Helpful ReplySome Suggestions for My Road Trip

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Danusa86
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Re: Some Suggestions for My Road Trip 2014/08/30 11:45:06 (permalink)
mayor al
I also have covered those same roads..and have done many of the segments in the time you have alloted. However I must admit I have not completed all of the segments in the order and the time you are allowing. Man that is a real endurance run !!  
Example- Durango to Las Vegas-- you have as a one day ride. That is possible. However If you split it in two-- Durango - Mesa Verde NP Monument Valley-Page/Lake Powell--- then--So Utah Kanab Zion St George Virgin River Mesquite and Vegas on day two, you have a chance to look around at some of the greatest SW scenery in the USA .
 
 However I understand the pressures of time.  AND a group of four can force other priorities on the agenda as the trip moves along. On one hand I envy your itinerary and wish I were there... On the other I fear for your safety when the pressure of the journey gets the best of the group. Call for support !!!




You got it right, Durango to Vegas is probably the longest leg of our journey. I am perfectly aware of that and that splitting it up would be better, however we just don't have the days to do so :(
In my original plan Vegas wasn't there as I've been there 4 times already but then I thought that my travel mates would like to see it as it's their first time in America. 
It is an endurance run but again I'm used to it and the trip I did in 2011 while being very similar wasn't too tiring either ! the trick is to organize your travel so that you have a sighstseeing stop every 2-3 hours, that way 10 hours on a car in one day do not really put too much pressure on you. 
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mayor al
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Re: Some Suggestions for My Road Trip 2014/08/30 13:04:44 (permalink)
I forsee a lot of eating while driving as opposed to leisurely two hour meal breaks three times a day. I understand now why a line at a BBQ stand, no matter if it offers gold plated Ribs, would be self-defeating to the overall task at hand.  I am sure you are aware that many if not most American restaurants will prepare 'take-out meals if you call ahead and order from an internet menu.  Not just the drive-thru burger stands, but many full service places. That could allow you to have your "ribs and scenery too" Leaving a trail of rib bones much like the Hansel and Greta Tale, or a Meat-Eaters version of Johnny Appleseed wandering the SouthWest.
 
What a great story you will have to share in November. I look forward to reading what wr call an "After-Action Report"
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Re: Some Suggestions for My Road Trip 2014/08/30 14:26:54 (permalink)
mayor al
I forsee a lot of eating while driving as opposed to leisurely two hour meal breaks three times a day. I understand now why a line at a BBQ stand, no matter if it offers gold plated Ribs, would be self-defeating to the overall task at hand.  I am sure you are aware that many if not most American restaurants will prepare 'take-out meals if you call ahead and order from an internet menu.  Not just the drive-thru burger stands, but many full service places. That could allow you to have your "ribs and scenery too" Leaving a trail of rib bones much like the Hansel and Greta Tale, or a Meat-Eaters version of Johnny Appleseed wandering the SouthWest.
 
What a great story you will have to share in November. I look forward to reading what wr call an "After-Action Report"




Yeah. Emailed Franklins to this regard but they offer pick-up only before 10.30 and I am not keen on having BBQ at 10 in the morning and being in a car I would not be able to heat food up and a cold BBQ is not exactly the best
 
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Re: Some Suggestions for My Road Trip 2014/08/30 17:26:04 (permalink)
In February we hope to head out to primarily Arizona but will spend over two and a half months kicking around the southwest. We are getting more and more leisurely about it. In 1998 we would have done similar but in only two weeks.
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Re: Some Suggestions for My Road Trip 2014/08/30 17:31:44 (permalink)
Danusa86
Yeah. Emailed Franklins to this regard but they offer pick-up only before 10.30 and I am not keen on having BBQ at 10 in the morning and being in a car I would not be able to heat food up and a cold BBQ is not exactly the best

I can think of worse sacrifices to make than eating barbecue at 10am...like not being able to eat barbecue at 10am!
 
