Sunday, July 31, 2016

Kimono Japanese Restaurant Review - Winston Salem, NC


324 Summit Square Boulevard
Winston Salem, NC  27105
(336) 377-0147


Interior View


Shrimp Tempura - $7.95 (click on photos to enlarge)


Shrimp Tempura Roll & Hot J.B. Roll - $8.45 each


Free Dessert

This is a review of a Japanese restaurant called Kimono located in Winston Salem, North Carolina. They have three locations, this review is for the one located near Sam's Club in Winston Salem. Previously, we dined at the location on Country Club Road, to see that review click here. We visited on a Saturday night at 6 pm and their posted restaurant sanitation grade was 91.5% They were very busy, at one point all the tables and booths were taken. The entire time we were there customers who ordered carry out were walking in to pick up their orders non stop! They have a huge carry out business and they are super speedy at preparing them. 

We were greeted by several people ready to assist us and we were seated at a booth immediately. There is certainly no shortage of employees at this restaurant! We ordered quickly since were overly hungry. I ordered three dishes for Hubby & I to share. It only took six minutes for our appetizer to arrive! We were shocked since usually Japanese restaurants are a bit on the slow side to bring out the dishes. The Shrimp Tempura was so scrumptious! It had three pieces of shrimp fried in tempura batter. In addition, it had two thinly sliced, large pieces of sweet potato, two pieces of broccoli and two onion rings fried in the same batter that Katsu is battered with. The sweet potato with Katsu batter made me crave Chicken Katsu. It was really crisp, not greasy and very tasty. I would have preferred the onion rings be battered in panko though. In addition, there was a little bit of tempura dipping sauce and the tempura was laying on some iceberg lettuce. I recommend this dish, but be careful since it's so hot. You'll have to wait a bit for it to cool. The sweet potato cooled the fastest, so that's what we started with. Just thinking about it is making me hungry. It's crave worthy for sure! Six minutes later our two sushi rolls arrived. The Shrimp Tempura roll has shrimp fried in the Katsu batter. It's described as "deep fried shrimp, avocado, asparagus with spicy mayo sauce". It was very tasty, but there wasn't much spicy mayo. Also, I prefer my shrimp to be fried in tempura batter rather than Katsu batter. The Hot J.B. Roll is described as "salmon, cream cheese with spicy mayo and eel sauce". I would have liked more eel sauce since it was mostly on the plate. Next time I'll ask for a side of spicy mayo and eel sauce. Both rolls were tasty. When Hubby asked for the check the waiter brought us a cut up orange with tooth picks as a complimentary dessert. It was very ripe, juicy, cold and delicious. 

Service was extremely attentive, prompt and friendly. All the servers help each other out with all of the tables, so our glasses of water were always full. Overall, it was a pleasant dining experience and we plan to return soon. I also plan to have Hubby pick up some carry out on his way home. I highly recommend you give this restaurant a try soon. What's your favorite restaurant in the Triad?

Update - We ordered carry out a week later and it was delicious! They come in clear plastic containers. We ordered Shrimp Tempura again along with a Rainbow Roll and a Salmon Twist Roll. These are now my favorites. They even gave us two slices of lemon to squeeze on the Salmon Twist Roll and it was scrumptious that way. That's the first time I've added some lemon juice to my sushi. The smoked salmon along with the regular salmon, cream cheese, panko crumbs, spicy mayo, a bit of lemon juice and a dash of soy sauce was perfection! It costs $10.95. If I had to pick only one favorite that would be it. The Rainbow Roll is described as "rainbow of fish on a California Roll" and it costs $9.95. It was a nice change from a boring California Roll. The fish on top made it so much more tasty. The Shrimp Tempura was still warm when it arrived home and it was just as delicious as last time. Though I do recommend opening the box as soon as you arrive home to allow the steam to escape so that the tempura batter stays crisp. I uploaded photos of all three to Zomato, just click on the names above to see them.

I invite you to follow my blog via InstagramPinterestTwitterGoogle +Bloglovin'Networked Blogs and Zomato. Also, be sure to browse around my blog since I'm sure you'll find something else that interests you. To see a full listing of my restaurant reviews, visit my Pinterest Restaurant Reviews BoardShare this blog post with your friends via Twitter & Facebook:

Kimono Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato
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Thursday, July 28, 2016

Firebirds Restaurant Review - Winston Salem, NC

1215 Creekshire Way
Winston Salem, NC  27103
(336) 659-3973


Exterior View


Interior View (click on photos to enlarge)


Wicked Burger - $11.25


Smokehouse Burger - $11.80


This is a review of a restaurant located in Winston Salem, North Carolina called Firebirds Wood Fired Grill. They are located not far from the Costco off Hanes Mill Boulevard. We visited on a late Friday afternoon before the dinner rush. They are open from 11 am until 10 pm everyday but Friday and Saturday when they stay open an hour later. Their sanitation grade is currently 95%. We were seated right away at a booth and there were only a few customers.

