Tuesday, February 12, 2013

L'as Du Fallafel, Paris, France

I took about 10 cell phone photos (on my crappy phone) of the facade of this place (here's the Wiki page), because for some reason I found it HILARIOUS that underneath their neon OPEN sign are the words: "As recommended by Lenny Kravitz." There were also photographs of Lenny Kravitz all over the windows. Lenny Kravitz likes falafel!


L'As du Fallafel does indeed serve up a really amazing falafel sandwich, stuffed with nuggets of eggplant and hummus (take note if you ever find yourself in the Jewish Quarter in Paris!) (PS: I actually liked the falafel from a nearby competitor a bit more, but this was still far better than anything I've ever had in the US. Sorry Oren's–which I've reviewed a few posts earlier, declaring it to serve to the best falafel sandwich I've ever had. That winning title for Oren's still stands up in the States, though).

Unfortunately, for me, but not for Lenny, the french fries did not match up to the falafel sandwich, although they still worked, if you know what I mean (ie, I finished them all). The fries were a bit on the thick side, which is not an issue for me, but they unfortunately suffered from being a bit mealy on the inside (sigh–that seems to be a pretty consistent problem with a lot of fries I've tasted lately); however, despite these shortcomings, they did still manage to eke out some pretty decent flavor. Extra points for being piping hot.
Above you are seeing remnants of a once big bowl of fries.


Price: I can't remember, but I have the receipt somewhere. It's in Euros!
Portion Size: Large
Texture: A bit mealy on the inside, very slight crisp on the outside. Could use more frying/cooking time.

Greasiness Level: 3 out of 5 (standard grease level)
Seasoning: None (really needed it)
Fried In: I believe some sort of vegetable oil

Condiments: salt, pepper, ketchup, hot sauce

Overall Quality of French Fries: 5.75 out of 10

Side Note: Lenny Kravitz approves!

Monday, February 4, 2013

The Cheesecake Factory, Freehold, NJ

Overall, my dining experience at The Cheesecake Factory was not satisfactory. People of America, do not be angry with me; I simply did not have a very good experience. I know that waiting 45 minutes to 2 hours with a vibrating beeper hanging around your person should by default guarantee a fine dining adventure, but I cannot lie. (Admittedly, I went here with my cousins who had a coupon, and who can turn that down?) 

My veggie burger with a side of fries arrived, and immediately one of my cousins remarked, eyes widening, " Did they just put a bunch of salt on your burger?" I looked down at my open-face meatless burger and confirmed that yes, indeed, someone must have poured a crapload of salt on my burger–the glistening crystals cut through the dimly lit dining area, piled high like frosting on the mound of mushy, flat, brown "veggie burger" (was that amazing prose, or what? Yes, it's terrible. It sort of reads like a romance novel. Without the romance. Just bad fries).

So, as far as the burger went, in the words of my 5-year old niece, it was undeniably "GROSS." Mushy and flavorless in that weird "veggie-burger-made-with-cardboard" sort of way, the salt could do nothing to save it. But that was the burger. As for the fries, well, not so great either.

The fries were undercooked, pale, flavorless. I mean, white as an old man's legs. Or something like that. They also had some weird dry texture to them, kind of like mushy peanut butter.

At least the Big Gulp sized Diet Coke came with free refills. The Cheesecake Factory provided me with a totally weird and bizarre almost Disneyesque (read: 500-page menu, or how ever many pages it is–how is it that The Cheesecake Factory menu on the Big Bang Theory is only a double-sided sheet?!) food experience. *PLEASE NOTE: This is not to say some of their other dishes don't taste "good," so please withhold your angry emails about their delicious cheesecake varieties.

Price: $3.95
Portion Size: Medium
Texture: Mushy, peanut-butter texture

Greasiness Level: 3 out of 5 (standard grease level)
Seasoning: None
Fried In: Canola Oil

Condiments: salt, pepper, ketchup

Overall Quality of French Fries: 3.75 out of 10. Kinda Super Gross.