[ {"id":"b07032b9-52f2-5684-9d6c-1d0974981246","type":"article","starttime":"1583416800","starttime_iso8601":"2020-03-05T07:00:00-07:00","priority":50,"sections":[{"pizza":"entertainment/dining/food-type/pizza"},{"provo":"entertainment/dining/location/provo"},{"dinner":"entertainment/dining/meal-type/dinner"},{"lunch":"entertainment/dining/meal-type/lunch"},{"low":"entertainment/dining/price/low"},{"faith-and-values":"lifestyles/faith-and-values"}],"application":"editorial","title":"Two Jack's Pizza makes specialty items shine","url":"http://www.heraldextra.com/entertainment/dining/food-type/pizza/article_b07032b9-52f2-5684-9d6c-1d0974981246.html","permalink":"https://www.heraldextra.com/entertainment/dining/food-type/pizza/two-jacks-pizza-makes-specialty-items-shine/article_b07032b9-52f2-5684-9d6c-1d0974981246.html","canonical":"https://www.heraldextra.com/entertainment/dining/food-type/pizza/two-jacks-pizza-makes-specialty-items-shine/article_b07032b9-52f2-5684-9d6c-1d0974981246.html","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":0,"audio":0,"image":4,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"byline":"By Braley Dodson\nDaily Herald","prologue":"I want this to be very clear: I didn\u2019t like Two Jack\u2019s Pizza\u2019s specialty items. What you should know is that if Two Jack\u2019s Pizza\u2019s specialty items started a cult, I\u2019d join it. I\u2019d go to war for that pizza. If NASA told me they\u2019d opened a Two Jack\u2019s Pizza on Mars, I\u2019d volunteer for the one-way trip to start the first colony.","supportsComments":false,"commentCount":0,"keywords":["food review","two jack's pizza","provo","provo pizza","specialty pizza"],"internalKeywords":[],"customProperties":{},"presentation":null,"images":[{"id":"8d332ed6-d23f-5c94-8bde-caa3a1d466fd","description":"Two Jack's Pizza's Chicken Alfredo Pizza is pictured on Friday, Feb. 21, 2020, in Provo.\u00a0","byline":"By Braley Dodson\nDaily 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I want this to be very clear: I didn\u2019t like Two Jack\u2019s Pizza\u2019s specialty items.

What you should know is that if Two Jack\u2019s Pizza\u2019s specialty items started a cult, I\u2019d join it. I\u2019d go to war for that pizza. If NASA told me they\u2019d opened a Two Jack\u2019s Pizza on Mars, I\u2019d volunteer for the one-way trip to start the first colony.

Two Jack\u2019s Pizza\u2019s downtown Provo location fits into Center Street\u2019s charm. But once you go inside, it\u2019s a full-on pizzeria. It offers all types of pizzas, in addition to cheesy bread so good that someone should really write a song about it, wings, calzones, salads and pasta items.

For this review, my group ordered the Chicken Alfredo Pizza, the Barbecue Pizza, cheese sticks, the Western cheese sticks (which include diced green peppers, onions, fresh tomatoes and bacon) and the cinnamon sticks.

We loved everything. The Chicken Alfredo Pizza had the perfect amount of toppings with a creamy sauce that\u2019ll make you forget marinara exists. The Barbecue Pizza was equally as excellent, with a nice, thick sauce and \u2014 more importantly \u2014 no onions.

The cinnamon sticks are essentially a cinnamon roll rolled flat. There\u2019s probably an entire container of cinnamon dumped onto these bad boys, in the absolute best way. On top is a drizzle of icing that you\u2019ll probably be licking out of the box.

But if there\u2019s one thing that brings you to Two Jack\u2019s Pizza, it should be the cheese sticks. Cheesy bread is either amazing or a complete flop. In this case, it soars. It\u2019s not too doughy and is covered in cheese without it being excessive. The pieces are large enough to not feel flimsy, but not too big where most of the bread is still dry when you dump it into the marinara sauce.

There\u2019s not a way to go wrong at Two Jack\u2019s Pizza. Whether it\u2019s a Friday night, recovering from a breakup or just one of those nights, their cheese bread or specialty pizzas can cure all ills.

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Anyone who enjoys a good combo plate at a Chinese mall food court eatery needs to give Happy Dragon a try.

The restaurant was one of the first to go up in the ever-developing city of Vineyard, and I\u2019m sure it will stick around a long time thanks to its fantastic flavors, array of options, customer service, affordability, and take-out and delivery options.

Stepping up to the ordering counter can be a bit overwhelming, what with all the various proteins in flavored sauces and accompanying sides the restaurant offers. But don\u2019t fear: Workers will happily let you sample different options you\u2019re considering.