Normally when you visit a restaurant that serves steak you'll smell lots of wonderful smells coming from the kitchen, we did not. So while I was craving a steak I was turned off by that and we decided to order burgers instead. While we were eating our burgers, I noticed that another table received a loaf of bread prior to their meal yet we were never often bread. I called to confirm that they normally offer a loaf of bread at lunch and dinner. That was really disappointing since we were hungry and that would have been a nice treat while we were waiting for our burgers to be cooked. Our drink orders were promptly taken and our drinks were brought out shortly thereafter. I ordered the Wicked Burger and Hubby ordered the Smokehouse Burger. It took fourteen minutes for our food to be delivered to the table. The Wicked Burger is described as "griddled, cheddar cheese, lettuce, tomato, secret sauce, brioche bun" and it costs $11.25. The secret sauce tasted similar to McDonald's sauce on their Big Mac. The burger was just average, frankly, my husband cooks a much tastier burger. It was also an average sized burger. I really expected a larger burger due to the prices and the upscale atmosphere. Red Robin's burgers are of a much better quality, much larger and so much tastier. The french fries were also average, certainly not crave worthy. The Smokehouse Burger is described as "Java BBQ sauce, applewood smoked bacon, lettuce, tomato" and it costs $11.80. Again, this burger was just average in taste, quality and size. It's not something Hubby would order again. The onion rings were the only hit of the meal. They were really scrumptious and crave worthy for sure. The sides offered are steak fries, tater tots, fresh fruit or cider slaw. A side salad is $4.99 extra. Hubby asked if he could have the onion rings that were listed in the appetizers instead. I thought it was strange that they weren't offered as a side. They are described as "panko breaded onions, roasted garlic, ranch dressing". They were perfectly crisp and not greasy. The dipping sauce was really good too. They cost $8.95 as an appetizer which seems quite pricey for what it is. They weren't generous with the sides either. It was a disappointing meal, while better than fast food, certainly not something we are anxious to purchase again. The server was prompt but not very friendly and I was really annoyed we didn't get the loaf of bread that we were suppose to be served. Why would he not offer it? So strange! If you want a really good burger, I recommend Red Robin. What burger restaurant is your favorite?

I invite you to follow my blog via InstagramPinterestTwitterGoogle +Bloglovin'Networked Blogs and Zomato. Also, be sure to browse around my blog since I'm sure you'll find something else that interests you. To see a full listing of my restaurant reviews, visit my Pinterest Restaurant Reviews BoardShare this blog post with your friends via Twitter & Facebook:

Firebirds Wood Fired Grill Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato
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Thursday, July 21, 2016

Green Blender 7th Delivery & 30% Off Coupon


Goji Watermelon Mint Smoothie Ingredients


Recipe Results


Cherry Rhubarb Pie Smoothie Ingredients


Recipe Results


Blueberry Apple Smoothie Ingredients


Recipe Results


Peachy Cream Smoothie Ingredients


Recipe Results


Spicy Mango Wakeup Smoothie Ingredients


Recipe Results


This is a review of the 7th Green Blender delivery I have received. Read more about this service in my previous review in which I explain their pricing, shipping, drinking straws and recipe cards. Also, check out my Green Blender Pinterest Board to see their recipe cards and all of my recipe results so far. This week I gave two smoothies four out of five stars and three recipes three out of five stars. My favorite recipe this week was the Blueberry Apple Smoothie.

Goji Watermelon Mint Smoothie

I gave this smoothie three out of five stars. The strongest flavor was the watermelon and the mint. It also had pear, yellow squash, goji berries and almonds. It had 209 calories and it offers immune boosting, calming and beauty benefits. 

Cherry Rhubarb Pie Smoothie

I gave this one four out of five stars. The strongest flavors were banana, cherries and coconut. It also had rhubarb, oats and maqui berry powder. It had 174 calories and offers energy, immune boosting and anti-inflammatory benefits.

Blueberry Apple Smoothie

I rated this one four out of five stars. The strongest flavor was blueberry and lemon. It also had baby spinach, gala apple, hemp seeds and cashews. It had 215 calories and it offers immune boosting and beauty benefits and it's high in protein. This was my favorite recipe for the week. It tasted very similar to blueberry bread with lemon icing without all the fat and calories! 

