Sunday, October 22, 2006

3 Days - 3 Restaurants

What a whirlwind of restaurants and food lately. Of course, my husband going out of town really sparked this eating out spike. And it turned out to be a fairly diverse group of eateries as well.

  1. Zed Café ( – A recent addition to the Lakeside Ave. restaurant scene. It’s now open for dinner Thursday – Saturday and features organic meats and produce along with vegetarian dishes. Highlights included a non-alcoholic libation entitled Love Portion #9 – pomegranate juice and organic lemonade – served in very tall, vase-like glasses; Red Pepper Tart with Roasted Olives – roasted peppers and feta between very thin slices of eggplant; Tea Infused Boiled Eggs that came with the salad; and a Mocha that was about as different as one can get from the Starbucks variety (and since I ordered it without looking at the drink menu, and since mocha was not listed on the drink menu, I think the waiter just made it up!) – My “Mocha” had very little coffee, if any, in it and no steamed milk. It did contain unsweetened melted chocolate which served a similar digestive purpose that an espresso after dinner would. Espresso has always been too bitter for me, but this “Mocha” struck a better balance between flavor and bitter. Since what I had was nowhere to be seen on the menu, it will be interesting if Zed continues to serve it. I would order it again. By the way, this past weekend Zed acquired a license to sell wine.
  2. Positive Vibe Café ( – My friend 007 wanted to take me out for my birthday and we decided to be Positive. Positive Vibe (located in the Stratford Hills Shopping Center off of Forest Hill Ave.) serves as a training facility for persons with disabilities to learn food service skills and to help folks go on to secure employment in the community. The wait staff is made up of volunteers from the community. Positive Vibe also focuses on organic products. Highlights were Avocado Corn Salsa – the salsa had nice avocado chunks and white corn (not too spicy), accompanied by blue corn chips; Buffalo Bistro Steak – I had a choice of the 5 or 10 ounce size, I opted for the smaller version, very tasty and lean, and grilled medium rare; Chocolate Chip Brownie with Vanilla Ice Cream – an intense chocolate brownie made at the restaurant topped with Bev’s ice cream. How could one go wrong? Positive Vibe has live music on Wednesday and Sunday evenings. So, what are you waiting for? Get Positive!
  3. Brio Tuscan Grille ( – Yes, I do occasionally eat at a chain restaurant, especially those who send $10 off coupons around my birthday! My hubby was finally back in town. Yesterday was beautiful and we decided to go to the Art Affair event at Stony Point and eat lunch at Brio’s. Highlights included the Ultimate Cosmopolitan – Grey Goose vodka, Grand Marnier, a splash or cranberry juice for color and a slice of lime; Chicken Milanese Pomodoro – Romano and breadcrumb encrusted chicken breast topped with melted fresh mozzarella nestled in herbed spaghetti and surrounded by Pomodoro sauce. The herbed spaghetti makes this dish and since the tomato sauce surrounds the pasta and does not cover it, I can enjoy the pasta two different ways. The chicken is tasty, too. I almost always get this dish when I go to Brio’s. It has a lot of flavor and it’s so big that I always have leftovers to enjoy for another day. Now, if only they would do a better job at pricing their wine list and if the male waiters would drop the faux Italian image…

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