Paul: 4 out of 5 Stars (9 August 2015)
Sam: 4 1/2 out of 5 Stars (9 August 2015)
*Parental Note: This review was dictated to dad and transcribed with 100% accuracy.
Paul: There’s this new shopping center across the street from the Publix on the East-West Connector in Smyrna. The main store there is Sprout’s Farmers Market. But, next to it they opened an Uncle Maddio’s Pizza Joint, an AT&T Wireless store, one of those nail places, and a Mattress Firm.
After church on Sunday night, we went to Uncle Maddio’s Pizza Joint for dinner. When we got there, the owner asked us if we had ever been there before. We answered, “No.” He told us that it was like a Moe’s, Willy’s or Subway - but for pizza!
So, basically, how it works is they have personal pizzas and you can pick your dough, your sauce, your cheese, and three toppings. This is called the “Build Your Own” in case you were wondering. They also have specialty pizzas that are made with pre-decided ingredients. They also have salads and toasted paninis.
After they make your pizza fresh in front you, they put it in a conveyer oven. It takes around five to ten minutes.
I ordered the traditional crust, tomato basil sauce, mozzarella cheese, pineapple, red onions, and bacon. The pizza was good because the ratio of sauce to cheese to toppings was great. If you go to some pizza restaurants that aren't the best, they have lot of cheese and barely any sauce on the pizza. But not at Uncle Maddios! Another reason why I like the pizza here is the crust. It is very light and airy. So, you can eat your entire 9” personal pizza without getting stuffed. The cooking time was spot-on. It wasn’t burned and it wasn’t under-cooked. It was just right. WARNING: The bacon is very salty!
For dessert, they have MASSIVE cookies. We ordered chocolate chip. You have option to put your cookies on the pizza conveyer belt to heat them up. I recommend it that way. I wouldn’t exactly call it a cookie. I’d call it a “mini-cake”! It was good. Not amazing. But, really good.
Uncle Maddio's is awesome!
Sam: I ordered the BBQ Chicken Pizza on traditional crust with no onions. It was great - no..wait…it was OUTSTANDING! What I mean by “outstanding” is outstanding with no bacon. I mean, it comes with bacon, but you should order it without. The reason why should leave off the bacon is because it’s overpowering…or whatever that word is.
There were lots of posters on the walls. Surprisingly, there was only one poster that had a pizza on it. The poster above our booth looked like it was a picture of Italy because they are famous for good pizzas. They actually are. I read that in a book.
Oh, yeah, let’s go back to Paul’s review of Uncle Maddio’s…. Don’t listen to Paul about those cookies! I didn’t think they were THAT big. They were good, though. Even though it was chocolate chip, it tasted a little like homemade sugar cookies right out of the oven.
Uncle Maddio’s was clean. But, I expected it to be clean because it was a new place and a lot of times stores and restaurants are clean when they are new.
And now….dun dun.... DUNNNNNN!!! It's time for my patented bathroom review! The bathrooms were based on modern stuff. The cabinets were modern. The lights were modern. Pretty much everything in the bathroom was modern. Like I said before, the place was new - so it was clean.
Thanks for reading the bathroom review and our restaurant review! I hope you read us again!
*Parental note: You can read more about Uncle Maddio's here.
Sam: 4 3/4 out of 5 Stars (May 16th, 2015)
Paul: 4 1/2 out of 5 Stars (May 16th, 2015)
Paul: Today, we went to The Crafty Hog. The owner's daughter is in Sam's grade at St. Benedict's.**
Well... Anyway... When we got there, for a second, it felt like we were at the beach. It had four horseshoe pitches, two bocce courts, and a sand pit for little kids to play in. It also had an outdoor bar and TV. When we got inside, it felt like a beach house. There had to be like 20 TVs! On each TV, they had a different sport.
Our server was very nice. I got a pulled pork sandwich. I also go this great BBQ sauce (Deep South). It was amazing! It was sweet and spicy goodness and the pork melted in your mouth.