Peachy Cream Smoothie

I rated this one three out of five stars. The strongest flavors were the peach and the orange. It also had swiss chard, flaxseed, lucuma powder and coconut cream. It offers beauty benefits and it's low in calories. It had only 119 calorie. This was my least favorite smoothie for the week.

Spicy Mango Wakeup Smoothie

I gave this one three out of five stars. It had green leaf lettuce, mango, red grapes, cucumber, lime juice, cayenne and chia seeds. It offers beauty, immune boosting and anti-inflammatory benefits and it had 205 calories. 

It was an enjoyable week of smoothies. Stay tuned for my review of my 8th week of smoothies. Before you go, browse around at my other posts and don't forget to enter my $72 Plated Giveaway! Green Blender is currently running a promotion for 30% off your first box. This is the highest discount I have been able to find for you, so be sure to use coupon code "SALTED". So what's your favorite type of smoothie? Before you go, be sure to check out my reviews of Blue ApronGreen ChefHello FreshHome ChefMarley SpoonPlatedSun Basket and Terra's KitchenDo you subscribe to any meal delivery services? If so, which one is your favorite?

Bargain Alert:

Green Blender - 30% off 1st box, coupon code "SALTED"
Green Chef - Buy Two Get FOUR organic meals FREE! 66% Off, click here. Choices: Paleo, Gluten Free, Vegan, Vegetarian & Carnivore
Sun Basket - 3 FREE Meals ($34.47 value), click here

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Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Green Chef 4th Delivery & 66% Off Coupon


Buffalo Blue Chicken Bowl with Carrots, Pickled Peppers, Fresh Avocado & Quinoa


Ingredients (click on photos to enlarge)


Strawberry Balsamic Steak with Sautéed Squash, Kale Salad, Lemon Goat Cheese



Ingredients


Chili-Lime Rainbow Trout with Jicama Hash, Collard Green & Chimichurri Sauce



Ingredients (Trout Not Shown)


This is a review of our 4th delivery from an organic food subscription box called Green Chef. This week I purchased one Paleo recipe, one Gluten Free and one Carnivore. We gave two recipes five out of five stars and one recipe three stars. Preparation time ranged from thirty to thirty-five minutes and calories ranged from 400-670. 

Buffalo Blue Chicken Bowl with Carrots, Pickled Peppers, Fresh Avocado & Quinoa

Wow, this one was so scrumptious! I gave it five out of five stars. I purchased this one for Hubby since he loves buffalo sauce, but he had to go out of town on business. I'm not usually a fan, but this buffalo sauce was so tasty and impressive! The salad and quinoa were also delicious. Green Chef prepared the honey buffalo sauce and creamy blue cheese dressing for us. They also chopped the rainbow carrots and prepared the pickled peppers in advance. I skipped the pickled peppers since I can't eat anything pickled. This one had 670 calories, was gluten free, took about thirty minutes to prepare and it was a generous portion.

Strawberry Balsamic Steak with Sautéed Squash, Kale Salad, Lemon Goat Cheese

What a unique recipe adding strawberries to steak! You won't believe how tasty it is! The balsamic reduction sauce was absorbed by the strawberries and they were so tasty with the steak. We were amazed by it's flavor and gave this recipe five out five stars. They chopped the red onion and prepared the balsamic reduction base for us in advance. This one took about thirty-five minutes to prepare, had only 400 calories and it was a generous portion. We were shocked it was only 400 calories, it didn't taste like a low calorie dish at all.

Chili-Lime Rainbow Trout with Jicama Hash, Collard Green & Chimichurri Sauce

Sadly, they forgot to add the trout to our box and instead gave us chicken. This is the first time there has been an error with the contents of our box. They gave me 30% off my next box as compensation. I substituted wild caught salmon from Costco. This is the first recipe from Green Chef that has been disappointing. We gave it only three out of five stars. The lime flavor stood out too much and the other flavors were diminished. This paleo recipe had only 510 calories, took about thirty minutes to prepare and it was a very generous portion with some leftovers.

This is currently my favorite food subscription box. What's your favorite? This Friday we are expecting the following Paleo recipes:
  1. Moroccan Apricot Chicken, Roasted Veggies, Glazed Carrots & Coconut Dressing
  2. Steak Caponata, Cedar Roasted Eggplant, Capers & Romesco Sauce
  3. Shrimp & Apple Salad, Roasted Sweet Potatoes, Malaysian Curry & Spinach
If you would like to give Green Chef a try, be sure to use my link below so that your first four meals are free! Check out my review of our firstsecond and third Green Chef deliveries also. In addition, check out my reviews of Blue ApronGreen BlenderHello FreshHome ChefMarley SpoonPlatedSun Basket and Terra's KitchenDo you subscribe to any meal delivery services? 

