A selection of local eateries recently featured in the Gwinnett Daily Post:
The Blue Rooster Cafe
Like something that leapt off the pages of Southern Living magazine, this restaurant is known for its sweet, signature chicken salad. The cafe offers a traditional menu, but that doesn't stop the owners from adding new dishes to their repertoire, like a Reuben big enough to belong in a Manhattan deli and a Cuban loaded up with layers of pork and ham and topped with a tangy mustard. Make sure you leave room for dessert. There's plenty.
107 Main St., Lilburn. 770-931-2445.
In this modern-day, family-oriented take on "Cheers," each table has its own flat-screen plasma TV. The menu includes something for every taste, from a monstrous chef's salad to racks of baby-back ribs smothered in hickory sauce. The K Sampler features a few bites of each appetizer, including fried mozzarella sticks, Buffalo wings and potato skins.
4955 Sugarloaf Parkway. Lawrenceville. 678-205-0282. www.kaysonsgrille.com.
Nadia's West African Restaurant
African dishes with a soul-food influence are served at Nadia's, where the best-sellers include deep-fried tilapia and barbecue beef ribs. For those nervous to try more authentic fare, the restaurant offers an on-the-house sampler plate so first-timers can try before they buy.
5245 Langford Road, suite A, Norcross. 770-582-9994. www.nadiarestaurant.com.
Chin Chin 7
Located directly across from the Arena at Gwinnett Center and minutes from the affluent Sugarloaf Country Club, Chin Chin 7 attracts area sports stars, celebrities and performers. The restaurant offers traditional Chinese dishes with an upscale twist, as well as sushi, soups and the stew-like Hot Pots.
6575 Sugarloaf Parkway, Duluth.770-813-1319.
Gimza Polish Restaurant
The only Polish restaurant in the state specializes in ethnic favorites, including kielbasa, pierogi and croquettes, which are filled with minced pork, onions, mushrooms and sauerkraut. A large selection of vodkas, a plethora of Polish beers by the bottle and a multinational wine list round out the offerings.
3435 Medlock Bridge Road, suite 209, Norcross. 770-441-2268.
Steaks are the best sellers at this Chicago-style steakhouse, located inside the Atlanta Marriott Gwinnett Place hotel. The 10-ounce Matambre Filet, the house specialty, is topped with crab meat and roasted red peppers, then covered in a spicy pepper jack cheese. The menu goes beyond red meat to offer a large variety of seafood, chicken, pasta and salad dishes as well.
1775 Pleasant Hill Road, Duluth. 770-923-1775. www.marriott.com.
Ribs 'n' Blues
Boasting the "best butts in Georgia," Ribs 'n' Blues specializes in two things: live, soulful blues music and sauce-smothered slabs of slow-smoked pork ribs. The restaurant prepares its signature sauce fresh every day. Side items include tangy coleslaw, rum baked beans and Brunswick stew.
3375 Sugarloaf Parkway, Lawrenceville. 770-962-8041. www.ribsnblues.com.
Fiji has created a tropical getaway within the frazzle of Peachtree Industrial Parkway. Specializing in both island and American fare, the restaurant serves up Fijian dishes such as mango-topped grilled tilapia and curry rice, as well as homestyle favorites like meatloaf and penne pasta.
315 Peachtree Industrial Parkway, Suwanee. 770-904-7830. www.fijigoodfoodgetaway.com.
Made famous in Athens thanks to a huge following of hungry University of Georgia students, Barberitos is the latest oversized-burrito cantina franchise to hit Gwinnett. Everything from a vegan burrito to meat-and-cheese stuffed rolls are offered, as well as salads, tacos and quesadillas. Most meals cost less than $10.
2725 Hamilton Mill Road, Buford. 770- 945-1877. www.barberitos.com.
Ashiana prides itself on a wide selection, including several Indian-Chinese dishes, known as "Chaatt Bhandaar." Some of its signature items include the Tandoori Mixed Grill and Chicken 65. The restaurant also caters to vegetarians with meat-free favorites like Bhindi Masala and Aloo Gobhi. One of Ashiana's most uncommon features is an unparalleled sense of cultural and religious sensitivity - their kitchen is divided in half so vegetarian dishes are not prepared near meat.
5675 Jimmy Carter Blvd., Norcross. 770-446-9092. www.theashiana.com.
Traditional Thai dishes of generous proportions are Spicy Basil's specialty. The sampler appetizer, with Bubble Ball corn fritter and Thai grilled chicken wings, is a customer favorite. Curries are also top sellers, and are served with a choice of three rice varieties: white jasmine, long-grain brown and green jasmine. For lighter fare, opt for the Yummy Fish Warm Salad or the Green Veggie Galore.
3675 Satellite Blvd., Duluth. 770-232-2803. www.spicybasil.net.