Archive for October, 2010

The Nugget, Monticello NY

Tuesday, October 26th, 2010

In most small towns you can always find one restaurant that surprises you with great food in unexpected surroundings. The “New” Nugget Restaurant and Pub in Monticello is such a place.

Last Tuesday evening, after some six hours on a motorcycle, myself and three friends happened by the Nugget. From the outside, it seemed that we had chosen a bar and expected to find burgers and sandwiches and after riding for so long, it would have been just fine.

The Nugget, as we were to find out, is a very popular spot in town and after seeing the menu we could understand why. Although burgers are listed, it was the varied array of Seafood and Steak items that caught my attention.  While reading the  menu I couldn’t help to think that the chef had to be from a larger city like Manhattan. On one of his dishes he uses the term  “Beurre Meuniere” (a French term and method of preparation for sauteed in a lemon and butter with fresh parsley), which is something you don’t expect to read on a pub menu.

The Nugget as it turned out, also has a very good variety of Vodka’s, and one Three Olives brand White Grape, which happens to be a favorite of mine. Drinks were also priced for happy hour this evening until 7pm so we took full advantage of that special, being that we took a cab from our hotel and left the bikes.

Andrew (the Chef), actually moved to Monticello from our hometown area of southern New Jersey, which explained his menu choices. He cordially introduced himself to us and told us what his best dishes were.  In all, we ordered Sweet Chili style Buffalo Wings to start, and Twice cooked Prime Rib, Shrimp and Clams Fra Diavolo, and Seafood Fra Diavolo as main dishes. Everything looked great and tasted even better and the Fra Diavolo sauce was one of the best I have had in a long time.

Jackie, our  server was extremely friendly and attentive and the bartender also bought us a round of Grape Vodka shots. The menu prices were very reasonable (when compared to pricing for similar dishes in my home town area) and the portions were plentiful. No one at our table left with any room to spare for dessert or coffee.

Regular Guy rating  * * * 1/2    –   * * * * ( because of the added attention by    our Chef, Waitress and Bartender)

The New Nugget Restaurant and Pub

371 E Broadway , Monticello NY 12701

845 794 4161

Pietro’s Coal Oven Pizzeria, Marlton NJ

Tuesday, October 26th, 2010

Sometimes your GPS can find places to eat that you would never try, let alone find, in an unfamiliar part of town. While driving back from Florida, at night, and in rain, our GPS found Pietro’s.

Pietro’s Coal Oven Pizzeria is a free standing building off the side of Rte 70 and (under construction) at night, is not an easy place to find but once inside, you will be happy you did.

Pietro’s atmosphere appears like one might think a sports bar in Tuscany Italy would.  The decor is rich in Italian countryside style with television’s lining the bar area, NFL games abound. Dim lighting, high open ceilings and grape vines with brick and tile warm the dining area nicely.

Pietro’s signature item is its Coal Oven Pizza’s and we were eager to find out just how good they are. The menu is very creative and the listing of pizza varieties are endless and hard to decide which type to sample, but we moved on and ordered a salad and pizza.

The Insalata Mozzarella Fresca salad looked to be just the ticket to start our meal. Cold dishes ( which always impresses me)  and a family style bowl were placed in front of us. The salad greens were very fresh and the dressing was nice but the Mozzarella amount was far too little for a salad with Mozzarella in its name.

The Barese pizza boasted a special roasted sausage, hot pesto, tomato, basil, and mozzarella combination. We added red pepper flakes prior to baking so to add some zing to our pie. The pizza was very, very good and I ate more than I should have in one sitting even knowing that I had miles to drive ahead of me. Adding the red pepper turned it up a notch and even with the hot pesto, it was fine.

Prices are a little high on average but expected as nothing is skimped upon from the decor to the menus.All in all, our dining experience was a good one and I would be glad to stop by there again when passing through Marlton in the future.

Regular Guy rating   * * * 1/2

Pietro’s Coal Oven Pizzeria

140 west route 70

Marlton, NJ 08053

856 596 5500

www.pietrospizza.com

For the love of Napa…

Monday, October 18th, 2010

(as submitted by Lea for “She Say’s”)

A real man is a woman’s best friend. He will never stand her up and never let her down. He will reassure her when she feels insecure and comfort her after a bad day.

