Russell’s on Lake Ivanhoe

Bar
Bar
Interior
Interior
Exterior
Exterior
Breakfast club
Breakfast club
Vietnamese spring roll and shrimp salad
Vietnamese spring roll and shrimp salad

*** (3 stars)

I wanted to like this place more because of its lovely setting on the lake, but everything about it was pretty mediocre, from the so-so cocktails to most of the brunch food. The charcuterie plate was the best thing we had, particularly after we asked for the surprisingly absent mustard. The Vietnamese Spring Rolls and Shrimp Salad would have embarrassed the Vietnamese restaurants in town, with the bland vermicelli-like stuffing in the rolls and the mostly undressed greens. The Breakfast Club sandwich was essentially avocado toast with club sandwich ingredients and an egg inside, but it was surprisingly flavorless, with the ingredients fighting with one another and the "secret" sauce keeping its secrets to itself. We probably won't be in a hurry to return.

Russell’s on Lake Ivanhoe
1414 N Orange Ave
Orlando, FL 32804

https://www.yelp.com/biz/russells-on-lake-ivanhoe-orlando-2

Reel Bowls

Interior
Interior

***** (5 stars)

This place makes excellent poke bowls with really fresh ingredients, and their online ordering is terrific. Just a few clicks and you can customize your bowl just the way you want. I had:

*Build Your Own Bowl
Choose Your Protein: *1/2 Ahi Tuna, 1/2 Salmon (sushi grade/raw)
Choose Your Base (up to 2): Spring Mix
Choose Your Toppings (up to 4): Pickled Ginger,Edamame,Cucumbers,Crab Salad
Choose Your Dressing (up to 2): Cucumber Wasabi,Garlic Teriyaki
Choose Your Crunch Toppings (up to 2): No Crunch Toppings

It was great!

Reel Bowls
13211 Reams Rd
Windermere, FL 34786

https://www.yelp.com/biz/reel-bowls-windermere

A Brasileira Bar & Grill

Exterior
Exterior

**** (4 stars)

This is in the large space that used to be Crafted, a sports bar with a giant central bar and very spacious patio seating.

The space is largely unchanged, but now the menu is Brazilian. There are a few lunch-priced items on the menu, but I really wanted to try the Moquequinha Capixaba de Camarao, even though it was $25. I must say that it was worth it. The metal bowl was served literally boiling hot, and was filled with shrimp–probably close to a pound, I would guess.

My companions also liked their food: a veggie burger, and a sandwich.

Service was pleasant. The kitchen is not terribly speedy, even though there weren't many lunch customers, so don't go in a hurry.

A Brasileira Bar & Grill
2417 S Hiawassee Rd
Orlando, FL 32835

https://www.yelp.com/biz/a-brasileira-bar-and-grill-orlando

BLT’s – Breakfast, Lunch and Tacos

Interior
Interior
Exterior
Exterior
Sunrise taco
Sunrise taco
Ham and Green Chile Scramble
Ham and Green Chile Scramble
Pancake (1)
Pancake (1)
pancake (minus a few delicious bites!)
pancake (minus a few delicious bites!)
Breakfast taco
Breakfast taco
Exterior
Exterior
Cheese and pepper scramble
Cheese and pepper scramble
Interior
Interior

***** (5 stars)

This spacious restaurant is doing a great job with breakfast. I really liked by Breakfast tac, which was essentially an open fast breakfast burrito. Nice crispy bacon and a delicious smoke salsa to accompany it.

The pancake side was also excellent, with a slightly crisp edge, and ample maple syrup and butter.

You order at a counter and they bring the food to the table.

A big, airy place with friendly service.

BLT’s – Breakfast, Lunch and Tacos
626 N 6th St
St. Louis, MO 63101

https://www.yelp.com/biz/blts-breakfast-lunch-and-tacos-st-louis

St. James Winery

Tasting bar
Tasting bar
Awards
Awards

**** (4 stars)

Excellent producer of both sweet and dry wines from Missouri. It's a challenging place to make dry wines, so their efforts are particularly noteworthy.

