Thursday, January 17, 2008

A "Bleck" and a "Yum"

First the "Yum!"

Pizza Bella, 1810 Baltimore. Their menu is not extensive - it's basically on the placemat - salads, antipasta and wood-fired pizzas - but everything was wonderful. During our visit, we enjoyed a zesty caesar salad, and split a Margherita pizza and a Proscuitto pizza between three of us.

They have a nice, wide selection of wines and beers (I secretly loved that Bud was not on the list!).

We finished off with Tiramisu and Italian gelato and some GIGANTIC cups of nice dark-roast coffee.

The atmosphere is very urban, yet comfortable and the wood-fired ovens made the place warm and inviting. Definitely try this place if you get the chance. Be warned: We were there on a Wednesday evening and it was packed!


Now, the "Bleck!"
Granny's Chicken Ranch, The Legends (in the previous McBride's pad site)

Who doesn't love some pan-fried chicken or chicken-fried chicken every once in a while? I do, so I had high hopes that Granny's might be the place for me.

Alas, no. This place is no Stroud's. Nor KT Fryer's.

I ordered the Chicken-fried Chicken. My son got drumsticks. We both got the mashed potatoes, green beans, biscuits and cinnamon rolls. After dinner, we both agreed that the cinnamon rolls were (by far) the best part of the meal.

I'm not sure what Granny puts in her gravy, but I expect chicken fried chicken gravy to be mostly white - a creamy gravy. Granny's gravy is a beige color. And lumpy. I suspect it might have been some sort of sausage gravy - the type you put on biscuits - which (trust me) does NOT work on chicken. But even after scraping all the gravy off, the chicken was overcooked. The drumsticks were too. And the biscuits basically just tasted like lard and flour.

Maybe Granny's is just going through some New Restaurant growing pains. That said, next time I want chicken fried or pan-fried chicken, I'll wait for the new Stroud's to open.

And one more thing - a pet peeve of mine: If you are going to put your menu on your website, make sure that it is READABLE. Granny's isn't.