He will inspire her to do things she never thought she could do; to live without fear and forget regret. He will enable her to express her deepest emotions and give in to her most intimate desires. He will make sure she always feels as though she’s the most beautiful woman in the room and will enable her to be the most confident, sexy, seductive, and invincible.

No wait… sorry… I’m thinking of wine.
Never mind.

I raise my glass to those who are lucky enough to have found a real man, as well!

Say What?

Monday, October 11th, 2010

(The following post is from my new contributing columnist. Her posts will be under the title “She Says” and will be one woman’s opinion, thoughts and perspective on men and life as she see’s it).

Does anyone really listen anymore? Have you ever been so excited about something you experienced during the day that you burst into an exuberant explanation with the first person who would spare you five minutes, only to discover that when you pause to take a breath, the person immediately interjects their own personal story?… Like they didn’t hear a word you said, they were simply waiting for you to stop talking.

I like to think of myself as a trained listener; salespeople learn the skill as part of their toolbox. To connect with customers and earn their trust, we have to listen attentively for clues about what drives them…about their passions and interests. So when a “customer” pauses, I ask questions or repeat something they said to show that I was paying attention. It’s the polite thing to do.

Why is it so hard for people to reciprocate? Sometimes I’ve even wondered if it’s me. Maybe my conversation is boring or I’m just not funny enough. Yet, even when the so-called listener skips the art of listening and immediately becomes the talker, I find myself trying to show an interest again. Occasionally I get hung up on the fact that my whole conversation just went by the wayside. My mind starts drifting and I’ve suddenly committed the same offense- I’m no longer paying attention.

I think I’ve got the edge though. The talker doesn’t even know it because he’s still listening…to himself.

Great tune..

Saturday, October 9th, 2010

I like this song..any one have any good ones to share?

Show_Me_What_I_m_Looking_for-Carolina_Liar

Last rites on the institution of marriage…..

Friday, October 8th, 2010

It’s probably a good idea for you to first read the article linked to this post before reading my thoughts on it below.

www.mediapost.com/publications/?fa=Articles.showArticle&art_aid=137298

As much as I hate to think that this person is correct in his opinion, I believe he could have hit the bulls-eye!

Marriage really doesn’t work, at least not like it used to. We have become a society of me rather than we people. Marriage after all, is just too hard for most people to become adept at, mainly because there is very little incentive for them to do so. People used to marry for love but if you ask couples today why they are marrying, most place love at the back of the list, and some never even mention it. It’s usually “we’ve been together for years and it was time”. How can anyone expect a marriage to last if that’s a reason to get married. Time together should never be a reason to marry.

Marriage works if both people want it to. Period, end of story! If you aren’t fully commited to making your marriage the single most important thing in your life, it’s probably doomed. I always beleived that if a person put their spouse’s feelings before their own, it would increase a marriages chance of survival. Too often I am around friends that talk bad about their spouse openly. I also witness couples that curse at each other. I have never in my life,heard my parents curse at each other. You need to respect your spouse and treat her that way. Never talk bad to people about her or curse at her like you curse at friends or others, especially when in a disagreement.

I am one of the unlucky ones who married then divorced. I am also one of the luckier ones who found the right girl the second time around. When I married the second time, my mom told us both, just one thing. “Be kind to each other”. That’s all..just be kind. Sounds corny huh? I sure as hell thought so. But after thinking it over  I conscientiously tried it. It makes sense too. It can only make your wife love and appreciate you more if you treat her kindly. Kind words, hold hands, little notes in everyday places, open doors for her (ALL THE TIME) and treat her like a woman used to be treated when our dads were young.

Yes, maybe the institution of marriage as we know it is doomed. And maybe its because we have forgotten what is truly important in our lives because we have all gotten caught up in computers, long hours at work, reality television  and what makes me happy. We allow our lives to become so complicated that we often don’t think about how to make our marriage better but just let days turn into years without thought of how it is actually falling apart. We allow our childrens’ interests to rule our marriage and forget that at one time, when they weren’t around, we were both what was important. Now, many husbands that started at number one in their wife’s eyes may very well be three or four, depending on how much she loves her parents and pets…

The formula for a good marriage isn’t that complicated. It just takes two people to be committed to making each others happiness the most important thing in their lives…Pretty simple huh?