Then, my dad got a beer and we played bocce. Dad beat me and Sam by one point. The court was very clean and kept up well. I can't wait to go back!
Sam: The Crafty Hog is awwwww-some! I got two side dishes for my meal. I got the Smoked Gouda Mac and Cheese and Pork & Baked Beans. I loved them! I really loved the cheesiness of the mac and cheese. The baked beans were kind of sweet and I like that!
Now for Sam's patented bathroom review: There was a beer sign in the bathroom (by the way, I'm talking about the boys' bathroom). For the sink they used a bucket and added a drain. So, they recycled the bucket. The bathroom was clean.
** Correction. Dad came to find out hat she's actually in the 2nd grade at St. B's.
3 1/4 out of 5 Stars (January 2015)
Paul: Hello, guys! It’s been a while since our last review. (Six months!) Today, we are reviewing the the Panera Bread in Smyrna. We’ve been here about two or three times in the last few weeks, so this will be an overall review.
Two things that I enjoyed most were their Mac and Cheese and their Creamy Tomato Soup. They were really good. The Creamy Tomato Soup was really rich and creamy. It was very tasty. The Mac and Cheese was amazing. It had a tons of cheese and the pasta was tender.
The service was just OK. The first time we went, the guy who took our order didn’t seem to care about anything. But, we got the same guy the next time and he was a lot nicer. (Sam said that he "stepped it up".)
The decor was really nice. The first time we went, it wasn’t all that clean. But, the second time it was very clean. A shout-out to all you people who like booths: They have plenty of them!
It is a great alternative to Atlanta Bread.
Sam: I got the Turkey Chili Bread Bowl. It was good. Inside of it was red peppers, black beans, turkey, corn, and other stuff. It was spicy. The bread bowl was good.
You should see how big their cookies are! The chocolate chip, short bread, and vanilla cookies were like this big. (I am making a big circle with my hands.) I didn’t want to split the cookie with my brother, but my dad made me.
Sam’s Patented Bathroom Review: The bathroom had fancy lights. The second and third time I was there, it was clean.
4.5 out of 5 Stars (March 1st, 2014)
Paul: We’re back! It’s been a while since our last review….and also please donate money to our Jump Rope for Heart campaign for the American Heart Association.
On March 1st, we went to El Sol Mexican Bar and Grill. The reason why is that Sam wanted to go to Twisted Taco for dinner. We all agreed. But, when we arrived there, we saw a sign that said, “For lease.” That meant that it was closed, so we had to figure out another restaurant to go to. The whole family agreed that we all had a hankerin’ for some Tex-Mex. So, dad asked Siri, “What are the Tex-Mex restaurants in Smyrna?” The first thing that came up was El Sol. Mom said that the Davis family (Grant’s family) likes it a lot. So, we decided to go.
When we got there, it looked very small from the outside. But, when we got in, it was a lot bigger than we expected - but, it was still pretty small. We sat down and there was College Basketball on the TV screens (which was cool). We decided to look at the menu very closely, since we had never been there before.
As usual with Tex-Mex restaurants, we got free chips and salsa and we ordered queso dip. That’s what we always do when we go to Mexican or Tex-Mex restaurants. It was really good, actually. The chips were not too salty, but they still had some salt which brought out the flavor. They queso wa really creamy and rich and had a very good “cheesey” taste. Dad got jalepenos on the side, which he always likes.
I got the the Burrito Deluxe. I ordered beans in mine because you have to choose what you want. I would recommend getting the beans because it was outstanding in the middle of the burrito when you got to it. It was awesome.
When we first got in there, I was not too crazy about the decor. But, once we got the food and we actually got to look around completely, it was actually quite neat. They have a pretty tall ceiling. They hang signs from it. Like one said, “Dos Equis”. It had a big beer bottle near the bar. It was a float on the cieling.
The service was pretty good. The server was nice. She got our food to us in a decent amount of time. I recommend this restaurant if you are looking for good Tex-Mex in the heart of Smyrna.