While you can order different menu items individually, we (and I\u2019m sure most diners) opted for combo plates, which come in small (one entree, one side), regular (two entrees, one side), and super (three entrees, one side). Happy Dragon offers about 15 entrees, including classic regulars and rotating chef specials. The dishes range in options from classics like Orange Chicken, and Beef and Broccoli, to unique options like Honey Walnut Shrimp. Side options also include classics: fried rice and lo mein, along with unusual options like Bacon Fried Rice.

We wanted to try as many dishes as possible to get the full Dragon experience, so our order included: Honey Chicken, Orange Chicken, Mushroom Chicken, Sesame Chicken, Sweet and Sour Chicken, Mongolian Beef, Honey Walnut Shrimp, Fried Rice, Lo Mein, Mixed Vegetables, Vegetable Spring Rolls, Cheese Rangoons and Egg Drop Soup. (Yes, our jeans were significantly tighter after the meal. Worth it.)

All four of us agreed the Orange Chicken was one of the best entrees: Happy Dragon does the classic right with crispy, high-quality white chicken and a sauce that\u2019s not too sweet but full of flavor. Orderers of the Honey Walnut Shrimp described the dish as \u201cscrumptious\u201d and \u201camazing,\u201d and well worth the extra dollar or so it cost to add it on. And our \u201csnack\u201d sides \u2014 Vegetable Spring Rolls and Cheese Rangoons \u2014 were fought over. Both were fried perfectly, and both had delectable fillings of veggies and cream cheese, respectively, accompanied by sweet dipping sauces.

Our sides of Lo Mein, Fried Rice and Mixed Vegetables were enjoyable, even if they were a bit plain. The Egg Drop Soup had a great consistency and included a yummy vegetable melody to accompany the swirls of egg. The Mushroom Chicken, Sesame Chicken, and Sweet and Sour Chicken were good, but not amazing.

The only menu item we tried that we were a bit disappointed with was the Honey Chicken. The sauce was great, but the problem was the chicken itself. Most of the other chicken dishes included the classic kind of chicken you\u2019d expect at a Chinese restaurant: various chunky sizes of white meat battered and deep fried. But for some reason, for this entree, the restaurant uses what I can only describe as lower-quality chicken nuggets (like the kind you buy in the frozen isle of the grocery store) to cover in its sauce. Kids may like this entree, but for us, when compared to all the other chicken items we ordered, we were left curious as to why the restaurant chose to switch from their high-quality, classic chicken to a low-quality nugget just for this dish.

Comparable plates at Happy Dragon\u2019s natural rival, the chain Panda Express, are more pricey and lower quality than what Vineyard\u2019s family-owned eatery offers.

So the next time you\u2019re craving a loaded plate of sweet and savory Chinese grub, or wanting some yummy Chinese takeout or delivery that won\u2019t break the bank, give Happy Dragon a go: Your wallet and taste buds will thank you, and you\u2019ll be supporting a local business!

"}, {"id":"88750c6d-eecc-58d0-9d52-213eee4eadf3","type":"article","starttime":"1582225200","starttime_iso8601":"2020-02-20T12:00:00-07:00","priority":50,"sections":[{"american":"entertainment/dining/food-type/american"},{"orem":"entertainment/dining/location/orem"},{"breakfast":"entertainment/dining/meal-type/breakfast"},{"dinner":"entertainment/dining/meal-type/dinner"},{"lunch":"entertainment/dining/meal-type/lunch"},{"low":"entertainment/dining/price/low"}],"application":"editorial","title":"Getting a first experience at a Utah County classic -- Apollo Burger","url":"http://www.heraldextra.com/entertainment/dining/food-type/american/article_88750c6d-eecc-58d0-9d52-213eee4eadf3.html","permalink":"https://www.heraldextra.com/entertainment/dining/food-type/american/getting-a-first-experience-at-a-utah-county-classic----apollo-burger/article_88750c6d-eecc-58d0-9d52-213eee4eadf3.html","canonical":"https://www.heraldextra.com/entertainment/dining/food-type/american/getting-a-first-experience-at-a-utah-county-classic----apollo-burger/article_88750c6d-eecc-58d0-9d52-213eee4eadf3.html","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":0,"audio":0,"image":5,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"byline":"By Ashley Stilson \nDaily Herald","prologue":"It was a dark and snowy night. 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It was a dark and snowy night.

The wind was howling, the snow was falling fast and the roads were slushy and chaotic when my friends and I braved the weather to visit Apollo Burger in Orem.

I know the burger joint has been an essential part of Utah communities since first opening in 1984, but I\u2019d never eaten there until that week.

First thing I noticed when walking inside the location is how warm it was. Not surprising considering it was early February and everywhere was cold. The second thing I noticed was the breakfast menu.

