Triple XXX Family Restaurant – West Lafayette, IN

1 10 2009
  • 2 N. Salisbury Street
  • West Lafayette, IN 47906
  • (765) 743-5373
  • Website
  • Menu
Triple XXX Family Restaurant on Salisbury Street in West Lafayette, IN

Triple XXX Family Restaurant on Salisbury Street in West Lafayette, IN

If you’ve figured out J and I, it should come as no surprise that we chose to take a honeymoon that revolves around food. After the wedding, we loaded up the car and headed to East Tennessee. It was too far to make in one night, so we decided to stop in Louisville for the night. Since we were in no hurry, the first stop on our culinary excursion was in West Lafayette, IN at a place we saw on Diner’s, Drive-In’s, and Dives.

The Triple XXX Family Restaurant is on the hill in West Lafayette just down the street from Purdue University. It’s a 24 hour place that serves good, cheap grub for those late “study breaks.” It’s been so long since I saw the segment on Triple D and the building we found was not what I was expecting for some reason.

Triple XXX (named after the Root Beer brand they serve) is an old drive in on the corner of State & Salisbury. The car stalls have turned into parking and the only business they do is inside. The building itself is not huge, but it’s bigger than you think. There are no tables, only lunch counters. They weave around the building so there are a lot more seats than I thought there would be. Read the rest of this entry »





South Side Soda Shop and Diner – Goshen, IN

20 06 2009
  • 1122 S. Main Street
  • Goshen, IN 46526
  • (574) 534-3790
  • Website
  • Menu
The South Side Soda Shop & Diner on South Main in Goshen, IN

The South Side Soda Shop & Diner on South Main in Goshen, IN

A couple years back, J and I were watching Diner’s, Drive-In’s, and Dives and we saw a segment on an old soda shop in Goshen, IN.  When we moved to Lansing, we pulled out a map to see where in Indiana Goshen is.  The map showed it just being outside of Elkhart.  It also showed the town as being pretty close to the Indiana Toll Road.  We figured it would take us about a half hour out of our way to make a stop on our way home from Chicago one weekend. 

So, one weekend, we made the detour and stopped.  Problem was, stupid me forgot to see if they were open on Sunday.  They’re not so we made the trip for nothing.  J wasn’t very happy with me. 

On our most recent trip home, we headed back towards Lansing on Friday.  As we were sitting in traffic on I-94 near Portage, IN, J asked if we missed the exit to get to South Bend.  We had, but I had her turn the GPS on because I knew there was a road from Michigan City to South Bend that we hadn’t missed yet.  As we waited to get through traffic, we made the decision to try again.  This time, J called to make sure they’d be open…and they were.

The South Side Soda Shop and Diner is on South Main Street just south of Downtown Goshen.  It’s sits on the corner an the only parking is in the neighborhood on the streets.  We pulled up near dinner time on Friday night, so there was already quite a crowd of people packing the small diner.  We parked a few blocks down and walked back. Read the rest of this entry »





Guy Fieri Imposter Fools KC Broadcaster

7 05 2009

This is too funny.  FSKansas City was fooled by a person that looked like Guy Fieri at Monday’s night’s game.  Someone got their ass reemed for this I bet.  The quality is not that goo, but you can tell the guy sounds nothing like Guy Fieri…

Awesome.  The REAL Guy Fieri posted this on his Twitter page.

So check this out, some cat is playin me in KC. Crazy, just for da record, I am home and was not in KC. Thanks to those keepin an eye out.





Dell Rhea’s Chicken Basket – Willowbrook, IL

2 05 2009
  • 645 Joliet Road
  • Willowbrook, IL 60527
  • (630) 325-0780
  • Website
  • Menu
Dell Rheas Chicken Basket on old Route 66 in Willowbrook, IL

Dell Rhea's Chicken Basket on old Route 66 in Willowbrook, IL

Yup.  We hit another Chicago area Diner’s, Drive-In’s, and Dive’s place.  J and I are back in Chicago for another weekend trip.  We have tickets to a show in Hammond, IN tonight which isn’t far from her parents house.  Her mom and step-dad had a prior commitment during the day, so J and I were on our own for lunch.  I had been wanting to check out another place we saw on Triple D that was only about 20 minutes from her parents.  After they left for the morning, J and I got going and headed to Willowbrook for lunch.

Dell Rhea’s Chicken Basket has been on Joliet Road in Willowbrook for almost 70 years.  Of course, in the early days, Joliet Road was Route 66.  A lot has changed since then.  Interstate 55 is in Dell Rhea’s backyard and the old Mother Road is hidden behind an office park. In fact, J is very familiar with this area.  Her high school speech team used to stay at a Holiday Inn down the road and her grandma was in an area nursing home for a few years yet she had never seen our destination.