Go for it...
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Danusa86
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Re: Some Suggestions for My Road Trip 2014/08/30 17:40:24 (permalink)
ScreamingChicken
Danusa86
Yeah. Emailed Franklins to this regard but they offer pick-up only before 10.30 and I am not keen on having BBQ at 10 in the morning and being in a car I would not be able to heat food up and a cold BBQ is not exactly the best

I can think of worse sacrifices to make than eating barbecue at 10am...like not being able to eat barbecue at 10am!
 
Go for it...




HAHA problem is: I'd like to go to the Hamilton Pool too ... is the Salt Lick's BBQ so much inferior to Franklin's? 
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Re: Some Suggestions for My Road Trip 2014/08/30 18:22:16 (permalink)
There are those who are fine tuned to quality of fine wine, or specialty pizza, or regional foods from around the the world...Including BBQ and it's various sub-regional specialties. When one has the time torelax and enjoy all that the exta qualities of exploring some of the fantastic bbq locations, you can really become quite an"expert" And even those you hand select their freakin' coffee-beans and toast them over special roasting devices to make a liquid that I can't stomach in any form.  But we are talking a few hours...just passing thru and that is much more like a "hit and run" than an indepth-study.
 
Yes there is a quality difference between Franklins and the Salt Lick BBQ's...Would your family notice that on their first and maybe only visit to the Texas BBQ Capital...Probably not. Making the day more comfortable for the group, it would seem that avoiding the lines and waiting that you will encounter at the "popular urban que stands" would be a wise decision.  There are many nearby places that have excellent bbq and ambience to boot, with much less crowd pressure, making for a more enjoyable meal.  I vote for a visit to the Salt Lick or Rudys or the Buzzy in Kerrvile or a number of others and ignore the crowd and hassle in downtown Austin.  Don't skip the Round Rock Do-Nuts though.!!
 
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Re: Some Suggestions for My Road Trip 2014/08/30 18:31:00 (permalink)
mayor al
There are those who are fine tuned to quality of fine wine, or specialty pizza, or regional foods from around the the world...Including BBQ and it's various sub-regional specialties. When one has the time torelax and enjoy all that the exta qualities of exploring some of the fantastic bbq locations, you can really become quite an"expert" And even those you hand select their freakin' coffee-beans and toast them over special roasting devices to make a liquid that I can't stomach in any form.  But we are talking a few hours...just passing thru and that is much more like a "hit and run" than an indepth-study.
 
Yes there is a quality difference between Franklins and the Salt Lick BBQ's...Would your family notice that on their first and maybe only visit to the Texas BBQ Capital...Probably not. Making the day more comfortable for the group, it would seem that avoiding the lines and waiting that you will encounter at the "popular urban que stands" would be a wise decision.  There are many nearby places that have excellent bbq and ambience to boot, with much less crowd pressure, making for a more enjoyable meal.  I vote for a visit to the Salt Lick or Rudys or the Buzzy in Kerrvile or a number of others and ignore the crowd and hassle in downtown Austin.  Don't skip the Round Rock Do-Nuts though.!!
 




My idea is the following:
- Leave Kerrville after Breakfast
- Arrive at Hamilton Pool around 09.00 AM and stay there until around 10.30 AM
- Arrive at the Salt Lick at around 11.15 AM and have lunch there
- Around 12.30-12.45 just pass near Franklin's, JMueller's or another of the popular downtown places and see how long the queue is, if it's not too long stop there. 
- Round Rock Donuts
- Around say 13.30 leave to Dallas through Crawford
- Arrive in Dallas around 17.00 for my meeting
- Steak Dinner somewhere in Dallas (not sure I'd do BBQ again haha)
- Visit to the White Elephant Honky Tonk around 8 PM
- Leave around 9.30 PM to arrive in McAlester, OK around midnight
 
Sound like a busy day, uh? 
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Re: Some Suggestions for My Road Trip 2014/08/30 19:15:55 (permalink)
One word of caution I-35 is a heavily traveled highway and a Sunday evening will find a gazillion Texans returning home to Dallas from where-ever they went for the weekend. Be ware.
 