Sam: When you walk in there, there was a sign that said, “Stay thirsty my friends.” I had the Cheese Quesadilla. I liked it. I got the Fried Ice Cream for dessert. I really liked it. I think Paul’s dessert was good, too. He go the Churros with ice cream.
If you are looking for Tex-Mex restaurant, you should pick this.
5 out of 5 Stars (October 13th, 2013)
Paul: We went to Siracusa’s for our Sunday meal after church. We got there and our waitress hooked us up with a great appetizer. We ordered the Zucchini Fritti. If you are wondering what that is, let me tell you. Zucchini Fritti is zucchini that is sliced into very thin circles. They kind of look like potato chips...but don’t let that fool you! It is actually zucchini. They were lightly battered and fried. They were served with marinara sauce for dipping. They were unbelievably delicious! Unlike other places, the zucchini was only lightly battered. They were seasoned perfectly and cooked very well. The waitress told us that they were “cooked to order”. My dad told me that means they are very fresh!
For our main course, my dad and I split a four-slice pizza. It was the Eggplant Pizza, which is their specialty. It was fantastically awesome! It was kind of like Eggplant Parmesan...but on pizza! It had eggplant, ricotta, marinara sauce, and mozzarella. I did not eat the crust. (I don’t like the crust on pizzas.) I know it was good, though - because my dad stole them off my plate! Really, if I liked crust, it would be magnificent!
For dessert, we had cannolis. It was good that they did not have pistachios in them, because I brother is allergic to nuts. Instead of pistachios, they put chocolate chips - which my brother likes. Sam really liked the cannolis! I loved them, too.
The decor is cool because they had three TVs and they have DirceTV’s NFL Sunday Ticket. They have a poster of a special kind of Italian wine that we have in a frame at our house! All of the posters are pretty awesome. They had a really cool bar and the tables in the back are neat because you get to see a lot of cool posters and if was a hot day, it would be good because you are right under the air conditioning.
They have a Bocce court outside. Bocce is a popular game from Italy. It is kind of like a combination of bowling and horseshoes. My family plays it a lot at my papa’s house in Hiawassee, Georgia. He has a real Bocce court, too! My dad had a bocce court in his backyard when he was a boy. Papa built it with his dad.
Siracusa’s is a small restaurant but very worth going to! The food is awesome and it is a really cool place!
Sam: The cannoli was so good. I really liked it! The bathrooms are in the back of the restaurant, if you don’t know.
Ivy Walk in Vinings | 1675 Cumberland Pkwy | Ivy Walk Unit #415 | Smyrna, GA 30080
We reviewed this place back in June, based on multiple visits. So, this is not a review. But, our parents didn't take pictures before and we went there for dinner again tonight. We got the BBQ Chicken Pizza. It was AWESOME!
3 out of 5 stars (Various visits, latest on 6/22/13)
PAUL: The service here has improved a lot lately. People don't believe that Twisted Taco is good; but, now with improved service, I think you should give it one more try.
The last three times we went, the service was good and food was excellent. On Saturday, I got the Big Jake Burrito - but, - NOT "twisted", which is when they put cheese sauce on top. It had EVERYTHING like...so...onions to beans to beef to lettuce and all that good stuff.
The service was a lot faster...we got our food in like two seconds! The waiter came back on a regular basis to check on us. The service used to be horrific because it took like two hours to get our food and they would like never come back to check on us. One time my dad's food was even cold!
Every time we go, there is hardly any people there because they must have said, "Uh..this place has bad service." - and then never tried to come back. So, they haven't seen that the service has gotten better.
I think I think you should give it one more chance
SAM: I like the TVs in the booth! Sometimes we watch baseball. I really like the food and I like the chicken quesadilla with rice and beans. You should ask them for a spoon and try to remind them because sometimes they forget.
FIVE OUT OF FIVE STARS (June 15th, 2013)
Paul: We took my dad to Taverna Fiorentina for a Fathers Day dinner on Saturday night (instead of Sunday, so it wouldn’t be so crowded).
