Jun 5, 2019

Key West Food and Fun

I recently had a couple incredible days in Key West, and lots of great food played a big part in that memorable trip.  Here are some highlights of my food laden adventure..

 Lazy Days Restaurant
79867 Overseas Hwy Islamorada
 Incredible views whether you dine inside or outside. 
The seafood here was excellent.

 Fresh fried Mahi Mahi

 a half pound of fresh shrimp just for me!

 Manhattan style Clam Chowder
Best I've ever eaten!  The fresh clams made all the difference in the world.

El Meson De Pepe Cuban Restaurant
410 Wall St. Key West

Everything we ate here was delicious. If you find yourself at El Meson De Pepe and are overwhelmed by the menu, I highly recommend ordering off the Tapas Menu.  You get huge portions, and a nice variety of traditional Cuban cuisine.

 You're not doing Key West correctly if you aren't eating lots of Cuban Bread! 

Southernmost Key Lime Shop
802 Duval St, Key West

 The best Key Lime Pie I've ever eaten was at this little pie shop on Duval St.

Ana's Cuban Cafe (formerly The Conch and the Cuban Cafe)
1330 Simonton St. Key West, FL 33040

This little cafe was right next door to our condo, and was right down the block
from the Southernmost point of the U.S.

After an eight hour drive from Orlando to Key West, a light meal of black beans and rice, fresh Cuban bread, Maduros, and Empanada, chased by some fresh Coconut water right from the Coconut, hit the spot and readied us for the next six hours of exploring the town.

The next morning, we started our day at Ana's.  As we sat on the patio, we could see the famous Southernmost point of the U.S. landmark right down the street, less than a block away.  It really was quite a surreal feeling sipping on Cafe' con Leche and eating fresh buttered Cuban Bread on a patio, pretty dang near as far south as you can travel in the U.S.  It really was the perfect way to start a day in Key West.

And finally.. there is no shortage of place to drink in Key West.  And while I drank my share of libations up and down Duval Street, I made dang well sure to stop at the 'Smallest Bar in Key West'.  Good times!

Going to Key West?
Here's a great guide to get you started! 

May 30, 2019

Little boy hijacks school recital to sing STAR WARS Imperial March Theme

When this happens, you know someone is winning at parenting..

The REAL KING... of the house

Cat owners know what I'm talking about..

May 29, 2019

The Cookie Crisp Mascot. Then and Now

Cookie Crisp Cereal.  What a sneaky way to get kids to eat their breakfast.  Not to mention an equally sneaky way to trigger me into late night snacking.

If there was ever a retro packaging resurrection I'd like to see.. Cookie Crisp would rank right up there at the top of my list.  I miss seeing Jarvis the Wizard turning kids drab and boring breakfast cereal into bite sized cookies.  There was even a vanilla flavored version that I loved equally as much as the chocolate chip Cookie Crisp back in the day.

I vividly remember the following Cookie Crisp Commercial from my youth.  It's from an era where cereal manufacturers used to actually try and compete for your business with clever marketing. They did this by catering directly to their main consumer, which were kids.

The Cookie Crook, Chip, and The Cookie Cop

The 'Cookie Crook' was introduced while Cookie Jarvis was still the Cereal's mascot. Quite suddenly however, Cookie Jarvis disappeared in 1985 and was replaced with the Cookie Crook who was always lurking around, hoping to score some Cookie Crisp.  Hot on his trail was 'Officer Crumb', a police officer looking to bust the Ne'er-do-well.

The storylines and skits that ensued, were in the style 'Keystone Cop' Comedy.  Further into the cereal's run, Cookie Crook gained a canine crook sidekick named 'Chip'.  The crook's plans to steal Cookie Crisp were usually foiled when Chip would get overly excited and uncontrollably start to howl "Coo-ooooooookie Crisp!"

