Saturday, March 12, 2011

Hansel n' Griddle - New Brunswick, NJ

I've always wanted to try them out. The name reminds you of that fairytale of similar name and the outside of their original location is very colorful. This is at 53 Mine Street.

For some reason I never gave them a try until a few days ago. I was going to a concert at Court Tavern and they have a second location a few steps away on Church Street. It opened over a year ago.

You can't really see it in the photo above, but the inside is brightly painted and the walls kind of have an old cottage type feel to them. The menu is displayed on a bunch of LCD televisions. One of them shows movies. When I went in there a Tim Burton animation was on, which fit the restaurant theme even more.

The place 5 or 6 stools facing the window, a few tables with 4 chairs, and a few tables with 2 chairs. Some of the chairs are a little close together, but not too bad. They have napkins on the table, which I like, so you don't have to keep asking. They also have free pickles in a large half barrel and free pens on the counter.

If you try 10 of their "Top 20" you get a free shirt. I wish I'd have known this, because I would have marked one off the list.

The menu consists of soups, salads, burgers, wraps, quesadillas (called crisps), chicken sandwiches, and some sides. They have fountain drinks, some bottled stuff like Arizona, and smoothies. They state their grilled chicken is fresh, their tuna is Bumblebee, steak is hand trimmed, mayo is Hellmann's, ketchup is Heinz, and hotsauce is Frank's. They believe in using quality products.

My Girlfriend and I started off with French Onion Soup. Their soups are home made. It came with croutons and cheese in it. The onions were plentiful. It looked flavorful and had a lot of spices in it. Looks are one thing, though. Taste wasn't anything special. It was kind of bland. Good enough to finish the whole bowl, but not good enough that I'd want to order it again. Maybe all it needed was a little salt.

Even though I didn't totally like the French Onion, I'd still like to give some of their other soups a try. In the winter they have as many as 7 homemade soups.

If you're interested, or if the owners ever read this, it's well worth taking a trip to Smithville Inn and trying their soup. It's the best I've ever had. You could probably learn a thing from them. You can see what I had to say about it here. It may be a 2 hour drive for me, but it's well worth it.

I had the Steak Crisp. It's steak, tomatoes, melted cheddar/jack cheese in a flour tortilla. It comes with either sour cream or salsa. I thought the portion was nice.. 4 decent sized pieces. The steak was tender and moist, not over cooked. The menu on the wall didn't have any description of anything and I didn't feel like asking. I probably would have went for the Coco Crisp, which is roast beef, cajun home fries, same cheese as above, and crisp bacon, served with gravy for dipping.

My Girlfriend had a Chicken Cordon Bleu sandwich. The chicken was very dry and the sandwich was not that flavorful. It had sauce on it, which was thin and mostly dripped off the other side of the sandwich.

The prices were fair I thought. My crisp was $6.75 and her sandwich was $6. Soup starts at $3.

My Girlfriend would probably not want to go here again. I did see her chicken was dry and stringy, but as far as what I ate I'd definitely go here again. I am very interested in trying the Coco Crisp mentioned above. They also make one that is like an italian sub in a quesadilla.

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