Sunday, November 24, 2013

Jerusalem Garden - Ann Arbor, MI

A high school friend introduced me to Jerusalem Garden in the summer of 1990, right before we started college.  I was hooked with the first bit of their Falafel with Hummus.  I continued to visit and always ordered the Falafel…. at least for the first 8 years I went there.  The Chicken Shawarma was the next sandwich I tried, amazing!  Once again, a perfect sandwich with fresh ingredients.  I stuck with that sandwich for a couple years, than started surfing the menu.  Never once have I been disappointed.  They are now a regular weekly stop for great food, good staff, and comfort food.
                Jerusalem Garden is known for being a local Cheap Eats spot, but they in no way skimp on the food.  If you like Middleastern food, or just want to try it without spending a lot of money, stop in! 
                BONUS:  They serve RoosRoast Coffee !

The Chicken with Fattoush Salad is our go to meal , we get it with rice pilaf.  It is plenty of food, enough for either two people, or two meals. 

They offer various cookies for dessert.  I was not a kid that grew up on rice pudding, but this is a fun dessert.

They have their menu up on the website, check it out:

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Casey's Tavern - Ann Arbor Michigan

Both Rob and I work for the University of Michigan, live in Ann Arbor, and play in Ann Arbor.  There is great energy here that I just have not found anywhere else.  Rob grew up in the Suburbs, I have tried to escape Ann Arbor, but it is home and we love it here.
Restaurants have come and gone, and right now Ann Arbor is a hub for amazing food, frequently referred to as the Foodie Town of the Midwest.  Sometimes you just want that hometown comfort of good food and good people, and that is what we Love about Casey’s Tavern.   Located on Depot Street, just across from the Amtrak station, this little gem is within site of one of Ann Arbor’s more well-known establishments, the Gandy Dancer.  Casey’s offers a more laid back, neighborhood feel then the formal Gandy Dancer.  Hang out with friends, grab a bit to eat and maybe a pint or two.
                I started going to Casey’s a few times with co-workers when I started working down the road at the Medical School.  I finally convinced Rob to try it out for his birthday dinner in 2007, if I remember the year correctly.  Suzanne was our waitress and treated us like old friends even though we had never met before (at least not in this life time).  Customer Service and how the staff makes us feel when we go to a restaurant is an important part of the experience for us, and Suzanne had us hooked with her smile, laughter, and unconditional friendship.  It was like meeting up with an old friend again.  As we have become regulars there over the years, the usual staff on Friday nights skips to the good beers on tap for out pint selections, and we are even on the call list for when they have Etouffee on the Specials (only a few times a year). 
We have a plush Monkey (Nigel, he’s from England and loves pubs and pints) that frequents restaurants with us; some of the staff got to know his name before they even knew ours.  Nigel likes the attention, we don’t mind, until Steve takes him to the kitchen to met the cooks… he comes back and gives Nigel a cigarette and a shot of vodka… I hear there was a deep fryer scare, Yikes ! 

Nigel Loves the Etouffee:

So… The food!

                The Winter menu has a Meatloaf sandwich (one of Rob’s favorites).  They have a Tuna fish sandwich, but bring it up a notch for the Salmwich… That is right, a Salmon sandwich.  A wonderful selection of sandwiches to chose from, burgers and grilled chicken, hot dogs and brats, salads, tasty appetizers, various specials and desserts.

                   Casey's Favorite is a unique version of a Rueben: Turkey, Pastrami, Slaw, and Dressing.

Their website:

~ Kate

Friday, November 15, 2013

Sharing makes everything taste better

I think that how we are exposed to food as children effects how we view food as adults.
With that thought, here is a little about the food exposure that Rob and I had growing up.

As a child I ate foods from various cultural backgrounds.  My parents were immigrants from Germany and Austria.  We had tenants from all over the world that were like extended family to me, including grad-students from countries like India and Japan.  For me food was about sharing, showing acceptance, and hospitality.
When I visited my Grandparent (both sides) we picked our vegetables fresh every day for the meals.  Almost everything was made from scratch.  With my Dad’s parents we even went to visit the local Amish families for foods like milk, eggs, butter, and some meats.  They lived in the middle of woodlands so hunting for deer and rabbit was always a tasty treat for a special meal.  Summer fishing in the fresh streams for rainbow trout was a light lunch to keep the energy going while we hunted for berries and mushrooms in the woods.  Taking part in gathering and making the food you eat connects you to it, makes it taste better because you know and understand the work it took to get the ingredients.  The more I was involved with the processes of preparing food the more I understood the flavors and how they fit together, enhancing my enjoyment of preparing meals.

                Rob comes from a more ‘American’ home then I did.  His family had a garden so he became aware of and connected to the food as well.  His exposure was not as broad as mine, but he enjoyed home-cooked meals that I didn't have… traditional foods like biscuits and gravy, meatloaf, macaroni and cheese, and jello molds (sometimes with other foods floating in them).

~ Kate
                As a couple we have both continued to expand our tastes and really think about the food we eat, the flavors and how they make us feel are a big part of experience.  We like to say “Sharing makes everything taste better”  J

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Blog Reboot

We originally started this blog back in the summer of 2008, we did not post on a regular basis or about specific things at the time.  A lot has gone on since then and we are really enjoying the food and drink in our area and when we travel.  Many of our friends enjoy what we share about the food on Facebook and usually ask us more about the food we take pictures of.  Because of them I am starting the blog back up to share our Dining and Drinking in the Ann Arbor area and when we travel.
Please feel free to join the conversation in the comments ask any questions you want about the food, the drink, and/or why we chose something.

So, to tempt your eyes... I give you..... The Walleye Po'boy with Truffle Fries from Jolly Pumpkin Cafe, located on Main Street in Ann Arbor Michigan

They serve a pickled Zucchini spear with all their sandwiches, a nice refreshing change from a pickle.
In the upper right is a lovely glass of IO saison