Bacco Italian Restaurant
I usually visit a food establishment a couple of times but my initial impressions comes during my first visit. If necessary I will give an establishment a second chance.
Bacco Restaurant must have been the 5th time of went to this restaurant . Talk about consistency, this restaurant is fantastic. Case in point, seafood must be cooked correctly, in a way al dente, not over cooked and not under cooked. They offer a grilled Octopus tail that is grilled to perfection as an appetizer. Every time I went I ordered it and it is simply wonderfully prepared.
Not only is the food delicious, but the staff is very professional but have a great personality of friendliness and they smile.
I tried the boneless short ribs over mash potatoes, had the squid ink linguine was delicious and the veal santibucco was fantastic.
I highly recommend this place and on a scale of 1-5 with 5 being excellent, I give Bacco a "10." You gotta try it.
Chef Woo Can
P F Chang's Honey Chicken
I also bought P F Chang's Honey Chicken. The pic was so appealing and appetizing. Now, with this dish I expect it to be sweet. The 2nd ingredient for the sauce is honey.
I have to say when I started cooking the meal, there is alot of chicken. So I can say the packet is good for 2 people. Lots of chicken.
But the packet is 950 calories.
When I cooked it, the same standard procedure of using a non stick pan and covering the dish for 4 minutes.
I know that it says "honey" chicken but still sweet. I'm a novice to these frozen entrees but from what I have tried with P F Chang's frozen dinners, everything seems to be unusually sweet and as I said, sweet sells..
I tried the brand Fusia that Aldi carries for frozen Asian entrees and that is still my choice so far.
On a scale of 1-5, with 5 being excellent I give it a rating of 3 for value, alot of chicken in a package.
P F Chang, you could do much better. Your reputation has been damaged. Try a little harder.
Chef Woo Can
P F Chang's Frozen Shrimp Lo Mein Entree
Almost everyone has heard of P F Chang's. Beautiful atmosphere, fantastic professional service and good food.
Because of their success the company has expanded into frozen entrees.
Let me begin with this, freezing food is a tricky task. Cooked vegetables turn out soggy when heated. And to sell, the pic on the front of the packet must look appetizing however the picture is made and finally the sauce or gravy must be delicious, so delicious that you'll come back and buy again. There's alot at stake, reputation that lures potential customers and repeat buying.
Today I bought Shrimp Lo Mein. I saw on the package that bok choy (vegetables), mushroom and shrimp. To my amazement, the preparation was fairly easy, use a non stick pan, heat to med to high and contents of packet and cover for 4 minutes. That's it! Wow.
Ok, I did what the instruction said but after about 5 minutes, there was so much sauce. How can we enjoy Lo Mein with all that sauce. I guess the moisture was needed to steam and defrost the content.
I started to taste the noodles and mixed with the sauce was very very sweet. Let me say if your a diabetic, beware or stay away!. The noodles were so so made to cook quickly.? possibly? I tried looking for the bok choy, now bok choy is so inexpensive I'm surprised I couldn't find a nice piece, nor could I find any mushroom and when I did, it was so micro thinly sliced. The only vegetable was the carrots.
But for my preference I'm use to having lo mein with no sauce. Lots of veggies, mushrooms etc....
The shrimp was so tiny that there is no flavor. The sauce was used to give flavor to ingredients that didn't have flavor itself.
On a scale of 1-5 with 5 being excellent, I give a rating of "1". P F Chang, you disappoint us. You can do better.
Chef Woo Can
701 Edgewood Rd
Edgewood, MD 21040
The other day a friend of mine suggested I review an ice cream shop in Edgewood, MD. I said, absolutely. I know we have Dairy Queen, Rita's Custard, so why not try a small business ice cream shop.
When I got there, I was so full of anticipation. It's a small store, a converted service station. Although limited in flavors the fact that it was the old fashion hard ice cream made fresh daily. As we entered they were in the process of putting another tub that was shock frozen into the serving freezer display.. I think the owner greeted me and asked if I've been there before. So, that tells me that he is aware of who comes to patronize his place. That's an important trait to have as a small business owner.
I'd rather have a limited menu that is of the best quality.
