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shoreline99

Cali Grill - quick thoughts

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Ate at the California Grill last week. Service was good, but the dinner was just OK. The menu has definitely changed and seems kind of disjointed - they've got the cedar plank salmon and bison steak now from Artist Point on the menu, and the rest of it seems like a collection of hits from other places. The bison steak was excellent, but my wife had a lobster and scallops dish that was way overseasoned and the flavors didn't seem to mesh well. No specials, either. Our friends had some sushi, which was excellent, but overall it seems to have dropped a notch.

We haven't eaten there since Brian Piasecki left, and I don't know who's running it now, but it just seemed off.

They seem to be much more lenient on the dress code, too...

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On ‎10‎/‎21‎/‎2019 at 10:07 AM, shoreline99 said:

Ate at the California Grill last week. Service was good, but the dinner was just OK. The menu has definitely changed and seems kind of disjointed - they've got the cedar plank salmon and bison steak now from Artist Point on the menu, and the rest of it seems like a collection of hits from other places. The bison steak was excellent, but my wife had a lobster and scallops dish that was way overseasoned and the flavors didn't seem to mesh well. No specials, either. Our friends had some sushi, which was excellent, but overall it seems to have dropped a notch.

We haven't eaten there since Brian Piasecki left, and I don't know who's running it now, but it just seemed off.

They seem to be much more lenient on the dress code, too...

We ate there in September, and I thought the same thing. We've been going multiple times a year for the past 5 years or so. I had the filet. It was good, but not as good as any other time. The side items were some small hashbrown things and slices of cold tomato. It did not work well with the filet. The flatbread and ravioli were good, though. Overall it was just not on the level we are accustomed to there. Also the service seemed less attentive. On our last visit I honestly contemplated not going back.

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Were the small hash brown things Tater Tots?  Cause if they were I will make reservations there for our next trip 

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57 minutes ago, ftwildernessguy said:

Were the small hash brown things Tater Tots?  Cause if they were I will make reservations there for our next trip 

Or... just swing by our site around 10-11am.  

 

Because nothing says camping breakfast like bacon, eggs and tater tots.

#DontLeaveHomeWithoutEm

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We rarely eat dinner there. It’s usually appetizers, sushi, and drinks. 
the quality of those items seem to e the same. 
I’m sorry to hear the quality of the entrees has gone down. 
We like the seating area next to the bar. 

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1 hour ago, BradyBzLyn...Mo said:

Or... just swing by our site around 10-11am.  

 

Because nothing says camping breakfast like bacon, eggs and tater tots.

#DontLeaveHomeWithoutEm

Love tater tots for breakfast. Throw them in the toaster oven while I’m cooking the bacon. 
 

off subject, but don’t you think they need more places to get sushi?

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6 hours ago, ftwildernessguy said:

Were the small hash brown things Tater Tots?  Cause if they were I will make reservations there for our next trip 

Nope I love tots. These things were like long skinny tot/fries. They were ok but more suiting for a burger not a $50+ filet.

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6 hours ago, h2odivers...Ray said:

We rarely eat dinner there. It’s usually appetizers, sushi, and drinks. 
the quality of those items seem to e the same. 
I’m sorry to hear the quality of the entrees has gone down. 
We like the seating area next to the bar. 

We prefer the bar seating area as well. We try to get there early enough to get a good seat to watch the fireworks but late enough we don't go broke from libations while waiting. 

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15 hours ago, h2odivers...Ray said:

Love tater tots for breakfast. Throw them in the toaster oven while I’m cooking the bacon. 
 

off subject, but don’t you think they need more places to get sushi?

Pro Tip - if you have one nearby, try Trader Joe's tater tots.  IMO better than any of the big name brands and cheaper too.  

And I'm always in favor of more sushi. Cali Grill has a limited (albeit super delicious) sushi menu - although I think it's slid a bit since the original woman that basically built the sushi bar there retired. Kona has actually expanded their sushi menu recently, but it's still somewhat limited.  It's usually pretty good although I think it was better a few years back when their head sushi chef came from Cali Grill.

Tokyo Dining at Epcot is pretty decent but I wouldn't burn a park ticket for it.  Morimoto's and Kimono's  actually have "real" sushi - not just a bunch of fancy rolls but a full menu with sashimi, etc., but I have only been to each once so I don't have a lot of experience. (I need to work on that)

And then there's the dark horse in the race - and you're gonna think I'm nuts here (moreso than usual) - but Splitsville does decent sushi!  Yes folks, bowling alley sushi is good.  You heard it here.

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1 hour ago, BradyBzLyn...Mo said:

Pro Tip - if you have one nearby, try Trader Joe's tater tots.  IMO better than any of the big name brands and cheaper too.  

And I'm always in favor of more sushi. Cali Grill has a limited (albeit super delicious) sushi menu - although I think it's slid a bit since the original woman that basically built the sushi bar there retired. Kona has actually expanded their sushi menu recently, but it's still somewhat limited.  It's usually pretty good although I think it was better a few years back when their head sushi chef came from Cali Grill.