What? A breakfast menu? Why on earth didn\u2019t I come here in the morning to review the breakfast options? Breakfast is the best meal of the day! Everyone loves breakfast! But alas, Apollo Burger only serves breakfast items until 11 a.m. so we settled for burgers.

Each one of my friends and I tried a different burger: the Double Cheeseburger, the Mushroom Swiss burger, the Tangy Bleu burger and of course, the Apollo Burger.

The Apollo Burger has a beef patty with thinly slice smoked pastrami and American cheese, tomatoes, lettuce, onions and Apollo Sauce, according to the online menu.

I\u2019ll be honest, this isn\u2019t my favorite burger. The \u201cthinly\u201d sliced pastrami looked and tasted delicious but definitely overpowered the rest of the burger. The two pieces of onion were also too much for my taste.

But my girlfriend loved the fresh ingredients and moderate sauce on her Double Cheeseburger. Again, a little heavy on the onions but she complimented the staff on cleaning the soda machine because her water actually tasted like water, not like the shared lemonade juice.

Another friend also complained about the onion on her Mushroom Swiss burger. However, she and her girlfriend loved the sweet potato fries and enjoyed the copious amounts of lettuce on their burgers.

Speaking of the Tangy Bleu burger, that friend said she enjoyed how much bleu cheese came with the burger even though her burger fell apart. Most likely a user error, but still.

During our visit, we chatted about how pale the fry sauce seems and why restaurants around the country avoid introducing fry sauce to their menus. No one has copyrighted the phrase \u201cfry sauce,\u201d right? So why create monstrosities like Mayochup? Just give us simple fry sauce, and that\u2019s what Apollo Burger did.

Hands down my favorite part about Apollo Burger was the zucchini fries. Freshly fried, crispy outside and the perfect amount of batter (and my girlfriend would know working for years in fast food), the fries were absolutely amazing with ranch dressing.

Apollo Burger also serves a variety of sandwiches including chicken, turkey, BLT, ham and cheese, steak, Reuben and halibut. Grilled and crispy chicken salads along with Greek, classic Cobb and chef salads are also available.

The restaurant also has a kid\u2019s menu, corn dogs, chicken tenders, fried mushrooms, mozzarella sticks and onion rings for appetizers.

And locations are found across Utah, from Orem to West Jordan to Salt Lake City to Tooele to St. George.

Although eating at Apollo Burger didn\u2019t diminish my love for Five Guys or In-N-Out, the burgers were still scrumptious enough to warrant another visit someday.

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Saturday, Feb. 8, 2020.","byline":"Genelle Pugmire, Daily Herald","hireswidth":3264,"hiresheight":2448,"hiresurl":"https://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/heraldextra.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/0/05/005c30aa-3212-5af8-8a8e-c9edc970b5d4/5e432ba0ba6a2.hires.jpg","presentation":"","versions":{"full":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"1662","height":"1247","url":"https://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/heraldextra.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/0/05/005c30aa-3212-5af8-8a8e-c9edc970b5d4/5e432ba0a4a65.image.jpg?resize=1662%2C1247"},"100": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"100","height":"75","url":"https://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/heraldextra.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/0/05/005c30aa-3212-5af8-8a8e-c9edc970b5d4/5e432ba0a4a65.image.jpg?resize=100%2C75"},"300": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"300","height":"225","url":"https://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/heraldextra.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/0/05/005c30aa-3212-5af8-8a8e-c9edc970b5d4/5e432ba0a4a65.image.jpg?resize=300%2C225"},"1024":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"1024","height":"768","url":"https://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/heraldextra.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/0/05/005c30aa-3212-5af8-8a8e-c9edc970b5d4/5e432ba0a4a65.image.jpg?resize=1024%2C768"}}},{"id":"1a78dab2-5323-518c-ab1f-e9c20f706883","description":"Chocolate-flavored macarons with peanut butter cup ice cream. The cookies and ice cream complement each other. 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If you\u2019re looking for an inexpensive, definitive dessert place, look no further than Macs A La Mode, at 934 N. State St., Suite 109 in Orem.

The 20-seat dessert parlor, that opened in October, serves basically a large variety of one thing, macaron ice cream sandwiches.

For those who are not macaron fans, this would probably not be your first choice in dessert dining, but you should at least try it out.

For those of you who are macaron fans, your dessert dreams have just been turned into reality.

For those of you not sure what a macaron is, the Chefstep online tutorial says this about the flat crispy confection, not to be confused with the coconut cookie:

\u201cA macaron (pronounced mack-a-rohn, French accent optional) is a confection made up of two flat almond flour-based cookies, sandwiching an emulsified filling like ganache or jam. Any variation in color or flavor is simply a variation of the filling, plus some food coloring. The macaron was made famous by the French, and is thus often referred to as a French or a Parisian macaron.\u201d

Macs A La Mode takes two macarons and dresses them up with a variety of flavors and adds a middle layer of ice cream. The finished product is delicious.

