Lexington on the Road – Enjoying Remarkable Barbeque

This past week, Jim & I have had the incredible experience of helping our daughter and her family welcome a beautiful little baby girl into the world.

Leaving them was a rather tearful occasion as it will be months before we will see Colette Marie, her three year old brother Dash, and their Mom again.

The one thing that we knew might comfort us on the long journey home to Florida from Detroit was a stop-over in Lexington Kentucky and dinner at City Barbeque.

In fact, the last six or eight times that we have traveled through that part of the country, #CityBarbeque has been our dining destination of choice.

Their hand-rubbed smoked meats and deliciously prepared sides have been crafted by owner Rick Malir and his team since 1999.

The talented entrepreneur opened his first restaurant in Upper Arlington, Ohio. Coincidentaly, Jim and I married in that same town over 35 years ago.

Now we are as totally and completely in love with Ricks beef brisket, pulled pork, smoked sausage, mac & cheese, and collard greens as we are with one another. Well almost anyway. We are food fanatics after all.

8 made at the restaurant sauces. From ginger to spicy to bourbon and more (2 rows, no waiting)

In fact, if Ricks restaurant was in existence in 1981 we would have had them cater our wedding reception.  That is something that occurs frequently anywhere in which #CityBarbeque is located as catering is one of their fortes.

When we arrived at the #CityBarbeque location on Harrodsburg Road  at 9 p.m. last Thursday the manager on duty whose name is #Enrique greeted us with a warm and welcoming smile.

He assisted us in making the perfect dinner selection and helped to package everything as we were planning to opt for carryout and eat at our hotel. His caring & sincere attention to detail made us bigger fans than ever before.

This is obviously an organization that cares passionately about the product and its people as well as the community.  We have been impressed from the time of our very first visit at how streamlined, clean and organized the operation is. The decor leans toward a fun and casual vibe with just a hint of rustic flair. There are always updates on City Barbeque’s volunteer efforts in the surrounding neighborhoods too.

My only criticism is that they have not yet opened a Tampa Bay location. I am all for the idea of “City Barbeque at the Beach.”  I think vacationers would flock there in droves.


For a great training program for hospitality please visit our other site at http://www.Giveremarkableservice.com

One thing is for certain, we will always be loyal patrons when visiting our adorable grandchildren up north.

Patti Abate has a passion for food, wine, and anything that adds to the overall experience of dining. Become a #tampabaygivesremarkableservicesubscriber and read more great reviews of some of the most remarkable restaurants in Tampa Bay and beyond.

James Poling is Patti’s husband is co-creator of the blog and they team up to produce the hospitality training program featuring 10 modules on every facet of the restaurant business.  Take a look at what we have to offer at https://www.Giveremarkableservice.com


Detroit on the Road – Trendy & Remarkable Corktown Restaurant

On day two of our baby sojourn in Detroit, Michigan while running a few errands on behalf of our daughter, Jim and I stopped for an early Saturday afternoon lunch at Mudgie’s Deli in the Corktown area of Detroit.

This delightful little spot on Porter Street has been a favorite of our daughter Amalia for years and it now rates highly on our list as well.

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Mudgie’s can be described as a quaint Artisian Deli that also offers table service, catering, and carryout. Their high quality house-smoked meat sandwiches, homemade soups. craft beers, well balanced wine selection and classic cocktails make this a favorite full-service establishment for locals and visitors alike.

On this particular sub-zero visit we waited in our heated car outside of the historic red brick building that Mudgie’s calls its home. As we stayed toasty and warm, (we do live in Florida afterall), we watched a few other couples arriving prior to their 11 a.m. opening and waiting at the white gated garden trellis entry to be sure that they would be one of the first to secure a table.

Once we went inside every single staff member gave us a warm welcome as we made our way to a table for two close to the front entrance.

Our server Megan introduced herself in a timely manner and was one of the most pleasant and informative servers that we have experienced in a very long time. She was extremely patient with our long list of questions and never tired of sharing friendly conversation.

(If you wish to be a server restaurant patrons talk about like Megan try our Hospitality Training Program from Give Remarkable Service by clicking below)


To us, a true sign of a very successful restaurant is how happy and engaged their staff appears to be. At Mudgie’s Deli it is obvious that everyone there loves their job.

After reviewing the fantastic variety of deli sandwich offerings, Jim decided on a classic Grilled Cheese and a cup of the homemade Tomato Soup. I ordered their famous “Mudgie” which included beef brisket, roasted turkey breast, house made vegetable cream cheese, romaine lettuce and caramelized onions with Kream Mustard from Brownswood Farms served on a toasty warm onion roll.

Next time in Jim and I plan to indulge in one of their many craft beers. If we weren’t on grandparent duty later that day we would have definitely ordered the Super Trooper Brown English Ale from Petrosky, Michigan.

I would also be very tempted to end with the Fudgie Mudgie or Sweet Ruth Warm Bread Pudding.

We aren’t planning another trip to the frozen tundra for several months, but when we return in late spring or early summer we are excited about ordering a build your own salad with locally grown fresh produce and delightfully chosen toppings.

