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Good Eating Outside of Theme Parks


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I always check Yelp for great restaurants when I am traveling and Yelp doesn't disappoint 90% of the time. I have a laundry list of restaurants to try in the LA area from watching various TV shows like Anthony Bourdain No Reservations/The Layover/Parts Unknown and Man vs Food and reading food blogs like Zagat. When I go to West Coast Bash I'm thinking of going to Little Tokyo in LA after SFMM on the drive down to Knott's since its near the 5 Fwy and hitting up the famed Daikokuya which is on my list of places to try and is open late. Good thread by the way Chuck.

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Speaking of Cookout, they've opened one on Richmond Road in Williamsburg (which is "tourist central" here when it comes to hotels). It is a very good burger joint, indeed.

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Good burgers

Edited by cfc
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After a day at KI, check out Blue Ash Chili on Western Row. Famous for the "Cincinnati Chili" style with 3,4,5 and 6 ways. Also have a lot of really good sandwiches. If you're really hungry try the double decker with your choice of meats and cheeses. Great place to eat!! Head south on Kings Island Drive, take a right on Western Row, and will be on your right after you go under 71 in a little shopping center with a Donatos and Penn Station. Also, for a little further drive, check out Marion's Pizza a little down 71 on Mason-Montgomery Rd. Awesome pizza!!

 

I second this suggestion. I went to Blue Ash Chili when I visited KI last month and the food was very delicious. I recommend either the 6-way chili (spaghetti, chili, onion, beans, cheese, and fried jalapeno nuggets) or their Philly Chili, a Philly cheesesteak smothered in chili (top-quality beef used, I might add).

 

They were featured on Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives, so a quick Youtube search will pull up the video for more.

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I want to throw in a 3rd recommendation for Palermo's near Hershey. I went last year, and the pizza and pasta I got were both fantastic!

 

I'll definitely have to try them next time I'm at Hershey. Usually we just go to Red Robin out of familiarity, but that place looks amazing.

 

Also, near Lake Compounce there is a good diner, Kizl's Family Restaurant (http://www.kizls.com/), that has a really good breakfast and pretty good lunch and dinner as well.

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  • 1 month later...

Time to bump this thread...

 

 

Hersheypark - About a 15 minute drive from the park is a place called Arooga's. If you are looking for awesome wings & a huge draft beer selection, you need to check this place out.

 

Another awesome find is Troegs Brewery which I believe is less than a mile away from the park heading East on the Hershey Highway (quit thinking dirty thoughts, people!)

 

I included some photos of my recent experiences in Philrad's Phoodie thread. They are great places to visit if you need a break from riding coasters and don't crave regular crappy theme park food!

 

 

Aroogas

 

Troegs

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There are two location by Santa's Village Azoosment Park.

 

Santa's Village

The first is Van's Frozen Custard located at 16 E Main St East Dundee. They, relatively, recently moved to this larger location and added an expanded menu. They have vanilla, chocolate, and whatever the special or two of the day is frozen custard, as well as sundaes, shakes, malts, etc. Additionally, they make everything fresh daily. The new location has also added hot foods. I will usually get the Peach Melba Crisp or the Sweet & Salty(vanilla with pretzel sticks, rasberries, and cheesecake bites) sundaes.

http://www.vansfrozencustard.com/index.html

 

Located behind Vans at 8 S. River St. in East Dundee, Benedict's Eggs and More is a pancake house. They are only open from 7-2, and they can draw large crowds, especially on weekends. I will usually get the potato pancakes. They give you a lot of food here, so come hungry.

http://www.benedictseggs.com/

 

Both of these are located just a couple minutes northwest of Santa's Village.

 

Six Flags Great America

 

Pita Inn

While not really close, it is on the way to the park from the south. This is a chain of Medeterrain cuisine restaurants with locations in Skokie, Glenview, Wheeling, and Mundelin. I will usually get the lunch special($4 or $5 depending on if you get chicken) or the hummus and shawarma plate. The lunch special is a great deal and could easily provide two meals if you weren't going anywhere. Again, it is a bit of a drive as Mundelin would be the closest, but it is well worth it. Plus, it easily beats the chain restaurants outside the park.

http://www.pita-inn.com/index.php

 

Timothy O'Tooles across the street from the park is also supposed to be good. I think I had their food at Taste of Chicago one year, but I'm not sure. Even if true, my personal experience with the restaurant is not enough to say anything more, other than, I heard they are really good.

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Six Flags Great America- Kaiser's Pizza and Pub- only a 5 minute drive from the park. I haven't been there in a few years, but the pizza was great when I last went, on Mondays the offer 1/2 price pizza, and Tuesdays-Thursdays they offer an all you can eat pizza special!

 

Kaiser's Pizza and Pub- 1801 Illinois Highway 21 Gurnee, IL (IL-21 is also called Milwaukee Ave/Riverside Drive) If you head east on Grand Avenue from I-94 (or a right turn onto Grand if you're leaving the Great America from the main entrance), the first stoplight you come to after the park's main entrance will be IL-21. Take a left at that light, and Kaiser's is about a mile up the road on your right side.

http://www.kaiserspub.com/

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Next time you go to Kennywood, go north to New Castle, PA. It's a 45 minute drive, but it's worth it, because New Castle is home to MP Coney Island, where some of the best chili dogs and chili fries I've ever tasted currently reside.

 

Thanks for reminding me of that. We used to go there all the time when I was growing good. If it's still as good as it was 25+ years ago, I second that recommendation.

