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Thursday, December 29, 2016

Naples, Italy: Good, Local Cuisine, But No "Burning" Desire To Return To La Brace ("The Embers")

Ristorante La Brace

Via Gabriele Jannelli 652
80131 Naples
Italy
Phone number: +39 081 5451074
Prices: €€€€

Pizza is an art form as well as a religious experience in Napoli (Naples, Italy), the home of the first pizzeria (Antica Pizzeria Port'Alba - 1830) and where pizza Margherita (named after Queen Margherita of Savoy - circa 1889) was invented at Pizzeria Brandi, both still in existence today. La Brace, "the embers" in Italian, did a decent job on mine, not the best pizza salsiccia e friarielli (sausage and broccoli rabe sauteed in olive oil and garlic) I have had, but far from the worst. Pizzerias, after all, do not exist for long in Naples unless they tend to get it right.
This was the first time we have eaten here, odd because my mother-in-law's home is less than a block away. The service was good although our server got carried away, along with numerous other patrons, as the Naples football club (S.S.C. Napoli) tied their northern rivals from Florence. We started with fritto misto (fried mix), consisting of the Naples standards including arancini (rice balls), potato croquettes, and algae dough balls (zeppoline di alghe). The non-seafood variety of fritto misto, which is what we had, normally costs less than $5 for reference sake.

My wife had rice with olive oil and parmigiano, a difficult dish to screw-up, because she had a bit of stomach flu that day and wanted something light. She, who (to put it mildly) is not well known for her culinary abilities, could not even mess-up this simple concoction if she tried. Of the two guests accompanying us, one had strips of steak (bistecca tagliata) with rucola and parmigiano as well as a side of french fries and the other had the thinest slices of sautéed chicken breasts I have ever seen along with some sautéed mushrooms. The steak looked very appetizing and plentiful, but the fries did not arrive until after I reminded the server of the order. The chicken consisted of less than three ounces of sliced breast, being overwhelmed by the decent sized order of mushrooms.
I ordered a bottle of vino locale (local wine - normally $3 - $5), which is usually a house wine made by the restaurant or one of their friends, but what we got was a cabernet sauvignon from Benevento about 45 miles away. I am not sure what the price of the wine was, but the bill (il conto) came to €61.50 (about $64) not including tip, a bit high for fritto misto ($5), a pizza ($8), steak and fries ($13), chicken and mushrooms ($7), rice ($5), a slice of cheesecake ($4) and a bottle of wine ($10 - all prices estimated and on the high side). Throw in $2.50 each for coperto/servizio (cover charge and service) and it would only come to about $62, about $2 less than what we paid (not including tip).
Anyway, a $70 price tag for dinner for four ain't all that bad no matter where you are, either in Europe or stateside.

CombatCritic Gives Ristorante And Pizzeria La Brace 6 Bombs Out Of 10 ... More Bombs Are Better!




Six Bombs Equates To:
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Read Chris S.'s review of La Brace on Yelp


Tabelog Reviewer CombatCriticView my food journey on Zomato!


Title: Naples, Italy: Good, Local Cuisine, But No "Burning" Desire To Return To La Brace ("The Embers")

Key Words: Ristorante La Brace, ristorante, la, brace, Rione, alto, Napoli, Naples, Italy, 80131, CombatCritic, TravelValue, travel, value, restaurant, menu, review, Yelp, Zomato, Tabelog

Translation for Civilians: G2G = "Good To Go"

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Naples, Italy: Simplicity And Value On The Outskirts, Yet Well Connected

Hotel Camaldoli

Via Gabriele Jannelli 586
80131 Naples
Italy
Phone number +39 081 5466836
Website: hotelcamaldoli.it
Prices: €€€€

A nice, simple, reasonably priced, clean hotel just north of Vomero in the hospital zone (Zona Ospedale - hospitals Monaldi and Cardarelli) and close to two Metro stops (Policlinico and Rione Alto) as well as shops, markets, restaurants and pizzerias galore.
You can walk to both Metro stations (Linea 1 - Line 1 - Yellow Line), taking you to Vomero, downtown (Centro Storico - the historical district), shopping areas on Via Toledo and Via Roma, and the port as well as the main train station (Napoli Centrale) and Piazza Garibaldi. At Napoli Centrale, you can take trains pretty much anywhere in Italy and Europe, either slowly (Regionale) or very quickly (Freccia Rosa and Italo), getting you to Rome in an hour, Florence in two, and Venice in five. You can also travel locally on the Metro from Piazza Garibaldi (adjacent to Napoli Centrale), taking Linea 2 (Line 2) to Mergelina and Pozzuoli. Linea 4 (Line 4 - Circumvesuviana) to Herculaneum (Ercolano), Pompeii, and Sorrento is actually in the basement of Napoli Centrale, so follow the signs or inquire at an Information Booth if needed. It is also quite easy to get to the islands of Capri, Ischia, and Procida by ferry in addition to Sorrento or even Sicily if you have the time.