Store owner and confectioner Jenna Parker makes the macaron ice cream sandwiches with new flavors every week. Four flavors are offered with Fruity Pebbles and Cookies and Cream being the staples.

There is always a chocolate-based sandwich on the menu as well.

On the day of this review the flavors offered were peanut butter cup, strawberry, Fruity Pebbles, and cookies and cream.

Other flavors offered depending on the week include: mint chip, lemon, Rocky Road, caramel, hot cocoa, mocha, butter pecan, mint moose tracks, snickerdoodle, pistachio and more.

One bite into the macaron sandwich and you get the sticky crunch of the cookie that has been flavored to complement the ice cream or has the exact flavor of the ice cream as well, such as was our strawberry dessert.

They are good, they are cold and they are one price \u2014 $5, that\u2019s it. Unless you want to by a dozen at a time and you save $10.

On Fridays at the restaurant, people gather for a fun evening of Bunco and other card and board games. A whole corner bookcase holds games and toys for kids.

If you need some liquid to wash down the ice cream sandwich, Macs a la Mode sells a variety of canned sodas and bottled water.

If there were a downside to Macs A La Mode it would be the visually sterile atmosphere. It is all white \u2014 white floor, walls, chairs, tables and counters, which didn\u2019t offer a lot of contrast. But it was all very clean.

For those who want to share their macaron ice cream sandwich, plastic knives and napkins are provided. The sandwich is served up in a white paper pocket-style holder and if you\u2019re eating in, that becomes your plate.

Don\u2019t worry about the crumbs. You will have them. The help is very quick to clean up tables and floors once guests have finished and left.

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During the Sundance Film Festival, I\u2019m always on the lookout for new places to eat in Park City, and was very pleased to have serendipitously visited the Boneyard Saloon and Grill this year.

As my scheduling fate would have it, most of the films I had tickets for were either showing at the main Eccles Theatre or The Ray. For those unfamiliar with the festival venue layout, those two theaters are maybe about a half-mile apart from each other on Kearns Boulevard. Obviously there\u2019s shuttles between the theaters, but sometimes, depending on timing, it\u2019s just as easy to walk it and have some quiet time to yourself away from the bustle of the buses.

During one of those walks, I noticed the Boneyard Saloon and Grill, and determined to make it my dining destination between Saturday afternoon movies. The place was really hopping, and you can tell that this is a popular destination, especially among the sports-watching crowd as there were TVs showing games all throughout the dining room.

Backing up just a little, there are actually two main dining rooms. One offshoot to the right as you enter, is called the Wine Dive, where, you guessed it, there are a bevy of wines and spirits offered along with a lighter menu of smaller-bite dishes, pizzas and charcuterie. The main dining room is off to your left. You can pretty much order anything you want from either location, so you should be fine no matter which way you turn.

Few things are more delightful on a wintry day than a bowl of Creamy Tomato Basil Soup, and I immediately ordered that as an appetizer. It came with half of a grilled cheese sandwich for dipping. I have kind of made it my mission to order tomato basil soup wherever I go, and I would rate this one well above average. It hit the spot perfectly.

To round things out, I opted for the Colossal Yardbird Wings \u2014 which come in orders of six and 10 pieces. The wings were indeed large, and extremely delicious, especially when dipped in the accompanying house blue cheese dressing.

Things went so swimmingly on Saturday, I also made Boneyard my dining destination on Sunday as well. This was the day former Lakers star Kobe Bryant, his daughter and others were killed in a helicopter crash. I had heard the news on the radio during my drive up Parley\u2019s Canyon, and it was obviously a big topic of conversation on most of the televisions in the restaurant. It\u2019s one of those \u201cwhere were you when\u201d moments, and I\u2019ll always remember where I was sitting in the restaurant as I watched the news unfold.

This day, I ordered the Beer-Battered Onion Rings as an appetizer and was not disappointed. The rings were light and fluffy, and not lacking for heft. The accompanying fry-style sauce proved the perfect dipping complement.

I branched out a bit with my entree, opting for the Mac \u2018N Cheese Skillet. It just looked so intriguing, I had to give it a try. The skillet came with macaroni, white and smoked cheddar cheese, chipotle, charred bread crumbs, Fresno chili and green onion. It was a little more liquidy than I would have expected, and it had a good amount of spicy bite when you got some of the chili. A delicious meal I was glad to have ordered.

There were all kinds of hamburgers, salads and specialty menu items available, but a man can only each so much in two visits. But I would definitely recommend Boneyard for an evening out in Park City, and would look forward to another visit at future festivals.

