Mad Girl Eats Pho 88 in Orlando


Pho 88 Vietnamese Restaurant, 730 N Mills Ave, Orlando, FL.

After hearing numerous great things about this Vietnamese restaurant, I knew I had to get there and experience it for myself. Quick and friendly, the staff sat me and helped me with the extraordinarily large menu. Since it was my first venture into Vietnamese, my server was knowledgable, patient, and reserved as to my virgin taste buds. He kept pointing out the most popular dishes along with the word ‘American’. I didn’t want an American watered down version, I wanted authentic, sock-it-to-me Vietnamese cooking. I figured he knew better than I, so I went with the safe, albeit flavorful bet.

I ordered the #5. Shredded pork skin spring rolls, #11. Roasted Quails, #37. Pho Bo with eye round steak and beef balls, #42.Pho Bo with eye round steak, flank, fat brisket, and soft tendon, #114. Chicken stir-fried with rice and vegetables. The appetizers came first and wow, were they nice. The spring rolls were big and chocked full of pork skin and veggie filling, just superb, and made more so by the luscious peanut dipping sauce. Roasted quail, well that was divine. Add a squirt of fresh lime and the little bird sang “Welcome to Flavor Town”! The Pho arrives and none too soon. I was getting over a bad cold (hence the reason for the 2 bowls) and the brothy noodle soup was just what Dr. Feel Better ordered. The bowls were huge! A plate of vegetables accompanied the bowls of Pho. I added bean sprouts and jalapenos for kicks and giggles. Soooo good. The meats were beefy and tender, the noodles and broth were scrumptious. Next up, the Chicken Stir-fry. I was a bit hesitant to order this, I felt I could get this same dish in the Food Court at the Mall. Oh no no no. It was incredible! It may look similar, but the taste was beyond what you’d find at a chain restaurant. Honestly, I couldn’t stop eating it!

The table was happy with the selections, but I plan on going a bit more wild next visit 😉

Open 7 days a week. Hours: Lunch – 10:00 – 4:00pm, Dinner 4:00pm – 10:00pm. Parking lot or street parking.


4.75 out of 5 Pho-nominally delish points.

Mad Girl Eats The Joint in New Orleans


The Joint BBQ…Always Smokin’, Bywater at 701 Marzant St, New Orleans,  LA. Corner of Marzant and Royal Streets.

BBQ. Oh smoky and succulent BBQ. The Joint, like most supreme BBQ restaurants, is sooooo good, “it’ll make you wanna slap yo mama”. That’s just a Southern saying, don’t actually do it.

Driving through the Ninth Ward of New Orleans, remnants remain from Hurricane Katrina. This is definitely a don’t judge a book by it’s cover lesson.  The shack looking establishment bordering the less fortunate neighborhood of the city, is filled with men in crisp white dress shirts and ties, hospital workers still in their scrubs, and everyone else who wants BBQ for lunch. The place is cozy, interesting, and smells like a BBQ restaurant should. Hint: If you go to a BBQ place and you don’t smell that delightful smoking meat parfum, get back in your car and leave.

You walk up to the register and order, then go find a spot to sit while you wait for your food. Soon enough, a platter of meaty bliss arrives! A combo plate with your choice of 3 meats; mine were ribs, pulled pork, and beef brisket. Also, I had sides of baked beans, cole slaw and of course, thick ol’ white bread. The smoked meats were INSANE! Moist, tender, and screaming with flavor. I like my meat naked, no sauce cooked on top of it or slathered in a mopping of bbq lotion and potion. Why? It covers up the taste of the meat! I add a bit of bbq sauce the side of my plate, just to try, but generally ending up dipping French fries in it. Give me a fantastic dry rub before you smoke, other than that, leave it alone! The pulled pork was my favorite. The sides were good, the meat was memorable.

The Joint has some of THE BEST BBQ in the country. Leaving the restaurant headed towards the French Quarter, I see the neighborhood is coming under a revival. Baby strollers and bicycles with trendy refurbished homes full of hipsters and the upwardly mobile. So, don’t pass up The Joint, you’d be very very sorry. It will be the best stop you made all day…and a place you will return to time and time again.

Hours: Mon – Sat 11:30am to 10:00pm. Street parking. There is a bus stop right by the door on Royal St.

5 out of 5 sensational smoking hot points!

Mad Girl Eats Peppermill in Vegas


Peppermill Restaurant and Fireside Lounge, 2985 S Las Vegas Blvd,  Las Vegas, NV.

Retro cool and quirky, Peppermill is an authentic 24 hour Coffee Shop…with a full-blown lounge attached.  Just south of the big action of the Strip, this restaurant offers a big menu with even bigger helpings.

Late night/early morning dining, screams for eggs and bacon. Their omelets are gigantic, add hashbrowns and bacon and you won’t need to eat anytime soon. The dining room is like eating in a garden…. a neon jungle, cheesy garden. It was kind of….charming.

The food came and it was plenty for 2 to share, bountiful and tasty. A behemoth Denver omelet, chocked full of tasty ham, gooey cheese, bright green peppers, and sharp onions. I add, S&P, with a dashy dose of hot sauce and walla, eggy perfection! Yummy hashbrowns, crispy on the outside and tender on the inside, and smokey crisp bacon. A cuppa joe with these menu choices, and all is right in Vegas. Carry on and win big!

Happy tummy.

4.75 out of 5 egg-stremely satisfying points.

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