Dinosaur BBQ: Good BBQ and Blues
Dino is a great place in the middle of Rochester to get some food. They have a great selection of local beers such as Roc Brewing, Customer Brew, and Rhorbachs along with many others. Specialty of course is pork.
Favorite Dish: The Big Ass Pork Plate with sides of baked beans, Mac and Cheese and corn bread.
Phillips European: Surf and Turf!
Just went here for dinner the other night and had a great meal. The menu is not overly extensive, but they did a great job with everyone's meal. 17 of us went out and everyone throroughly enjoyed their meal. Plenty of cocktails, wine, and beer to choose from as well. Right when you walk in you see their display of desserts. Hmmm hmmm.
Not an overly fancy looking restaurant from the outside, but quaint when you get inside as the building is older along with the restuarant which is a testament to how good they are. Looks basic from the outside, but excellent food and service inside.
Favorite Dish: I had the sesame Salmon which was fantastic. The Chicken French looked wonderful as well (order the full size and you will have take home). For appetizers the mussels and baked brie was wonderful.
- Food and Dining
- Luxury Travel
Strathallan's The Grill: elegant dining
The Grill restaurant within the Strathallan Hotel is a very nice, quiet and elegant setting. The name does not do justice to the atmosphere of the place; white linens on dark wood table settings with avante garde tableware. Every meal is a culinary adventure that the chef takes you on. There are standard items, to be sure, on the menu, but the house specialties for the day are usually the best treat.
The host escorts you to your table and performs all the ettiquette tasks to get you and your mate seated in style. He then summons a table hostess to see to your needs; before dinner beverage, appetizers. She tells you the daily specials and indicates the favorites and takes your order. Within 15 minutes the hostess returns with a serving person to set the meal before you in Emily Post fashion.
The prime rib and french onion soup are probably the local favorites here, but they have a fabulous Beef Wellington also. I like a side order plate of salad with oil and vinegar.
There is an adjacent bar area where you can get any alcoholic drink you can think of and relax in a quiet, low-light area that invites you to linger for a while.
The prices are in line with the style of the restaurant; high class. You can easily spend $40 per person for a dinner (not including alcoholic beverage, tax and tip). It is a very pleasant experience and worth every dollar.
We have stayed here overnight a few times for reunions and wedding arrangements and the breakfast served here is also fantastic. Stacks of pancakes, fresh fruit, crepes, specialty omelets. Everything is served as if you are very special and it all tastes so good.
- Road Trip
Papa John's Pizza: sometimes you don't want to go out...
You are sitting in your downtown Rochester hotel room and you really don't feel like getting spruced up to go out and eat.
Well, no problem my friend; just give Papa John's a call and they'll deliver. You can even order over the internet.
27 different pizza combos. And there are usually coupons in the local newspaper that the hotel leaves at your door in the morning.
Side orders of wings or cheese sticks or chicken strips or sweet treats. A sprite or coke to wash it all down. And they can have it all at the hotel in 20 minutes.
This pizza shop has won Rochester's Best Choice Award for three years.
You can't go wrong; give them a buzz.
- Road Trip
Dashen: Ethiopian in the South Wedge
OK, they don't have the messob tables, but great food, great value and a low-key atmosphere. Can't go wrong here.
They also have a full bar, although it seems to be dominated by the local Ethiopian community.
Favorite Dish: I've only eaten the vegetarian dishes, but they are all excellent.
Scotch N' Sirloin: sizzling steaks
Walking into the place, the aromas remind you of backyard barbecues with steaks sizzling on the grill. This restaurant has been cutting and preparing great slices of meat for nearly thirty years. For $25, you can join the rest of us in enjoying this Rochester favorite.
This is comfortable decor with large, dark beams on clean wood-panel walls. The tables are sturdy and the chairs are easy on the spine and behind. The eating area is rather open so it can get a bit noisy when dinner-time crowds fill the place.
The service is by waiter dressed in distinctive dark clothing to contrast the red-and-white tableware. Normal time between ordering and eating is on the order of 15-to-25 minutes, so you have time for a relaxing drink and a little conversation.
You get a soup/salad bar, followed by the meat entree and something to drink then topped off with dessert and coffee. The prime rib is probably one of the best and the onion soup is my favorite. If you are really hungry you can splurge and for another $10, you can get the surf/turf combo which is the priciest thing on the menu.
Dinners are served from 5pm to 10pm. There is plenty of parking room in the plaza.
Favorite Dish: Onion soup with Prime Rib is one of the favorites
- Road Trip
Midtown Cafe: open 8am to 4am
This place serves lunch AND breakfast choice from 8am until 4pm, seven days a week. The dinner menu begins at 5pm and lasts until 11pm when the light meal menu takes affect and continues until 4am.
The decor inside is a bit wild and bright but the younger crowd seems to like its brashness.
Soup, salad and coffee will cost $10 (not including tax and tip). The paninis are filling and a good deal at $6.25.