"}, {"id":"93912a20-d363-510b-89cb-0f040a852968","type":"article","starttime":"1579802400","starttime_iso8601":"2020-01-23T11:00:00-07:00","priority":50,"sections":[{"pizza":"entertainment/dining/food-type/pizza"},{"provo":"entertainment/dining/location/provo"},{"dinner":"entertainment/dining/meal-type/dinner"},{"lunch":"entertainment/dining/meal-type/lunch"},{"low":"entertainment/dining/price/low"}],"flags":{"featured":"true"},"application":"editorial","title":"Nico's Pizza in Provo brings Boston-style pizza to Provo","url":"http://www.heraldextra.com/entertainment/dining/food-type/pizza/article_93912a20-d363-510b-89cb-0f040a852968.html","permalink":"https://www.heraldextra.com/entertainment/dining/food-type/pizza/nicos-pizza-in-provo-brings-boston-style-pizza-to-provo/article_93912a20-d363-510b-89cb-0f040a852968.html","canonical":"https://www.heraldextra.com/entertainment/dining/food-type/pizza/nicos-pizza-in-provo-brings-boston-style-pizza-to-provo/article_93912a20-d363-510b-89cb-0f040a852968.html","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":0,"audio":0,"image":1,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"byline":"By Braley Dodson\nDaily Herald","prologue":"Nico\u2019s Pizza in Provo provides pizza lovers with good food in a casual dining atmosphere. I decided to check out Nico\u2019s Pizza after driving by it every day on my way to work and hearing from several friends that it\u2019s the best pizza in town. Nico\u2019s Pizza, also known as Nicolitalia Pizzeria, is located on Cougar Boulevard and boasts Boston-style pizza, which, according to them, means the pizzas are baked flat on a stone in a high-temperature oven, that the pizzas have thin, crisp crusts, that the pizzas are made with a simple tomato sauce and that cheese goes underneath the toppings.","supportsComments":false,"commentCount":0,"keywords":["food review","nico's pizza","provo","nicolitalia pizzeria","boston style pizza","utah county pizza parlors","utah county dining"],"internalKeywords":[],"customProperties":{},"presentation":null,"images":[{"id":"5f16f79d-3eb4-5b77-9b79-622476b52915","description":"The Meatza Chiena is pictured Friday, Jan. 10, 2020 at Nico's Pizza in Provo.","byline":"By Braley Dodson\nDaily Herald","hireswidth":4032,"hiresheight":3024,"hiresurl":"https://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/heraldextra.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/5/f1/5f16f79d-3eb4-5b77-9b79-622476b52915/5e27be736a077.hires.jpg","presentation":"","versions":{"full":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"1662","height":"1247","url":"https://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/heraldextra.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/5/f1/5f16f79d-3eb4-5b77-9b79-622476b52915/5e27be735b95a.image.jpg?resize=1662%2C1247"},"100": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"100","height":"75","url":"https://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/heraldextra.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/5/f1/5f16f79d-3eb4-5b77-9b79-622476b52915/5e27be735b95a.image.jpg?resize=100%2C75"},"300": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"300","height":"225","url":"https://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/heraldextra.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/5/f1/5f16f79d-3eb4-5b77-9b79-622476b52915/5e27be735b95a.image.jpg?resize=300%2C225"},"1024":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"1024","height":"768","url":"https://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/heraldextra.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/5/f1/5f16f79d-3eb4-5b77-9b79-622476b52915/5e27be735b95a.image.jpg?resize=1024%2C768"}}}],"revision":8,"commentID":"93912a20-d363-510b-89cb-0f040a852968","body":"

Nico\u2019s Pizza in Provo provides pizza lovers with good food in a casual dining atmosphere.

I decided to check out Nico\u2019s Pizza after driving by it every day on my way to work and hearing from several friends that it\u2019s the best pizza in town. Nico\u2019s Pizza, also known as Nicolitalia Pizzeria, is located on Cougar Boulevard and boasts Boston-style pizza, which, according to them, means the pizzas are baked flat on a stone in a high-temperature oven, that the pizzas have thin, crisp crusts, that the pizzas are made with a simple tomato sauce and that cheese goes underneath the toppings.

I\u2019ve never specifically had Boston-style pizza before, but it\u2019s not too much different from your regular pizza.

Nico\u2019s Pizza has a casual setup where you order and pay first at a counter before picking your seat and having the pizza brought to you. The atmosphere was fun, with pictures on the walls of famous paintings with pizzas edited onto them. The service was also fast even though we went on a busy Friday night.

We ordered the margherita pizza, which has tomato sauce with fresh garlic and basil, the Queen Margotte, which has pesto, tomatoes, spinach and basil, and the Meatza Chiena, which has tomato sauce with pepperoni, Canadian bacon, sausage, hamburger and bacon. We also ordered garlic sticks.

The food all came out steaming hot. The crust on the pizzas was very good. It was greasy pizza, so be sure to grab plenty of napkins and be ready for a messy eating experience.

