Tasting Thomasville: Yoburst, George & Louie’s


Yoburst Frozen Yogurt

We love the toppings bar... perhaps a smidgen too much some visits.

We love the toppings bar… perhaps a smidgen too much some visits.

While we were still “camping out” at the Dollhouse before officially moving in, we gave into temptation and stopped by the frozen yogurt shop on E Pinetree Blvd (we passed it coming and going to Lowes, it was just a matter of time). It was not the last time.

While not a restaurant of the sort I’ve included in other Tasting Thomasville posts, the fact that we frequent this shop a couple times a month makes it definitely worth mentioning. From what I can tell they serve the Yocream brand of frozen yogurt (produced by Dannon) and they rotate flavors on a regular basis. Sometimes this is good (yay, variety!) and sometimes it’s bittersweet (like the amazing Rootbeer Float frozen yogurt they had on one trip).

I often opt for the Triple Chocolate paired with something else depending on the options. This last visit, after dinner Friday night, they had recently put out Pumpkin Pie, so I skipped the chocolate and paired it with Butter Pecan for a pie-flavored fro-yo-off. Both were delicious, especially topped with praline pecans and some cinnamon sauce! Todd’s favorites are the Country Vanilla and Cake Batter.

And, yes, we’re quite aware that frozen yogurt is only a half-step healthier (if that!) than going out for regular ice cream, but we also don’t care. Everything in moderation, including moderation!

George and Louie’s

Their options can be a bit overwhelming at first.

Their options can be a bit overwhelming at first.

Back into the realm of “real food” (as opposed to the imaginary sort, but you know what I mean) we ended up at George and Louie’s one evening after Todd saw they had gyros on the menu. It’s tucked back on Remington Ave (a street I’m just now getting my bearings on) and features self-seating and a walk-up counter for ordering. This threw me, at first, as we walked in about 30 minutes before closing that first time and I was a little overwhelmed by the series of chalkboards spanning the wall showcasing their southern-seafood-Greek offerings.

Crab Louie Special: obviously I made an exception to my Low-FODMAP lifestyle, but it's a saving grace that I can!

Crab Louie Special: obviously I made an exception to my Low-FODMAP lifestyle, but it’s a saving grace that I can!

That first night I went with the Crab Louie Special (when in doubt, I default to ordering the house special in a new place) which was a deviled crab cake, hushpuppies, Greek salad, and cheese grits, along with a glass of Merlot. The cheese grits were more like grits topped with cheese, so not what I think of when I order cheese grits, but other than that the meal was just perfect. The tartar sauce tasted homemade and, well, it’s hard to screw up a Greek salad but it can be done (they didn’t though). Todd got the gyro he went in craving along with an order of onion rings that he was quite over the moon about. Once we’d ordered I had a chance to look at the parts of the menu I skipped over. Items like the Greek salad topped with Fried Green Tomatoes, Fried Oysters, or Tilapia sounded especially intriguing.

French fries and onion rings---it'd been that kind of week, folks!

French fries and onion rings—it’d been that kind of week, folks!

While it can get pretty loud in there when it’s busy (as we found out when we visited with a group of friends after the Taste of Greece event was rained out, a month or so after our first visit), there’s nice music playing in the background, plenty of seating of all configurations, and umbrella’d tables outside. There’s even a drive-through if you’re in a hurry. The music was of particular interest to us, though, as we were midway through our meal when a familiar song came on: “our” song, the one we danced to at our wedding, a song from 1955 that we don’t hear unless we play it intentionally, was playing on the sound system. One of the many reasons Thomasville continues to feel more like home every day are these little touches of awesome we run into in random places around here.

We also got to talking with the owner before we left and complimented him on his atmospheric choices. And we know we’ll be back because there are just so many great-sounding things left on the menu to try!

Review: Bonefish Grill


In celebration of Todd’s new job we went out to eat a couple of weeks ago and ended up at our local Bonefish Grill (a national chain with locations in 28 states). I say ended up because we were initially going to go to a restaurant that, in the interim, had either closed or relocated since I last thought of them. Bonefish was handy, I’d heard good things, so we went.