I decided to choose a sundae with 3 flavors, caramel salt, chocolate chop and butter pecan. with hot fudge, wet walnuts, whip cream and a cherry to top the sundae off like years ago.
It brought me fond memories when I was a kid getting the hard ice cream from the tub. Each flavor had its own unique flavor. The butter pecan was buttery, the chocolate chip was vanilly with chocolate chip and the caramel salt was salty and caramely.
They been in business for about a year and I always believe that supporting small business is important. If you have a chance, please visit them before the Summer is over.
On a scale of 1-5 with 5 being excellent, I give the Edgewood Creamery a 10+
They're that good.
Chef Woo Can
Emmorton Snowballs & Ice Cream
101 E. Wheel Rd, Bel Air, MD
Every once in awhile I'm asked about a new ice cream place to try. To my surprise the Emmorton Snowballs & Ice Cream was a pleasant surprise. Let's see, Bel Air has Rita's Custard and Dairy Queen. This place blows both of them out of the water. Why you say? Well, small businesses can be more creative when making their products. More varieties especially when it comes to a sweet treat. Yes, they have lots of interesting varieties of ice cream, shakes and snow ball ices with every conceivable flavor you can think of. Their loyal followers have been going here for years. I'm sure word of mouth for this place does its job.
It's just delicious. I had one of their sundaes and it was so unique in flavor that I would go back again.
The ice cream was fresh tasting and so creamy like it was made the old fashion way.
I highly recommend this place and on a scale o 1-5 with 5 being excellent, I give this place a 10. It's that good.
So before the end of the Summer, you MUST visit this place and let me know how you like it!
Chef Woo Can
Main Street Bel Air
Once upon a time I had an appointment to get my haircut and colored at Bei Capelli The owner Kelly Sorensen is a fantastic hair stylist and hair colorist. She will make you feel glamourous with her creativeness to get the right color for you. Call her at 858 997 9544 for an appointment before the holidays. She's that busy. She cares about how you look and takes pride in her work.
Although it was a beautiful sunny Thursday I sensed the exciting vibration of people were out for fresh air or just strolling around main street checking out the new shops lining the streets. It was a scene from small time USA along the most common Main Street in Bel Air. The vibrancy of seeing families walking around with the kids running all over the place was a pleasant sight for all to see. The vibrancy and excitement of this picturesque scene just reminded us all that we ae all different in our beliefs and culture that we can all enjoy each other on Main Street. That scene on a Sunny Summer day brought out artist on the street capturing a scene of small town America enjoy the outdoors. It is a welcome relief of seeing us all getting along together, like a kaleidoscope of colors blending together to create a beautiful mosaic of happy smiles from all walks of life and for that moment we can forget all the bad news that seemed to have beaten us down. Not in Main Street, Bel Air, MD. It was a welcome relief of happiness that I haven't seen in a very long time.
The media seldom reports the good stuff and did they miss being there on Thursday or any other day on Main Street, Bel Air. But for the record it was a sight to behold and made me damn proud to be from Bel Air, MD.
Chef Woo Can
Chef Woo Can 1 Page Diet Manual
Mid Summer, the weather is beautiful, everyone is practically going on vacation to their favorite spot, whether International or near home. Most are going to the beach to enjoy the sand, exotic destination, crystal clear warm water sipping Pina Coladas, Marqueritas and enjoying the many varieties of food around them whether its Boardwalk Fries, hamburgers, pizza, or the local delicacies.
We waited for this moment for a long time considering what we've been through. Getting the latest Summer fashions, arranging the perfect destination and most importantly going on a diet to lose some weight from staying homebound through this Covid crisis.
So, what do we do, we hit Barnes and Noble or amazon for the best diet book that promises to reduce your weight in a specific time schedule. We're really not concerned if the diet has been approved, we just look how much we can lose in a specific time. It could be no carbs, or the Paleo diet, Atkins diet, whatever. BUT this is what you should know:
Chef Woo Can 1 Page Diet Book:
1- How can 1 diet book apply to everyone interested?