Tokyo Dining at Epcot is pretty decent but I wouldn't burn a park ticket for it.  Morimoto's and Kimono's  actually have "real" sushi - not just a bunch of fancy rolls but a full menu with sashimi, etc., but I have only been to each once so I don't have a lot of experience. (I need to work on that)

And then there's the dark horse in the race - and you're gonna think I'm nuts here (moreso than usual) - but Splitsville does decent sushi!  Yes folks, bowling alley sushi is good.  You heard it here.

Is that like gas station sushi?  :ROFLMAO-1:

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1 hour ago, Travisma said:

Is that like gas station sushi?  :ROFLMAO-1:

I strongly advise against gas station sushi (unless that gas station is in actual Japan).

However some of the best fried chicken I've ever had did come from a gas station in Jarratt Virginia!  

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4 hours ago, BradyBzLyn...Mo said:

Morimoto's and Kimono's  actually have "real" sushi - not just a bunch of fancy rolls but a full menu with sashimi, etc., but I have only been to each once so I don't have a lot of experience.

We have been to Morimoto's a couple of times and they seemed consistently good but we haven't been there in a while. One thing I really liked about Morimoto's besides the sushi/sashimi  is the Japanese/American fusions they come up with. It makes for a nice balance if you don't want just fish and rice.

 

1 hour ago, BradyBzLyn...Mo said:

However some of the best fried chicken I've ever had did come from a gas station in Jarratt Virginia!  

When we first moved here in the early 90's I was trying to find a decent deli. An Italian guy I worked with told me to go to a BP station which I thought was crazy. Turns out the owner had moved here from New York and decided the gas station would give him the most business. For a long time it was the only place in the area where you could buy good crusty breads. We eventually found a Kosher deli as well. Again it was some refugees from New York. Sadly neither are around anymore.

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3 hours ago, keith_h said:

When we first moved here in the early 90's I was trying to find a decent deli. An Italian guy I worked with told me to go to a BP station which I thought was crazy. Turns out the owner had moved here from New York and decided the gas station would give him the most business. For a long time it was the only place in the area where you could buy good crusty breads. We eventually found a Kosher deli as well. Again it was some refugees from New York. Sadly neither are around anymore.

You never know where some of the best places will turn up!

I stumbled on the gas station chicken totally by accident.  Road trip to the Fort, driving straight through from NH, needed a quick rest stop right off the highway around 5am and saw the sign.  While my driving companion was using the loo all I could smell was some crazygood chicken smells (good sign #1).  And there were already people lining up to get some fresh out of the fryer... at 5am (good sign #2).  And the capper - it was ridiculously cheap.  I think I got 3 thighs and a couple of biscuits for less than $5.

As far as I know it's still there.  If you're traveling along 95 in Jarratt VA and have a hankering for fried chicken, look for the Granny's sign.  It's an easy off/on. ...and the bathroom was clean too.  ;) 

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I like those dried up hot dogs on the roller thing at a really dirty gas station.  That there is some good eatin’

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17 hours ago, GaDawgFan.....Kelly said:

That makes me sad to hear because it's our favorite. I know the chef has changed. 

Artist Point was by far our favorite before it closed; Cali Grill was always great too but harder to get in to. It's definitely slipped a notch. Other than the view, IMHO it's not worth the cost. Go to Morimoto Asia for better sushi and Le Cellier or Don Shula's for better steaks....

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On 11/11/2019 at 12:47 PM, shoreline99 said:

Artist Point was by far our favorite before it closed; Cali Grill was always great too but harder to get in to. It's definitely slipped a notch. Other than the view, IMHO it's not worth the cost. Go to Morimoto Asia for better sushi and Le Cellier or Don Shula's for better steaks....

Artist Point was our favorite too. Wish it was still around.

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We had dinner at California Grill on October 25, and the sides to the filets were definitely not hashbrowns and tomatoes.  David had a big crock of mac and cheese (which he said was very good) and another small side of sauteed spinach and onions (he thought this was pretty good, but I thought it was delicious).  I don't eat mac and cheese, so I asked for green beans.  Both our meals were excellent.

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On 11/11/2019 at 12:47 PM, shoreline99 said:

Artist Point was by far our favorite before it closed; Cali Grill was always great too but harder to get in to. It's definitely slipped a notch. Other than the view, IMHO it's not worth the cost. Go to Morimoto Asia for better sushi and Le Cellier or Don Shula's for better steaks....

Going to disagree about Le Cellier. I’ve never been impressed. 

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11 hours ago, GaDawgFan.....Kelly said:

Going to disagree about Le Cellier. I’ve never been impressed. 

We were the very first time we went, I think it was 2006.  Been back twice since and not impressed either time - once the service was just awful. 

For steak our go to has been Yachtsmen but we haven't been in a few years now and haven't tried Shula's.

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