CLICK HERE FOR A NAPLES METRO MAP

Breakfast is included at the hotel and is served from 7:30 AM to 9:30 AM daily. It is a typical, light Italian breakfast, serving cornetti (a fresh, flaky croissant filled with sweet cream and sprinkled with powdered sugar - indigenous to Southern Italy, Naples in particular) and coffee as you like it (cappuccino, espresso, caffe latte, etc). They also have juices, water, cereal, croissants, tarts, toast and an assortment of jellies as well as Nutella and butter.
Most rooms have balconies although the view is limited to surrounding buildings and the neighborhood's high rise apartment buildings and shops. Our balcony was spacious with a table and chairs to relax and get some fresh air. Our room was large with an entry vestibule to hang coats and umbrellas and store luggage. We also had a medium size wardrobe with four drawers, a small desk, two chairs, and a TV (only useful if you understand Italian because there are no English language channels - e.g. CNN, BBC, or Sky). The bed was an "Italian king size" (two twins pushed together on a king size frame


There is Wi-Fi, but it is a bit slow. You can stream videos, but they sometime pause as the video is buffering. Wi-Fi on the ground floor is spotty at best as it seems the wireless routers are on the upper floors. The staff are very friendly and helpful, attending to our every need. There is almost always someone at the front desk or in the breakfast area/bar where they have a limited selection of spirits.
There is no elevator, so handicapped access is a problem because even the lowest floor of rooms is 8-10 steps up from the front desk. Large bags can also pose a challenge, particularly if you are located on any of the upper floors. Our room was on the 1st floor (2nd floor in the U.S.), a trek of over 30 steps up the staircases from the lobby and even I was a touch winded after dragging two large bags up to our room.

A simple, pleasant hotel on the outskirts of Naples, yet well connected through the Metro system, Hotel Camaldoli is a good option if you do not have the need or desire to stay in the main tourist areas and want to get acquainted with the true Neapolitan way of life.

CombatCritic Gives Hotel Camaldoli 7 Bombs Out Of 10 ... More Bombs Are Better!
Seven Bombs Equates To:
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Yelp - Elite '14/'15/'16

Tabelog - Official Judge (Silver)

Zomato - #1 Ranked "Verified" Foodie

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Read Chris S.'s review of Hotel Camaldoli on Yelp


Tabelog Reviewer CombatCriticView my food journey on Zomato!


Title: Naples, Italy: Simplicity And Value On The Outskirts, Yet Well Connected 

Key Words: Hotel Camaldoli, hotel, Camaldoli, Naples, Napoli, Pompeii, Sorrento, Roma, Amalfi, Italy, Italia, CombatCritic, TravelValue, travel, value, review, Yelp, bed, breakfast

Translation for Civilians: S&G = "Shits & Grins"

Saturday, December 17, 2016

Lawrence, Kansas: Best Breakfast Value, Most Arrogant Staff in Town

WheatFields Bakery Café
904 Vermont Street
Lawrence, KS  66044

Phone: 785.841.5553
Web: www.WheatfieldsBakery.com
Hours:
Monday through Friday - 6:30am to 8:00pm
Saturday 6:30am to 6:30pm
Sunday - 7:30am to 4:00pm
Prices: $$$$


I love a good, hearty breakfast, but because bacon, eggs, hash browns, biscuits and gravy are not as healthy as they are tasty, we normally only indulge on special occasions. I reviewed Wheatfields, a bakery and restaurant one block West of Mass Street in downtown Lawrence, on my birthday last year after going there for breakfast. Coincidentally, my wife and I returned for breakfast yesterday on my 60th birthday, enjoying ourselves and allowing me to reassess the rating I gave them last year (6 Bombs Out Of 10 ... More Bombs Are Better!). 

