Shagwells for the Win(gs)!

Shagwells on the RidgeRestaurant wings, while a steady go-to in the superfoodies world, have been an infrequent guest of late. We just don’t seem to make the effort much anymore, as a certain element does not fit in well healthwise with our way of eating.  Surprisingly, it is not the delicious, crispy wing creating, deep fried process itself, or the chicken skin etc. that is our problem point, but the type of oil used to cook said deliciousness. No preaching, we just avoid most processed oils. However, we also like to stay flexible and on the social/public grid in terms of food and health, so we eat less than optimal things from time to time… and this was a time!

Back to one of our most favourite wing haunts: Shagwells on the Ridge! Now long ago, I told L that every where in town claims to possess the “Region’s Best Wings!” and if you aren’t from around here, you might believe this the first time you read such a proud claim, blasted from a hole in the wall’s billboard, and maybe the second time?? But now we notice this faux stamp of culinary success at all sorts of places… heck, they can’t all be true! Which brings us back to Shagwells. No claims of such there that I am aware of, but L awarded his own proclamation of “Best Wings!” in any geographic region, on this very day.

For this reason, we do not usually stray from the pull of the wing basket on our visits, and on Wednesdays they are half price, which is great, but we still have no problem paying full price since they’re well worth it. Good size, crispy, crunchy, not greasy, and a large selection of sauces and/or dry seasonings, they really can’t be beat. Our hearts and tastebuds are solemnly committed to the spicy red pepper dry seasoning, with a side of hot sauce.

We used to order a cider with them (miss you Strongbow), but now we have pretty much switched to wine, and they have a perfect, standard sauvignon blanc, and the good grace not to skimp on the pour.

Of non-food note, they play country music in this here establishment, and L and I enjoyed guessing whether the songs would have a truck, car, beer, whiskey, and/or women in them, and we also noticed that every one in a country song seems to be going somewhere… or somewhere else.

Wouldn’t be fair not to also mention the great service, and though it was less than busy this time, we have been many times in the past where our drink choices and wing preferences were always remembered, always a nice touch.

Head on out to the ridge if you are in need of some fantastic, yet under celebrated, well kept secret wings.

K&L 😀
Shagwells on the Ridge on Urbanspoon

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superproducts! sodastream

sodastreamWow, it’s been awhile since a superproduct has been posted so here we go! While this is not a food or drink itself, the sodastream is the creator of fantastic, on tap, low cost soda.  And when we say “soda” we actually mean just plain old, straight up carbonated water.

We were buying, and lugging, and storing, and consuming, and of course disposing of many bottles of soda every week.  Lots of bother, lots of space consumption, lots of waste, and lots of $. I had mentioned picking up one of these slick little units a while back… but L was not particularly enthusiastic, so we just didn’t bother. Eventually though, I pulled the idea out again and by this time, enough hassle had gone on that L was getting downright chipper about the prospect.

sodastreamI did a bit of research and price hunting and ended up buying the Genesis model, as I wanted to be able to use both the large and small bottles. Wow, what an immediate love affair! We just fill the bottles and keep them in the fridge, takes only a few seconds to turn them into our favourite beverage that doesn’t carry and alcohol percentage. We don’t drink from the bottles so we don’t need to wash them every day, and the sodastream itself really requires no maintenance, it doesn’t even require power. The only requirement is to pop in a CO2 cartridge once in awhile, and we get them as an exchange at Home Outfitters, and use a coupon, so the cost is only around $17 or so.

If you happen to like flavoured sodas, they have over 60 to choose from. We don’t drink em, so we can’t comment on the taste, but perhaps one of you good readers could send us any comments you may have from that side of the glass? Pick one up today and get your fizz on…

(To check out all of our superproducts! just click on the “superproducts!” category below)

Like a Boss!

Boss HogsBoss Hog’s Smokin’ Chophouse that is! Well, superfoodies finally headed a bit further west than we usually do to attend a happy 40th 🙂 in London, ON, on Saturday. Excellent party, interesting people, and an actual bar set up (nice!)… superfoodies took particular advantage of that feature, and our wise and caring host took care of our cab ride back to the hotel. This kind of Saturday however, leads to the inevitable “Sunday Morning After”, and this time was no exception.

The only thing that will expel us from our hotel room earlier than checkout time is an overwhelming need to find a “cure” for what ails us! We set out just before 11 and had no plan in mind.  We pulled into a Golden Griddle, but neither of us really wanted to go that predictable route.  We searched the google machine while in the parking lot, and found a little diner not too far away where we could get some standard, but hopefully less chain-like, breakfast fare.

On the way there, we spotted a sign that is a nickname of one of the kiddos and while we pulled in to take a pic, we spotted a little BBQ joint… and though just 11 am… it was open! Score! Lets have some ribs 🙂

Boss Hog’s had obviously gotten a head start on the rest of the city, since the 15-20 table, clean, and nicely decorated joint, was still empty. We were quickly greeted and told to sit where we liked.  Menus in hand, a drink offer was met with my usual answer on days like these: a caesar with extra spice, and L went with club soda.