Once we got the pizzas, we realized that the Queen Margotte and the margherita were very similar and we could not tell which one was which. We enjoyed both of them, and the meat combinations on the Meatza Chiena were great, as well.

The garlic sticks were thin, doughy and not very garlicy. But they were unique. The thinness of them meant that you could get more sauce onto them with each bite.

Overall, it\u2019s a place I would go back to to grab a quick, casual bite of pizza, get pizza by the slice or try one of their other menu options like a calzone.

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I\u2019ve waited in anticipation for a very long time to see what would replace the posh Chef\u2019s Table restaurant in Orem after it closed. Dim Sum Kitchen finally took the plunge and settled into the vacant building located just north of the Orem-Provo border on State Street with big windows overlooking the valley.

If I were to think of one word to describe our meal, I would say \u201cfun.\u201d It truly is fun to look over the paper Dim Sum menu, marking the dishes that sound appealing, and then getting to enjoy a wide range of dumplings and other dishes brought to the table nestled in individual dim sum steamers.

Everything we tried was good enough that we would get it again on a future visit to the restaurant. The classic Shrimp Dumplings, which are steamed, and the Deep-Fried Shrimp Dumplings were both chock full of shrimp and cooked to perfection. The steamed dumpling wrappers allowed the flavor of the shrimp to shine a bit more.

The Milk Cream Buns were interesting \u2026 but in a good way. Bread cooked by steaming isn\u2019t something we Americans are very accustomed to, but their texture was uniquely delicious. Without being overpoweringly sweet, they could either work as a side dish to switch to in between the more savory dim sum, or as a dessert. The cute, intricate design made me hesitant to bite into the bun, but of course, even the prettiest of dishes are still meant to be eaten, and we quickly gobbled them up.

The Deep-Fried Egg Rolls were good and pretty standard \u2014 nothing spectacular, and we wished they had come with a bit more sauce.

We also ordered a few things from the main menu: Egg Drop Soup as a starter, Vegetable Lo Mein and Sesame Chicken.

I was a bit hesitant to order the Sesame Chicken, as I thought about the dish in mall food courts that would surely be identical and cost half the price, but I was happily surprised. I can say with complete surety that it was the best Chinese chicken dish I\u2019ve had. I\u2019m a bit picky about the quality of my meats, and it was clear that only high-quality cuts of chicken were used in the dish. The Vegetable Lo Mein was also delicious, with the perfect balance of noodles, fresh veggies and oily sauce. Both dishes came in a heaping serving, making spectacular leftovers the next day.

Egg Drop Soup is a favorite of mine, and I loved the restaurant\u2019s addition of sweet corn to the broth.

While dim sum isn\u2019t typically considered a posh food, unlike the deluxe American eatery the Chef\u2019s Table was, the atmosphere is still fancy and elegant. Live piano music played as we enjoyed our meal, and the view from the tall windows is hard to beat.

As for the service, we were pleased that despite the small amount of staff present when we dined, everything came out quickly, and our server was attentive and pleasant.

The Dim Sum menu color codes dishes according to price, ranging from $3.20 to $6.95, while the larger main dishes from the main menu, such as our Sesame Chicken and Lo Mein, ranged at about $9-$13. We thought the prices were pretty reasonable given the quality and portion sizes of our food.

Whether you\u2019ve never tried dim sum before or you\u2019re a huge dim sum fan, I would highly recommend giving Dim Sum Kitchen a try \u2014 and seriously, get the Sesame Chicken.

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When I first saw the grand opening of Padeli\u2019s Street Greek in Lehi earlier this year, I couldn\u2019t wait for my sister to come visit so we could try it out. She was a missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Greece back in the early 90s, and since then she\u2019s struggled to find good Greek food that reminds her of what she ate there.

We perused the appetizer side, ordering dolmas, a traditional dish typically made of a rice and ground meat filling wrapped in grape leaves; pita chips with \u201cspicy feta dip,\u201d and we tried to get a cup of Avgolemono (lemon chicken soup) and Spanakopita, feta and spinach pie, but on a Saturday afternoon we were informed they were out of both of those. We were pretty bummed, but we soldiered on nonetheless. Apparently the Spanakopita at least is typically delivered from other Padeli\u2019s locations in Salt Lake City or South Jordan.

For main dishes, we aimed to try a variety of things \u2014 we ordered a Half and Half Bowl, which has lemon rice, chopped Greek salad and a choice of meat or falafel; and two gyros; the Traditional Gyro with lamb/beef mixture and the Shishito Gyro, which is less traditional with the addition of shishito peppers to rotisserie chicken.

We decided to skip desserts because Padeli\u2019s only offers two: brownies and baklava. Baklava is more authentic and traditional, but neither my sister nor I really like the strong honey taste.

