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By C.T. Sorrentino “His Holiness”. I first saw him on TV, a documentary, 60 Minutes, I forget exactly where or when, but he i...

Monday, December 10, 2057

Countries Visited ... So Far ... 41 And Counting!

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 List (Alphabetical)

 Bahrain – Kingdom of Bahrain
 Belgium – Kingdom of Belgium
 Bosnia and Herzegovina
 Bulgaria – Republic of Bulgaria
 Canada
 Croatia – Republic of Croatia
 Czech Republic
 Greenland (Kalaallit Nunaat/Grønland)
 France – French Republic
 Germany – Federal Republic of Germany
 Greece – Hellenic Republic
 Holy See
 Hungary
 India – Republic of India
 Ireland
 Israel
 Italy – Italian Republic
 Jamaica
 Japan
 Korea, South – Republic of Korea
 Luxembourg – Grand Duchy of Luxembourg
 Macedonia – Republic of Macedonia
 Malta – Republic of Malta
 Mexico – United Mexican States
 Micronesia – Federated States of Micronesia
 Monaco – Principality of Monaco
 Montenegro
 Netherlands
 Palau – Republic of Palau
 Palestine - State of Palestine
 Portugal – Portuguese Republic
 San Marino – Republic of San Marino
 Saudi Arabia – Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
 Slovenia – Republic of Slovenia
 Spain – Kingdom of Spain
 Switzerland – Swiss Confederation
 Tunisia – Republic of Tunisia
 Turkey – Republic of Turkey
 United Arab Emirates
 United Kingdom – United Kingdom of Great Britain    and Northern Ireland
 United States – United States of America
 - Guam
 - Puerto Rico

Read Reviews By CombatCritic:

Yelp - "GOLD" Elite '14/'15/'16/'17/'18/'19 650,000+ Views A Year

Tabelog - Official Judge (Silver)


Zomato - #1 Ranked "Verified" Foodie - Over  1,890,733 Review And Photo Views

View my food journey on Zomato!





... And Don't Forget To Subscribe To TravelValue TV on YouTube


View my food journey on Zomato!

Title: Countries Visited ... So Far ... 41 And Counting!

Key Words: countries, country, nation, capitol, Google Maps, Google, map, maps, city, state, world, earth, visit, visited, traveler, 44, CombatCritic, TravelValue, travel, value, Yelp

Sunday, December 10, 2056

Why Should You Read My Reviews And Subscribe To TravelValue?



I served my country in the United States Air Force for over 20 years and have visited 44 countries over the last 35 years, all without spending over $75 per night for a nice hotel room and dining in excellent restaurants for well under $25 per person. How do I do it? Through diligent research, exploration, trial and error, and tapping local knowledge.
Would you like to stay in a central, 3-star hotel in a major city for under $20 per night? How about a room with a balcony and view of the Himalayas while attending teachings with the Dalai Lama for just $5 per night? Or a beachfront hotel for $13 per night? Maybe a meal prepared by a 5-star chef for less than $20? Well, you have come to the right place ...


Having several popular travel blogs CombatCritic.com and received numerous accolades from several of the top travel and restaurant websites/apps (Yelp, TripAvisor, Zomato, Tabelog, Booking.com), you can trust my opinions. 

Unlike many reviewers who are either afraid to tell the truth or have personal relationship with businesses and biased views, I reserve 5-stars (10 Bombs on my blog) for only the most flawless restaurants, accommodations, businesses, attractions and destinations, those where you absolutely and without a doubt get the most “bang-for-the-buck”. 
CombatCritic.com

I try to remain as objective as possible in all of my reviews, providing the pros and cons as I see them and a rating based on the overall “value” as compared to similar entities in similar locations. I accept no "freebies" and only identify myself as a critic after having been a customer and paid the bill, so you can trust my reviews.

Here is a breakdown of my ratings both on my blogs (where I use a ten point scale) and on travel and dining websites (that all use 5 point Likert-type scales) ...

If I hate a place, they get 1-2 Bombs (1-star)

If so-so with numerous”issues", they get 3-4 Bombs (2-stars)

If average (the vast majority of businesses fall into this category if you look at the distribution of my ratings), they get 5-6 Bombs (3-stars)

If above average, they get 7-8 Bombs (4-stars)

If they are one of the very rare “best of the best” values in my experience, they get 9-10 Bombs (5-stars – I always round up from bombs to stars because I use a 10 point Likert-type scale in order to be more discernible). 

Now that you understand my philosophy and ratings, on to my reviews …

CombatCritic

The Leader In Getting Travelers The Most "Bang-for-the-Buck"

"Follow Me To TraveValue"
CombatCritic's "TravelValue" Channel




Read More Reviews By CombatCritic:

Yelp - "Gold" Elite '14/'15/'16 /'17 / '18

Tabelog - Official Judge (Silver)

Zomato - #1 Ranked "Verified" Foodie

View my food journey on Zomato!