My wife and I have been buying Wheatfields wonderful breads since we moved to Lawrence a little over three years ago. My favorite is the raisin and pecan sourdough ($4.50), a robust torpedo-shaped loaf with a thick crispy crust outside and plenty of raisins and pecan pieces inside. It toasts marvelously and is delicious alone, with butter, or coated in my favorite toppings, peanut butter and bananas.
They have numerous varieties, including sourdough, semolina with sesame and poppy seeds, baguette, ciabatta, Kalamata olive, sourdough, and 100% whole wheat among others. Breads range in price from $4 to nearly $9 for their holiday specials, but the whole wheat with walnuts and raisins is just HALF the price of a similar loaf at a new East Lawrence bakery on Barker, being quite a good value.

You order at the counter immediately in front of you as you enter, pay, and are given a small sign to place on your table so the servers can bring your order to the correct table. Drinks are help-yourself with three varieties of coffee (two regular and one decaf) and a small selection of teas and fountain drinks.
Always keeping it simple, I went with the Classic Breakfast (#1 - $6.95), coming with two eggs, hash browns, toast, and sausage links or bacon (I went with the bacon of course). They raised their price a buck since last year, but it is still the cheapest breakfast in Lawrence. Adding a half order of biscuits and gravy (#5 - $4.25, up 50¢) brought my very hearty and delicious breakfast to a little over $11, very reasonable compared to other downtown breakfast spots. Not a big egg or meat eater, my wife had a scone and coffee. She loves their scones and was quite happy with this cheese and herb variety.
Our meals arrived very quickly, even before I was done pouring coffee and toasting my bread. The Classic Breakfast was excellent with the eggs cooked perfectly over-medium, the bacon crispy and not burnt, but the hash browns were not as crunchy as I like them. The half order of biscuits and gravy was plenty for me with a very large biscuit smothered in a thick, savory country gravy with loads of sausage. The coffee was hot, obviously fresh, and delicious.
As breakfast goes, I have had better, but we enjoyed our meal and I have to say that you will not find a better breakfast value in Lawrence. Wheatfields is a very popular meeting place with great bread, excellent coffees, and tasty breakfasts. They seem to do very well because the place is almost always full.
My only gripe is with the staff who seem to have an "attitude". There is no "Hi, welcome to WheatFields" when you come in, it is more like "Yea, what do you want". Employees are routinely impersonal and abrupt, not warm and inviting. A smile and occasional "thank you" from staff would be much appreciated.

CombatCritic Upgrades Wheatfields Bakery Cafe To 7 Bombs Out Of 10 With A 2 Bomb Deduction For Arrogant Staff ... MORE BOMBS ARE BETTER!
Seven Bombs Equates To:

"Shits & Grins"

Read Reviews By CombatCritic:

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Zomato - #1 Ranked "Verified" Foodie

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Read Chris S.'s review of WheatFields Bakery Café on Yelp


WheatFields Bakery Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

WheatFields Bakery CaféWheatFields Bakery CaféTabelog Reviewer CombatCriticView my food journey on Zomato!



Title: Lawrence, Kansas: Best Breakfast Value And Most Arrogant Staff in Town

Key Words: Wheatfields, wheat, field, bread, bakery, eggs, bacon, breakfast, dinner, Lawrence, Kansas, CombatCritic, TravelValue, travel, value, menu, review, Yelp, Zomato, Tabelog

Saturday, December 10, 2016

Lawrence, KS: "Comfortable", "Safe", "Accepted And Respected" ... I Don't Think So

Planet Fitness

2525 Iowa Street
Lawrence, KS 66046
Phone number (785) 865-3771
Website: planetfitness.com
Prices: $$$$

If you travel as much as I do and like to stay in shape while on the road, then a gym membership with reciprocal privileges and numerous clubs across the U.S. is a convenience you cannot do without.

New on South Iowa, Planet Fitness is a breath of fresh air in Lawrence after being an abused member at The Summit and Genesis for the past three years. Planet Fitness has dozens of stationary bikes, ellipticals, treadmills, stair climbers, weight machines, and other top-shelf equipment. They also have 32 TVs with 8 set channels and free Wi-Fi available, all for $10 a month. That is why I left Genesis where we were paying $80/month. 