The pita chips were good, perfectly crunchy but not too thick so as to be difficult to eat, and they were rather plain, which made them perfect for dipping. The spicy feta had a very strong flavor and the spice kind of hit you later. Quite tasty, but not something you could eat too much of.

The dolmas were served cold and at first I was a little nervous because of the temperature and, well, they\u2019re soaked in olive oil so they were a bit ... slimy. However, one bite rocked my world. The dolmas, which were just rice, were flavored with mint and lemon. Mint can be an overwhelming flavor that I don\u2019t like very much, but in these it was perfectly balanced and delicious. Dolmas are my sister\u2019s favorite \u2014 and while these weren\u2019t the best she\u2019d ever had (hard to compare to what Greek grandmothers make), she gave them her stamp of approval. Definitely eat them with a fork though to avoid getting your fingers greasy.

The other wow factor was the Traditional Gyro. Oddly, the menu says the choice of meat is chicken or pork, but definitely ask to have it with the lamb/beef mixture. All of the food was served with generous portions, and our gyro was no exception, being stuffed with meat and topped with onions, tomatoes and lettuce.

Again, I was a bit worried about my own picky palate \u2014 no matter how many times I\u2019ve tried lamb, I haven\u2019t liked it. But this \u2014 this was incredible tasting. Both my sister and I gave the meat two thumbs up, but what really took it over the top was the tzatziki sauce. Tzatziki is a traditional sauce made with yogurt, cucumber and lemon, and my sister said it was some of the best tzatziki she\u2019d ever had. Score one for Padeli\u2019s!

The Shishito Gyro wasn\u2019t as spicy as we thought it would be, and the chicken was good, but it wasn\u2019t much of a follow up to the amazing traditional gyro. Both gyros came wrapped in warm, thick and fluffy pitas which we both loved.

The largest amount of food by far came in the Half and Half Bowl, which was served with tzatziki, an olive oil and oregano dressing, and something called \u201clemone Greek\u201d on the side. We ordered it with \u201cFalafel Bombs,\u201d which were made with feta. The Falafel Bombs were, in fact, the bomb. Freshly made, they were served hot and the briny feta, while salty, left us wanting more. The lemone Greek was by far my favorite dressing as it was creamy and tangy without being too thick, and we loved the variety of textures and flavors that came in the Half and Half Bowl, which includes lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, red onions, pepperoncinis, feta cheese, kalamata olives, garbanzo beans and a single dolma.

Interestingly, the feta in the salad wasn\u2019t very salty or briny, instead it tasted rather creamy and mild. Cheese is cheese, so of course it was still good, and it was a nice balance next to the salty olives and pickled pepperoncinis. My biggest frustration with the salad was I personally found it difficult to eat. Again, I\u2019m grateful for the generous portions, but the food was so packed into a small container that it would have been impossible to mix everything together, much less dress it all. The salad made for great leftovers the next day, when I was able to pour it into a larger bowl that allowed me to mix everything together with that wonderful lemone Greek dressing.

For the amount of food we got, I feel like the price was definitely right. My taste buds and I can\u2019t wait to pay another visit to this little slice of Greek heaven. And if you\u2019re in doubt of what to order, trust my experienced sister and get the traditional gyro with lamb/beef and the dolmas.

Carley Porter covers northern Utah County and business for the Daily Herald. She can be reached at cporter@heraldextra.com.

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If you have ever wanted to taste what home cooking is like in Mexico, it\u2019s time to visit Villa Del Sol: Real Mexican Food in Orem. It will fill the bill.

The food and flavors from this local restaurant are found in the villages in the state of Jalisco, with Guadalajara being the capital in the central part of Mexico.

Food selections range from huevos (eggs) and chorizo (spiced sausage) to chilaquiles (eggs and fried tortilla strips), for breakfast to a variety of familiar and not-so-familiar tastes and food options for lunch and dinner.

Familiar items on the menu include tacos, enchiladas, tostadas, burritos, fajitas and even chicken nuggets and French fries on the children\u2019s menu.

It is the more unique and perhaps unfamiliar options to the American palate that might have some curious enough to try.

Everyone is served tortilla chips as they are seated. If you don\u2019t like the house salsa served, there is also a salsa bar with varying levels of heat. Side garnishes like chopped onions, sliced limes and sliced radishes are also provided.

Our party ordered some guacamole to go with the chips. It was filled with tomatoes, onions, cilantro and spices. We would like to have had a bit more flavor of the avocado, but it was delicious and went well with the house salsa.

The Huraches (yes shaped like a sandal) is a thick tortilla made from masa topped with refried beans and your choice of meat. We selected carne asada. It was topped with lettuce and melted Mexican white cheese.

The carne asada (steak) had a delicious flavor. The tortilla part was fried, and thick and crisp. The portion size was large and filling.

