Virgil’s Gullah Kitchen and Bar Review

Hey students, it’s your favorite teacher, Adriena, here in Downtown College Park, Georgia at Virgil’s Gullah Kitchen and Bar. Today I’m trying some “Geechee” inspired small plates! Click the link for more goodness 🙂

Hey students, it’s your favorite teacher, Adriena, here in Downtown College Park, Georgia at Virgil’s Gullah Kitchen and Bar. Today, I’m trying some “Geechee” inspired small plates!

Classroom: Virgil’s Gullah Kitchen & Bar

3721 Main St, College Park, GA 30337 (Link to Google Map)

⭐The Lesson Plan [Full Review of Experience]

⭐Materials Needed:

1. Patience: Very small restaurant causing long waits.

2. Hand Fan: The air was not working.

3. Comfortable Shoes: You may have to walk some blocks depending on where you find a space to park.

4. Guest: With a guest, you can choose multiple plates to share, which is much better.

⭐Observation: [The Best of the Day]

The “Get Tight Up” Cocktail at Virgil’s Gullah Kitchen

Opening (Appetizers)

-I had a cocktail called “Get Tight Up” that contained pureed fruit with vodka, gin, rum, whiskey, triple sec, fruit liqueur, and sour. The drink is available in peach, blackberry, or strawberry. I chose peach, and it was just okay.

I will try the “Geechee Rita” next time, which is also a popular drink according to the bartender. 

During (Entrees)

-Jam Up Fried Wings: Three seasoned and marinated whole wings drizzled with Gulla gal sauce. The wings were tasty, and the sauce seemed ketchup-based but much sweeter.

-Fried Poke Chop (Pork Chop): One small pork chop that is lightly battered and fried to a golden color. This was a disappointment. The meat was well cooked, but not seasoned well. Additionally, the pork chop was very small and not nearly the size of a standard pork chop.

-Seafood Pasta (cold dish): A combination of crab meat, white shrimp, and pasta mixed with a seafood salad dressing. This dish was one of my favorites, and a must-have.

-Fried Cabbage: Fresh cabbage fried in a skillet with onions and bacon. This was the biggest disappointment. It was very salty, and the cabbage was so overcooked that it was brown and soggy. Cabbage, even fried, shouldn’t be that mushy.

-Macaroni & Cheese: Classic cheddar cheese and elbow macaroni baked til golden. This was just cheese and noodles. The noodles were overcooked and unseasoned.

-Fried Shrimp: White shrimp that are seasoned, lightly battered, and golden fried. These were cooked perfectly.

-Sauteed Shrimp: White shrimp that are seasoned and sauteed in a Gullah butter sauce. These were seasoned nicely and yummy.

-Gullah Fries (Potato Wedges): Fried potato wedges dusted with Virgil’s Gullah seasoning. These were very good and came out hot. They are also a must-have.

-Shrimp & Crab Gravy: White shrimp cooked in crab gravy over Jasmine rice (contains bacon). This was the STAR of the night. It is better than New Orleans jambalaya. The rice was slightly undercooked, but the shrimp and gravy made up for it. I wanted to sop it up with a biscuit. You can’t come to Virgil’s and not have this dish!

Closing (Desserts)

-Chucktown Chewie Sundae: This dessert was a warm chewie blonde (vanilla) brownie topped with caramel ice-cream, candied pecans, chocolate fudge, and powdered sugar. It was delicious and I hardly ever eat a dessert at a restaurant. It was heaven on a spoon! I would go back just for dessert and try a new cocktail. Just thinking about this dessert makes me want to make the drive to College Park right now!

⭐ Small Plate Ranking 

[0 to 5-star scale, 5 being the highest]

5⭐ Shrimp & Crab Gravy (over rice), Chucktown Brownie, Seafood Pasta (cold)

4⭐ Gullah Fries (Potato Wedges), Jam Up Wings

3⭐ Sauteed Shrimp, Fried Shrimp

2⭐ Poke Chop, Get Tight Up cocktail

1⭐ Mac ‘n Cheese

0⭐ The Fried Cabbage

Evaluation: [The Score]
Grade A

⭐Teacher’s Notes

1. This restaurant is not family-friendly. No high chairs or car seat slings.

2. Our waiter was William, who was excellent.

3. The host, Curtis, was accommodating with getting me a larger table.

4. The restaurant sits between Soul Crab and Milk & Honey.

5. They do not take gift cards. (VISA)

6. They do have lots of free street parking and lots in the area if you follow the signs. Not sure if the lots are free or not.

7. Your party should be from 1 to 4 people. The restaurant is not designed for groups.

8. Police circle the area often for a sense of safety.

9. Be careful crossing the street. I was almost hit in the crosswalk because everyone doesn’t abide by the law about pedestrians in the crosswalk, especially when there is no flashing light.

10. I met both owners, and they were very kind to my family and me. Search Food Is My Classroom on YouTube to see the video with Gee, co-owner of Virgil’s Gullah Kitchen & Bar, A “Geechee” Cultural Experience.

