Wednesday, July 14, 2010

What's New in Town?

By now you may know that Bravo, an Italian eatery at the Promenade at Chenal, is open - they have a lovely patio. Also, if you're in the mood for Cajun/Creole inspired cuisine - check out Bar Louie - the new restaurant (with lots of tv's and a huge patio) located in the Pleasant Ridge shopping center - where Crew used to be.

I have had so much fun over the last year introducing new places and reminding you about some you might have forgotten - I hope you'll continue to tune in each week - you can be sure if there's something tasty on the menu, I'm going to find it. Arkansas truly does have some gems and it's a pleasure to profile them - there are so many unique and interesting stories associated with the local establishments.

Remember, if you have a place you'd like to recommend, don't be shy - leave me a note and if you have an opinion about a place I've previously featured, pro or con, you can leave a note about that, too. My goal is to help you find places to try - by giving you a little bit of insight before you venture to them, if you haven't been before. Are there other questions about the restaurants you want to have answered? I always try to tell you about the price range, kid-friendliness of a place, wheel chair accessibility and service.

Finally, got any great BBQ recipes you want to share? Everybody has one or their uncle has one, or their dad has one!!! :) Leave your ideas/recipes here and we'll post them.

Oh... and stay tuned for Pam's Picks in July - we have some special places in store for you!!!!! Enough for now - hope you have a super rest of your week! Until next time, Bon Appetit.


Doe's is Back

Doe's Eat Place

1023 West Markham


Lunch Monday - Friday 11 am - 2 pm

Lunch $5-8 (Excluding Steaks - they are sold by the pound)

Steaks Range from $14.50 per pound to $18.50 per pound

Dinner Monday - Friday 5:30 - 9:30 pm; Saturday 5:30 - 10 pm
Doe's website

Click on above link to be directed to Doe's Website

It's the Steak of all Steaks

Doe's is back after a 2-month drought for all you steak lovers. A fire in one of the kitchen vents caused the shut-down. Long-time restaurateur, George Eldridge thanks the LR fire department for quickly putting out a blaze that could have put them out of business. And sends some love the way of his patient and loyal customers who've returned...almost like they never missed a beat. Goes to show you - customer satisfaction can go a long long way.

For those who don't know it- hard to imagine there could be any who don't, but just in case... Doe's Eat Place at Markham and Ringo in Little Rock serves super-sized steaks by the pound. Usually a 3-pounder is enough to feed 2-3 people, that is unless you happen to have a bottomless pit. The Porterhouse is the largest and represents, according to Eldridge, the best of both worlds - it's where the loin transitions from sirloin to t-bone and it's the one cut that has a big fillet on it and a big strip.

Doe's is also known for its tamales. The expanded menu includes shrimp, catfish, spaghetti and meatballs, Norwegian Salmon, hamburger steaks with grilled onions and hamburgers (in the tradition of the old Band Box -which also owned by Eldridge). Among the sides: homemade french fries and a soaked salad (dressing consists of vegetable and olive oil, lemon juice and and a lot of garlic - but definitely delicious.) Dessert is the on the menu but good luck having room for it after chomping down on a big steak!

Boudreaux's Home of Maumelle's Cajun Cuisine

Boudreaux's Bar and Grill

9811 Maumelle Blvd

Maumelle, AR 72113

(501) 753-6860

Boudreaux's website

Hope you get your crawfish fill before the season is over - that's how I ended up at Boudreaux's. I was looking for crawfish - and someone left a post for me on FB telling me to check out Boudreaux's which has a North Little Rock address but is on Maumelle Blvd. Ironically, I ended up not getting the crawfish.

The first thing that caught my tastebud's attention - a jalapeno hot water corn bread - truly some of the best I've had - and oh my, add that jalapeno - and we've got a "whole nother" melt-in-your-mouth delicious kind of thing going on.

The restaurant truly is your neighborhood "Cheers" kind of place. Everybody knew everybody's name, everybody knew what everybody else was eating... and everybody was quick to offer you a seat at their table or a sample from their plate.

The owners, business partners, Jody and Wayne Bettoney, are from Baton Rouge and decided to open a "Cajun" style restaurant in the area because they said no one else was doing it. Their Arkansas connection were thrilled about it but had to make their LSU Tiger friends a little more Razorback friendly - so you'll find a picture of a "hog" with tiger stripes. (Some say that's just not right - to do that to the hog - smile) But before you die-hard Razorback fans get upset - they assure it's just a little good-natured ribbing!)

Boudreax's is in a strip-mall parking lot and if you don't know it's there, you might drive past. Definitely worth a visit to check out the alligator - blackened or fried; jambalaya and crawfish etoufee. (They have a plate called the trio where you gt a bowl of jambalaya, crawfish etoufee and gumbo) I prefer my gumbo with a few more ingredients , like okra, and a lot more seasoning - however, Wayne Bettoney says they have to prepare it how it would be best for large crowds... and told me they have lots of hot sauce for those whose tastebuds like things heated up.