The three enchiladas and three tacos that were ordered were filled, one with shredded chicken, one with beef and one with curd (Mexican cheese). The beef and curd selections were very good and somewhat typical, the chicken, however, was spiced and flavored a bit different than the typical Tex-Mex red sauce you might usually get. It is not a bad taste just a surprising one.

They were garnished with lettuce, cheese and sliced radishes.

For those with more traditional and gentler taste buds, try the bean and cheese burrito with a side of rice. The serving is large, and what you would expect, no surprises.

While our taste buds were not set for tasting the unusual, you can order a tostada not just with beans and beef or chicken and pork, chorizo or fish, you can also have your tostada topped with pig feet, pig snout, pig ear or beef tongue.

You can also have a serving of menudo soup made with tripe. Very popular dishes and unwasted animal parts that are used in Mexico.

A popular dish for two is the Molcajetes, which is a large bowl filled with grilled steak, chicken, chorizo, shrimp, onions, jalape\u00f1os, cactus and fresh cheese served with rice, beans and six tortillas.

Villa Del Sol also serves tamales, street tacos and steak dinners.

The dessert menu features flan, tiramisu and tres leches cake.

The flan was a cream caramel custard with no surprises, but left a lingering caramel aftertaste. It was delicious and served in large portions.

The tiramisu was a four-layer event with a mixture of whipped cream, mocha and Mexican chocolate mixed and spread between four layers of cake. The outside of the cake was surrounded with whipped cream and topped and drizzled on the sides with dark Mexican chocolate. It is rich and delicious. You most likely will have to ask for a take home box. The portions are large.

Drinks include bottled Coke products, jarritos, horchata, non-alcoholic sangria and more. They also serve a variety of Mexican beers.

The restaurant itself is small and seats about 60 people. On Friday and Saturday from 7 to 11 p.m. there are karaoke nights with both Spanish and English music.

Seating features both booth and table options. It is clean and not overly decorated, but carries the spirit of Mexico. The help is friendly and bilingual.

Prices on the menu range from $5.99 to $16.99 for individual meals. The Molcajetes for two was $25. The evening bill for three adult full meals and dessert and drinks came to $53 without tip.

We were there for some of the karaoke. While none from our party sang, we did feel like part of a big family celebration rather than guests in the corner.

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Every wall is painted gold and each street taco tastes like the mythical El Dorado at Pepe\u2019s Grill, where the lunch and dinner dishes deserve at least four gold stars any day of the week.

My girlfriend and I arrived at the Spanish Fork restaurant late one cold November night and immediately loved the warm and casual atmosphere. The staff was friendly and infinitely patient as we tried to decide how much Mexican food we could comfortably eat in one sitting.

On the menu were street taco combos, including two tacos for $6.29 or three tacos for $7.29 that includes rice, beans and a medium drink. We could also pick two enchiladas or four rolled tacos for the same price of $8.

Eventually, we decided on shrimp, chicken fajita and slow-simmered carnitas tacos that tasted simply amazing, especially smothered with onions and cilantro.

The spicy sauce on the shrimp taco had an excellent kick, although it rather overpowered the shrimp flavor. The other impeccably cooked meats made me want to run back to the counter and buy a dozen more immediately.

The beans in the creamy chimichanga were a little overbearing but once again the meat melted delightfully and the sauces paired perfectly. My one complaint is the hot sauce needed more spice as it didn\u2019t really set my mouth on fire.

We also ordered a breakfast burrito with chorizo, a Mexican-style pork sausage which tasted a bit dry with too much tortilla but delicious once you reached the filling inside.

All the food arrived fairly quickly considering how much we chose to sample. While waiting in line, you can look at the members of the Taco Club, or those who successfully ate 15 tacos in 20 minutes.

I definitely wasn\u2019t up to the challenge, but the pictures were fun to see, along with the times each person achieved. Congrats to Trevor Davis for eating that many tacos in almost less than four minutes.

The restaurant started in 2009 when a local family decided to start making street tacos to raise money for fundraisers. The next year, the business set up a booth at Fiesta Days, according to the company website.

Fast forward to 2016 and the restaurant opened the first retail location in Spanish Fork along Main Street. There is also a new location in Orem near University Parkway.

For dessert, we decided on an apple taquito sundae featuring a scoop of vanilla ice cream and caramel drizzle. The textures on the smooth ice cream and crunchy taquito worked perfectly and tasted just as divine.

Also on the menu are fish tacos, lettuce wraps, tostadas, breakfast tacos, nachos, quesadillas and Asada fries, along with kid\u2019s meals or chips and salsa trays, all under $10. There is also a vegetarian option to replace meat with vegetables in any taco or entree.

All in all, Pepe\u2019s Grill provided a delectable late-night delicacy of authentic Mexican food and raised my expectations for every other street taco vendor I meet in the future.

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