Tuesday, March 31, 2009

IT' IN THE BAG! WEEKLY GUEST FOOD REVIEW (03/31/09)

From the Weekly Mailer's -What’s For Dinner?

It’s In The Bag!

In this day and age we all seem so busy. Work, shuttling children to their next event, running errands, household chores, before long- our day can get away from us. Our food habits sometimes suffer from this wave of busyness. Case in point, on a busy work day at lunch time, I walked into a fast food restaurant that I wasn’t familiar with. The place was busy with people, just like myself who needed to refuel with a quick bite to eat. As I stood in line, I took a deep breath and looked around. The employees looked frazzled and the patrons equally so. Staring at the menu on the wall, nothing seemed to entice me, but I knew I needed to eat. It was easy to see that most of those waiting for their order had other places to be and, like myself, were simply trying to get their food and be on their way. Some days are like that. If everyday is like that then that’s another story! Breakfast, lunch, or dinner are the little moments that should be savored, even under time restraints. It’s good to remember that we are not just feeding that empty part in our tummies but utilizing our sense of smell, taste and sight. It really helps when a restaurant can appeal to all of those qualities. A week later, I found myself walking into another restaurant, at the same busy lunch time. I was greeted by the friendly staff, cozy fireplace and an inviting menu. This time, I drew in a deep breath and felt quite relaxed. When I looked around, I saw patrons smiling in conversation and with that I placed my order to stay rather than to go. I knew that when it came taking a breather and getting a good lunch, this one had it in the bag!

Places to Visit:

Gonzo’s/ Bent Bean
2101 Overland Avenue, Burley
Hours: Mon.-Thurs. 6 a.m. -8 p.m./ Fri. 6 a.m. -10 p.m./ Sat. 7 a.m. -10 p.m./ Sun. 7 a.m.- 4 p.m.
Take Out: 878-SUBS
Fax: 878-SUBS (Call before faxing an order)


Located within Mr. Gas, Gonzo’s and Bent Bean have recently combined to provide both delicious coffee and yummy subs all in one spot. The warm and modern decor is welcoming, while the glowing fireplace and couches invite you to hang out a while. Ordering a sub is a fun process in which brown lunch bags are preprinted with different sandwiches such as a Turkey, Bacon and Ham Club, to a Chicken Curry served on Honey Wheat bread, priced at $4.25. Build it the way you like it by checking off options that include six types of cheeses and spreads, as well as several choices of mustards and vegetable toppings. The deli meats are hand cut and the bread for the subs are made on the premises. Add a side order like a hot bowl of Chicken Noodle Soup or Chips for $1.00. The beverage menu is quite diverse and features choices of Latte, Espresso, Tazo Herbal Teas, Steamed Cider, several flavors of Hot Chocolate and Smoothies. The Smoothies are made with real fruit puree and if you don’t order whipped cream and sprinkles on top, then they are fairly low in calories as well. Smoothies are priced at $3.85 for a Grande. Save room to check out their baked goods which may tempt you with rich, fudge brownies, oatmeal cookies, croissants, scones, and muffins. The food is quite tasty and with your Kick Back Card your eleventh specialty drink is on the house! Once ordering is completed, find a seat or cozy up to the couch and break out your laptop as they have Wi-Fi. Read from one of the magazines found on the coffee table or request a game such as Candyland or Jenga from one of the friendly employees. Sampler coffees are usually available for tasting and they also sell specialty coffee and tea by the bag and unique gift items as well. Live Coffee House Music events are held from time to time so call ahead to find out when the next one is scheduled. If your pressed for time that’s okay, just head to the drive through!

**BEHIND THE SCENE**
I went back to Gonzo’s / Bent Bean a second time and ordered a cup of Tortilla-Chicken soup for $1 and a Blueberry Scone. The soup comes in a small to go cup with some crackers and I have to say it was really delicious! The base of the soup was very creamy and had bits of corn, blackbean, and chunks of Chicken. The small serving was actually very filling and hit the spot. The Scone was dense and rich. I washed it all down with a sampler of their Coconut coffee which was free. The whole thing set me back about $3.50.

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