... And Don't Forget To Subscribe To TravelValue TV on YouTube


Tabelog Reviewer CombatCriticView my food journey on Zomato!




Title: Why Should You Read My Reviews And Subscribe To My Blog?

Key Words: combatcritic, travelvalue, travel, value, combat, critic, review, reviews, objective, restaurant, hotel, attraction, destination, Italy, USA, India, Asia, Europe

Saturday, August 17, 2019

Ridgefield, WA: Yelp Elites Treated Like Kings And Queens By "His Airness"

Elite Event: High Steaks Gambling @ Michael Jordan Steakhouse
1 Cowlitz Way
Ridgefield, WA 98642
Prices: $$$$

Being Elite is pretty awesome, especially when we get pampered like we did at Yelp"s High Steaks Elite Event at Michael Jordan Steakhouse at the Ilani Casino.
Met at the entrance of the restaurant with a large glass of Cherry-Raspberry Sangria, we were escorted to a private room in the back and a private terrace with several large Adirondack chairs around a large gas fire pit as well as a couple of high tops and chairs. We were warmly welcomed by the manager and chef as platters full of appetizers arrived, Steak House Bruschetta (shaved USDA prime steak and chimichurri bleu cheese) and Ahi Tuna Poke Bites (Ahi tuna, avocado, sweet onion, and wonton crisp). I am not a raw fish or poke fan, but the steak house bruschetta was delicious. 




We were then given a tour of the restaurant, including the restaurant's wine cellar and kitchen, before heading back to our private room for a family-style feast. There were two tables with 7-8 of us at each and each table received platters full of starters, including Garlic Bread topped with a hot bleu cheese fondue, Double Smoked Bacon in a black maple pepper sauce, and New Orleans Style Barbecue Shrimp. I did not get to taste the bacon, but the shrimp were scrumptious and the garlic bread sublime. More drinks accompanied the starters, for me a tasty Old Fashioned made by muddling sugar with bitters, then adding whiskey and a twist of citrus rind.











Next came two massive wood platters full of 40 ounces of sliced USDA steak, a ribeye, a New York strip, and a Delmonico (a thick ribeye made popular by New York City's Delmonico's restaurant) all served medium-rare. Accompanying the steaks were a number of side dishes scattered about, including a zesty corn off the cob, fried brussel sprouts, mashed potatoes, and mac and cheese. The steaks were perfectly seasoned, juicy and tender, so tender that it nearly melted in my mouth, and the sides were all delicious in their own right. This course was accompanied by a glass of wine, a smooth, blend of Pacific Northwest reds.
The grand finale consisted of two massive slices of 21 Layer Chocolate Cake and two large bowl full of Warm Peach Cobbler at each table to be shared and savored by all ... WOW!

I was extremely impressed with the location, environment, drinks, service and food. The staff's hospitality was superb the entire evening and they even took the time to line-up to bid us farewell as we departed this incredible event ... HOOAH!

CombatCritic Gives Elite Event: High Steaks Gambling @ Michael Jordan Steakhouse 10 Bombs Out Of 10 And A Spot On My "WALL OF FAME" ... More Bombs Are Better!

Ten Bombs Equates To:


Translation for Civilians: 

HOOAH!: "Phonetic spelling of the acronym HUA, which stands for 'Heard Understood Acknowledged.' Originally used by the British in the late 1800's in Afghanistan. More recently adopted by the United States Army to indicate an affirmative or a pleased response." - Urban Dictionary

"The Department of Military Science and Leadership, University of Tennessee claim HOOAH 'refers to or means anything except no' ... Regardless of its meaning ... the term is an expression of high morale, confidence, motivation and spirit." - WarChronicle.com

"The U.S. Air Force stole 'HOOAH' from the Army because we were part of the Army until 1947 and rather than waste a bunch of time coming up with something new and unique like "ROO-YAH" or "HAL-A-LOO-YAH", we said 'screw it, let's go with HOOAH' ... thanks Army ... HOOAH!" - CombatCritic
Read More Reviews By CombatCritic:

Yelp "GOLD" ELITE '14/'15/'16/'17/'18/'19 
  • 650,000+ Views A Year
Tabelog - Official Judge - "Silver"


Zomato - #1 Ranked "VERIFIED" CONNOISSEUR (13) - Over  4 Million Review And Photo Views ... And Counting #1 Reviewer in Portland, Oregon!
Booking.com - Frequent Traveler "Genius"

Google Maps - "Top Photographer" With Over 3 Million Views!