One thing is for sure, we will be returning to Mudgie’s Deli again and again when we visit our adorable grandchildren.

Patti has chosen to take advantage of her journalism background by writing about what she loves. That includes all sorts of foods, wines and beers. She is also appreciative of great, actually remarkable, servers, bartenders, owners and managers. This is a business and hospitality is not for everyone. But for those who love it they can enjoy a long and lucrative career.

Along with co-creator Jim Poling, they have turned their passion of serving into a hospitality training program named Give Remarkable Service. You can find out more about it by clicking the link above.

Detroit on the Road – Remarkable Pizza With Heart

When our daughter Amalia moved back to Detroit from our paradise like home on the west coast of Florida, my husband and I literally said, “Why in the world would you want to do that?”

Her reply was that she missed her artist and musician friends. We assured her that St. Pete is known as “The City of the Arts” and that it would be crazy to leave.

This past week we ourselves have returned to Detroit, (the city we left nearly ten years ago), for the birth of our third grandchild. Baby Colette was born on January 3rd in temps that were equivalent to 20 degrees below zero considering the wind chill factor.

After experiencing some of Amalia’s favorite spots for great food we have to admit that the climate is ridiculously frigid, but perhaps one good reason to live in Detroit is the remarkable variety of restaurant options.

(Hospitality training available with subscription sign up).

With many ethnic origins being represented in the cooking of people who’s culture drives their passion for food, Detroit may be one of the most colorful and diverse cities in America for dining in or out.

On the first night that Amalia and the baby came home from the hospital we ordered pizza from Slices in downtown Detroit located on Woodward Avenue. The owner of this wonderful little establishment is literally known as “Pizza Joe.”  He is aptly named as it is evident when you take your first bite of his Butter Parmesan crust that he has complete devotion to creating some the best pizza around.

We also ordered a veggie calzone that was one of the best I’ve tasted to date and Joe’s Greek Salad was served with ample amounts of Feta Cheese and black olives and what seemed to be a house made fresh dressing.

What was most endearing of all was the handwritten message that we received on the inside lid

of the box that offered congratulations for the new arrival to our family.

It may have only taken a moment for one of Joe’s well trained and caring staff to write such a supportive message, but it made us lifetime fans of his remarkable Detroit style pizza.



Patti and her husband Jim travel and when they do they love to appreciate the offerings of other cities in relation to food, wine, beers, and remarkable service provided by servers, bartenders, owners, & managers. We have over forty years of hospitality experience to share what we see, eat, and hear from noteworthy customers and fans. Please sign up for our blog subscription and keep us in the loop with comments you would like to make.

Continue reading “Detroit on the Road – Remarkable Pizza With Heart”

Why We Recommend Our Affiliates

As we prepare for the next blog we wanted to harp on a couple of great choices of affiliates we added to our site.

Amazon is of course one of the premier shopping sites on line where you can get virtually anything and that is what we are promoting. In the restaurant industry, or for cooking items such as pots, pans & knives, or corkscrews and wine decanters one can make that purchase through Amazon and we request that you do that through our site if you don’t mind.

Dinnerware, glassware, or anything that can be utilized to eat food or drink wine or serve food or wine can be found on Amazon.

Now, of course Target is the shopping store of choice for many younger people we have talked with. We can appreciate the upscale look of their stores. They’re fun and Target is easy to order from either on line or by making a local trip to the store itself.

We feature a company we love because of the ease of using it to connect us to WordPress and that is Bluehost. We didn’t know how easy it would be to work with this company to connect our domain and then as we said to WordPress to generate our blog.

We love Bluehost and it is inexpensive like only $3 to $5 a month. 

Add this to WordPress and you have a great base for a great blog OR store OR training site like we offer on http://www.giveremarkableservice.com. 

This is where we offer hospitality training site. 

Please subscribe to our site on the right side near the bottom of the blog and we will share our info as we complete it.

Jim and Patti are hospitality professionals with over forty years of experience and we have a passion for this industry. We love food and wine and restaurants, but we really love great service so we offer a training site as well. Check out our training site at http://www.giveremarkableservice.com

Blog Coming This Week from Detroit

We knew we wanted to develop a blog for restaurants for the Tampa Bay area of Florida. However, with the event of the new year for us we headed to Detroit, Michigan for #Colette, the little gentle grand daughter born to our

oldest daughter right in Detroit, Michigan. Thank you to #DetroitHarperHetzelHospital,  #DMC of Detroit  and all of the gracious nurses we encountered and we are grateful to all of them #ThankyouDMCnurses.

This is from our site that includes the addition Tampa Bay &

Beyond. http://www.tbgrs.com

Okay, so what’s coming up from our trip? #Mudgie’s, #Slo’s, #P


izzaSlices will be on the agenda for different reasons, but all are great reasons.

We can’t wait to finish the blog. But, first we have to spend a little more time with the babe. Thanks all. #giveremarkableservice.

Meanwhile, check out our training site where we are still offering a free 10 module training program. Free! Come on and get it while the baby is young. See you in a day or so.

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