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Good Eating Outside of Theme Parks

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Here are a few of my favorite near Cedar Point



This was the original supplier of Cedar Point's famous french fries. Good food, decent prices, and about 10-15 minutes from the park. The GRILLED BUTTERED CINNAMON SWIRL BREAD–(their caps not mine) is to die for!! And they are on Facebook, too: https://www.facebook.com/Berardis



Of course, you can also get Tofts at the park, but if you go to the actual dairy in which it is made, the prices are better, the ice cream is fresher, and the portions are HUMONGOUS! Plus, they tend to carry all of their flavors at the same time, and they also do huge shakes and sundaes. I always stop there after a day at the Point, but check to make sure they are open late since they close exactly at closing time!!



Good pizza and decent prices. When I worked at CP in the 80's, we always remembered the rudest waitresses worked there! They may be gone, but the good food remains.


All three of these restaurants are off the beaten trail and not near the more touristy ones, so you'll end up eating with locals.


I was going to suggest both Berardi's and Toft's. I would add that Berardi's has awesome homemade pies as well.



My friends and I always like to escape to Margaritaville as well. We head there more for the drinks than the food, but the food is pretty good. It sits along a creek, and has a nice outdoor deck. It gets a little insane anytime there's a bike week or any other type of motorcycle event.

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I've heard some sketchy things about the big Chacho's on 410 near 35, but I lived about a mile away from the one on Callaghan for a few years and never heard about any shootings. You should try it! Their food is really good. Plus, they have enormous margaritas and frozen Jack & Coke!


I have and I think it's just meh, but that's just me.

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Anyone that's visited SFGAm and has hung out with me know that there are two places I'm going to make you go to after a day at the park:


Mickey Finn's - Your typical brewpub menu, with some additional items. The Irish Egg Rolls are awesome, as are the pizzas, and the burgers. Best of all, it's a micro brewery run by my dear friend Greg Browne. Awesome brews all year round, which change month to month. He still makes the best Hefeweizen I've ever had. It's straight south down Milwaukee Avenue.


Firkin - This is my higher end choice, as the food is a wee bit more expensive. Top notch food, and the beer list that rivals The Map Room in downtown Chicago. Constantly changing beer menu, so you'll never know what may be on tap....unless you like them on FB or Twitter.


Same deal as Mickey Finn's, straight south on Milwaukee Avenue.


Again, these are for after going to the park, not a lunch stop. It's a good fifteen minutes away, if traffic is good.

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I'm gonna use this forum to eulogize the great Jungle Jim's that used to be at the Crossroads (at the West entrance to Disney World). We would go there every Orlando trip for their amazing burgers. The jungle themeing was well done and loved it as a kid. Sadly closed down before I turned 21.


There's still some good chains (Perkins, Steak & Shake, Miller's Ale House) around the Crossroads if you want some food outside the parks and resorts.

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Of course, you can also get Tofts at the park, but if you go to the actual dairy in which it is made, the prices are better, the ice cream is fresher, and the portions are HUMONGOUS! Plus, they tend to carry all of their flavors at the same time, and they also do huge shakes and sundaes. I always stop there after a day at the Point, but check to make sure they are open late since they close exactly at closing time!!


I completely agree with Toft's Ice Cream Parlor! Over 50 flavors too!


Two other restaurants that I love by Cedar Point are Thirsty Pony and Sortino's Little Italy


Thirsty Pony http://rainwaterpark.com/thirstypony/

Such a great sports bar feel to this place and really easy to find. Some highlights are very tasty wings and burgers, oh and a huge beer selection too! You can also gamble with Keno and on televised horse racing!



1935 Cleveland Rd W

Sandusky, OH 44870


My favorite is the Thirsty Bam Burger which is a 1/2 pound of fresh beef with fantastic flavor!

From the website menu: "Our Signature burger ground with a touch or horseradish and fresh garlic, seasoned with salt, pepper & steak sauce, topped with Swiss & Mozzarella cheeses on Ciabatta bread"



Sortino's Little Italy Ristorante http://sortinosristorante.com/

This is quite possibly the best restaurant in Sandusky. The food is fantastic and big portions as well! They can handle large groups with ease. A little fun fact for the gals and gays: In the Woman's restroom in the basement, there is a picture of a lifesize naked Italian man with wooden door covering his privates. If you lift the door, an alarm goes off in the dining room upstairs and the customers all laugh when you walk back upstairs!



1220 Sycamore Line (at the corner of Sycamore Line & Sortino Blvd.)

Sandusky, OH 44870


**Note that it's only open for dinner, is closed on Sunday and Monday, and the entrance can be a real pain to find**


Pasta Mafia is my favorite dish.

From the website menu:“A dish you can't refuse!” Olive oil with garlic and scallions, broccoli, fresh peppers bite size pieces of medallions of steak, tossed with Parmesan cheese cream, and a dash of hot sauce, marinated in Italian herbs and served over fettuccini noodles, topped with basil.

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Here are some of my favorite places near SFFT.


Magnolia Pancake Haus(Breakfast) 10333 Huebner Road San Antonio, Texas 78240

Chacho's(Breakfast/Lunch/Dinner) 7870 Callaghan Road at I-10, San Antonio Texas 78229

Chester's Hamburgers(Lunch/Dinner) 9980 W Interstate 10 San Antonio, TX


I totally agree with all three plus Chuy's that was mentioned as well. And glad they have opened a few more locations around San Antonio.


OK this one is a regional chain but it's really good.