Oh, and by the way, guests are free and you can upgrade to a Black Card, adding hydro massages, tanning (not my bag), drink discounts, and reciprocity at Planet Fitness locations nationwide for just $10/month more. The hydro massage beds (2), recliners (2), and chairs (2) are a relaxing way to finish a workout and almost as good as a real massage. HOOAH! The only thing missing are towels, a sauna, and shampoo in the showers, but hey, what'ya expect for $10-$20 a month?

My one primary complaint are the giant, and I mean HUGE (as The Donald would say), ceiling fans whirling over the aerobic equipment and 30-Minute Workout area. There are two long rows of aerobic equipment divided into two groups, each with a giant fan overhead. As a matter of fact, I have been in the airflow created by a C-130 Hercules propeller with less force than these fans. Not all of us like cold air blowing on us when we are sweating profusely during rigorous exercise. Some do, but many, including me, do not. I have asthma and many of us who suffer from exercise induced asthma should not have unnecessary cold air blowing on us while working out. It exacerbates the condition and, in some cases, could lead to hospitalization or even death.

For reference, here is their philosophy as outlined on their website:
"We at Planet Fitness are here to provide a unique environment in which anyone - and we mean anyone - can be comfortable. ... As we evolve and educate ourselves, we will seek to perfect this safe, energetic environment, where everyone feels accepted and respected."
I went to the front desk to inquire about a suggestion box or other portal where I could share my dismay about the fans and was referred to the Assistant Manager. Because the machines are symmetrical with basically the same number of identical machines on each side, I asked her if it would be possible to turn one of the fans off so that people could have a choice whether or not they have cold wind blowing on them during exercise. It made perfect sense to me and a win-win situation in my estimation. However, her response was: "No that's not possible. We have to turn them on during business hours.", being the wrong answer from a customer service perspective. The correct answer would have been: "That's a great idea, let me look into it and get back to you!", but all I got was a bureaucratic, lazy, "that's the way it has always been done, so that's the way it's going to stay" attitude. Unacceptable. 

As a Disabled Veteran with asthma being one of my disabilities, it seems as though the Americans with Disabilities Act comes into play in this situation, but I will not play that card. It is up to Planet Fitness to do the right thing and accommodate a disabled patron. They talk-the-talk with their "customer friendly" philosophy, so we will see if they walk-the-walk. Based on management's prior inadequate response, I highly doubt it. If they do not and I continue to have to tolerate uncomfortable and unsafe conditions, I may just walk-the-walk to a health club that cares about customer satisfaction and well being

CombatCritic Gives Planet Fitness An Initial 5 Bombs Out Of 10 With A Three Bomb Deduction For Uncomfortable Conditions, Disabled Unfriendly Policies, And Management Complacency ... More Bombs Are Better!


Five Bombs Equates To:

Read Reviews By CombatCritic:

Yelp - Elite '14/'15/'16

Tabelog - Official Judge (Silver)

Zomato - #1 Ranked "Verified" Foodie

View my food journey on Zomato!



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Read Chris S.'s review of Planet Fitness on Yelp


Tabelog Reviewer CombatCriticView my food journey on Zomato!



Title: Lawrence, KS: "Comfortable", "Safe", "Accepted And Respected" ... I Don't Think So

Key Words: Planet Fitness, planet, fitness, gym, gymnasium, health club, health, club, spa, aerobic, CombatCritic, TravelValue, Iowa, Lawrecne, Kansas, travel, value, service, review, Yelp

Translation for Civilians: Charlie-Mike = "Continue Mission"

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Portland, OR: (Airbnb) Heather's Cozy NE Portland Apartment

Heather's Cozy NE Portland Apartment (Airbnb)