A breakfast special is th cornflakes-crusted french toast.
Parking can be a bit hard to find because on-street, metered parking near the restaurant is not very abundant. Many people find longer term parking in one of the lot or ramp garages a little farther away and walk down to the restaurant.
The area is okay until 10-11pm but gets a little scary in the wee hours of the morning when many of the local fights and stabbings and shootings occur.
The restaurant is relatively new and management promises to expand their menu to please a wider range of clientel. There have been several restaurants that failed in this section of the city so we will have to wait to see how well this one does over the years.
- Road Trip
Dave's Sidewalk Cafe: True Rochester Food
It might seem strange, but one of the best places for food in downtown is a street vendor who operates as Dave's Sidewalk Cafe. There are not many options for lunch in downtown Rochester, but from around April to October people line up 20 deep for Dave. He offers about 20 menu items that he cooks on a hot dog cart, from the standard red hot to steak sandwiches to grilled chicken. You get to add grilled onions and peppers, sauerkraut, or hot sauce for no extra charge. His Rochester hot sauce (kind of like a thin chili for non-Rochesterians) is outstanding. Dave is such a long standing tradition that every other cart moves blocks away after realizing people will wait up to a half hour for him.
While most people are workers and take the food back to the office you can sit in the park next door or in the B&L atrium across the street to eat.
Favorite Dish: Jumbo white with peppers, onions, mustard, and hot sauce.
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Lindburgers: Best burgers in town
Lindburgers is a chain in Florida, but there is one in Rochester because the owners are from here originally. They have over 50 varieties of half pound burgers and you can get them cooked as rare as you want. Very casual place (no tablecloths). Beer and wine available. Their food is a better bargain than what you would get at a Red Robin. Usually really quick service so it's good with kids as well.
- Road Trip
- Family Travel
- Historical Travel
ZEBBS: voted number one burger
Zebb's has one of the best thick burgers you have every tried. Fresh ground round with low fat, dual-cheeses melting over the edge, fresh greens and thick slice of sweet tomato, all on a freshly baked bun.
This is a bar and grill; very casual. Friendly staff, friendly clientel and the area is not too bad during the day (not nearly as nice after 9pm). The food is the calling card for this restaurant which has been around western New York for ages. Besides this restaurant, they have similar places in Buffalo and Syracuse and they all serve great food.
The restaurant has been voted Best Burger three times over the last decade.
Besides the burgers, they have a full menu of foods: finger treats, soups, salads, club sandwiches, wraps and fajitas. They have a wide selection of premium beers or they can make you your favorite cocktail.
They provide a kid's menu but I haven't seen many kids in this particular store.
The hours are 11am to past midnight (but again, visitors would be advised to be safely on their way by 9pm). They are offering a buy-one-get-one-free if you vote for them for net year.
- Road Trip
DiPisa: Old Fashioned Subs
Good place to get a sub or specialty sandwich. They have a good menu, but not one that is overwhelming. Eat in or take out.
Favorite Dish: I enjoy the turkey breast club, but they have some other warm subs that look great.
Golden Port Dim Sum Restaurant: House of Sushi!
I am new to this restaurant, but was impressed with their servers and the ambiance. Cool location in the East End right across from the Eastman School of Music. I am having some sushi right now which is prompting me to write about them.
Extensive lunch menu with over 188 choices of Japenese, Vietnamese, and Chinese dishes. Winner of several D&C Rochester Choice awards (for top restaurant).
Favorite Dish: Try the Sushi! They have seafood, vegetarian, and other special rolls.
The Chen Garden: Best Chinese Food
This is a small Chinese restaurant off Monroe Ave in Brighton where I continue to have the best Asian food. The owners are always there and make sure the meal is great and the mood is cool.
Favorite Dish: Hunan Chicken and pepper beef and spinach. Both are great meals with all the rice you want.
Nick Tahou's: Home of the "Garbage Plate"
This is the home of the infamous "garbage plate". Has been copied all over the city but never duplicated and is a true "Landmark" Say Rochester and the first thing you will think of is Nick Tahou's Garbage Plate!!! Something you must experience at least once in your lifetime...I dare you!!!
Favorite Dish: My favorite is the red hots plate. This consists of two red hots, macaroni salad, homefries and doused with the works,,,onions, ketsup, mustard and hotsauce (which is a meatsauce) OMG...you truly must have an iron stomach or suffer the consequences later.
Open Face: Urban Chic and So Good
Walking into Open Face takes me back to days in Chicago or NYC when you just stumbled into the coolest joints in the neighborhood. Fundamentally fashionista, Open Face has it all. The place is so small you feel like you've found hidden treasure and this place doesn't disappoint. Amazingly healthy and hearty sandwiches and soups that are complimented greatly by their great selection of boutique sodas and teas. Even the flat-ware is cool.
Favorite Dish: Open Faced Chicken Salad sandwich - comes with these really cool bagel chips. I also recommend those bagels chips with the chicken noodle soup. Delish!
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