|This is us at the end of every American holiday. Taco Bell 4 lyfe.|
Our must-eats in Boise are mostly chain restaurants, as our lovely photographer pointed out, and not so much cute little cafes and Boise locals, so I guess this list could be called 'What to Eat in the USA' to some extent, but the reason for this is that we don't live in the USA - so Boise is our only chance to dine at these nationwide establishments! So bear with us here please!
One of the places we never miss in a trip to Boise is the Mongolian Barbecue. It's not like anything we have here in London (as far as we know, and we have done the research). It's a make-your-own-noodles style eatery, with a long bar of vegetables, meats, sauces, and noodles, which you shove into your bowl, and it is then cooked on a giant circular grill by one of the staff. The best part of it is that as long as it fits under 4 inches from the top of your bowl, you are only charged the price for that bowl (you can take what you don't eat away!). So people get really serious, there is a whole system - pack the meat in first, then veggies in the cracks, then noodles pile on top (as they hold their shape pretty well) - you can even bring a second bowl for your sauces for no charge. Mongolian is a haven for students and those on a budget, because its absolutely delicious, and you pretty much get two meals for the price of one. Laura's family are actually known there by the waitress, who has been serving there for 8 years, and we've never once left without someone getting sauce on their shirt.
Sarah's favourite place to visit in Boise is Chuck-a-Rama. It's a buffet, but not as you'd know it - it's all quality, delicious, restaurant-made food. As a teen, this place was Laura's worst nightmare (I mean, the name, for one - chuck? As in puke?) but since moving away she's come around to the awesome comfort food, hilariously 'Idaho' clientele and low prices. It caters very well to those with large numbers of kids or large appetites... and in Idaho we have lots of both!
|Loving the chuck since 2009|
We always go to Blue Sky Bagel when we are home - they sell the most delicious bagels around! This is the first 'Boise local' on our list. Laura has been getting the same bagel since high school - Asiago cheese bagel with sun-dried tomato cream cheese. Perfection in a bagel. This last time, Laura forgot that Sarah might not have been ordering the same bagel since high school (oops) and so didn't give her adequate time to think about all the choices, so she randomly ended up with a Parmesan bagel with plain cream cheese, ham, and...an egg. But it was all good in the end, it tasted delicious! We also got a dessert bagel to share - cinnamon sugar with berry cream cheese! Just fantastic.
We've never visited Applebee's much in our lifetimes, but that changed as of last week, when Laura's brother introduced us to what is possibly the best dish we've ever eaten - the 4 cheese mac and cheese with honey pepper chicken tenders.
Here, we'll give you a look at it.
|Dry your tears, food lover.|
The mac n' cheese connoisseurs we are, we absolutely adored this dish, and would consider paying to fly to our nearest Applebee's location just for the pleasure of eating it again. I don't remember what the rest of our group ate that night, but they were also delicious. We are officially SOLD on Applebee's!
Laura worked at the Old Spaghetti Factory in Boise when it first opened up, and likes to eat there whenever we go back. Because is there anything better than great pasta? We ordered toasted cheese ravioli bites for a starter, which are absolutely delicious and you should never miss them, and then Sarah was highly inappropriate with her Meat Lover's platter.
'Excuse me sir, I'm offended by the shape my meat has taken.'
Speaking of factories, which seem to be popping up everywhere in the restaurant world, we visited the Cheesecake Factory as well while we were home. We shared appetizers with L's parents, which were delicious (mini corndogs, anyone?) but the real star was, of course, the cheesecake. More specifically, red velvet cheesecake. As big as Sarah's head. And almost as beautiful. Almost.
In case this isn't enough for your big trip, we have a few more for ya - do you see now why we plan out our meals on these trips?
|Really, the only reason a road should ever be closed - bacon.|
IHOP - as cringeworthy as it can be, can you really pass up an opportunity while in America to have pancakes, at any time of day? 24 hours!! How about red velvet pancakes, or cinnamon sugar?
We visited twice, the second on Agent Smiffy's birthday, where he had the pleasure of being sung to by the employees, and given ice cream, at 10am. Anything goes at IHOP!
Fanci Freez - the premier drive through milkshake joint in downtown Boise. Literally anything can go into these shakes. L had butterscotch and marshmallow. They are so thick you have to wait for them to melt a bit before drinking, and probably they wouldn't spill if you carried them upside down.
Last but not least, Blue Cow Frozen Yoghurt. Open until 11pm (cuz that's always when we want ice cream), they have a dozen flavours and countless toppings, which you can pile on as much as you want, because you are charged by the weight (we're fans of lots of lightweight marshmallows). And each day they have a goal weight, that if your ice cream weighs that amount, you get it completely free of charge! It's the best.
Have we made you hungry? We've definitely already started planning meals for our next trip - we'll still look good in our wedding dresses if we pile on 10 pounds in the week leading up to the big day, right?