Start with the calamari and save room for the fresh catch at Forest's Benjamin's — this Forest seafood spot has quite the selection.
This restaurant visitors can also take advantage of the many drink options offered here.
Both the young and the young-at-heart will dig the family-oriented menu and ambience at this restaurant.
Get online gratis thanks to Benjamin's' complimentary wifi.
Benjamin's has a large dining room, making it easy to seat large parties.
Sit outside at Benjamin's and soak up the sun on those nice summer days.
This restaurant's most sought after items include Benjamin’s Sampler, J.o. Steamed Spiced Peel and Eat Shrimp, 1lb Chilean Blue Mussels, Fried Green Tomato Bruschetta, and Chicken Or Smoked Brisket Quesadilla.
Benjamin's goes easy on the dress code — business casual is expected, so no need to squeeze into your finest attire.
You can also grab your grub to go.
Feed the gang at your next get-together with catering from Benjamin's as well.
Drivers can access the parking lot next door.
If you go out for a nice meal, it doesn't need to cost $100, come treat yourself at Benjamin's.
Supper is exceptional, though the restaurant also offers breakfast and lunch.
Isn't it about time you caught the freshest fish around with a dinner at Benjamin's?
Come to Olde Liberty Station to grab an American classic with a side of fries.
Help yourself to a healthier lifestyle at Olde Liberty Station, where gluten-free and low-fat plates are the standard.
Bring the whole family to this restaurant, where kiddos are welcomed with open arms.
Whether you have a large or small group, Olde Liberty Station can accommodate both.
Wifi access is totally free at Olde Liberty Station, perfect for catching up on the news, hopping on social media, or even working.
Don't sacrifice comfort for style — Olde Liberty Station's dress code is business casual, so guests can look and feel great.
Short on time? Don't wait for a driver — pick it up yourself.
Score a close parking spot at Olde Liberty Station.
At Olde Liberty Station, bikers can lock their bikes safely outside.
Meals at Olde Liberty Station are incredibly tasty and reasonably priced around $30.
Breakfast, lunch, and dinner are all on Olde Liberty Station's menu — you can stop by whenever the moment's right for you.
Lunch and dinner are easy as pie (and you might as well get a slice) at the delicious Olde Liberty Station.
So next time you're hungry and want a casual meal, Olde Liberty Station is the perfect destination for some good old fashioned food.
For familiar food you're sure to love, head to Benjamin's At The Pointe for American-style cuisine.
Unwind with a glass of wine or cocktail with your meal — this restaurant has a wonderful selection of drinks to accompany your dinner.
Gather up your group of friends and head to Benjamin's At The Pointe, a local restaurant that has room for large groups.
Sunny day plus appetite equals the perfect time to head to Benjamin's At The Pointe.
Throw on your favorite T-shirt and head out the door — dining at Benjamin's At The Pointe is all about comfort.
The restaurant also offers catering if you want to bring the flavors of Benjamin's At The Pointe to your next party or event.
Don't spend time searching for parking — diners are welcome to use the adjoining lot.
Benjamin's At The Pointe s fare is so good, you ll want to sample everything on the menu (and with its middle-of-the-road prices, you can!).
Breakfast, lunch, and dinner are all on Benjamin's At The Pointe's menu — you can stop by whenever the moment's right for you.
A hearty salad, juicy burger, or classic chicken — all of your favorite American dishes will be made fresh when you head to Benjamin's At The Pointe.
Mr Shipps Pizza in Forest does not just make pizza. They serve decadent slices of heaven that anyone who sinks their teeth into rate high on their list.
Mr Shipps Pizza knows how to make gluten-free and low-fat fare taste great, so stop by for a healthy (and flavorful) bite.
Comfort is prioritized at Mr Shipps Pizza, where business casual is the name of the (dress code) game.
For the tastes of Mr Shipps Pizza from the comfort of your next party, the pizzeria also offers catering services.
For the nights you just want to stay in and cozy up, order in great takeout or delivery from this pizzeria.
Waiting can feel like forever, especially when you're hungry. Spare yourself time spent in the parking search and dine with us. We've got space available for you and your car.
Come to Mr Shipps Pizza for a satisfying meal that won't break the bank.
If pizza is your all-time favorite, it's important to find a pie that's worth your while. With star-studded reviews and sky-high ratings, there's no better way to spend your time than eating some 'za at Mr Shipps Pizza.
Switch up your normal pizza routine and head on over to Mr Shipps Pizza for a new take on pizza.
Visit Carol's Restaurant for some true American comfort food smack dab in the middle of Forest's Forest.
This restaurant is great for families with kids.
At Carol's Restaurant, your large or small party can easily enjoy a meal.
Carol's Restaurant is the perfect spot to enjoy a great meal outside (weather permitting).
Not a popular place for dress-up dining, most Carol's Restaurant patrons come in casual attire.
If dining out is not on the agenda, this restaurant offers delivery and pickup, too.