The restaurant offers 2-for-1 prime rib on one of its weekend days - so call ahead to find out which day; karaoke and live entertainment some nights. Opened for lunch and dinner on Friday and Saturday otherwise a dinner only operation. Boudreaux's has a game room and says it is kid-friendly, although I see it more as an adult atmosphere at dinner time.

I did not sample the bread pudding but some patrons and a couple of my colleagues say it is the best they've eaten.

La Regional Bakery & Taqueria 7414 Baseline

So sorry everyone... was trying to post from my cell phone and couldn't quite make it:(

La Regional's Pastry Shop is located at 7414 Baseline; the restaurant, grocery store/meat market and western store are all next door. Hours at the bakery and grocery store: 6:00 am - 10:30 pm. The restaurant offers authentic Mexican food as well as entrees from other Hispanic cultures. Well worth the visit - I was pleasantly surprised.

I think my recommendation of La Regional has sparked the most controversial comments to date. I had one viewer leave a post saying she was "very disappointed" in La Regional - the food, service and location. And one cornered me at the service station to tell me it was the worst experience he'd had - he told me I usually got it right, but that I bombed this time.

I truly respect people's differing opinions. First, let me say for the record - "I" did truly enjoy La Regional and I would never recommend a restaurant that I would not personally visit or enjoy. My appreciation for La Regional was the "total" experience - including the bakery, grocery store and restaurant. I loved how they all worked together to blend the ingredients and products for an experience that would replicate one that you might have in the owners' native Monterey, Mexico. Perhaps I should have "stressed" that this was not a "white table cloth" dining experience then maybe expectations would have been different. But I don't rate my restaurant experiences or base my recommendations on the "white table cloth" factor, alone - I try to find what is unique and original about each of the places I visit... and then try to tell you the interesting back stories associated with them.

Please know that my recommendations are for your enjoyment but I know that there will be some who take strong exception, occasionally - however, I welcome all comments, pro and con. Thanks for taking the time to leave them. Also, if you want to recommend a place for me to try, please leave me a note.

Until Next Time,

Bon Appetit,


Pam's Picks Patios

Calling all Patio Lovers

Got a favorite place you hang out that has a great patio.... I'm looking for the coolest patio's to feature in future Pam's Picks. Point me to your favorite and tell me why......

We'll visit the top 4 in June - so let me hear from you.....

Until next time, Bon Appetit


BTW, be sure to catch the 30 minute edition of Pam's Picks, this Saturday at 2 pm on KATV.

What's New?

FYI.....Restaurant 1620 - now has a fabulous new deck for outside dining.

Acadia - now serving lunch.

Ump's has a new tasty ice cream dessert - a vanilla/raspberry combo, encased in a white chocolate shell.

Rockston's patio is open - Sunday is karaoke night.

Lighthouse Pizza and Barbecue now open at the former Wheels and Grills at 17th and Martin Luther King Drive - they also have plate lunches.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Inside the Box -Home of the Outside the Box Burger

The Box

1623 Main, Little Rock (Moving Soon)

Lunch Only

11:00 am - 2:30 pm (M-F)

$2.00 - 7.50

(501) 372-8735

There's something about a homecooked greasy burger... you get that plus the 62-year-old ambiance at The Box at 17th and Main in Little Rock. But a bit of sad news for those of you who don't know already... The Box in its current location will be no more. Kelly Joiner, current owner, says USA Drugs made him an offer he couldn't refuse... so the restaurant and all its storied history is moving to 7th Street, near Chester. But not to worry, Joiner says he's taking the seasoned grilled, known for cranking out thousands of burgers over its life-time, is going with him... as well as the long-time cook, Mae Hughes and server, Candle Weaver. You can still get a juicy Box burger ( the signature sandwich features the pepper-jack cheese) on Main until the middle of June... then you'll have to navigate to 7th Street.

BTW, The Box has expanded its menu - you can get 4 kinds of cheese on your burgers or you may choose a club or grilled chicken sandwich, grilled chicken salad or hamburger steak with grilled onions. Joiner boasts that a unique method for cooking their fries makes them crispier. See the video post of this story later on for more.

Meet My new Crossett Friend

This has absolutely nothing to do with food... just met this wonderful lady last week during the Crossett Connection and wanted to share her pic with you. The Crossett connection is a group of women, all from Crossett - obviously, who have maintained a friendship over the years and meet periodically for food, fun and fellowship. Had a blast. Now, I'd like to introduce you to 84-year-young Bobbye Elliott. (Photo by Brenda Scisson)