It’s not really hard to find and there are signs from IL-83 for the out of towners like us.  The building is a classic Route 66 icon.  There’s a big neon sign out front and the decor hasn’t aged in fifty years.  Parking is a little wierd.  The spots out front are spots that are perpendicular with the building, so you take a sharp 90 degree turn off the road into a spot crossing a lane of traffic in the process. Read the rest of this entry »





Tony’s in Birch Run to be on Triple D?

22 03 2009

Frequent commenter Dan pointed me to an article in the Saginaw News that says Tony’s Restaurant in Birch Run may be featured on my favorite show Diner’s, Drive-In’s, and Dives.

“They got an overwhelming amount of calls about us being on their show,” said Steve Fritzler, 10-year owner of the restaurant. “You have to get a certain amount of referrals from customers.”

Fritzler said producers contacted him about three months ago and indicated they wanted to tape this summer.

On the day of filming, posted notices will warn patrons not to enter if they don’t want to appear on TV.

A representative from show producer Page Productions of Minneapolis, Minn., would not confirm whether taping would take place.

Tony’s was one of the places I wanted to stop when we took a trip to Frankenmuth last fall, but I wasn’t sure if it was a place my parents would enjoy.  It definitely sounds like a place J and I would enjoy and it’s now getting bumped up to a higher priority on our list of stops.





The Fly Trap

24 01 2009
  • 22950 Woodward Avenue
  • Ferndale, MI 48220
  • (248 ) 399-5150
  • Website
  • Menu
The Fly Trap on Woodward Avenue in Ferndale.

The Fly Trap on Woodward Avenue in Ferndale.

When I started watching Diner’s, Drive In’s, and Dives, one of the first restaurants I saw was a little joint in Ferndale, MI called the Fly Trap.  At that point, J and I weren’t even dating and I had no idea that I would one day move to Lansing.  Still, the diner looked awesome and I knew if I ever made it to Detroit, I had to find this place.

J and I got up and got going this morning.  We figured since we live in Michigan, we have to go to the North American International Auto Show.  My parents were going to drive up from Eastern Illinois last weekend and go with us, but the weather kept them home.  They weren’t able to make the drive this weekend, so J and I decided to go on our own.  One of the things we really want to do is see as much and do as much in Michigan as we can.  We always took things in Illinois for granted and there are a lot of major events I’ve never been to.  Would you believe I have never been to the Taste of Chicago?  Me!  A guy who blogs about food has never been to one of the premier food events in the country that takes place in my backyard.  We didn’t want to do that in Michigan and the NAIAS is the equivalent to the Taste.

Before heading in to Detroit, we decided to stop and eat first.  I have a short list of places I want to eat at in Detroit and the Fly Trap in neighboring Ferndale was one of them. Read the rest of this entry »





Soooooo Close

13 01 2009

I almost beat Guy Fieri to a restaurant instead of going after I see it on Diner’s, Drive In’s, and Dive’s.   If you watched Triple D last night, you saw a pizza joint on Chicago’s south side called Vito & Nick’s.  When J and I were home for Thanksgiving, Vito & Nick’s was one of the places J’s step-dad suggested.  We chose BBQ instead and went to The Pit Rib House (review HERE) in Hickory Hills.  Now, when we go home in February, we’ll follow Guy again and go check out Vito & Nick’s….





Guy Fieri Replacing Emeril?

23 07 2008

I headed over to Foodnetwork.com tonight to print out a couple recipes I saw on Guy’s Big Bite this afternoon and came across this message.

Is Guy Fieri the next Emeril?

Is Guy Fieri the next Emeril?

Hey Guy Fieri Fans!

Get up close (and very personal) with me, Guy Fieri – as I shoot all-new Guy’s Big Bite episodes with an exciting new twist – a live studio audience. Now’s your chance to hang out with me in Food Network’s incredible NYC studios.

 

We’ll shoot two shows each day – July 28, 29 and 30. So you’ll witness twice the shows and have twice the fun. Bring your sweatbands and BIG appetites – we’ll try to fit everyone into the pool!  

If I had any money at all I’d be on a plane to NYC.  Just a couple months ago, Emeril Live was cancelled on the Food Network then picked up for new episodes by the Fine Living Network.   Now, Food is coming back with a “Live” show (live as in live studio audience not live as in happening as you see it.)

My feeling is the novelty on Emeril wore off.  The “bam” was fun for a while and adding more and more Essence as the audience cheered was wacky at first, but it got tired.  I love Guy Fieri’s shows, so I hope this doesn’t happen to him.  Hopefully it won’t be overdone like Emeril eventually was and they stick to the one new episode a week like they do now.





White Palace Grill – Chicago

23 06 2008
  • White Palace Grill1159 S. Canal St.
  • Chicago, IL 60607
  • (312) 939-7167
  • Website (not working)
  • Menu

Guy Fieri let me down.  That’s painful to say out loud.  My girlfriend and I first heard of the White Palace Grill in downtown Chicago on an episode of Diner’s Drive-In’s and Dives about 24 hour diners.  I was working in Chicago this past weekend and since my girlfriend’s parents live in a Chicago suburb, she decided to come with me and take a long weekend.  We left Lansing around midnight on a Thursday night and got to Chicago a little after two a.m.  We took a detour into the city instead of just heading to her parents.  We’ve been to a handful of places featured on Triple D including two others in Chicago and figured if Guy went there, it must be good.  We were wrong.  Really, really wrong.

