Posts Tagged ‘soup’

Cheese’ n Crust SouperstaR – Burlington Vermont

January 5, 2009
Chees' n Crust SouperstaR - Burlington Vermont

Cheese' n Crust SouperstaR - Burlington Vermont

It looks like the old Klingers bakery shop, has a new tenant “Cheese’ n Crust SouperstaR”. I love the copper patina facade, and I’m curious what their take on grilled cheese is. It seems like the winter is a good time to open a soup and grilled cheese shop.

With the spate of recent closings, I’m happy to see a new opening.


Did anyone happen to notice the name appears to be a play on words?

Jesus Christ Superstar
Chees’ n Crust SouperstarR

Cheesy, yet titularly funny at the same time.


Ruben James – Cheese Burger & Chicken Tortellini Soup

September 19, 2008

Almost a year ago I posted about some of my favorite wings at Reuben James in Burlington Vermont. Unfortunately they don’t also have free burgers, but they do have inexpensive ones.

Reuben James - Burlington, Vermont

Reuben James - Burlington, Vermont

I have a cold, so I ordered some chicken noodle(tortellini) soup.

Reuben James - Chicken Tortellini Cup

Reuben James - Chicken Tortellini Cup

The soup was decent, nice chunks of celery, some onion, chicken pieces and plain tortellini. I recently slurped some MSG infused classic Campbell’s Condensed chicken noodle, RJ’s broth was noticeable MSG free. However it’s not house made as confirmed by the staff, I’m guessing the soup is a Sysco product based on evidence of Sysco boxes in the kitchen. Also of note: locally made Westminster crackers come with.

Reuben James - Cheese Burger

Reuben James - Cheese Burger

Reuben James is open for lunch on Thursdays and Fridays, and they usually have a few sandwiches “on special”. Lately they’ve had their normally $5.50 cheese burger for $4.00 (come with chips + pickle). The cooking temp was more medium-well then medium, but it still had a touch of pink, and the burger is large maybe 1/2 lb affair. Djon mustard is available on request and the corn-mealed bun is fresh. Swiss cheese at no charge rounds out this bargain sandwich.

I rate the also inexpensive burger at VPB as slightly tastier and ethically sound (local beef), but in these pocket-pinching times a $4 cooked to order 1/2 lb.  burger is a welcome lunch choice. Oh and the cup of soup was $3.

Jazzman’s Cafe @ Champlain College – “Ham and Brie Sandwich”, “Potato and Bacon Soup”, “Peanut Butter and Chocolate Chip Cookie”

January 15, 2008

I was on Champlain College‘s beautiful campus today, so I decided to get some lunch there.

William R. Hauke Family Campus Center - Champlain College
William R. Hauke Family Campus Center – Champlain College

From Maple Street in Burlington Vermont, Jazzman’s Cafe is  just through the pictured door. Jazzman’s cafe is actually a chain, and is only one of Champlain’s dining options. Previously in the same location there was a student run cafe, which I actually prefer, but Jazzman’s has surprisingly decent food for a chain.

Jazzman’s Cafe - Ham and Brie Sandwich
Jazzman’s Cafe – Ham and Brie Sandwich

The counter person popped the sandwich in a panini press with good results. The brie was warm and gooey, the ham was good quality, and the Dijon mustard was an excellent choice. This is a ham and cheese with a french accent.

Jazzman’s Cafe - Potato Bacon Soup (cup)
Jazzman’s Cafe – Potato Bacon Soup (cup)

I was waffling on getting this soup, as I already had pork in my sandwich, but the cook up-sold me into a cup of this soup. The soup was nice and thick, there were chunks of potatoes, carrots, celery, and small bits of bacon. The soup appropriately hearty on this chilly day, but could have used a little more bacon.

Jazzman’s Cafe - Peanut Butter Chocolate chip cookie
Jazzman’s Cafe – Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie

A few great things about this cookie:

  1. Tons of peanut butter flavor – A good peanut butter cookie will likely be crispy on at least the outside. This is probably due to the peanut oil in the peanut butter, this cookie managed to stay soft in the middle.
  2. Peanuts!– I actually prefer some chopped peanuts inside the dough, but the result was fine.
  3. Dark chocolate in the icing – milk chocolate would have pushed this cookie into the “too sweet” range, just like “peanut butter” cookies, that don’t have enough peanut butter in them. The chocolate chips were also dark, or maybe semi-sweet.

I think the soup was $2.50, the cookie $1.50, and the sandwich $5 (everything was under $10 with tax), Jazzman’s Cafe is an inexpensive lunch option.

Pho Dang – “Pho Ga” & “Egg Rolls”

January 13, 2008

I don’t really know anything about Vietnamese food, I imagine(d) it being some similar to Thai food, and heavy on fish sauce like Thai food. I also remember that Anthony Bourdain once ate porcupine in Vietnam. I was happy to have my preconceptions adjusted. I’ve passed by Pho Dang Vietnamese Cafe in Winooksi Vermont a few times, and for lunch on Friday I decided to see what this popular place was all about.