View my food journey on Zomato!

View my food journey on Zomato!

View my food journey on Zomato!

... And Don't Forget To Subscribe To TravelValue TV on YouTube and our sister channel, CombatCounselor Chronicleswith Over 1,250 Subscribers and 1,000,000 Video Views ... HOOAH!


Title: Ridgefield, WA: Yelp Elites Treated Like Kings And Queens By "His Airness"

Key Words: Ridgefield, WA, Ilani, casino, Yelp, Elite, Michael Jordan, Michael, Jordan, steak, house His Airness, CombatCritic, TravelValue, travel, value, restaurant, menu, review, Yelp, Facebook, Portland, 

Copyright 2019 - 3rd Wave Media Group And CombatCritic ™ - All Rights Reserved

Monday, August 5, 2019

White Salmon, WA: Affordable White Water Rafting Not Far From Portland, Oregon

River Drifters
856 Hwy 141
White Salmon, WA 98672
Phone number: (800) 972-0430
Prices: $$$$

Whether you are visiting the greater Portland area or live here full-time, some decent whitewater rafting is just an hour to an hour-and-a-half up the Columbia River Gorge on a tributary originating from the glaciers of Mount Adams and better known as the White Salmon River. 

The price ($60 weekday/$65 weekend) seemed fair enough for a 3.5 hour whitewater rafting trip, but the first hour plus was consumed by a safety briefing, putting on a wetsuit, booties, helmet, and life vest, then driving seven miles upstream to begin our trip. We finished about 30 minutes early, so you can plan on having less than 2 hours on the river itself.
The staff were all a bunch of "gnarly dudes", reminding me of Ridgemont High's Jeff Spicoli ("People on ‘ludes should not drive") and equally suited for shredding waves as they are for whitewater rafting guides. There were four or five on the ancient Blue Bird bus, all making goofy jokes along the seven mile journey to start our trip.
Once we finally got on the river, there was a succession of rapids that were fun and exciting. However, after the first few Class III and IV rapids, there was not much excitement. We floated for what seemed like the last half of the trip with nary a thrill. The canyon was spectacular and quite beautiful, so it was not a total waste, but I would have preferred a few more thrills spread out over the entire trip. 

The highlight of the trip was the jump into the river after portage around a waterfall midway downstream. The canyon was narrow, so we had to jump into the middle of the river 20 feet below in order to miss the submerged ledge, plunging into the 41 degree Fahrenheit glacial runoff from nearby Mount Adams ... BRRRRRRRRR!
I told the guides about being a disabled veteran with knee, back and shoulder issues, but I was made to feel like a burden, a PITA, and was not allowed to go over the falls with my son and teammates at the end of the trip. I was not given an option by the guide and felt ripped off.
Lesson Learned: Don't put people with mobility/knee problems in the front of the raft. I nearly fell out of the raft three times sitting front-left because I couldn't get a decent foothold and the guide took several drops with my side facing downhill, causing me to lose my balance. Once he put me in the back row, I was able to anchor my feet under the seat in front of me and had no further issues.
Not a bad deal in retrospect, but the trip would have been much more fun for me had they put me in the rear of the raft from the beginning and allowed me to participate in the grand finale with my son and three other teammates.

CombatCritic Gives River Drifters 6 Bombs Out Of 10 ... More Bombs Are Better!

Six Bombs Equates To:


Translation for Civilians: "Good To Go"

Read More Reviews By CombatCritic:

Yelp "GOLD" ELITE '14/'15/'16/'17/'18/'19 
  • 650,000+ Views A Year
Read Chris S.'s review of River Drifters on Yelp

Tabelog - Official Judge - "Silver"

Zomato - #1 Ranked "VERIFIED" CONNOISSEUR (13) - Over  4 Million Review And Photo Views ... And Counting #1 Reviewer in Portland, Oregon!
Booking.com - Frequent Traveler "Genius"

Google Maps - "Top Photographer" With Over 3 Million Views!

View my food journey on Zomato!

View my food journey on Zomato!

View my food journey on Zomato!

... And Don't Forget To Subscribe To TravelValue TV on YouTube and our sister channel, CombatCounselor Chronicleswith Over 1,250 Subscribers and 1,000,000 Video Views ... HOOAH!

Title: White Salmon, WA: Affordable White Water Rafting Not Far From Portland, Oregon

Key Words: White Salmon, WA, affordable, white water rafting, white, water rafting, Portland, Oregon, CombatCritic, TravelValue, travel, value, destination, service, business, review, Yelp, Zomato, Google, Facebook


Copyright 2019 - 3rd Wave Media Group And CombatCritic ™ - All Rights Reserved

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