Tag Archives: restaurant



The atmosphere was electric at the opening of B Spot Burgers last Saturday. Chef Michael Symon is known for award-winning burgers at locations in the Cleveland area. Now these burgers are here for you in Rochester Hills with more locations in the works.


Wish I’d taken this picture, a welcome to B Spot Burgers. It shows a side view of the restaurant. Thank you B Spot Burger Facebook Page. But the welcome you don’t want to miss is inside.

We drove over in mid-afternoon. The place was hoppin’ and Chef Symon worked the kitchen and the crowd. He was courteous, fun and, as you might expect, knowledgeable and passionate about the food offered at B Spot: fantastic burgers, brats, beer and much more.

Come along and join the fun.

We ate burgers, stacked with great flavor. My Skinny Lizzie was luscious, cooked to perfection, jazzed with pickle choices and Lola Ketchup. Jerry enjoyed the New Jack City Burger with chorizo sausage, avocado, salsa verde, red pepper, onion and pepperjack cheese.



Those crunchy onion rings were packed with flavor and if you want additional tangy layers of taste, try the coffee BBQ sauce. Jerry said it was definitely the sauce for the rings. And he is an expert on Onion Rings and BBQ sauce, or perhaps I might say, he is very experienced.

You may want to sauce you burger. Sauces at your service.


I liked Lola ketchup. I dressed my Thin Lizzy with assorted pickles including a slice of pickled green tomato.


Yes, there’s a pickle bar. Don’t miss it.

Burgers are cooked to order: well, mid well, medium, mid rare and rare. In our chat with Chef Symon he talked about the quality products so important to his kitchen and the food he serves. Meat is ground from large muscle and the journey from source to plate is known. The cuts used include brisket. The menu lets customers know burger beef is Pat La Frieda’s custom grind. Chef Symon’s one-of-a-kind smile broadens and brightens when he talks about the magic of brisket. (You may wonder if that’s possible, but it is.)

The menu is filled with fun and the promise of all the foods and combos I might try next time. I can’t wait for a second visit. If you are not sure about the burgers on the menu, build your own. There’s also bologna and brats, salads, shakes, fries and more.

Here’s the wall of beer cans behind the bar with its big B. The drinks menu is extensive.


Find complete menus at www.bspotburgers.com Follow them on facebook and twitter.


Chef Symon bestowed his smile on all who entered. He was welcoming and friendly as he mingled with the crowd. It was easy to see his passion for the food and the restaurant.


Staff was focused and working hard. This was after all the opening day. Our waitress was attentive and accommodating. The place looked like it was running smoothly, with lots of people moving this way and that to satisfy the customers who were coming in a steady flow in the late afternoon. No doubt evening was even busier. But I expect that the food continued to be the best.


These burgers have been voted best burgers in America at the Sobe Burger Bash, 2010, 2012, and 2014. I challenge you to find a better burger in Detroit. I’d be very surprised. My Thin Lizzy lived up to the hype. I’ve not tasted better in this city. This place is definitely the new favorite for Jerry and I.

Location: the Village of Rochester Hills, a retail center located in the suburban Rochester Hills north of Detroit near the corner of Walton Road and Adams Road. Learn more about B Spot and the shopping area at www.thevorh.com

Check out B Spot. You won’t be sorry. Loose meaty grind, juicy, luscious, cooked-to-perfection, all the trimmings and a tasty bun that stands up to meat. How could you want more?

See you there, the place where burgers are crazy fun!




Aunt Kate’s Restaurant serves small sweet oysters harvested from the Tolomoto River/Intercoastal Waterway and fried to a golden crispness. Eating oysters at this spot continues a long tradition. They have been served under a grove of live oak trees alongside this river for more than 100 years. Buildings have changed, owners have changed, but an eating establishment continues to occupy this spot. You can enjoy some very good food waterside at Aunt Kate’s.

The crooks of the live oak branches are like artwork in the sunshine. Tiered decks step down to the water. At Sunday lunch we were serenaded by a musician who included one of my favorites––“Big Rock Candy Mountain”. This folk song was originally written and recorded in 1928 by Harry McClintock and later sung by the likes of Pete Seeger and Woody Guthrie, climbing the charts at different times during the twentieth century.

The charm and comfort of Aunt Kate’s are undeniable.

Aunt Kate’s is located about two and a half miles north of the Vilano Bridge on the Tolomoto River. A sign on A1A alerts you to turn left. Drive nearly to the water and there it is under the spreading trees with plenty of parking.


Here they serve some very good food. Buttermilk ranch dressing topped my fresh salad.


The bacon broccoli cheese soup tasted smoky and rich with big chunks of broccoli.


Sweet and tangy pulled pork was Jerry’s choice. Look at those pickles. Makes you want to grab one.


I had a basket of oysters with creamy dill tarter sauce I absolutely could not resist. They were the finest oysters I’ve had this winter. The menu includes all kinds of seafood and other southern style dishes. There is a full bar and outdoor seating on the water. Check out their informative website. www.aunt-kates.com

Fine food and local charm make eating in this spot as sweet as the oysters.




The Black Molly Grill
504 W. Geoffrey Street
Cobblestone Village
St. Augustine, Florida

“Come on in” is the way I feel when I enter the Black Molly Grill with its casual, comfortable yet stylish interior. I love the spacious booths, able to accommodate your party or my reading material. It’s open every day at 11:00 a.m. Someone always smiles at me.