At exit 353 is West, Texas. Mentioned earlier as a Czech village with a truck stop and bakery at the exit. Good place to take a break, enjoy a Kolache or two and catch your breathe  for a minute or two... good sausages in the meat counter too.
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Re: Some Suggestions for My Road Trip 2014/08/30 19:35:46 (permalink)
mayor al
Yes there is a quality difference between Franklins and the Salt Lick BBQ's...Would your family notice that on their first and maybe only visit to the Texas BBQ Capital...Probably not. Making the day more comfortable for the group, it would seem that avoiding the lines and waiting that you will encounter at the "popular urban que stands" would be a wise decision.  There are many nearby places that have excellent bbq and ambience to boot, with much less crowd pressure, making for a more enjoyable meal.  I vote for a visit to the Salt Lick or Rudys or the Buzzy in Kerrvile or a number of others and ignore the crowd and hassle in downtown Austin.  Don't skip the Round Rock Do-Nuts though.!!



The counter to this argument is that if one is already IN Austin, driving 45 minutes out to Lockhart, Taylor or Driftwood - AND 45 minutes back, the lines at the Austin bbq stands are not all that onerous.
 
Danusa86
My idea is the following:
- Leave Kerrville after Breakfast
- Arrive at Hamilton Pool around 09.00 AM and stay there until around 10.30 AM
- Arrive at the Salt Lick at around 11.15 AM and have lunch there
- Around 12.30-12.45 just pass near Franklin's, JMueller's or another of the popular downtown places and see how long the queue is, if it's not too long stop there. 
- Round Rock Donuts
- Around say 13.30 leave to Dallas through Crawford
- Arrive in Dallas around 17.00 for my meeting
- Steak Dinner somewhere in Dallas (not sure I'd do BBQ again haha)

 
You seem like an optimistic guy, but if you plan to arrive at Franklin's (and at J Mueller's, too) at peak lunch hour, you are only going to be disappointed. I can think of no circumstance under which there wouldn't be a line - other than a situation where either location has sold out of brisket. If they're sold out, and you get on line, then you are going to eat something there for which they are less well-known (i.e. Franklin's almost always has sausage left at the end of the day). If you're going to visit a world-renowned place, don't you want to eat the things for which they are renowned?

As for your steak in Dallas, the city has a number of top tier steakhouses. These places are great if you are on an expense account or want to splurge on a nice meal. I am sure you can find reviews of those places around the Internet, but two of my favorites are the Texas-only Pappas Brothers and Chamberlain's. Pappas are part of the same chain that include Pappadeaux, Pappasito's, etc. As chains go, they are pretty small and most of the decisions are still made in the kitchen rather than the boardroom. Chamberlain's has a steak house and a high end fish house in Addison. Their steaks are excellent, but I cannot help myself from eating too many of the popovers they serve as bread.
 
I arrive in Dallas in eight days and I am already planning a trip to Chamberlain's myself.
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Re: Some Suggestions for My Road Trip 2014/08/30 19:37:23 (permalink)
Vegas, Take your pick, I love burgers the burger at Ketchup was outstanding.
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Re: Some Suggestions for My Road Trip 2014/08/30 19:50:31 (permalink)
TTM- no debate on the bbq   but look at the time allocated for the business mtg and dinner after arriving in Dallas at 5pm and winding up at the honky tonk at 8pm. The prime Steak Houses would need reservations far in advance to keep to that tight a schedule.
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Re: Some Suggestions for My Road Trip 2014/08/30 20:20:02 (permalink)
Ahhh....missed that one on the time frame log.

Honestly, though, if you allot three hours for a meeting in Dallas, dinner and then travel time to the honky tonk, the planned meeting better be a short one anyway.
 