⭐Feedback [Comment & Share]

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#foodismyclassroom #virgilsgullahkitchen #atlblogger #FIMC #atlfoodie #quickbites #collegepark #Geechee #BlackOwned

Mama’s Caribbean Grill Review

Hey students! It’s your favorite teacher, Adriena, here with today’s mini-lesson at Mama’s Caribbean Grill in Decatur, Ga. If you live in the Decatur area, try them out today! Everything was absolutely fresh and delicious!!!

Hey students! It’s your favorite teacher, Adriena, here with today’s mini-lesson at Mama’s Caribbean Grill in Decatur, Ga. If you live in the Decatur area, try them out today! Everything was absolutely fresh and delicious!!!

Food is My Classroom at Mama’s Caribbean Grill

⭐Location:

4919 Flat Shoals Pkwy #122, Decatur, GA 30034 (Kroger Plaza)

⭐What Did I Eat?

I had jerk shrimp, rice and peas, plantains, macaroni and cheese, jerk chicken, cabbage and veggies, curry goat, curry chicken, and oxtails in gravy. If that didn’t sound like enough, I ended with the sweet potato pudding. 

See my RECOMMENDATIONS below: 

Mama’s Caribbean Grill Menu

Rice and Peas (topping with oxtail gravy is optional): The rice was cooked well and the peas were soft, but not mushy. The dish was very tasty with a mild hint of coconut milk.

Cabbage and Veggies: The cabbage had a slight crunch and was cooked with green beans, carrots, peas, red and green peppers, and corn. I absolutely loved it!!!

Mango Island Vibes Nectar

The Mango Island Vibes Nectar: This is a sweet juice that is even better over heavy ice (it’s sweet ya’ll).

The Baked Macaroni & Cheese: The noodles were NOT overcooked and the dish was well-seasoned. It was baked cheesy in the oven, which is the only way to eat it in my opinion. 

Curry Chicken: The chicken pieces were in an authenticly delicious Curry Gravy, which had a hint of coconut milk. 

Jerk Chicken: These leg quaters were tender, seasoned well, and spicy. They weren’t so spicy that it took over the meal. This was my favorite meat!!!

Sweet Potato Pudding

Jerk Shrimp: Although the shrimp are small, the jerk shrimp starts with a sweetness. Then, the heat hits you, but it is not overwhelming for those of us that can’t take hot/spicy food.

Sweet Potato Pudding: This Caribbean dessert was like a dark sweet potato pie in pudding form. It did have more nutmeg than I prefer, but it was yummy. Adding raisins to the pudding would be good too, in my opinion.

Background Knowledge: 

1. Located in the Kroger Plaza beside American Wings 3 and near Gutbusters.

2. Located in Decatur, Ga.

3. They offer a large menu and 2 Caribbean desserts. 

4. All seafood items are cooked to order.

5. For an upcharge, instead of having cabbage with rice and peas, you can substitute for baked macaroni and cheese, collard greens, or yams. 

6. They offer some drinks with an island vibe. The Mango Nectar drink was yummy.

7. The restaurant opened at the end of July (2019), as announced by the DeKalb Chamber of Commerce, with a food drive for the community and 100+ free hot meals to customers.

8. Open Monday – Saturday (7 am – 10 pm), Sunday (8 am – 8 pm)

Pros: 

1. All natural, even the seasoning. Salt and pepper is their only purchased seasoning. They make their seasonings from blending raw ingredients. So, if they want onion powder, they blend from real onions.

2. The owner believes in no MSG.

3. My server was Khalil who was very respectful, kind, used his manners, and was completing multiple tasks with a smile on his face. 

4. The restaurant is family-owned and operated.

5. I also met Erica, the manager, who took the time to explain EACH dish to me. This was greatly appreciated considering I voiced that Caribbean cuisine is not my cuisine of choice due to how spicy it is. She explained that not all restaurants have a heat level that extreme and that they don’t!

Cons:

1. It was a bit warm inside.

2. The oxtails were small, but the gravy was good enough to dip the coco bread in and eat.

✏📋 Score: A

I will definitely be going back to try more dishes. Especially, the cabbage and mac-n-cheese.

Food is My Classroom at Mama’s Caribbean Grill

#MamaCaribbeanGrillGa #foodismyclassroom #atlfoodie #atlblogger #FIMC #BlackOwned 

Mangos Caribbean Restaurant Review

Hey students! It’s your favorite teacher, Adriena, from Food is My Classroom here at Mangos Caribbean Restaurant. I found this Caribbean restaurant right in the Heart of Downtown Atlanta affectionately called “Sweet Auburn.” Click the link for more goodness 🙂

Hey students! It’s your favorite teacher, Adriena, from @foodismyclassroom here at Mangos Caribbean Restaurant. I found this Caribbean restaurant right in the Heart of Downtown Atlanta affectionately called “Sweet Auburn.”