When the drinks arrived, we mostly knew what we wanted… and then the server mentioned that it just happened to be all you can eat rib day. Um, easy call for L, he went with that, and I got the rib and brisket combo with a side of sweet potato fries and mayo, and the fries just happened to be my favourite: lattice! We also had to go with the Loaded Potato Soup to share for a starter.

The caesar went down fast, and was delicious and spiced perfectly… tasted like a couple more, but a long car ride ahead steered me to a soda instead. The soup arrived and it was as great as loaded potato soup should be, so let me point out the best reason to order it: it is loaded with pulled pork, not just a little garnish on top. We are already feeling a million times better. As we waited for our entrees, the country music played, and L regaled me with his extensive knowledge of the Smokey and the Bandit movies (1,2, AND 3) and the Dukes of Hazzard. The things you learn…

Here come the ribs… and brisket… etc… Big portions compared to the other smoke/bbq places we have previously reviewed here and the cost was comparatively lower.  Based on this, we thought it might not be as good as the other places, but have to say, it was fantastic.  Meat came off the bones easily, but the meat still held a solid, but tender texture. The sauce looked thick and super sweet, but it wasn’t at all, just tasty and added to the flavours instead of overwhelming. It had an undercurrent of vinegar and apple.  The brisket was thin sliced, and though I’m a fan of thicker, it was still enjoyable due to the pull apart, but still the right amount of chew going on, as well as a nice smoked flavour. Have to include a mention of the little corn bread muffin on my order too, just how I like it, didn’t crumble to dust when picked up and the right amount of sweetness.  Perfect.

L downed 2 plates of ribs and some brisket and lattice fries and made himself a “slider” with the last of the brisket and the soft little garlic bun on his plate and that was all folks! Over and out. So happy that we stumbled across a place with such great service and food. On the way out, noticed a truck full of wood and an add on to the restaurant, sporting a large chimney. We presumed that this was the “smoker” area and a new load of “fuel”. We were glad to see that they are obviously doing the real deal here. So head on in if you’re in the area… the Boss wants to see you.

K&L 😀

Boss Hog's Smokin' Chophouse on Urbanspoon

The place so nice they named it twice! twice!

Burgers & Burgers ArubaHave to get a new post up now to push the previous post out of the top spot, since it has some negativity in it… and it’s been up long enough…be gone! (one post below lol)

Onto one of my favourite things to write about (mostly… I’m looking at you vanishing Snacky’s): Aruba food times!!! On one more sad note, our beloved Rembrandt Dutch restaurant, discovered the previous year, was now under “new management” which definitely did NOT mean “better” management.  So off we harrumphed, into the night, hungry and looking for somewhere to land. We wandered a bit, out of good ideas, new ideas etc… and eventually wound up at a place that we had checked out many times, and always bypassed for some reason. Not because there was anything really wrong with it, it just seemed to be very standard and unexciting.  It sure looked a lot better to us after a couple of growling trips up and down the main strip. What place is this you ask, that finally earned our resigned stamp of: oh I can’t walk another step, let’s just eat here! approval…? As I said, it’s named twice, and even named so in two ways… first way: Dushi Bagel and Burgers & Burgers, and therefore you guessed the second way: Burgers & Burgers.  Hmmm, not sure Burgers & Burgers is the most scintillating name, but dammit, you know what you’re getting… unless you’re there for the bagels, then you know they will be Dushi bagels.  (Dushi is a word in the Papiamento language of Aruba)

Anyway, in we went, and it was clean and elevated from the street a bit, and for some reason they had an Oktoberfest thing going on (guess because it was October, I’m smart like that). Not terribly busy, and luckily that was reflected in the attentive service we received.

An awesome vodka and soda for L and a wine for me were quickly shuttled to the table.  We looked around and got an idea of how this food show was going to go, so L ordered a big double burger with cheese, and some gorgeous (don’t care if they come from a freezer) steak cut fries, and I got an Argentinean burger that came with a side of chimichurri and coleslaw.  The atmosphere slightly removed from the street, but with a full entertaining view, was quite perfect and relaxing as we waited for food to arrive. And it did 🙂 with the fun metal martini (or sundae perhaps?) shaped fry presenter, and big cutting boards with our lovely burgers perched on top. Did they look like prefab patties? Yep! Did we really care? Uh… no.  Did we remember to ask for a big squirt bottle of mayo like we had spotted at another table for our fries ? YES!

(Pictures first of course, now….) Dig in! It was exactly what we needed and expected. Standard goodness, nothing fancy, just good, reasonably priced food, and a really comfortable atmosphere that we would recommend if you just want a decent place to get some good food, hang out, and take in the street traffic… and also consume an entire bottle of mayo on your fries with no side eyes from your server 😀

K&L 😀