The White Elephant is in Fort Worth, which could be as much as an hour drive from wherever the meeting is in Dallas. Of course, that also opens up the possibility for the steakhouse to be Cattlemen's in FTW. Cattlemen's has a ton of ambiance and I like the food, but it is not to be compared with a prime steakhouse. It is most certainly an old school Fort Worth experience.
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Re: Some Suggestions for My Road Trip 2014/08/30 21:10:57 (permalink)
mayor al
There are those who are fine tuned to quality of fine wine, or specialty pizza, or regional foods from around the the world...Including BBQ and it's various sub-regional specialties. When one has the time to relax and enjoy all that the extra qualities of exploring some of the fantastic bbq locations, you can really become quite an"expert" And even those you hand select their freakin' coffee-beans and toast them over special roasting devices to make a liquid that I can't stomach in any form.  But we are talking a few hours...just passing thru and that is much more like a "hit and run" than an indepth-study.

Mayor, that was beautiful. Love it.
Danusa86
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Re: Some Suggestions for My Road Trip 2014/08/31 04:20:56 (permalink)
The Travelin Man
mayor al
Yes there is a quality difference between Franklins and the Salt Lick BBQ's...Would your family notice that on their first and maybe only visit to the Texas BBQ Capital...Probably not. Making the day more comfortable for the group, it would seem that avoiding the lines and waiting that you will encounter at the "popular urban que stands" would be a wise decision.  There are many nearby places that have excellent bbq and ambience to boot, with much less crowd pressure, making for a more enjoyable meal.  I vote for a visit to the Salt Lick or Rudys or the Buzzy in Kerrvile or a number of others and ignore the crowd and hassle in downtown Austin.  Don't skip the Round Rock Do-Nuts though.!!



The counter to this argument is that if one is already IN Austin, driving 45 minutes out to Lockhart, Taylor or Driftwood - AND 45 minutes back, the lines at the Austin bbq stands are not all that onerous.
 
Danusa86
My idea is the following:
- Leave Kerrville after Breakfast
- Arrive at Hamilton Pool around 09.00 AM and stay there until around 10.30 AM
- Arrive at the Salt Lick at around 11.15 AM and have lunch there
- Around 12.30-12.45 just pass near Franklin's, JMueller's or another of the popular downtown places and see how long the queue is, if it's not too long stop there. 
- Round Rock Donuts
- Around say 13.30 leave to Dallas through Crawford
- Arrive in Dallas around 17.00 for my meeting
- Steak Dinner somewhere in Dallas (not sure I'd do BBQ again haha)

 
You seem like an optimistic guy, but if you plan to arrive at Franklin's (and at J Mueller's, too) at peak lunch hour, you are only going to be disappointed. I can think of no circumstance under which there wouldn't be a line - other than a situation where either location has sold out of brisket. If they're sold out, and you get on line, then you are going to eat something there for which they are less well-known (i.e. Franklin's almost always has sausage left at the end of the day). If you're going to visit a world-renowned place, don't you want to eat the things for which they are renowned?

As for your steak in Dallas, the city has a number of top tier steakhouses. These places are great if you are on an expense account or want to splurge on a nice meal. I am sure you can find reviews of those places around the Internet, but two of my favorites are the Texas-only Pappas Brothers and Chamberlain's. Pappas are part of the same chain that include Pappadeaux, Pappasito's, etc. As chains go, they are pretty small and most of the decisions are still made in the kitchen rather than the boardroom. Chamberlain's has a steak house and a high end fish house in Addison. Their steaks are excellent, but I cannot help myself from eating too many of the popovers they serve as bread.
 
I arrive in Dallas in eight days and I am already planning a trip to Chamberlain's myself.




So their sausage is not as good? better go to Elgin for that you say? 
The only reason why I am saying I'd go there around 1 PM is because I've read somewhere that if you go around that time most people will have already eaten. Yeah you may find no brisket, that is the trade off. What's your take on this? Salt Lick and then where?
The meeting in Dallas will be short and can be as well be over dinner, so I'm not worried about that. Thanks for the suggestions, even though I think the people I'm going to meet will choose but I'll certainly put "my card in the deck".
 
Concerning Vegas instead, been surfing around the net to decide to which buffet to go to. Any you would suggest in particular?
 