Love the food so much you want to serve it at your next soiree? No problem — Carol's Restaurant offers catering.
For convenience, diners can park in a neighboring lot.
Your piggy bank is best left behind when dining at Carol's Restaurant
prices are so low you won t believe how good it tastes!
The breakfast menu receives the most rave reviews from patrons, but you can also stop in for lunch and dinner later in the day.
When you're craving a true American classic, such as a burger and fries, make your way over to Carol's Restaurant.
So enjoy a casual lunch or dinner at Carol's Restaurant and indulge in some America-inspired cuisine.
Hot cheesy goodness awaits your appetite at Lil' Cucci's Pizzeria — this pizza joint is the place to go for a serious five-star slice.
You won't need to get a sitter before heading to this pizzeria — kids are more than welcome at this family-friendly establishment.
Take the comfort of your own home and add great grub from Lil' Cucci's Pizzeria to create the perfect night.
Always five minutes behind schedule? Pick up your food to go instead.
For drivers, a nearby lot is available for use.
Lil' Cucci's Pizzeria has three square meals a day on the menu, so swing by for breakfast, lunch, or dinner.
Everyone's talking about Lil' Cucci's Pizzeria. Find out why when you treat yourself to a delicious pizza pie.
High-quality pizza is waiting for you at Lil' Cucci's Pizzeria, so find out what all the fuss is about and get your hands on a cheesy slice of deliciousness.
When you just want to relax in a casual setting and enjoy some pizza, make your way over to Lil' Cucci's Pizzeria.
For a pizza that is out of the world, call or make a visit to Lil' Cucci's Pizzeria.
As useful as WD40 and much more edible, coconut oil is a powerhouse. In fact, just one jar of the stuff can replace several household staples, from kitchen ingredients to baby wipes. Here’s how to substitute it for 16 total items in 3 rooms of the home:
1. Coffee: Coconut oil is a reputed energy booster. Swallowing a spoonful or two in the afternoon can be a healthful alternative to a cuppa.2. Coffee creamer: Emulsified and poured into coffee, it’s much tastier than (and probably just as nutritious as) that bulletproof stuff.3. Butter or oil (when sautéing): Coconut oil’s high smoke point makes it great for cooking on the stovetop, especially at high heat. Try swapping it in when making stir-fries, scrambled eggs, or pancakes, especially if you like a very mild coconut flavor.4. Oil (when baking): The oil imparts a delicious je ne sais quoi to baked goods—even boxed ones. Use it to give from-the-box brownies an upgrade, and you’ll dream about them for days.5. Condiments: Drop it into quinoa or oatmeal for added nutrients and healthy fats. You can also put it on top of sweet potatoes instead of butter!
6. Moisturizer: It works on your body and your face. It’s naturally SPF 4, so it offers a bit of protection from UV rays, too.7. Leave-in conditioner and anti-static agent: Rub a small amount between your hands and smooth them over your hair to control flyaways.8. Lip balm: It soothes sore, chapped lips, and other skin irritations.9. Eye-makeup remover: Rub it between your fingers until it liquefies, smear it on your lids, and wipe it off with a cotton pad.10. Face wash: Add a little water and rub it in your hands until it foams.11. Hand and foot cream: Massage it into cracked knuckles, or slather it onto your soles and stick them into socks for an overnight soak.12. Shaving cream: It’ll give you a smooth shave, plus additional moisture for your skin.
13. Ouchie ointment: Dab it on cuts and scrapes, which will benefit from its antimicrobial properties.14. Anti-itch cream: Coconut oil reduces itching from bug bites, and helps to calm sunburn, eczema, and cradle cap.15. Diaper cream: A layer on baby’s bottom guards against (and soothes) diaper rash flare-ups.16. Baby wipes: Simply mix it with hot water and pour it over a stack of paper towels that you’ve cut in half. Keep the towels in an airtight container so they stay moist.
Check out more coconut-oil coverage:
Oil Pulling Whitens Your Teeth and (Maybe) Makes You Invincible
The Five Best Uses for Coconut Oil You’ve Never Heard Of
A dainty sweet-potato bourbon cake (seen above). A deconstructed cheesecake topped with a sphere of fruit purée. A crème brûlée decorated with delicate, edible flowers. Ceviche plated to look more like a frothy cocktail than a bite of raw fish. These are just a few of the dishes that Chef Roque Heidler has conceptualized, plated, and posted to Instagram over the years.
Jump to his five tips for food photography.
This Tulsa chef is a bit of a Renaissance man. First and foremost, he works at The Chalkboard, an elegant New American restaurant where he does triple-duty as chef de cuisine, pastry chef, and resident plating expert. There, he quickly earned a reputation for his immaculate desserts, which helped him win the Sweets category in the first annual Taste of Groupon Awards. But that’s just his day job.
Over the years, Chef Heidler’s explored all sorts of facets of the art world. He experimented with street art in his youth, and, early on in his career, he took a two-year hiatus from the food industry to work as a tattoo artist. Today, he’s using those art skills to create the stunning desserts that first caught our attention.