Mangos Caribbean Restaurant
Food is My Classroom at Mangos Restaurant

Classroom: Mangos Caribbean Restaurant, 180 Auburn Ave NE, Atlanta, GA 30303

The Lesson Plan [Full Review of Experience]

Mangos Caribbean Restaurant
Food is My Classroom at Mangos Restaurant

⭐ Materials Needed:

  1. Major Credit Card: To pay for street parking, which is $2.00/hr. Max 4 hrs. Must enter your tag number. Police monitor these spots heavily.
  2. Patience: There can be a bit of a wait to order (to-go) during the lunch rush due to the large crowd.

⭐ Observation:

Opening (Appetizers)
-n/a

During (Entrees)

Mangos Caribbean Restaurant
Food is My Classroom at Mangos Restaurant

Regular Oxtails Plate:

  • Comes with approximately 6 small bones in gravy. The plate includes a small portion of cabbage, 2 plantains, and a large amount of rice and peas. Oxtails were on the small side, and the amount was seemed justified and expected due to the market value as oxtails are considered a delicacy in the food industry. They were tender, and the gravy from the meat was soooo yummy that it made me want to lick the plate. The cabbage was a bit salty and overcooked while the plantains had a slight crunch, which was unexpected only to be further let down by the dryness of the plantains. Lastly, the rice and peas were filling, but nothing stood out about it in comparison to any other Caribbean restaurant.
Mangos Caribbean Restaurant
Food is My Classroom at Mangos Restaurant

Curry Shrimp Pasta:

  • Bowtie Pasta with large juicy shrimp, broccoli, red and green peppers, and onions all coated in a fragrant and flavorful Curry Sauce. The bowl was placed in front of me, and the aroma was breathtaking and made me want to dig in immediately. The shrimp were large, plump, and perfectly cooked. The veggies had just enough crunch, and the curry sauce was absolutely impeccable. They need to sell it! This dish is large, so share!
Mangos Caribbean Restaurant
Food is My Classroom at Mangos Restaurant

Mango Lemonade:

  • The suggestion made by my waitress was Mango Tea or an Arnold Palmer, but I went for the Mango Lemonade. It was a great choice! The punch is a perfect blend of lemonade and mango punch to create a delightful concoction. The punch made me feel like it was native to the Caribbean islands, especially if it had a little Rum.
Mangos Caribbean Restaurant
Food is My Classroom at Mangos Restaurant

Closing (Desserts)

Signature Mango Cheesecake:

  • A large slice of creamy mango cheesecake on a caramel drizzle with whipped topping. The cheesecake was very smooth and creamy with a soft crust. There is a thin mango-flavored gel layer on top that I didn’t care for. The caramel drizzle on the plate was delicious. The whip was not flavored and had no taste.
Mangos Caribbean Restaurant
Food is My Classroom at Mangos Restaurant

⭐ The Glows [Pros]

  1. They opened on time at 11 am, and food was ready to be ordered & served. All options were available.
  2. Portions are large enough for sharing. This way, you can sample multiple menu items.
  3. Depending on your location, Mangos is available via many means of transportation. (i.e., car, the Marta bus, the downtown trolley, scooters, bike, and on foot)
  4. They are walking distance from/to Georgia State University (my alma mater) which will allow college students to get there on foot.
  5. They are right next to a Marta bus & Trolley stop, which is good for public transit commuters.
  6. They offer Door Dash.
  7. They are minutes from I-75 and I-20.
  8. My waitress, JOELLE, was an ABSOLUTE Godsend. She was kind, attentive, and made suggestions on what most people order & what she liked.
  9. Since they are in the heart of downtown Atlanta, they are close to public parks, night clubs, luxury apartments, historical places to tour, and other small businesses.

The Grows [Cons]

  1. The decor is a bit outdated and visually busy.
  2. The restaurant is a bit cluttered with items that need to be in storage, especially in the bar area.
  3. They decorate the plate with so much parsley, and I do mean a lot of it. It’s unnecessary and a bit messy. It was all over my table.
  4. The meats are done well, so they shine brightly, but the veggies are just okay.

⭐Evaluation: [The Score]
Grade📋 B

Most Popular:
Per Joelle, most people order Mango Lemonade or Tea, Oxtails, Jerk Shrimp, Curry Shrimp Pasta, Red Snapper, and Mango Cheesecake.

⭐Teacher’s Notes✏:

  1. If you go on Mondays, they have BOGO.
  2. If you go during lunchtime for DINING-IN, the crowd isn’t that bad.
  3. The owner, Tru, used to own The Royal Peacock. But, they are still deeply tied to the location.
  4. The Royal Peacock crowd frequents Mangos after they party, which is why on the weekend, Mangos stays open to 4 am.
  5. From Thursday – Sunday night beginning @9pm, Mangos has a live DJ for what is called “Club Mangos.”

⭐ Feedback [Comment & Share]

📸 and 📽 by Adriena Long

#foodismyclassroom #atlfoodie #atlblogger