In the past I've been to Caesar's for Breakfast, Paris for Lunch and Planet Hollywood for dinner as a "buffet of buffets" holder but now, as I'll stay there just hald a day, I'll go to one only. Any you'd pick over the other? on the internet it seems that the Bacchanal at Caesar's and the one at the Bellagio are at the top, closely followed by the Wynn, Cosmopolitan and Rio. What would you say? 
mayor al
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Re: Some Suggestions for My Road Trip 2014/08/31 07:45:44 (permalink)
Dan I will be the first to admit the Salt Lick would rate a 7.5 to sn 8 on the Texas bbq 10 scale where the top raters are definite 10's. However add some points for the following and you may understand why I include it with the 'big-names--  http://www.saltlickbbq.com/pages/About.html
1. Location In the hills on the West Side of Austin, also a location in Round Rock, but the Driftwood is the 'big one'.
2, Plenty of room and parking -easy in and out , especially if you can time your arrival to beat the church-goers to the sunday dinner/lunch table
3. IT LOOKS Great, the large finishing open pit in the 'lobby' lets your family see the various cuts of meat in the cooking process,,,it is all 'hype' but it looks great.
my photo from our last visit-

4. The family dinner will serve all of you a variety of meats and side to give an intro to Texas que to all.  I think it works well for a newcomers visit. Note china not butcher paper service.

 
post edited by mayor al - 2014/08/31 08:00:58
Danusa86
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Re: Some Suggestions for My Road Trip 2014/08/31 08:10:41 (permalink)
mayor al
Dan I will be the first to admit the Salt Lick would rate a 7.5 to sn 8 on the Texas bbq 10 scale where the top raters are definite 10's. However add some points for the following and you may understand why I include it with the 'big-names--  http://www.saltlickbbq.com/pages/About.html
1. Location In the hills on the West Side of Austin, also a location in Round Rock, but the Driftwood is the 'big one'.
2, Plenty of room and parking -easy in and out , especially if you can time your arrival to beat the church-goers to the sunday dinner/lunch table
3. IT LOOKS Great, the large finishing open pit in the 'lobby' lets your family see the various cuts of meat in the cooking process,,,it is all 'hype' but it looks great.
my photo from our last visit-

4. The family dinner will serve all of you a variety of meats and side to give an intro to Texas que to all.  I think it works well for a newcomers visit. Note china not butcher paper service.

 




It looks good indeed. I think I'll stock to my plan then: Driftwood for lunch around 11ish and then "try my luck" around 13ish in central Austin for a small extra portion. If I can get it, good otherwise no problems.
 
Are you able to give me any tip on the Vegas buffets instead?
 
mayor al
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Re: Some Suggestions for My Road Trip 2014/08/31 09:04:40 (permalink)
My Vegas info is older than yours, my friend.  On our Nevada trips and while we lived just 3 hours from Vegas for 14 years, we avoided the strip. Any casino time was spent at either state-line preferably in Mesquite at the AZ=NV border  smaller town just three or four mid-sized casinos with fair buffets, and 30 miles from southern Utah, our target tour area most of the time. Others can give better Vegas advice.
 
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Re: Some Suggestions for My Road Trip 2014/08/31 09:12:30 (permalink)
Dan,
 
What I've read about Franklin's is that you need to be in line well before 1:00 (and hour or two) in order to be served at 1:00. The staff from the restaurant will count people in line and at some point tell people that they are not likely to have food left for them. Unless you make a commitment of several hours, you are not likely to get anything at Franklin's at 1:00.
 
Jim
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Re: Some Suggestions for My Road Trip 2014/08/31 09:20:41 (permalink)
Dan,
 
Our favorite buffet is at the Paris casino in Las Vegas.
 
Our tip is to eat during off hours - either early or late. Eat breakfast before 8:00; avoid 11:00-13:00 for lunch; and avoid 17:00-20:00 for dinner. The lines at these normal meal times get very long at any of the Vegas buffets.
 