Just outside of Seaworld San Antonio is Rudy's BBQ


I agree as well....and there is also one about 5 miles West on the 10 just down from SFFT in Leon Springs as well. Great Texas BBQ!


And I'm also going to add one of my other San Antonio favorites which is Alamo Cafe. Mexican food is great and they have the best freshly made flour tortillas. The margaritas are pretty good too!

10060 Interstate Highway 10

San Antonio, TX

(210) 691-8827



And also a great Pizza place just about 4 miles West of SFFT on I-10 in Leon Springs (Rudy's BBQ is just down 1/4 mile further down the same exit). While it is outdoor seating, it's a great atmosphere and live music on weekends.

Fralo's Art of Pizza

23651 IH 10 West

San Antonio, Texas 78257

Fralo's Art of Pizza

Edited by ArizonaGuy
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^^I've heard good things about Cookout from friends of mine who live in North Carolina. I noticed one opened on Jefferson Avenue in Newport New, Va., near the airport. I have yet to try them.


Being as Cookout is a "regional chain," it's acceptable for this thread.

You're missing out if you haven't been. Another great place is called The Volstead. It is regional as well, and they have burgers better than any you have tasted before. They cook the meat in Coors; it wouldn't even fit on a scale between one and perfect. There is a few in Charlotte as well.

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^The timing has never quite worked out for me with Cookout. One of these days, I'll give Cookout a shot.

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For Orlando-area parks, I would suggest Boston Lobster Feast (www.bostonlobsterfeast.com) for dinner. There are two locations, both of which are within minutes of the parks. One is on Irlo Bronson in Kissimmee, and the other is smack-dab on International Drive, fairly close to Sea World. I'm not an Orlando local, so I don't get there much, but I've been there 4 times in the past 9 years (2004, 2005, 2008, 2011), and the food has always been consistently good. It's an all-you-can-eat seafood buffet, and the food is constantly refilled. It's very fresh, and there's a large selection available.

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Here's another suggestion for those of you seeking a good beer with your meal in Williamsburg: the DOG Street Pub in Merchants Square. They have an extensive selection of brew on tap and in bottles, in addition to some good "pub style" food, such as Shepard's Pie (excellent), Bangers and Mash (also great), and damn good burgers.



This used to be the Suntrust Bank Building.




Fish and Chips, anyone?


401 West Duke of Gloucester Street

Williamsburg, VA 23185


Take Rt. 60 (a left turn) toward Williasmsburg as you leave the park. (This street is also known as Pocahantas Trail and York Street.)

Turn left on Francis Street (this will take you past one side of Colonial Williamsburg).

Turn right on S. Henry Street. The pub is on the left as you go through the stop sign. (Parking lots are available. Some are free, others charge a fee.)

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Lunch or Dinner: Lion's Tap is an awesome burger joint with a very simple menu and amazing food. It's about ten minutes away from the park.


-16180 Flying Cloud Drive, Eden Prairie, MN-


Also lunch or dinner:Buffalo Tap is also a great restaurant with a variety of burgers, wings, etc. They also have the juicy lucy, which if you don't know is a burger with the cheese inside the patty. It's located in Savage on highway 13, roughly 10 or 15 minutes from the park.


-4990 W 123rd St. Savage, MN-



Nickelodeon Universe/Mall of America


Lunch or Dinner: Fat Lorenzo's features amazing pizza, hoagies, pasta, and gelato. They have two locations, one in Minneapolis and one in Bloomington (which is about five minutes from the mall).


-311 West 84th Street, Bloomington, MN-

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If anyone ever travels all the way out to Sylvan Beach, a couple hundred yards away is Eddie's restaurant; a really good diner/Italian restaurant that's been there since 1934, and it even still has a full-on soda bar.

Edited by cfc
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^Found a link to Eddie's Web site and updated the thread index. Thank you to everyone who's contributed so far. Keep those recommendations coming!

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OK, I finally got around to checking out another local breakfast joint that many locals like. I've driven past it many times, but never bothered to stop there until yesterday:


Astronomical Pancake and Waffle House

5437 Richmond Road

Williamsburg, VA

(This is the location I tried. They have another restaurant closer to Colonial Williamsburg and the College of William & Mary, but I can't dig up an address for it--it hasn't been open very long.)


If you're into HUGE FREAKIN' PANCAKES covered with all sorts of stuff, this is the place for you. I couldn't even finish my pecan pancakes. There were two of them, both the size of a dinner plate! Yes, it's pretty touristy, but I can forgive that if the food is good.


There's a new diner in town that I've heard good things about, too--hope to check it out this week.


Hard to miss this sign as you leave Williamsburg on Rt. 60.


There's a hotel for visiting workers behind the place, too (mostly college students).


Yep--there are two HUGE FREAKIN' PANCAKES on that plate, and they give you both whipped cream and butter. I could only finish half.

Edited by cfc
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I would always love to go to Perkins either after a long day at work during my Disney College Programs or after a long day in the parks in Orlando whether it was Universal, SeaWorld, WDW, or Busch.

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^Hmm--Perkins is a pretty good sized chain (like Cracker Barrel) and, therefore, does not qualify for this thread. We're looking for locally owned restaurants (or regional chains, at the most).

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Awesome thread Chuck!!!


For outside of Six Flags St. Louis the places I would pick would be Joe Boccardi's- JoeBoccardis they got great Italian food and pizza.

128 Boccardi Lane

Eureka, MO 63025



My second place would be if you are looking for some quality BBQ stop at Super Smokers- SuperSmokers

601 Stockell Drive

Eureka, Missouri 63025

(636) 938-9742


Both places are only a couple minutes away from the park!!

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