2. There are many factors that contribute to weight gain. Pyschological, stress, family history, medication etc....
3. No emphasis on will power. You have to want to lose wait long term so you'll be around for a long time.
4. As we all are we are not disciplined when it comes to eating. If it taste good, we want more.
5. What we ate as children no longer applies as we are older.
6. We may be doing our body more harm than good going on a diet. The shock to our system is enormous and dangerous.
7.Companies that claim they are manufacturing healthy options are deceitful and only concerned with the bottom line profit.
Here is what you need to do:
- Set a goal of how much you want to lose.
-Check with your doctor if its obtainable. In all probability be realistic. Doctors appt's aren't exactly cheap.
-You doing it to be with your family for a very long time. Don't be selfish.
-Everything in moderation is ok.
-Accept the fact that you need to be active, whether walking, bicycling, jogging or working out.
-Gradually get rid of items that are bad for you, The rule is all white products, bread, pasta, cakes, cookies and danish. Use the prepackaged foods until -gone or throw it out.
-Cut out all sugar drinks, ALL. Includes Gatorade. Gradually get use to water not necessarily bottled water.
-Buy fresh produce and fruits. If your diabetic, check internet. Low glycemic rating is good but everything in moderation is ok.
-Focus on non red meats gradually or portion control red meat.
-Balance meal is a protein, veggie and carbohydrate.
Don't add addl salt or sugar to anything. Allow the fresh foods provide the flavor. A little salt will bring out the flavor. Don't cheat yourself on quality. The better quality more flavor.
Marinades for Summer is ok but use mostly herbs, fresh garlic, fresh rosemary or thyme, and olive oil with a little barbeque sauce for sweetness. The longer the marinade is on, the more flavor.
BUT most importantly, losing weight is a gradual process. Not just for that planned vacation but for your overall health.
You don't have to restrict yourself on these diets and suffer due to quantity your allowed to do or use ingredients you don't really like or make you change your eating habits. You should be able eat what you want using fresh foods!
The same scenario, every loses weight according to the diet, they look fabulous but after vacation they let loose and gain back all the weight they lost and more.
The key is to maintaining the weight. I went from 206 to 189. I discontinued Metformin, work out to tone my muscles, swim and watch what I eat every day. I do cheat, its only normal to cheat. Temptation is all around us bombarding us every minute of every day.
I no longer eat whole wheat bread. It's over processed and the result is less fiber. I eat Rye bread, more fiber and brown rice, more veggies and a little meat, fresh fruit and just drink cold water all day long.
Most important is to have a glass of water before going to bed. Yeah, you'll need to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night but what they found is if you don't, it may be a detriment to your system.
Chef Woo Can
Hiring Hiring Hiring!
Everywhere we look, practically all businesses need more staff added. As a self employed business person I can understand the difficulty of getting good help. Some establishments are crying that they have so much business but not enough staff to help service the customers. For that brief period when it was ok to open business again, there was a mass movement to open up for business as we were all hurt last year due to Covid.
I understand all that and also know that the food service business is hard, work conditions, dealing with customers may not be the most pleasing to staff, always complaining about lack of service, food quality. Why should workers go back when they can enjoy unemployment and make just as much if they were working? Really do you blame them. Could you do a better job and be on your feet all day? I think not.
But as business tries to add staff, they may or may not be adding incentives like sign on bonus, extra days off, continuing education, and maybe add healthy benefits are even raise the hourly rate.
Business owners are not being focused right now. They've been devastated with no business, bills mounting, threatened bankruptcy and just closing!
Business owners and corporations are desperate. Their thinking is this, if we offer a higher hourly rate with sign on bonus and other benefits, they should flock to them. However, conditions never change, advancement is nil, unqualified leadership is non existent. So, what? If potential candidates don't like it there will be another willing to take the job. But consider all the time and effort management devotes to get these workers up to par. It's a major expense. What do you get in terms of future candidates? A person just looking to make a couple of dollars and doing the minimal work possible and doesn't care about the customer and doesn't care that the customer's business helps sales which ultimately pay their wage.
Case in point, today I was at AT & T looking to switch. The girl was uninterested in getting to know me, unfriendly, impersonal, impatient and one hell of an attitude.
Now as a customer, what the hell? In the telecommunication business its so competitive, you treat customers this way, sales sales and sales.
