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Rocco’s Tacos. What’s the big fuss about? It’s one of the newer restaurants in the Dr. Phillips area, also known to others as Restaurant Row. Rocco’s Tacos definitely has a great location with a beautiful view in the back. I went in on a Sunday afternoon so it wasn’t that crowded. The drink selection was a bit overwhelming with everything screaming “sweet drinks” at me. If you are in the mood for a margarita, you are in luck. I settled with a beer on tap, easy enough.
I really liked the decor in the restaurant. Funky lights and a nice view, great for a Sunday afternoon. The music was a bit random. I consider it as hits of the 70’s, 80’s, 90’s and today. Definitely a wide range and not what I would have anticipated. The service was alright.
The guacamole is made at the tableside and I had mine extra spicy. It was really good! The individual who made my guacamole made it just right. It was well balanced, fresh, spicy, flavorful, and I loved the cilantro in it. Yum! It’s cool that they serve the guacamole in a molcajete (mortar). I suggest ordering the half-size portion for 2 people. The tortilla chips were a bit thicker than I’m usually accustomed to. These chips were seasoned with what tastes like a slightly sweet chili seasoning. If you eat these plain, it’ll taste bland unless you get one of the ones that were heavily seasoned. It was different but tasted a whole lot better with the guacamole.
As far as the menu goes, there’s tacos (obviously), quesadillas, salads, sandwiches, enchiladas, specialties and some entrees served in a heated molcajete. I’m always a fan of trying multiple things so I ordered three tacos, the cochinitas achiote (slow roasted pork), chorizo, and blackened mahi. I tried some of the carne asada, and my first thought was “eh.” My cochinitas achiote had a nice reddish color (as expected). With my first bite I thought it tasted flavorful but after two to three bites later, it was just salty. My friend agreed with me. No salt on the chips and all on the cochinitas achiote. The chorizo is not spicy at all. I had to ask the server to make sure I got the right dish because it really just looked like ground beef. I could only wonder what the carne molida (spicy ground beef would taste like). Last but not least, I had the blackened mahi taco. This was one pretty good. Nice seasoning on the fish. The cotija cheese didn’t really add much to my tacos. I was left underwhelmed with the tacos (aside from the mahi).
All in all, good guacamole, great view, enjoyable atmosphere, mediocre tacos. Sadly to say, Rocco’s Tacos wasn’t rocking for me.
I like to keep my eye out for things that good and/or interesting. As I was strolling down the aisle at a Dollar Tree, I saw a bag of chips that made me go “hmmmm”. Sweet Maui Onion Chips. This could either by quite delicious and nastily sweet. On the bag, it reads “intensely different”. Oh really? I’ll be the judge of that!
The look of the bag is very cute. The cactus is because the Poore Brothers are based out of Arizona. Overall, the design works. It stood out to me and I had to try it.
My thoughts? I thought it would have been actually sweeter. Luckily it wasn’t and it definitely had a nice crunch. It didn’t seem as oily as other brands as I’ve had previously. The company states they slice their potatoes thicker, cook their chips in batches and in lower temperatures. The color of the chips aren’t as dark as other chips. These are some pretty tasty chips! I tried to eat just one serving but that didn’t happen.
I think I’ll have to go back and try the Jalapeno chips too. For those who don’t have a Dollar Tree close by, you can also order the chips from the Inventure Foods website.
Three new flavors, only one shall win…. Let the battle begin!!
So, I was watching TV, which I rarely do but I saw three potato chips flavors and it piqued my interest. I didn’t think much of it because I hadn’t seen any of the snack size ones. It didn’t make any sense to buy 3 bags of the regular size of this stuff since I didn’t know how the chips would taste. Lo and behold, I’m in line at Wal-mart and I see the chips. They looked good. Well maybe just the Chicken & Waffles and the Sriracha chips. It only seemed like it’d be a matter of time before the Sriracha chips came out anyhow. I remember putting sriracha on everything as a child. Especially fried rice. Yum!
First up, we have the Cheesy Garlic Bread. Sounds simple enough but I don’t get why they had to put “bread” on there as a flavor. It threw me off. I can understand “Cheesy Garlic Chips” but “Cheesy Garlic Bread Chips”? Doesn’t sound very enticing to me. Why would I want to eat anything “bread” flavored? C’mon, it’s…bread. The flavor itself was indeed cheesy and garlicky, not in an overwhelming way by any means but it works. Too bad they didn’t have it labeled as CHEESY garlic chips. Hmm… simply put, this taste like the garlic version of a Cheddar & Sour Cream chips. For the people who actually care to read nutrition labels, I’ve provided a pic of each one. You might as well know how bad the chips are for you. Knowledge is power!