So far I’ve had three different lunches, taken my husband along, and quizzed the waitresses and some of the other patrons. I’ve enjoyed shrimp and grits, a seafood platter of red snapper and shrimp, lightly fried with just the whisper of a crisp coating and a lightly blackened fish sandwich (I think it was snapper again, but I had a choice). Jerry had a rib eye sandwich. All of this food was the very best. I understand from quizzing others that the place has top quality beef. I observed a couple eating huge wonderful looking burgers dripping with juiciness. They told me these were the best burgers they had had in St. Augustine. Well, the woman said she didn’t like burgers and this one was delicious.

The place has a full bar and a very nice wine list. Usually, the wait staff is knowledgeable and more than courteous. I love it when they tell me about the different foods on the menu. The salads are crisp and fresh with house-made dressing, or it certainly tastes like it, and I’m fussy about the salad dressing. I’m looking forward to trying the fish tacos, and the burgers. Yes, I plan to go there again.

To my mind, this restaurant serves quickly cooked fresh food with the slightest adornment. No need for heavy sauce or multiple garnish to mask the questionable quality of the food. It’s true I like local fish and Black Molly’s excels in this department as well as others.

The menu includes a variety of chicken dishes, salads, pastas and burgers in five flavors. Appetizers include hand-cut fried mozzarella and other dreamy items. At dinner there are many meat and pasta dishes as well as vegetarian choices. Prices are reasonable.

I love the place. I thank everyone who works there. I hope they keep turning out simple food, well prepared, food that tastes the way the way it should. Yes, the latter is a subjective statement. Still, I’m not after tofu, or chicken smothered in a sauce with five different ingredients and two vegetables on top. Simple meat or fish, cooked to perfection is what I like best.

As you can see from the menu, you have plenty of choice at The Black Molly Grill. I hope you will try it out and tell me what you think. I look forward to hearing from you.



Local shrimp, tender and sweet, is one of the joys of St. Augustine, Florida. These winter days shrimp boats parade along the horizon on the Atlantic Ocean. Some of the local restaurants are smart enough to serve this local fish in a variety of ways.

Salt Water Cowboys is one such restaurant. The building brings to mind a fishing shack; it settles among the salt marshes along the intercoastal waterway. Inside, Old Florida atmosphere abounds. This past week with some Cowboy Lemonade spiked with vodka and other good stuff to warm us up, we ate one of the most delicious shrimp dinners ever.

A very congenial waiter soon set before us the essentials of an Old Florida Shrimp Feast. We didn’t gaze at the beauty of the dishes long because everything was dive-right-into-it inviting. The aroma of the Oysters Dondanville smothered in garlic butter and vermouth flavored bread crumbs had us pushing aside the Cowboy Lemonade.

Soon the true comeback dish at Saltwater Cowboys arrived. As the waiter said, “If this salad ever left the menu there would probably be a riot in protest.” He placed before us a salad of crisp romaine on a cold plate topped with thin rings of red onion, apple slices, walnuts and raisins and draped in the most delicious creamy tangy dressing you will ever eat. (I have tried to reproduce it, but mine is never as good as Saltwater’s.)

The shrimp! Oh-My! The light crispy shrimp was perfectly prepared, butterflied, tender and tasty. My handsome companion ordered and enjoyed 3 Way Shrimp. Creamy Red Pepper Shrimp Sauce topped the crab-stuffed shrimp. The Barbequed Shrimp were broiled, and he had light, crispy fried shrimp, too. The trimmings were all delicious.

Helpful, friendly service is the norm here. Hot is hot and cold is cold. No rushing. At least this week, Salt Water Cowboys had it all. If Cracker Cooking means delicious. This is the place to find it. They serve chicken, fish, ribs, and other local good food. And, believe me, the shrimp is outrageously good!

Check their website: saltwatercowboys.com





The Cheesecake Factory recently opened a restaurant at 12 Oaks Mall in Novi, MI.

I was less than enthused when friends chose it as the place for lunch. I thought maybe great cheesecake, but what about the food? I was not optimistic. Based on lunch there a few days ago, I was very wrong.

Thanks to a good friend who got in line at 10:30 a.m. our group was seated by 11:00. At that time the line was very long. But, in spite of this large lunch crowd, the service was spot-on. The food was beyond great!

There is a huge menu. At this point I feel like the menu has more inviting dishes than I can dream of eating. And I love to daydream about food. The menu makes for great reading. The names are so much fun: SkinnyLicious, Glamburgers, Ice Cream Delight. You get the idea. But it’s also a descriptive and informative menu. I felt that I knew what I would be eating with any order. The menu made the food sound good; what I ordered was GOOD.

My lunch, at a very reasonable price, consisted of soup, salad, and half-a-sandwich. The salad was crisp, fresh and generous. The ranch dressing house-made, I would guess. My sandwich was chicken salad on toasted bread: chunks of chicken with veggies in a light, easy-to-eat dressing. The mushroom soup had a depth of flavor not often experienced in chain restaurant soup. Earlier in the week I had a rather well-known soup at another chain I won’t name, and it was unappetizing both in how it looked, and how it tasted. The mushroom soup at the Cheesecake Factory had flavors that complimented each other and blended into deliciousness. It was the best wild mushroom soup ever. Fresh ingredients were obvious.

And the cheesecake. I believe there are as many as thirty-seven different cheesecakes, as well as other desserts. Our table shared White Chocolate Raspberry Truffle Cheesecake. OH MY! Creamy, smooth, no hint of aftertaste. It tasted as good as it looked.

There is a full bar, wine, and beer, an extensive menu with variety in size of servings and types of food. Our server was knowledgeable, accommodating and cheerful. Food was brought from the kitchen hot and in a timely manner.

The menu makes for terrific reading; the food for terrific eating. I can’t wait to go back. Wherever I travel, I’ll be watching for a Cheesecake Factory Restaurant. And, oh, yes, many thanks to the friends who decided we should eat there. WOW!

www.thecheesecakefactory.com for more information.