ‘n Rich song Coming To Your City which has the lyric…

Well we blew through Cincinatti
And we all got really happy
Grabbed a bowl of that Skyline Chili along the way

Since our trip was essentially a country music/BBQ experience, it makes sense that we headed back for some chili.

Skyline Chili has six locations in the Greater Indianapolis area.  The one we chose was the location on West 86th Street on the northwest side of town.  It’s in a little strip mall just off Michigan Road with a number of other fast food and chain restaurants.  Read the rest of this entry »

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Krystal – Pigeon Forge, TN

4 10 2009
  • 2041 Parkway
  • Pigeon Forge, TN 37863
  • (865) 908-3210
  • Website
  • Menu
Krystal on The Parkway in Pigeon Forge, TN

Krystal on The Parkway in Pigeon Forge, TN

For someone who likes to think I know a lot about food and restaurants, I felt a little ignorant the first time I saw a sign for Krystal.  J and I were driving through Sevierville, TN on the way to our cabin.  I knew it looked like fast food, but I had never heard of it.  J said she thought it was like a White Castle.  That was a turn off to me, but we also thought it would be fun to try something new. 

As we were leaving Pigeon Forge on Wednesday morning, J suggested stopping.  It was early and I was hungry.  We had a three hour drive to Nashville where we already had lunch plans, so getting a little something to eat wasn’t a bad idea. 

The Krystal in Pigeon Forge is right on the Parkway.  We pulled in probably a little after 9:00 and the place was empty.  In fact, we were wondering if it was even open.  There were maybe two cars in the lot, but it looked dark inside.  We pulled in and saw people moving.  I tried the door and it opened so we went in. 

Krystal is apparently a pretty large chain.  They were founded in 1932 in Chattanooga, TN.  One of the original owners actually visited White Castle restaurants and took notes.  Today, Krystal is commonly referred to as the White Castle of the South.  Read the rest of this entry »





Harland Sanders Cafe & Museum – Corbin, KY

1 10 2009
  • 688 US Highway 25W
  • Corbin, KY 40701
  • (606) 528-2163
  • Website
  • Menu
Harland Sanders Cafe & Museum

Harland Sanders Cafe & Museum

Two chains in a row. I know what you’re thinking. And to make things worse…a KFC? Again, I know, BUT this isn’t just any KFC. It’s the original KFC. 

The Sanders Cafe & Museum is on US 25 West on the outskirts of Corbin, KY. It’s not in a highly developed area. It sits along a two lane road right next to a gas station. Ever since my first trip to the region in 2006, I’ve wanted to stop, but usually my travel companions aren’t as excited about it as I am. 

This time, I had J and I knew she would enjoy, so we pulled off the Interstate and followed the signs to chicken. 

From the outside, this place looks nothing like a KFC. If it wasn’t for the modern signs, it would be hard to even tell. Instead, it looks like the original cafe. The hotel and service station are long gone, but there is a lot left of the building that gave us Kentucky’s greatest gift.  Read the rest of this entry »





Qdoba Mexican Grill – Delta Township

30 08 2009
  • 5415 W. Saginaw Highway
  • Lansing, MI 48917
  • (517) 977-0063
  • Website
  • Menu
Qdoba Mexican Grill on Saginaw Highway in Delta Township

Qdoba Mexican Grill on Saginaw Highway in Delta Township

I don’t think I need to tell you about our shopping patterns again….do I?  Of course, we were out in Delta Township and it was lunch time.  We weren’t in the mood to hunt out a sit down place and McDonald’s didn’t sound good either. 

I remember seeing a few months ago that Qdoba was moving into the space that used to be a Ya-Ya’s Chicken.  That was a while ago, so I assumed it was open. 

I’ve only eaten at Qdoba once in my life.  I used to work with a woman that loved it.  She would have lived inside Qdoba if they would have let her.  The closest one to us was forty minutes away, but if we were ever anywhere near it, I would have to take her for a burrito.  Only once did I actually eat lunch with her.  I wasn’t impressed, but I wasn’t turned off either. 

The newest Qdoba in the Lansing area is on Saginaw Highway across from the Lansing Mall.  Parking around the building isn’t great.  The entrance is actually on the side of the building and there are a few angled parking spots there.  If there’s a lot of traffic in the area of that strip mall, finding a close spot could be a challenge. 