 

On to my current home park, if you drive up 77 about 15-20 minutes north of Carowinds, you'll be in downtown Charlotte. There they have a city block that is EPICENTRE. One of my favorite restaurants is there with good fresh American food, BlackFinn American Saloon. EPICENTRE also has numerous other restaurants including Whisky River which is owned by Dale Earnhardt, Jr. I've heard reviews that the food is good although I've not personally eaten there. EPICENTRE has its own parking garage but they seem to charge more than double what the public parking garages are in the area.

 

Another favorite of mine is Ri Ra Irish Pub. It's an easy walk about 1-2 blocks away from EPICENTRE.

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  • 1 month later...

We left Dorney Park at midnight on Friday and were looking for somewhere to eat that was still open. We stumbled upon John's Plain and Fancy Diner in Quakertown, about 20 minutes from the park on RT 309. It's open 24/7, has a very classic diner feel to it, prices were decent, portions were surprisingly big, and everyone in our group seemed to like their food (the fries are really good). My only complaint was that the service was rather slow, but it was 1 in the morning and the place was actually kind of busy.

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They are starting to build a Chipotle in Hershey right now. Its been somewhat of a controversial topic because some of the townspeople think that there shouldn't be a fast food joint in town (it is actually technically called fast casual) and that it would ruin the overall look of it. The sad thing is that ten years ago there was a Hardees right across the street and people don't remember it. I welcome this addition because the only fast food places around Hersheypark are Wendy's, McDonalds, and a couple of Subways.

 

EDIT: Fenicci's, which is located right across from The Hershey Story Museum is a pretty good pizza place with some of the best in town. The old world style is the best and they also have a nice ice cream and small sub shop nextdoor.

Edited by Ccron10
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^I recommend that you look at the first post of this thread. We're looking for "local" joints or "regional" chains. Chipotle is national.

 

This is interesting info concerning the town's attitudes toward big chains, though.

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^ Thanks for letting me know about these. Usually, we're too tired to drive anywhere else after Knoebels, and go to either the Cracker Barrel or Ruby Tuesday that are right next to where we usually stay, in Buckhorn.

 

An Olive Garden opened in Buckhorn earlier this year, but I'd much rather go to one of the two Italian places I posted...Balzano's especially. All three that I listed are within 10 minutes of Buckhorn.

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I hear the area around the park isn't that nice but are there any good places to eat near BGT? I'm looking for mostly seafood and the opportunity to try key lime pie in Florida (I make it myself at home with my own recipe but I'd like to see how it stacks up to the real thing), and any other good Florida food.

 

If you're going to Carowinds to ride their new giga in 2015, there's a good Mexican place called Azteca near the park that has some of the best shrimp enchiladas I've ever had and you can have guacamole made tableside and pick what you want in it. I've both eaten there and had my dad go out and bring it back to the hotel and my family ate it in the courtyard gazebo overlooking the pool at night and it was fab. There's also a German place called Waldhorn in the area that has amazing schnitzel and gulaschuppe.

 

And just in case you don't want pancakes for breakfast, lunch, dinner, midnight "I can't sleep, to heck with it" snack, and afternoon snack at a pancake house in Pigeon Forge, there's a quite a few places around the park that are definitely worth trying. Huck Finn's Catfish has some pretty good fried seafood, especially in such an area where not much fresh seafood is available. I loved the catfish I had. There's thousands around the Smoky Mountains, but my favorite pancake house is Ye Olde Pancake Pantry. I had some pretty good peanut butter and chocolate pancakes there. Calhoun's has really good barbecue, but for some reason they felt the need to explain to me that the ribs I was about to order had bones in them. And as pricey as it is, if you have the time, I recommend doing Dixie Stampede. In addition to the show being incredible, the food is great. I loved the barbecue chicken I was served (I don't usually like barbecue chicken!) as well as the vegetable soup.

 

And it isn't really local, but the Famous Dave's at Cedar Point's marina (not sure if it counts as outside of a park, but you need a reentry stamp to leave the park like that) is my favorite place to eat when visiting Cedar Point because while there are other Famous Dave's around, this one's extremely unique due to its location. In addition to having the best barbecue I've ever had, you can get an incredible view of either Raptor/Blue Streak/GateKeeper or one of Millennium Force and the back of the park across the marina while you eat and watch the boats go in and out on Lake Erie. Only thing I don't like about it is that the walkway leading to the door has no railing to keep you from falling into the lake, and I'm a big klutz. Both of the following shots were taken from that Famous Dave's.

 

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So yeah, that view + the best barbecue in the world. Why eat anywhere else?

 

Sorry for the long post; I'm a bit of a foodie.

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St. Louis wings across from Canada's Wonderland. Good local chain of wing joints. Wings are small but marinated for extra tastiness. Great dill sauce and awesome fries. Their suicide is tasty and the right level of hot - not a gimmick. Opened up a location right across the street from Wonderland not even a five minute walk from the gate. Has a patio that offers a great view of Leviathan and cold beer.

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Canada's Wonderland:

Lunch/Dinner

Lick's Burger Boutique is located just across the parking lot on Jane St. It's a local chain with a few locations in Ontario.

Everything is made on the grill when you order and their burgers are a pretty good size. Whatever you order, make sure to get Guk sauce on it. I'd also suggest getting Taters'n'Cream on the side (Fries smothered in sour cream, bacon bits, cheese, and chives).

 

Don't recommedn Lick's to Americans. They overcook the burgers which are dry and tasteless. They will never respect us again.

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