NE 79th Avenue
Portland, Oregon
Montavilla, Glisan and I-205
Website
Prices:$$$$

Let me start by saying that I have a very popular travel blog and have received numerous accolades on several of the top travel and restaurant websites/apps. Unlike many reviewers who are either afraid to tell the truth or have a personal relationship with the business, 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”. I try to remain as objective in all of my reviews as possible, providing the pros and cons as I see them and providing a rating based on the overall “value” as compared to similar entities in similar locations. Otherwise, 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); and 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, on to my review …
The size of the apartment, privacy, photos and amenities were all spot-on and the apartment was extremely clean, organized and well stocked. Heather even left us a very thoughtful welcome note, a bottle of Oregon wine, and a few local cans of beer in the fridge upon arrival.
The Airbnb description notes, in two places, that the area has "quiet time after 10pm” and that the “hosts live upstairs”, but well after 10pm on our first two nights there was quite a bit of sound emanating from people walking and talking in the rooms upstairs. Heather left on an extended holiday trip a couple days after arrival, so things were extremely quiet and peaceful thereafter.
Otherwise, we were not mislead in the least and the apartment was for the most part “as advertised” except as noted above and in the “Location” section below. The apartment was quite large and modern with one big room where there is a sitting/TV area and kitchenette (small fridge, microwave, toaster, kettle, and utensils) with a large table, a decent size bedroom with a comfy queen size bed, and a huge bathroom with shower and all of the amenities you might need while using the “loo”.
There was little communication after making our reservation on 9/3/2016 and 11/17/2016, four days before our scheduled stay from 11/21/2017 to 11/27/2-16. I finally sent an Airbnb message to Heather four days before check-in, asking about arrival details and telling her what time we would arrive. Heather quickly replied with a detailed message outlining most of the things we needed to know when we got there.

We had no idea how to enter the apartment as listed in the description or messaging, not knowing if we were in the right place because the side door had no exterior light and we had no idea that you actually had to touch the lock before the key pad would light-up. However, I called Heather and she quickly came outside to show us how to get in and give us a quick orientation.

Observation: An exterior light near the entry door and a reference regarding how to operate the electronic keypad, informing guests that you need to touch it to activate the backlight would have been very helpful. We had to use the LED lights on our cell phones while hauling four bags in the drizzle to see where we were going and, even then, we were still unsure if it was the correct door.

I also tried to call Heather the first night to find out how to access the TV channels, but she failed to answer even though I could hear (quite well I might add as noted in "Accuracy") her and her companion moving around upstairs until quite late. She called me back the next morning, apologizing and giving me the required information as well as telling me which phone number would be best used to contact her in the future.
Observations: 1) Clearer instructions or an orientation describing how to use the Apple TV (we had never used Apple TV before) and exactly which channels (there are over 30 options available) are accessible by guests would be helpful; 2) Even though it was noted that "Cable TV” was excluded (looking again at the description after we returned), it would be nice if cable was included in order for guests to be able to access local channels (news, sporting events, etc) during their stay; and 3) Information regarding which phone number to use (work or cell and which was which) for contact purposes would have been very helpful in advance, particularly because of our difficulty finding out how to enter the apartment.
Heather left for the duration of our stay a couple days after we arrived and she gave us clear instructions about how to contact her boyfriend (who was staying in the area) in the event of an emergency. That was fine with us because the noise from upstairs (people walking around and talking) was quite distracting. She did check in with us by phone a few days before departure to make sure things were going well, but we had no interaction with her during our stay other than by phone/text and the five minutes she physically spent with us upon arrival. There was no place to wash the limited number of plates, cups, silverware and glasses other than the bathroom sink and we ran out of coffee shortly after she left, but they were minor inconveniences as there was a Fred Meyer (Kroger’s Oregon version of Walmart) less than a mile west on Glisan.

Observation: We stumbled upon the Fred Meyer by chance while driving back from dinner, so it would be nice if Heather listed such details (nearby markets, pharmacies, hospitals, etc.) in the listing description or, otherwise comprehensive, orientation booklet.
The apartment was extremely clean and comfortable upon arrival with almost all of the amenities you might need during a short stay. 

However, we had no idea how to enter the apartment as listed in the description or messaging, not knowing if we were in the right place because the side door had no exterior light and we had no idea that you actually had to touch the lock before the key pad would light-up. When I called Heather, she quickly came outside to show us how to get in and give us a quick orientation.

Observation: An exterior light near the entry door and a reference regarding how to operate the electronic keypad, informing guests that you need to touch it to activate the backlight would have been very helpful. We had to use the LED lights on our cell phones while hauling four bags in the drizzle to see where we were going and, even then, we were still unsure if it was the correct door.

The apartment is centrally located as advertised and it is extremely easy to reach most areas of Portland, which is made-up of a “downtown” and several unique and charming neighborhoods, within a 10-30 minutes car ride depending on traffic.
The neighborhood sounds wonderful in the description, but is not what I would consider an “upscale” area and the restaurants and bars within walking distance (over 1/4 of a mile) looked a bit seedy. The closest main streets (NE 81st and NE Glisan) did not look like appealing or extremely safe places to walk at night, so we ate at the many wonderful restaurants around Portland.