Next up is the Chicken & Waffles. Chicken and….waffles. Hmm. Well, I recently did have chicken and waffles as an entree and it was fabulous but how well does it taste as a potato chips flavor? If you’re into kettle-cooked popcorn then this may be for you. It’s heavy on the sweetness but the saltiness is definitely there. Have you ever made a dish too salty and tried to “save” it by adding sweetness to hopefully balance it out? It’s one of those deals. As I’m eating it, I’m thinking where’s the chicken? I absolutely looooooove fried chicken skin. It’s one of my guilty pleasures but I don’t get that with these chips. I really don’t think I could eat a full size bag of this. Sweet, salty, greasiness. As interesting as it seems, I don’t this will make the cut.
Last but not least, we have the Sriracha chips. Not to be biased, but I thought this will be the clear winner. C’mon, it’s sriracha! Who doesn’t love sriracha?! If you haven’t had it before, I would describe it as a spicy ketchup. The consistency is like ketchup while the flavor is spicy. Not crazy Thai hot spicy but more of a medium. For the non-spicy folks, it’s safe to eat it. I promise. Sriracha has gained popularity over the past few years and is commonly known as the “rooster sauce” or “cock sauce”. The color of the chips are more orange than anticipated. The flavor is more vinegary, sweet, spicy. I really had high hopes but it didn’t deliver. It’s sriracha-esque also it has cream cheese, Swiss, and cheddar cheese in it. How peculiar. Imagine if you will, a sweet version of salt & vinegar chips. The spiciness only comes out towards the end.
Hey, at least I’ve tried all three now. I honestly think the winner will be the cheesy garlic bread potato chips. These chips are the most balanced in flavor. The other chips sound good in theory but as far as execution goes, it didn’t seem to go as well. I couldn’t even finish the Chicken & Waffles snack size bag or the Sriracha one either. What do you guys think? Which one shall win? I’m curious to see which one actually makes it.
Cast your vote on Facebook.
Finally, I’ve made my trip out to Trader Joe’s! No, people of Orlando, we do not have a Trader Joe’s here. At least not yet, anyway. So far there is one in Sarasota. Yes, I know it’s a far drive but for those in the area, it’s definitely a place to drop by.
I’ve had some people ask me, what’s so special about Trader Joe’s. In my opinion, I don’t think there’s anything THAT special about it. I compare it to an Aldi essentially, where they have their own branded products. But the folks of California love this place. I’ve even seen cookbooks dedicated to things you purchase for Trader Joe’s. There is obviously a cult following. I went inside the store, and it’s just packed. The cashier told me they opened about 3 months ago. I had been to a Trader Joe’s in the outskirts of Baltimore, MD, so I had some familiarity with it. They do have lots of items and for anyone who enjoys food, this would be a fun store to check out. The nice thing about this store, is that it’s like Whole Foods but you don’t end up spending your whole paycheck. In today’s hard economic times, it’s nice to get good food at a good price. The store isn’t very big at all, but there were definitely an assortment of items in here. I didn’t buy many things but I still managed to spend a lot between my saffron, pink Himalayan salt, 2 bottles of framboise, a bottle of rice vinegar and a bag of kale chips.
I’m getting hungry and the drive back to Orlando isn’t a short one, so I look for a nutritious snack. The kale chips jumped out at me, with the bright green comic-style bag. Vegan, no preservatives, super nutritious, I’m all in! The question is, how does it taste? I am all about healthy and I truly believe you can healthy and delicious tasting food. Except vegetarian bacon. No one should ever eat that. bleh! So, the words “zesty nacho” sound quite enticing, but unfortunately, it lets me down. Don’t call something “zesty nacho” if it’s not going to taste like “zesty nacho”. What does it taste like? One might ask. Or maybe they wouldn’t and just gladly eat the kale chips. Have you ever ate the rice seasoning that you get from the Asian store? Yep, it’s like that sprinkled on top of kale chips. It’s not bad by any means, but it certainly isn’t “zesty nacho”.
- Let’s see what the ingredients are: kale, cashews, sunflower seeds, carrot powder, red bell pepper powder, onion powder, apple cider vinegar, lemon juice concentrate, salt, garlic powder, chipotle powder.
- And the ingredients on my Yasai Fumi Furikake (rice seasoning): sesame seed, carrot, spinach, pumpkin, celery, Japanese mustard plant, potato starch, sugar, salt and seaweed.
Just saying. I’m not crazy for thinking the flavors are similaresque.
After I showed some people the picture of the kale chips, they kept telling me it looked like a certain herb. *coughs, coughs*. I was like, “WHAT?!” I thought it was funny they thought it looked like that, but to me, I thought it looked like seasoned kale chips. This 2 ounce bag of kale chips is 2 servings but needless to say, I finished it without difficulty. I had a fun time at Trader Joe’s and I’ll be going back to get more snackies. Just not the kale chips. I’m certain I can make some tastier kale chips.
On a side note, these chips are not good as a driving snack, unless you like green crumbs all over you.
Doritos I saw at a store in Toronto.