We had the chance to chat with Chef Heidler after he won his award recently. Here are some of the highlights from our conversation.
Turning dining into an adventure
A video posted by Keepin Tha Block Fed (@purpstagram) on Dec 28, 2015 at 4:00pm PST
For Chef Heidler, cooking is all about balancing the familiar and the surprising. “I generally like to do a take on my childhood favorites,” he explained. He starts with these classic dishes and infuses them with “some sort of whimsy” while maintaining their approachability.
Frequently, that whimsy he talks about comes in the form of some sort of sneaky molecular-gastronomy trick, be it dessert gels made with agar or fruit purées transformed into delicate spheres that crack open with the whack of a spoon. Or, consider his take on chocolate pie:
“I got ahold of some methylcellulose and I did this crazy, crazy mad-scientist chocolate pie … that had this strawberry-buttermilk foam and this methylcellulose chocolate filling. [The filling] would be liquid at 70 degrees, but once you heated it up to 140, it would turn into that custard state.” The resulting dessert balanced different temperatures, textures, and flavors—subverting the diners’ expectations about what a classic chocolate pie could be.
How his unique background inspires his food
A photo posted by Keepin Tha Block Fed (@purpstagram) on Apr 10, 2016 at 8:22pm PDT
An artistic eye pervades everything Roque Heidler does. Though it’s been years since he did any street art or worked in a tattoo parlor, those experiences still give him a unique outlook on food: “I’ll look at flavors sometimes as colors, if that makes any sense. And I plate them out like that. Sometimes I’ll base a whole dish on a color and search for those flavors that go with it,” he said.
But over the years, he’s learned to let the flavors shine as much as the aesthetics. “Like, I mean, if you dig back a little deeper in [my career] ... you’ll see more of that really, really modernistic art on the plate, and I’ve dialed back from that a lot. I kind of learned, you know, you’ve gotta plate to the crowd.”
Working under the constraints of a traditional Lebanese restaurant helped him strike the right balance even more. “I just would take their classic flavors and would try to just distribute it out in that street-art form, like, layers and different takes and elevating it with different textures. But working under that [chef] taught me a lot about not detracting from the flavors so much that you couldn’t tell where it was from.”
Plating food like a pro
A photo posted by Keepin Tha Block Fed (@purpstagram) on Apr 8, 2016 at 9:26pm PDT
Now that he’s traded in no-frills Lebanese cuisine for fine dining at The Chalkboard, Chef Heidler has a lot more room to experiment with his food’s presentation. But even though he knows that many of his diners will rush to snap and post photos of these beautiful plates, he tries not to let that Instagram culture shape what he does too much.
“I don’t think about 6 o’clock. I don’t think about any sort of clockwise on a plate. I more or less look for that overall balance from a bird’s eye view,” he said. That’s because when a plate is placed in front of a diner, that’s the first perspective they get. And this first impression is important—even if the guest immediately drops down to plate level to snap that perfect piece of food-porn photography.
They say that you eat with your eyes first, so moments like these are vital to a restaurant’s success. But last impressions are just as important as first ones at The Chalkboard. “I love doing the plate ups on desserts because it’s gonna be the last thing that sticks in your mind when you leave,” Chef Heidler said.
Five tips for improving your food photography
When his knack for plating, arts background, and love of Instagram, Chef Heidler is a force to be reckoned with when it comes to food photography. That’s why we took the opportunity to ask him for some of his best tips.
1. Find the best lighting.
Natural light is your friend.
2. Shoot on neutral backgrounds.
Chef Heidler works on gray tables at The Chalkboard, but he recommends photographing your own food on “anything black or white—that’s always going to give another element to your photo.”
3. Combine different textures.
Varying textures form the most interesting compositions. “Try to provide three different textures, be it a purée, be it a frozen element, be it something crunchy. ... That’s what’s going to give you that depth in your dish.”
4. Add some acid to boost the colors.
This is especially true if you’re photographing a dish you cooked yourself. “[Acid] will give you those bright, vibrant colors everybody tries to achieve,” he suggests. This usually means adding lemon juice or white vinegar to a dish to bring out its natural green, purples, or reds.
5. Try different angles.
He explains, “Take a step around, even if it’s like, I don’t know, 6 inches from where you were just at. You might capture a cooler way.”
Don’t roll up to the bar trying to stump Brandon Phillips. Brandon knows his cocktails. And he likes a challenge. As the bar director at Chicago’s The Duck Inn, he’s had more than a few. As he told us:
A neighborhood guest was positive I couldn’t make him an old-fashioned that tasted like a prime-rib dinner. A little beef bouillon, horseradish, Worcestershire sauce, rum, and voilà, the Prime Rib Old-Fashioned was born.
In the video below, hear more on craft, cocktail culture, and good old-fashioned hospitality directly from Brandon, the winner in our inaugural Taste of Groupon Awards for the The Drink Award for the Advancement of Potent Potables.