Ethel Reds Chop House is named for a red-haired woman hallowed in family legend and yarns: the indomitable Ethel. Her ninety-some years of life were apparently filled with daring adventures, from jumping off waterfalls to riding a bull. The Chop House still serves her famed chili, and massive cuts of steak and chops challenge patrons. The eatery brims with bone-in ribeye and pork ribs like a ballad written by a hungry cowboy, and bacon celebrates an affinity for beef by embracing cuts of filet mignon and piling on top of cheeseburgers.
Diners bond over live country music, chicken wings, and copious use of napkins in the Western-style dining room, which is decorated by saddles, horseshoes, and other riding accessories. On balmy days, visitors toting drinks from the full bar wander to the patio garden to take in the fresh air.
Fugazzis brings sophisticated ambience and casual fine dining to its clients with menus melded from fresh, local ingredients. Fugazzis California Bistro, the collective's flagship restaurant, parachutes palates into a metropolitan atmosphere matched with modern appetite appeasers. Delve into its menu with an order of sweet-potato fries ($6.75) or coconut prawns ($8.95) before opting for the Fugazzis Pizza, boasting barbecue sauce, chicken, artichokes, and sun-dried tomatoes ($13). Sandwichy sustenance includes the halibut wrap ($11.50), and more elaborate entrees range from spinach-striped raviolis ($12.75) to a grilled rack of lamb ($24.95). Fugazzis California Grill serves up lunch and dinner for both midday marauders and moonlit mischief makers. Dinner highlights include a pear and walnut salad tiara’d in tangy honey-mustard dressing and blackened grilled chicken ($10.75), as well as fire-flicked flare such as a 10 oz. filet mignon ($24.95) and an Atlantic salmon filet ($19.95).
In 1985, a little drive-in burger joint called Rally's was born in Louisville, Kentucky. A year later, a similar drive-in burger joint called Checkers opened in Mobile, Alabama. After nearly a decade of competition between the more than 200 Rally's and Checkers franchises, the two merged in 1999. There are now more than 800 Rally's and Checkers double-drive-thru burger spots across the country.
At each location, patrons cruise through the drive-thru lanes or head to the walk-up window to request made-to-order burgers, creamy milkshakes, and, of course, Checkers and Rally's well-seasoned fries. In 2012, Checkers and Rally's CEO said that they sell more than 300,000 fry orders per day, which doesn't even include the 100,000 sent to Paul Bunyan's house.
Slice into the menu with a cool, cold sandwich ($3.39–$13.79) such as the veggie sub, with your choice of three cheeses and avocado, the salami-turkey-provolone, or the ham-salami-capicolla-pepperoni-provolone. Load a gastronomic cargo carrier with a medium fountain drink ($1.39) or chips ($1), or turn on the mouth heat with a stomach-warming griller, such as the 12-inch New York steak ’n’ cheese on ciabatta ($4.99–$7.99) or the 8-inch barbecue pork ($4.99–$7.99). Any sandwich can also be made into a wrap ($4.99–$6.29).
The sweet fragrances of fresh-baked goods, artisan sandwiches, and imported Swedish coffee waltz about the interior of this charming European-style café, nestled in a Swedish timber-framed house with ample seating and loads of warmth. Early morning guests can add pep to their palates with traditional Swedish coffees brewed into lattes as smooth as a Santana and Rob Thomas collaboration. Lingonberry-loving lunchers are invited to nibble on traditional Nordic sandwiches served on Max's stone-baked bread, such as the Scandinavian sandwich, which is layered with smoked salmon, cucumbers, and onions ($8.50), or the smoked-sardine sandwich, which is smothered with Latvian sardine pate and topped with onion slices and cucumbers ($7.50). Stockholm Bakery's vegetarian victuals include creamy potato gratin ($5.50) and the Farmer's salad, sporting fresh seasonal berries, almonds, raisins, thinly sliced onion, and a delicious douse of house dressing ($7.50).
The chefs at Los Pepe's blend spices and sway flames to sear the chicken, steak, and seafood showcased in their authentic Mexican cuisine. Extensive menu options tempt diners to test premeal might by ascending a mountain of nachos laden with cheese ravines, guacamole-capped peaks, and abominable snowmen masquerading as sour cream ($6.95). Warmed up mandibles can take on specialties such as the carne asada ($11.95) or the camarón a la diabla, a sizzling mound of sautéed shrimp, peppers, and mushrooms slathered in a fiery sauce ($13.95). Tortilla whisperers also wrap nine varieties of burritos and chimichangas ($4.95+), including a vegetarian burrito festooned with tomatoes and cilantro ($5.95). Imported beer ($3.75), wine by the glass ($4.25), and margaritas ($4.50), help temper heat by forming a fire line and dousing patrons with buckets of water.