The decor was very dark. It was cool because it had a bar and two dining rooms. They had wine bottles on the wall. The two rooms were separated by a curtain and steps. It was an open kitchen so you could see what different people were ordering when the waiters took it out. The only kids were Sam and me.
We got two appetizers for our table. We got the eggplant parmesan and the caprese. (I love caprese!) The caprese was stacked like a tower. I said it was the “Leaning Tower of Caprese” because it slightly leaned. The mozzarella on the caprese was awesome! The eggplant came out super-hot, but it cooled down pretty quick. I loved it.
I ordered the Gnocchi di Ricotta. It was very good! It had gnocchi, shrimp, zucchini, and cherry tomatoes. The zucchini was fresh and tasty. The shrimp was very big and tender. The gnocchi was light for a gnocchi, which is normally pretty heavy. I loved it! I would recommend getting it; although, there are many other great options on the menu. (And don’t forget to look at the specials, because they are very tasty. My dad got the special lamb and said it was awesome.)
The server’s name was “Joe”, which is my dad’s name! He gave really good recommendations. He told my dad a really good wine to get with his lamb. There was a bar code on the wine bottle and he let my dad scan it with his iPhone. It told him where he could buy it in the future. He came back on a regular basis to check on us and see if we were OK. Joe was great.
I almost forgot about dessert. Me, Sam, and mom got the chocolate mousse. It was creamy and very thick. I liked it. It was very good.
I recommend this restaurant.
Sam: I really liked my spaghetti and meatballs. I almost had my whole thing but I didn’t because it was too much. I wanted to have it for leftovers because it was really good and I wanted it again. I really liked the bread. I liked my chocolate mousse dessert, too.
Click on the pictures for a bigger view.
Three out of Five Stars (Various visits)
Paul: Overall, the food is really good. They have a pretty new menu. It has a lot of good choices. I like the soup in the bread bowl. They have different soups depending on what day you go. My favorite soup is the Organic Butternut Squash. If they don’t have that when I am there, I like to get Corn Chowder. Only problem is, sometimes, if you go at dinner, they run out of bread bowls. I also really like the Pesto Chicken Panini.
They have good bakery and you can choose from a lot of yummy desserts. I normally like to get the chocolate toffee cookie. The cookies are huge. For drinks, they have one of those machines where you can choose pretty much any Coke product. My mom does not let me drink sodas or juices that often...like hardly ever. But, here, if I am lucky, I can get Dasani fizzy flavored water!
It is a very convenient location near my school and not too far from my baseball fields. Inside, it needs a better cleaner. It does not have the best service and it is not too clean. (And, like I said before, sometimes they run out of stuff.)
It’s a pretty nice restaurant.
Sam: I like Atlanta Bread. I like the Tomato Basil Soup without cheese. Sometime they don’t have it, but the days they don’t have it they have the Butternut Squash. And I like the chocolate chip cookie. It is really good!
Ivy Walk in Vinings | 1675 Cumberland Pkwy | Ivy Walk Unit #415 | Smyrna, GA 30080
4 1/2 out of 5 Stars (Multiple Visits)
Paul: I like to order the Chicken Sausage Pizza. It has sausage made from chicken. It also has tomato sauce, mushrooms, mozzarella cheese, and fontina cheese. All the flavors burst into your mouth! It is really filling, but light at the same time. I would recommend it, although Little Azio's has a lot of other good choices. My mom likes to order the Hummus Wrap. She says it is a healthier option.
The decor is just alright. Not the worst in the world. Most of the time, it is very clean. You can choose between sitting outside or inside. It can sometimes be cold in the restaurant, but that is a good thing during the summer. The booths are HUGE! I've seen eight people stuffed in one booth before! They have two TVs that are always on sports, which I like.
Sam. I usually get the kids' Cheese Pizza. I like it a lot. It is why I get excited when we go there.