Eventually in the late 90's, Officer Crumb and The Cookie Crook were dropped, and Chip became the sole mascot.  Rather than a thief, the commercials usually featured him giving kids cereal while howling "Coo-ooooooookie Crisp!".  Officer Crumb was present for a short while, but was now trying to take the cereal away from kids because it was unacceptable to eat cookies for breakfast.  Chip would somehow manage to foil Crumb's plans and save the day.  After Officer Crumb's disappearance, authority figures such as teachers, park rangers, little league umpires etc. would act as the antagonists, telling kids they couldn't have cookies for breakfast.

In 2006, Chip the dog was dropped altogether and replaced with 'Chip the Wolf', who succinctly pilfered Chip the Dog's catch phrase "Co-ooooookie Crisp".   He was a sneaky Wolf who would try to take kids Cookie Crisp cereal using gadgets etc he had created.  His plans were usually brought down by the same kids he was trying to steal from.  I personally can't remember seeing any new commercials featuring Chip the Wolf for close to ten years now, but he still graces the cereal boxes, and honestly looks like any other cartoon animal you would see on a multitude of generic brands of cereals out there.

I still buy Cookie Crisp on occasion, but apart from being able to eat an entire bowl of cookies (one of my favorite pastimes) the magic I remember as a kid is gone.  Breakfast cereals were a lot different when I was a boy.  The cereal companies employed animators to produce a constant slew of adventurous cartoons in commercial form.  They also commissioned toy companies to make the great in-box prizes and toys that so many of us remember from our youth.  In television commercials and comic books, cereal mascots took on a life all their own.

Thankfully.. companies are catching onto consumers fondness for the way things used to be, and there are more hopping on the retro packaging bandwagon everyday!  Hopefully General Mills will include Cookie Crisp into their ever changing limited edition lineup of throwback packaging.  Maybe they just need a little feedback to encourage them to do so?  Below is a link to bug err.. encourage General Mills to bring back Jarvis the Wizard.

NOTE: Type in 'Bring Back Cookie Jarvis',  hit enter, and then choose the 'SEND COMMENT' option.

Heck.. while I'm at their site putting in my monthly vote for a Jarvis revival, I may even ask them to bring back Vanilla flavored Cookie Crisp as well!

Epcot cuts me off from drinking..

I love visiting Club Cool at Disney's Epcot theme park.  I mean, c'mon.. FREE unlimited samples of soda from around the world on a 97 degree day?  Sign me up!

Now.. I'm in the minority of people who actually enjoy one of the sodas there known as 'Beverly', and I was on my third sample when I believe they decided to cut me off..

The hierarchy of Disney Annual Passes

Not all Disney Annual Passes are alike my friends!  Here's a meme to inform you.
#theMoreYouKnow ..

May 24, 2019

Hostess Cinnamon Sweet Rolls. A chance for a comeback?

So while I'm perpetually bummed out that Hostess discontinued their Cherry Sweet Rolls, Hostess falsely got my hopes up last week.  When I visited their website, it appeared as if they were still making their Cinnamon sweet rolls.  

This image and info pictured to the left, is currently listed on the Hostess product page.  It appears at some point, Hostess re-released the Cinnamon Sweet Roll!  Whatsmore.. they look exactly like the original version.  The only difference being an all new single serving size versus a full tray of rolls.

I took to the supermarkets and convenience stores looking high and low for these sweet rolls to no avail.  I then spent way too much time scouring the internet for stores and suppliers that I could order them from.

Finally, I emailed Hostess telling them how big of a fan I was of their Cinnamon Sweet Rolls and asked them where I could obtain them.  They wrote back apologizing that the Cinnamon Sweet Rolls have been discontinued.  However, they also stated that they would be passing along my email, as there have been a lot of customers requesting these sweet rolls as of late.  So there may be hope for the masses who sorely miss Hostess Sweet Rolls!

As I see it.. there's only one thing left to do.  Flood the Hostess inbox with email requests pleading for the return of Hostess Cinnamon and Cherry Sweet Rolls!  A direct link to the Hostess consumer response reps is listed below, so make your voice heard!