Jim
 
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Re: Some Suggestions for My Road Trip 2014/08/31 09:22:18 (permalink)
JRPfeff
Dan,
 
What I've read about Franklin's is that you need to be in line well before 1:00 (and hour or two) in order to be served at 1:00. The staff from the restaurant will count people in line and at some point tell people that they are not likely to have food left for them. Unless you make a commitment of several hours, you are not likely to get anything at Franklin's at 1:00.
 
Jim




Yeah, I am aware of that. In fact I said I'll try ... if I can't get anything, no worries. I might try JMueller instead of Franklins, we'll see. 
 
As for Vegas mayor al, thanks. I'll think I'll try my luck there. The Caesar's palace Bacchanal buffet sounds great but $36.00 for lunch sounds also very expensive vs $21.00 at the Bellagio. 
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Re: Some Suggestions for My Road Trip 2014/08/31 19:42:36 (permalink)
The Bellagio is pricey but their products are better quality and  I believe they have a better variety of items.
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Re: Some Suggestions for My Road Trip 2014/09/01 03:09:58 (permalink)
Foodbme
The Bellagio is pricey but their products are better quality and  I believe they have a better variety of items.




You mean the Caesar's? Bellagio's actually cheaper. 
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Re: Some Suggestions for My Road Trip 2014/09/01 15:15:57 (permalink)
In Austin with time constraints you might try La Barbeque on Caesar Chavez. John Lewis is the pitmaster who helped start Franklins and was pitmaster at one the Mueller joints also. He co owns the place with Louie Muellers daughter. Stiles Switch on Lamar Blvd would be a great choice also, Lance Kirkpatrick the pitmaster ran the pits at Louie Muellers for years. The Salt Lick is good food with great atmosphere my family really likes it.
post edited by Texascajun - 2014/09/01 15:17:41
mayor al
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Re: Some Suggestions for My Road Trip 2014/09/04 03:58:25 (permalink)
Add another grill/ bbq shot at the entrance of the Salt Lick.
It is a wonder that anyone ever goes to their seats when the action at this cooking station gets moving.
 

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Re: Some Suggestions for My Road Trip 2014/09/04 13:29:36 (permalink)
Danusa86
Foodbme
The Bellagio is pricey but their products are better quality and  I believe they have a better variety of items.




You mean the Caesar's? Bellagio's actually cheaper. 


Excalibur actually has a really good buffet at a great price.  Unless you want caviar or something.. Never got a bad meal there. 
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Re: Some Suggestions for My Road Trip 2014/09/14 10:12:15 (permalink)
One more question. I have just been told that I will be in the U.S. for a second time in November. In the Washington D.C. area (and the surrounding areas in VA and MD). Any place you'd suggest there? 
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Re: Some Suggestions for My Road Trip 2014/09/15 11:02:25 (permalink)
Danusa86
One more question. I have just been told that I will be in the U.S. for a second time in November. In the Washington D.C. area (and the surrounding areas in VA and MD). Any place you'd suggest there? 




Jimmy's Old Town Tavern in Herndon (near Dulles Airport) 
http://www.jimmystavern.com/
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Re: Some Suggestions for My Road Trip 2014/09/15 11:19:12 (permalink)
Danusa86
One more question. I have just been told that I will be in the U.S. for a second time in November. In the Washington D.C. area (and the surrounding areas in VA and MD). Any place you'd suggest there? 


Actually, here are a few more places that I would recommend in VA.
Peking Gourmet Inn in Falls Church, considered one of the better Chinese Restaurants in the area. http://www.pekinggourmet.com/
 
El Pollo Rico (Arlington location) A lunch favorite for me.
http://www.welovethischicken.com/
 
Generous George's Pizza My favorite pizza place in the area. Near Dulles Airport.
http://www.generousgeorges.com/
 
AND.....If you can make the drive to Emmitsburg, MD........Chubbies!
http://chubbysbbq.net/
post edited by Davebassman - 2014/09/15 11:22:23
Danusa86
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Re: Some Suggestions for My Road Trip 2014/09/16 06:00:01 (permalink)
Thanks
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