The tasting bar offer the opportunity to try any five of their vast selection for a mere five dollars.

My favorites are their Chambourcin and Norton, but if you like something with a touch of sweetness, the Pink Catawba and Concord are the way to go.

St. James Winery
540 State Rt B
Saint James, MO 65559

https://www.yelp.com/biz/st-james-winery-saint-james

Uranus Missouri

Exterior
Exterior
Funky yard food
Funky yard food
Sign
Sign
World's largest belt buckle
World's largest belt buckle
Funky yard
Funky yard
Sign
Sign
Good food
Good food
Almost moving animatronics!
Almost moving animatronics!
Fudge and gifts
Fudge and gifts
World's largest belt buckle
World's largest belt buckle
This way in
This way in

***** (5 stars)

This place is hilarious! It's all just one huge joke at the level of thirteen year old humor, and it's wonderful. The fact that every employee is so engaging and in on the joke makes it all the more fun. There's good stuff to eat, funny photo opportunities, a large gift shop, children's play area, and of course the opportunity to bring friends gifts that have passed through Uranus!

Uranus Missouri
14400 Hwy Z
Saint Robert, MO 65584

https://www.yelp.com/biz/uranus-missouri-saint-robert

Uranus Fudge Factory and General Store

The best fudge comes from Uranus.
The best fudge comes from Uranus.

***** (5 stars)

This place is hilarious! It's all just one huge joke at the level of thirteen year old humor, and it's wonderful. The fact that every employee is so engaging and in on the joke makes it all the more fun. There's good stuff to eat, funny photo opportunities, a large gift shop, children's play area, and of course the opportunity to bring friends gifts that have passed through Uranus!

Uranus Fudge Factory and General Store
14400 Highway Z
Saint Robert, MO 65584

https://www.yelp.com/biz/uranus-fudge-factory-and-general-store-saint-robert-2

Silver Dollar City

Mystic River Falls
Mystic River Falls
Jail
Jail
Entry
Entry
The Flooded Mine
The Flooded Mine
The Flooded Mine
The Flooded Mine
The Flooded Mine
The Flooded Mine
water wheel
water wheel
Mystic River Falls
Mystic River Falls
swinging bridge
swinging bridge

***** (5 stars)

Beautiful park, with great theming and landscaping. Lines are long for popular attractions. We waited 2-1/2 hours for Mystic River Falls, and others waited much longer. That said, it was a great ride.

The Flooded Mine is a good ride with a shorter wait.

The food was less than stellar, although the cinnamon rolls were good.

Silver Dollar City
399 Silver Dollar City Pkwy
Branson, MO 65616

https://www.yelp.com/biz/silver-dollar-city-branson

El Lago

Enchiladas Rancheras
Enchiladas Rancheras
Quesadilla, relleno, tamale
Quesadilla, relleno, tamale
Interior
Interior
Margaritas!
Margaritas!
Cheese nachos
Cheese nachos

***** (5 stars)

I'm pretty sure this is the best restaurant in the Branson area. It's certainly the best Mexican restaurant. There's an extensive menu of both authentic Mexican and Tex Mex food. The margaritas are great. The nachos and guacamole are great. And the service and kitchen are lightning fast, even during rush times.

I'm originally from Southern California, so my expectations for Mexican food are pretty high, and this far surpassed what I was expecting to find in Branson. Well done!

El Lago
18942 MO-BUS13
Branson West, MO 65737

https://www.yelp.com/biz/el-lago-branson-west

Sultana Disaster Museum

***** (5 stars)

This is a terrific museum dedicated to a disaster that has largely been forgotten, lost in the aftermath of the Civil War. There is a great introductory film, and then several rooms of artifacts and interpretive material about this event, the largest maritime loss of life in American history. The passionate and deeply knowledgeable guide made our visit very special.

Highly recommended.

Sultana Disaster Museum
104 Washington Ave
Marion, AR 72364

https://www.yelp.com/biz/sultana-disaster-museum-marion