Let me just say, you don't get a sale if the customer doesn't feel comfortable with the salesperson. It's called "getting to know you"
I left and swore I wouldn't go back to them. I went to T Mobile, the sales girl was friendly very patient and willing to answer my questions and we were able to talk to each other. I had questions and she answered them as best she could and was very understanding.
I guess the bottom line is this, you can hire any candidate and they can all be trained but you can't train someone with a bad attitude!
If your hire someone to fulfill a number and has a bad attitude, you'll lose customers rather than gain more customers.
As customers, we have our limitations to. We want to be treated with some respect and we'll walk. Right now business can't afford to treat the customers poorly, not ever especially now!
So, if business wants to flourish correctly, they need to get back to "How to serve customers 101",
Corporate needs to look at other things than sales, sales is derived from a number of factors and they should be focused on 100%. Train managers and once trained then employees can be trained the right way. Recruiting shouldn't be based on meeting numbers but a careful review of qualifications and a positive attitude!
I was so pissed at AT & T in Bel Air.
Chef Woo Can
HotPot Jamaican Restaurant
1010 Edgewood Rd,, Ste 105
Edgewood, MD 21040
Sometimes I say to my friends, what new cuisine is happening in Harford County, MD? It's always a great conversation to always look for different foods to try.
I'm getting tired of Popeye's Chicken, Chick Fil A, Pizza, Hamburgers, chicken etc....
Well my friend suggested a Caribbean Restaurant she saw in Edgewood, MD. She said its been around for awhile. I then decided to try it today.
When I think of Caribbean I think of Jamaican Meat Patties, Ox Tail and curry goat. Authenticity of these foods would hit the spot.
The restaurant is very clean and offers a cheery atmosphere. The inside is decorated in Caribbean decor.
I had seen the menu in advance, so I knew exactly what I wanted to order.
I asked for a Jamaican meat patty, oxtail, curry goat and jerk chicken wings.
I had to wait about 6-7 minutes.
What I got in each order was a tremendous portion of rice, shredded cabbage and a generous portion of either oxtail, curry goat and jerk chicken wings. Great value, I was impressed. I ordered the small size which could have been a large size. No kidding!
I wanted to try the oxtail first, my favorite. The portion was ample enough for me and the amount of meat with the bone wasn't over cooked nor was it undercooked. It was just right from a tenderness standpoint. The flavor was perfect, a tinge of sweetness and I could taste the thyme.
The curry goat was so tender with a curry flavor that wasn't overpowering.
The jerk chicken wings were perfect in taste. The spiciness of the jerk was very evident.
Overall, my experience was very pleasurable. On a scale of 1-5 with 5 being
excellent I give HotSpot Jamaican Restaurant a rating of 4.
I know that this is Jamaican cuisine is sweet but if its a little spicier, I would offer a rating of 5.
If your palate is looking for different flavors I highly recommend HotSpot Jamaican Restaurant. Why travel to Jamaica other than for the beautiful beaches.
Chef Woo Can
As everyone knows the Delta Variant is a according to media outlets a very dangerous strain of the Covid-19 virus. Whether you are an advocate of anti vaxing or a pro vaxer.
I myself know the media provides their interpretation of the news and who is right and who is wrong is not the issue.
Whenever there are differing opinions which this is the case, we have to turn to science and numbers as an accurate measurement of what's going on.
Everyone believes its an individual decision to safeguard themselves and their families. But its really a decision that affects us as citizens of the United States. To agree makes us as a country strong. and right now we must stand united as a country. Whether your a Democrat , Republican, Independent, conservative or liberal, our country is in a crisis right now and needs your immediate attention.
I encourage everyone to get vaccinated and wear masks! What/s the worst thing that can happen? If you catch Covid and vaccinated, maybe a little inconvenience of wearing a mask, aches and pain.
BUT if you don't get vaccinated, You Can Die or suffer terribly grasping for air!
I'd say this, as parents we want to see our children grow up. You do them no good by dying from a virus that could have been prevented with a little inconvenience to protect yourself.
Yes, the vaccination is not perfect, no vaccine is but its all we have right now and based on the numbers, its helping to save lives!
Chef Woo Can