Pho Dang Vietnamese Cafe - Winooski Vermont
Pho Dang Vietnamese Cafe – Winooski Vermont

This small noodle cafe is the former site of Souza’s Burittos. Not knowing what to order, I ordered the “egg rolls” and the first “Pho” on the menu “Pho Ga”.

 Pho Dang - Egg Rolls
Pho Dang – Egg Rolls

These egg rolls, appear to be more of a “spring roll”. I believe they are filled with seasoned ground pork (although not listed on the menu). The 4 rolls come garnished carrot juliennes and cilantro. The sauce is a yummy sweet, slightly spicy, tangy mix of flavors.

Pho Dang - Pho Ga
Pho Dang – Pho Ga

Pho Ga is the boiled chicken noodle dish. I was confused at first when I opened my take out bag to see a small tub of noodles (not pictured), a quart tub of broth, and a bag of sprouts, limes, hot sauce, and some mint? First I dumped the noodles into the broth, and the formerly packed noodles seemed to cook a little in the hot broth. After being consumed with the delicious broth, and fun of eating noodles with chopsticks, I remembered the bag of accompaniments and to take a picture (above).  I tossed in some sprouts into the soup, and a couple of the mint leaves, and swirled in a little of the hot sauce. The soup then takes on a new character, I made a discovery: Pho is fun to eat!

I discovered that dipping the chicken into the hot sauce once it’s out of the broth is the way to go. I will be back to get a little more acquainted with Vietnamese food, and get my noodle slurp on.

The Pho was under $7 and the Egg Rolls were $3.50 (both came to under $10 with tax).

Sugarsnap – “Cream of Mushroom and Fennel Soup”

January 13, 2008

With my Dino’s Pizza Roll I also decided to get a cup of soup from Sugarsnap.

Sugarsnap - Cream of Mushroom and Fennel
Sugarsnap – Cream of Mushroom and Fennel Soup

I don’t think I like bisque or other soups that are food processed down to one consistency (with a few exceptions like squash). While the initial taste and texture is nice, I get bored as the consistancy and taste doesn’t change while eating the soup. This soup had a nice weight to it, without being overly rich, the mushroom / cream flavor was slightly sour to my taste. The two pieces of included bread added to the enjoyment of this soup.

$2.78 with tax, it’s hard to beat the quality of the soup at Sugarsnap, even if I don’t always care for the flavor combination.

Sugarsnap “Green Mountain Turkey Sandwich, Jeruselum Artichoke and Parsnip Soup, Baklava”

November 30, 2007

There is something nice about being able to eat food that was harvested near by, it tends to be much fresher and tastier. Sugarsnap is all about local from scratch food. In fact they have their own garden plot in the Intervale down the road. When I’m thinking “whats 4 lunch?” I take a look at their specials page, which is updated daily.
Sugarsnap, Green Mountain Turkey Sandwich.
“Green Mountain Turkey Sandwich” is Red Hen Bakery crusty baguette, smoked turkey, fresh pesto, sun dried cranberries, provolone cheese.

This is one of my favorite sandwiches, the bread may be on of the few things that is not made on site, but it’s still local and perfectly crusty, but not so chewy that you have to gnaw on the bread to get a bite. The pesto is fresh and is spread on both sides of the bread. The turkey has nice texture and smokiness. The cranberries appear to be freshly dried, they could be local. The sweetness of the cranberries and sweetness of the basil, compliment the smokiness of the turkey, and finally the saltiness of the Parmesan in the pesto rounds out the flavors. There is nothing I would change about this sandwich.

Sugarsnap, Jeruselum Artichoke and Parsnip Soup
Sugarsnap “Jeruselum artichoke and parsnip soup” (with complimentary bread) This picture is not a good one, the soup has great texture (its been through a food processor).

Sugarsnap has consistently great soup, and I didn’t really know what a “jeruselum artichoke” is. Doing some quick googling, I found that its the tuber of a kind of sunflower, AKA sunchoke. Parsnip, which I had at least heard of, is another root vegetable. The soup was creamy and had nice texture, like most root-based soup the flavor was a little too subtle for my taste, I think I should have added a little pepper.

Sugarsnap, Baklava
Sugarsnap “Baklava” – phyllo dough, chopped nuts, honey.

As advertised on the placard next to the tray in Sugarsnap, this is best Baklava. In fact, it’s the best I’ve every had. Let me explain. Baklava is a traditional Greek / Turkish desert. Normally when I’ve had it, the bottom layer is oily, there is no separation in the phyllo dough and it may be overly sweet. With Sugarsnap’s rendition even the bottom layers of the phyllo dough were still flaky, eat bit had a satisfactory “crisp” sound when biting into it, the nut layer was nicely delineated, and the taste of honey drizzled on top came through perfectly, without being overly sweet.

The sandwich was $6.25, the cup of soup is $2.50 and the Baklava was $1.75.