Although it may have fallen out of Top 40 rotation in the 70 years since it was sung by a burger-shop owner’s barbershop quartet, the song “When the Red, Red Robin (Comes Bob, Bob, Bobbin' Along)” lives on in the legacy of a Seattle-based burger joint. The Red Robin franchise has spread its wings far and wide, now serving locations throughout North America with sustainably grown, environmentally conscious burgers and sides that marry classic American flavors with savory twists such as onion straws or bruschetta. Most of the shop’s fire-grilled burgers, chicken sandwiches, and entrees come with a side of bottomless steak fries, allowing patrons to soak up the juicy Whiskey River barbecue sauce, melted blue cheese, and edible fedoras that top the menu’s varied eats. The staff are happy to help patrons pair their sandwiches with one of the full bar’s microbrews or specialty mixed drinks, keeping glasses filled while athletic superstars battle it out on the eatery's big-screen TVs.
The ancient art of dining meets modern ingredients and design at Feng Asian Bistro, where delicate geometric forms adorn both the walls and rice-covered plates. Cozy up in a stone-spangled alcove and dip into Feng’s lunch and dinner offerings to find yellow-tail jalapeño starters ($12), eel-cucumber sushi rolls ($6), and entrees such as miso-glazed Chilean sea bass ($16 lunch, $27 dinner). Enterprising eaters can tackle their fare in the main dining room, the lounge, or the sushi bar.
Bright reds and yellow oranges color the exterior of one Pepperoni Express location, signaling the tangy tomato sauce and gooey cheese commingling on pizzas inside. The other location sports reddish-pink walls, which resemble the spicy sausage that inspired the eatery’s name. In each kitchen, cooks make fresh dough each day, which forms the base of pizzas studded with ingredients such as shrimp, broccoli, and mushrooms. They offer a choice of more than 20 ingredients for build-your-own pies and rectangular 18”x24” party pizzas; rectangles suit parties because they have edges and thus are more likely to attract U2 guitarist The Edge. Pepperoni Express’s thin-crust pies brim with Italian ingredients such as olives, oregano, and prosciutto, as do italian authentic subs. Wine and beer can grant a hydrating reprieve for any dining session.
Melted butter and housemade cracker stuffing coat the succulent pieces of tail and claw meat inside Bridge Street Bistro's lazy lobster pie. The name cheekily undersells the rich entree, as well as the bistro's culinary team, whose extensive menu showcases a commitment to cooking that's anything but lazy. Dishes range from panko-crusted pork chops to Italian-style entrees such as haddock parmesan and flatbreads topped with pesto-infused mozzarella. Besides hearty lunches and dinners, the bistro's cooks add upscale twists to brunch with options such as pumpkin-stuffed French toast, which, at the stroke of noon, turns into a carriage for your ride home. Gluten-free dishes are available at any of the bistro's mealtimes.
Fresh, colorful fruits and vegetables fill the shelves of Weepin Willies, a local market that stocks produce and meats at two locations. Shoppers can find high quality cuts of beef, chicken, and pork, or opt for Boar’s Head meats and cheeses and prepared soups, salads, and sandwiches from the deli.
Gift Chalet cheers up homesick Viking-Americans with an array of home, kitchen, and clothing products that stir memories of the homeland's snowy winters, hammer-wielding thunder gods, and majestic fjords. Honor the ancestors with a knit hat flying the Norwegian flag ($8.50) or a T-shirt proclaiming one's hatred of lutefisk ($18). The best-selling almond cake pan and recipe gives Danish dessert fans all the tools they need to bake a traditional treat and present it as a housewarming gift to the next home they pillage ($10). Otherwise, add a sense of fun to a gray cubicle with a Finns Have More Steam mousepad ($5) or ward off cowardly ballpoint-pen thieves with a Lommedalen troll Viking figurine brandishing a Swedish shield ($40). Gift Chalet also supplies all the necessary Christmas accouterments for an Ultima Thule–themed Yuletide, including Lucia candleholders ($40) and accessories. Fans of international footwear can apply their Groupon toward a pair of Dansko clogs ($110-$120).