Bargain Alert - Buy TWO meals and get FOUR FREE, click here

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Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Play! by Sephora Subscription Box Review - July 2016



Effortless Summer


This is a review of a fairly new cosmetics subscription box from Sephora for only $10 a month including shipping. This is my 3rd box so far and the retail value of this box is $39.78 which is very good! June's box had a value of $27.81 and May's box had a value of $35.21. I really enjoyed the last two and this one was fun too. Included in the July box were the following products:
  1. Nest Fragrances - Citrine, .04 fl. oz., $1.60 retail value
  2. Beauty Blender - Blotterazzi & Liquid Blender Cleanser, full size & 3 ml, $10 & $.36 value
  3. First Aid Beauty - Face Cleanser, 1 oz., $5.50 value
  4. Smashbox - Photo Finish Primer, .25 fl. oz., $9.00 value
  5. Benefit Cosmetics - Dew the Hoola Soft Matte Liquid Bronzer, .16 fl. oz., $4.48 value
  6. Ouai - Wave Spray, 1.7 fl. oz., $8.84 value
I've been anxious to get my hands on a Nest sample since it's been pretty popular lately and it's quite expensive so I don't plan to purchase the full sized version for $68. It's described as "the day softness of lotus flower and freesia are set against sparkling citrus notes and hints of precious woods". It's a lovely scent and I'm enjoying wearing it. I hope they give us another Nest scent soon since I'd love to try them all! I have a full sized Beauty Blender that I received from Ipsy for free by using my points back in 2014. I find it very time consuming, I just don't have the patience to use it but I like the results. This version is just a thin slice of a beauty blender and it is intended for blotting your face to remove oil and remove shine not for applying foundation. I plan to use this one soon since the hot, humid weather tends to make my foundation a bit oily after a few hours. I have sampled quite a few First Aid Beauty products over the years since they pop up in subscription boxes quite often. I like their products, I just don't like their unfeminine packaging. This cleanser is very effective, but my favorite is still Josie Maran's. I've received Smashbox Primer several times in other subscription boxes. While I think it works very well, my favorites are Laura Geller's Spackle and Julep's version which has healthier ingredients. The Benefit Bronzer is the second liquid bronzer they have sent us so far. It's a nice change since it's easier to apply to fair skin without using too much. I find that I can't use the powder bronzers because it always goes on too heavy and it appears to look like dirt on my very fair skin. I'm always happy to receive a beach wave spray since I love to use them in the summer. The trick is to use a lot of it. I've heard other people say they can't get them to work and when I ask how much of the product they used I find out they aren't using nearly enough. The sample bottle above will probably only be enough for two to three uses on long hair. So if you are using less than that give my tip a try! I use it on freshly washed hair at night and then in the morning I spray on some water to dampen it and then apply more of the wave spray. Tip two: once it dries if you're not happy with the results, just spray your hair with a bit of water to dampen it and then repeat the process again. I'm not crazy about the scent of this one and I've never heard of this brand. Julep's version is my favorite. In addition to the six samples, Sephora sent the drawstring makeup bag shown above. Here's a video explaining how to use this month's products:



Are you a subscriber to this box, still on the waiting list or on the fence about subscribing? Before you go, check out what I received in my May box and my June box. Also, check out my Subscription Box Pinterest Board to see what other subscription boxes I've subscribed to over the years. Simply click on the photo of the one that interests you and it will take you to the matching blog post to find out all about it. Don't forget to enter my GIVEAWAY before you go!

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Monday, July 18, 2016

Plated Giveaway & 15th Delivery Review


Beef & Lamb Meatball Bánh Mì with Sriracha Aioli & Herb Salad


Ingredients (click on photos to enlarge)


Curried Chicken Lettuce Cups with Celery, Cashews & Grapes


Ingredients


Crispy Redfish with Coconut Rice & Chinese Broccoli


Ingredients


This is a review of our 15th delivery from a food subscription box called PlatedTheir weekly box for two people which includes everything for three recipes costs $72. Each week they also have two desserts to chose from for $8 and two "Chef's Table" dinners which are more expensive and feature specialty cuts of meat and market priced seafood. This week we gave two recipes five out of five stars and one recipe four out of five stars. Calories ranged from 580-730 and they took from 35-50 minutes to prepare. If you are here for the giveaway only, scroll down to the bottom of this post.