The restaurant is set up sort of like a Subway.  There’s a counter where you order and it’s put together right in front of you.  I don’t like rice and it seems like all fast food Mexican likes to use rice filler.  Qdoba is no different.  That limits the options for me.  There were some things that sounded good, but I had a feeling it would be 90 percent rice and 10 percent meat.  Instead, I ordered three tacos.  Read the rest of this entry »





Sonic Drive-In – Birch Run

23 08 2009
  • 8650 Main Street
  • Birch Run, MI 48415
  • (989) 624-4700
  • Website
  • Menu
Sonic Drive In on Main Street in Birch Run.

Sonic Drive In on Main Street in Birch Run.

A few weeks ago, I put up a press release about Sonic opening a store in Birch Run.  I knew it was just a matter of time before we would find an excuse to make the trip east.

The Sonic in Birch Run is the chain’s fifth Michigan store.  It’s located on Main Street in front of the Prime Outlets.  You can see it as soon as you get off the Interstate.  The store has an exit and entrance from Main Street which was actually closed off when we first went by because of a lot of traffic, but most people will actually enter off Beyer Road in the back. 

When we took a trip to Flint just a few weeks after the Sonic opening there, we actually had to wait in a line to get a stall.  I assumed the same thing would happen in Birch Run.

We finally made our way to Sonic a little before six o’clock.  The main entrance is accessible from Beyer Road.  Since we were coming from the Outlet Mall, we were already close.  We pulled in to the drive way and I noticed a stall right away.  Instead of having two rows of stalls on one side of the building, they have one row on either side of the building.  Read the rest of this entry »





Sonic Drive In – Oregon, OH

3 08 2009
  • 2925 Navarre Avenue
  • Oregon, OH 43616
  • (419) 691-6600
  • Website
  • Menu
The Sonic Drive In in Oregon, OH

The Sonic Drive In in Oregon, OH

So, I’m sure many of you were expecting a review of one of Michael Symon’s restaurants in this spot.  I mean, if I’m going to Cleveland, you’d think I’d check out one of my favorite chef’s places, right?  Normally, you would be right, but this time, I was tired and already promised J we’d find a Sonic on the way home.  In addition to that, neither of us were really dressed for dinner at a fancy restaurant.  We would have been ok for lunch, but would have felt out of place at dinner.

We left Cleveland at about 5:30.  Had we used the GPS to look, we could have found a Sonic in Cleveland, but I already wrote down an address for one near Toledo.  Our original plan was just to go to Sandusky and Toledo was the closest one that was on the way home.  I had been planning that stop for days.

There are two Sonic’s in the Toledo area and both are in suburbs.  We chose the one in Oregon because it wasn’t that far off the Interstate and on the northwest side of the city.  On the way from Cleveland, I missed my turn to stay on I-90, so we ended up taking OH-2 until it turned into a two lane road.  We had about a half hour drive through the Ohio countryside which was fine with me.  When we got into town, OH-2 turned into Navarre Avenue.  A few blocks later, it ran into the Interstate we needed to head home. Read the rest of this entry »





A & W Restaurant – E. Oakland Ave.

28 07 2009
  • 427 E. Oakland Avenue
  • Lansing, MI 48906
  • (517) 485-3950
  • Website
  • Menu
The A & W Restaurant on East Oakland Avenue in Lansing.

The A & W Restaurant on East Oakland Avenue in Lansing.

As I’ve mentioned in the past, I still haven’t figured out the fascination with Sonic Drive-In’s.  J, on the other hand, loves the place.  Mostly because of their Limeade.  While watching TV the other night, we saw a commercial for A & W and they were promoting their new Fruit Flavored Limeades.  The commercial caught her attention and the next chance we got, we headed to A & W.

There are two A & W Restaurant in Lansing.  One is on West Saginaw Highway.  The other is on East Oakland.  We chose the Oakland store because it was the one I knew.  The A & W is at the corner of East Oakland Avenue and North Cedar Street.  Like many businesses in the area right now, their parking lot is only accessible from one street because of the CSO project. 

As we were pulling up to the stoplight at Cedar Street, I had serious doubts that they were open.  It was lunch time, but there was only one car in the parking lot.  It looked desserted.  As I pulled into the parking, there was a car that drove around to the drive thru window so we knew they were open. 

We were wanting to eat in the store because our next stop was grocery shopping.  It wouldn’t make sense to take our meals with it.  The inside of the store is tiny.  Very, very tiny.  There’s an order counter that only has one register and almost no counter space.  There are less than ten tables jammed into the small space…most of which are two tops.  Read the rest of this entry »