White Palace Grill is located just south of the Loop on Roosevelt and Canal Streets.  According to a friend of my girlfriend’s, venturing into this neighborhood at this time of night five years ago would have been scary.  It wasn’t quite a walk in the park now, but it wasn’t really bad.  We parked about a half a block from the diner and walked back.  There’s a huge mall with a lot of high end stores right next door.  The scary thing was all the people just loitering in the street and around the restaurant.  We made our way to the front door and someone behind the counter acknowledged us and told us to sit where we want.  There are two dining rooms.  When you first walk in, there’s the traditional diner setting with a counter and a row of booths along the wall.  Keep going back and there’s more of a dining room with tables and booths.  We sat in the front dining room in a booth along the wall.  The menus were already on the table, so we grabbed a couple and started looking over them.  A bus boy came by with water and wiped the table down.  After that, it was quite a while before a waitress noticed us.  This was just the start of possibly the worst service we’ve ever gotten at a diner. Read the rest of this entry »





Krazy Jim’s Blimpy Burger – Ann Arbor

25 05 2008
  • 551 S. Division StBlimpy Burger
  • Ann Arbor, MI 48104
  • (734) 663-4590
  • Website
  • Menu

Not only is Blimpy Burger the oldest burger joint in Ann Arbor, it’s also one of the most famous places in town.  The humble little shop on the corner of Packard and Division Sts. is voted best burger year after year by a variety of publications and they’ve even been featured on Food Network’s Diner’s Drive-In’s and Dives which somehow I missed. 

I was in Ann Arbor the Big Ten Baseball Championships and needed to find lunch before crew call at U of M.  I had heard of Blimpy Burger and thought it would make a good lunch.  Apparently, half of Ann Arbor thought that too.  The line weaved around the tables inside and right to the door.  The building is small. There’s only room for a handful of tables that line two walls and a couple free stand tables next to the counter.  The service is described as cafeteria style.  You actually walk up to a counter where the cook asks you what you want and he cooks it right there in front of you.

Ordering is a tradition in itself at Blimpy Burger and something I thought was going to be really intimidating.  On their website, they give you instructions for ordering and those same instructions are posted in the restaurants.  For the most part, they’re just to keep the line moving.  It starts out simple.   Everyone who’s ordering must order themselves.  You can’t just send Mom up to get food for everyone.  Your first stop in the process is the deep frier.  A fry cook asks if you want anything deep fried.  Your choices are fries (which are steak fries) or vegetables like onion rings or mushrooms.

After you get your fried food, you make your way to the grill.  The cooks actually put on quite a show and this part can be fun to watch.  The cook will first ask what you want.  Adults have to get at least a double and they go all the way to quints (that’s five burger patties) and beyond.  All the meat is fresh.  What they do is take a disher and make little balls out of fresh beef.  The cook puts those balls on the grill then slams them down into patties.  He had probably five or six orders going at one time with all of them being at least triples.  The patties aren’t huge.  Once slamed down, they’re pretty thin, so a triple isn’t as huge as you’d think.

After the cook asks what you want, the next question is “Do you want any grilled items.”  By this, he means bacon, onions, etc.  Don’t say cheese.  Cheese isn’t grilled.  The guy in front of me made that mistake.  I didn’t want anything, so he moved on to buns.  The regular bun comes standard, but they also have choices of onion or Kaiser rolls for an additional charge.  As the burgers are just about done, the cook turns around again and asks if you want cheese.  They have five choices.  I went with cheddar although the bleu cheese option was there.  The burgers cook a little longer then they are passed on to the cashier who finishes the burgers off with condiments.  There’s even a correct way to handle this process.  Wet condiments first then everything else.  I passed altogether as I just wanted to taste the burger.  The cook appreciated that.  He turned around and said most people don’t do that, but they really should.

It took me about a half hour to get through line.  I elected to take my burger to go since the place was packed, but quite a few people were grabbing trays to stay.  Once I got to my destination, I chowed down.  The burger was delicious.  Blimpy Burger is NOT all hype.  They really do have good food.  The triple was about the size of a double most places.  The cheese was melted into the burger and the burgers were so moist they were just falling apart.  I actually had a hard time finishing the burger and fries which almost never happens.  I just got the small order of fries and with the sandwich, the total was just over six dollars.

Blimpy Burger is an absolute must in Ann Arbor.  Make sure you have plenty of time as I imagine it’s always busy like it was the day I was in there.  This place lived up to the hype as a classic burger joint.  Their slogan is “cheaper than food”…..they could also add “better than food”