Of course, being 7pm on a Saturday night, there was a considerable wait. An hour, expected, but here’s where they earned a few points in my book: In addition to plentiful and comfortable seating and being able to place bar orders while we waited, every 20 minutes a waiter would circulate with a tray of appetizers, toothpicks and napkins. During our hour-and-a-bit wait three different apps came by: their Bang-Bang Shrimp, the Saucy Shrimp and some Bang-Bang Chicken (not on the menu but, according to the manager who was serving it, you could ask for it). We loved the Bang-Bang Shrimp and even ordered one to share when we got to our table. (Imagine my glee when the copycat sauce recipe was listed in the most recent issue of Food Network Magazine!)

The interior of the restaurant was amazing. We couldn’t see the bar for the crush of people still waiting inside but I’ve been told it’s a pretty impressive feature in and of itself. Instead, from our seats in the dining room I saw a fantastic back-lit cut-out mural. It complemented the dimly-lit room and sure-footed wait staff. That’s where one of my larger complaints lie: the waitstaff wear chef’s jackets. I fully admit that I’m sensitive on the use of the title Chef for every other home cook and it’s for the same reason that, having spent two years in Culinary School, I do NOT like waitstaff dressing the part of chef. I’m sure someone just thought it “looked cool” but it irritates me.

Anyway, back to dinner. We’d ordered drinks on the patio–a Mangotini that had a bit too much citrus in it for either of our tastes (but at least was made with fresh mango and not Snapple) and a rum drink whose name escapes me at the moment that was just too much booze, not enough mix. In fact, the entire cocktail menu seemed a little heavy on high-octane drinks. But that’s just one girl’s opinion based on the menu descriptions and the 2 we tried.

The menu itself focuses on a variety of fresh fish grilled and topped with your choice of sauces. For a seafood place, Bonefish Grill offers a variety of other entree options that all sound very good. It was tough to make a choice, honestly, and then we both settled on the Imperial Longfin (tilapia stuffed with seafood and topped with a buttery lemon caper sauce).

First to come out was warm bread served with olive oil and pesto; our waiter listed the ingredients for us and the surprise feature was the use of pepitas (pumpkin seeds) instead of pine nuts. I’m going to have to try that at home, next time, not to mention using pesto for the dipping sauce instead of just herbed olive oil. Next, we both opted for a cup of the corn chowder with lump crab meat. Velvety smooth. A slight crab flavor permeates it but I would guess it’s from stock or a stock base, as the crab meat itself was in the bottom of the cup as a garnish.

Entrees come with your choice of one side and the vegetable of the day. That day the vegetable was a succotash redolent with wood-smoked bacon. It was fresh, tasty and very different from the mushy amalgamation I’ve had under that name in the past. I chose the herbed Jasmine rice as my side, Todd the potatoes au gratin. Both came on the plate obviously from a portion scoop like this was some sort of cafeteria lunch. My rice was a little over minted but otherwise fine, Todd’s first bite of potatoes was raw though that did appear to be an aberration. It was also apparent that the au gratin was portioned then topped with the breadcrumbs and cheese before a moment under a broiler or some such. An… interesting way to do things.

The fish itself was very tasty–unless you tasted a bit that was without sauce or filling. The unadorned tilapia was just that: unseasoned and uninspiring. But the sauce was absolutely lovely, not too heavy on the capers, and paired nicely with the seafood stuffing. Another major point in Bonefish’s favor were the realistic portion sizes. Usually a stuffed fish dish is gargantuan, way too much food, not to mention grouper is the stuffed fish of choice for most restaurants I’ve been in. So I guess that’s two points.

Overall we enjoyed our experience. The bill came to $61 including tip (but not including the bar tab). I’ve got my eye on the Fontina Chop for a future visit and, of course, more of those Bang-Bang Shrimp.