Beef & Lamb Meatball Bánh Mi with Sriracha Aioli & Herb Salad

Hubby & I gave this recipe four out of five stars. The sandwich part was really delicious. The combination of fresh basil, cilantro and mint sounds strange yet it turned out to be a wonderful combination of flavors. I think it would have tasted even better by removing some of the bread in the inside of the baguette, so that the meatballs would have had a stronger flavor. We would have also liked more aioli which was made with mayo, honey and Sriracha. We would have given it five stars if the side salad had been more tasty. Just carrots and onion was boring though the dressing made of fish sauce, honey, lime juice, salt and pepper was a nice touch. It took about fifty minutes to prepare and it had 610 calories. This recipe had a filling portion with no leftovers.

Curried Chicken Lettuce Cups with Celery, Cashews & Grapes

We gave this recipe five out of five stars, it was so scrumptious and I can't wait to have it again. It was a really nice change from the typical pork lettuce wraps. This one is made with chicken, celery, cashews, grapes, raisins and lettuce. The dressing is made with Greek yogurt, mayo, honey, lime juice, salt and pepper.  The spice mix was made with curry powder and ginger. We absolutely love curry, so next time we will add more. I also recommend chilling the curry chicken salad in the refrigerator for a couple of hours so that the curry becomes stronger in flavor. It makes all the difference, so it's worth the wait! Thankfully, the lettuce was fresh and crisp since it's such an important part of this recipe. Just writing about this dish is making me so hungry and now I'm craving it, it was so good! It took about forty-five minutes to prepare and it had only 580 calories. It was a delicious, healthy, filling and low calorie portion with no leftovers.

Crispy Redfish with Coconut Rice & Chinese Broccoli

I love the seafood from Plated, so I usually add one of those to my box every time I order from them. They send enough ice packs so that I can even order fish from them in the summer which I can't say about some of their competition. The redfish was so scrumptious! Hubby gave this recipe five out of five stars and I gave it four. Just a bit of rice flour added to the fish gave it a bit of a crisp, thin outside layer which was very enjoyable. We would have liked more of the sauce which was made with mayo, soy sauce, peanut butter and Sriracha. It was so delicious! We had tried coconut rice from a competitor and absolutely hated it, but I decided to try it again since I trust Plated to come up with mostly five and four star recipes. I'm glad I gave it a try again because it was super tasty. It must have been the quality of the coconut milk or the amount that Plated suggested that made all the difference in the flavor. I wasn't crazy about the flavor of the Chinese broccoli, but Hubby loved it. It gave me awful acid reflux for hours afterwards, but I do have a sensitive stomach and IBS. I have to limit the amount of certain vegetables that cause gas especially during stressful times. I had it before and I didn't have that reaction. It smelled really good when it was cooking in the sesame oil. It was a healthy portion with no leftovers and it had 730 calories.

The recipes this week were especially enjoyable! Most of Plated's recipes we have given four or five stars to, one reasons we really enjoy Plated. I just wish they had a referral program or a lower price so I could afford to order from them more often. Have you tried Plated yet? If not, I highly recommend you give them a try soon! Which food subscription box is your favorite?

Bargain Alert:

Green Blender - 30% off 1st box, coupon code "SALTED"
Green Chef - Buy Two Get FOUR organic meals FREE! 66% Off, click here. Choices: Paleo, Gluten Free, Vegan, Vegetarian & Carnivore
Sun Basket - 3 FREE Meals ($34.47 value), click here.  

GIVEAWAY:

Plated has provided me with another box worth $72 to give away. Plated will send the winner one shipment that includes three recipes and the ingredients needed to make three meals for two people, a total of six servings. Enter via Rafflecopter:

The winner must be over 18 years old, have never subscribed to Plated, provide me with their name and email address to give to Plated, provide Plated their credit card number in case they want to continue with the service past the first box and live in the US (not in Hawaii & Alaska). Winner will be sent an email from Plated and simply need to click on the link to redeem their free Plated box online. To cancel future shipments: visit their website and go to my account settings, scroll down to the bottom and chose "cancel subscription" or to skip future shipments select weekly menus and chose "skip week". They ship to most of the US except Hawaii, Alaska and small towns in Montana, Colorado, New Mexico & Texas. Box is shipped via FedEx and arrives at your doorstep on your choice of Wednesdays or Saturdays. Vegetarian meals are also offered.

Learn more about Plated by visiting my Plated Pinterest Board. Click on the photos that interest you and it will take you to my matching blog post which provides a review of that recipe. Be sure to check out my reviews of Blue ApronGreen BlenderGreen ChefHello FreshHome ChefMarley SpoonPlatedSun Basket and Terra's Kitchen

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