For the price, I would say that the locations is very central if you have a vehicle, but expect a fair amount of walking and a somewhat complex transit system if without transportation. 

At $90.17 per night, including taxes and fees (we did not receive the 15% discount because our stay was one night short of the 7 day requirement), the apartment is a very good value for the Portland area where things are a bit pricier than in the Midwest and many other places we have visited (41 countries so far). A quick search located several well known chain hotels/motels in the area ranging from $56 to $87 per night, so considering the size, cleanliness, and amenities included in the apartment, we were very pleased with the accommodations although a price in the $80 range would seem more appropriate.

CombatCritic Gives Heather’s Cozy Apartment In NE Portland 8 Bombs Out Of 10 … More Bombs Are Better!


Eight Bombs Equates To:
Read Reviews By CombatCritic:

Yelp - Elite '14/'15/'16

Tabelog - Official Judge (Silver)

Zomato - #1 Ranked "Verified" Foodie

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Tabelog Reviewer CombatCriticView my food journey on Zomato!



Title: Portland, OR: (Airbnb) Heather's Cozy NE Portland Apartment

Key Words: Portland, Airbnb, Heather, Cozy, NE, Apartment, Oregon, Montavilla, CombatCritic, TravelValue, travel, value, accommodation, hotel, motel, guest, bed, breakfast, review, Yelp

Translation for Civilians: WTFO! = "What-The-Fuck ... Over!"

Monday, November 28, 2016

Portland, OR: A "Wagon"-Load Of So-So Food ... Ay Caramba!

La Carreta Mexican Restaurant

4534 SE McLoughlin Blvd
Portland, OR 97202
Southeast Portland, Brooklyn
Phone number: (503) 236-8089
Prices: $$$$
Facebook Page

Our realtor told us that La Carreta ("the wagon/cart" in Spanish) is his favorite Mexican restaurant despite the outward appearance. You would think it is an abandoned building as you drive by except for the lights of the sign and inside the restaurant.
A group of Latinas celebrating a birthday occupied the table next to us, always a good sign when people indigenous to the cuisine frequent a place. The food was decent by Left Coast standards, exceptional by Midwest standards, and reasonably priced.
We tried the chili con queso ($5.95) and guacamole ($3.50) for starters. The queso has an odd consistency, similar to ricotta cheese, but was good with big chunks of green chili. The guacamole was cut with something because it neither had the texture of mashed avocado nor the taste.
My wife had the quesadilla and taquitos appetizer (Menu price = $9.95, we paid $10.95) as an entree and it was disappointing. Coming with guacamole, pico de gallo , and sour cream, the quesadilla had hardly any cheese and the taquitos were a bit burnt and dry inside. 
I went with the chile relleno, taco, and enchilada combo ($11.95) with, as my dad used to say, "refired" beans. I asked for a cheese and onion enchilada and shredded beef taco, but got a shredded beef enchilada instead. The taco was good, but came in a pre-fab shell (deal breaker). The enchilada was also good, but not what I ordered. When I told the waiter that I got the wrong enchilada, he scurried off before I could tell him to forget it. He brought a cheese and onion enchilada a few minutes later, but I barely touched it because I was stuffed by that time. What I did eat was very good though. I could not even see the relleno because it was covered with shredded lettuce and tomato. I think it was pretty good, but the taste was masked by the unusual toppings.
The "Cadillac Margarita" ($5.95) was rather tasteless and weak, so I did not bother ordering a second. In conclusion, the service was excellent and the decor cheesy, just as it should be.
CombatCritic Gives La Carreta 5 Bombs Out Of 10 ... More Bombs Are Better!


Five Bombs Equates To:

Read Reviews By CombatCritic:

Yelp - Elite '14/'15/'16

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!


Read Chris S.'s review of La Carreta Mexican Restaurant on Yelp

La Carreta Mexican Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato


Title: Portland, OR: A "Wagon"-Load Of So-So Food ... Ay Caramba!

Key Words: La Carreta, la, carreta, cart, wagon, Mexican, taco, margarita, Portland, Oregon, CombatCritic, TravelValue, travel, value, restaurant, menu, review, Yelp, Zomato, Tabelog

Translation for Civilians: Charlie-Mike = "Continue Mission"

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