Traveling Northwest Indiana: Don Pablo’s – A Taste of Mexico

Don Pablo’s

2831 East 80th Ave

Merrillville, IN

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Entrance to Don Pablo’s Merrillville branch.

For all intent and purpose, Don Pablo’s is one amazing restaurant to get served Mexican food. From their fresh tortillas to their famous margaritas, Don Pablo’s enticed me to try new foods that I have never had before. A restaurant that serves some amazingly bold tasting food, Don Pablo’s will undeniably succeed in getting your mouth to celebrate a fiesta.

For example, the food that my family and
I ordered was The El Matador, a combination of chicken flautas, cheese & onion enchilada, crispy beef taco, and a chicken enchilada. My mother ordered the Mexicano, a beef enchilada, crispy beef taco, and a cheese & onion enchilada. My father ordered the  Numero Uno Favorite. A crispy steak fajita taco, a soft chicken fajita taco with sautéed onions and peppers, and a chicken enchilada. Lastly my niece ordered the President, a beef enchilada, chicken enchilada and a chile cheese relleno.

With each bite of food, the looks on the faces of my family changed. I remember my niece’s first bite. She claimed that she didn’t like Mexican food, yet when she closed her mouth, her eyes lit up like a Christmas tree. It is always a valuable lesson to learn – to not judge a book by its cover. My niece learned this for the first time in her life by trying Don Pablo’s food. Now it seems like all she wants to do is go back and try something new.

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The inside of Don Pablo’s.

The environment of the restaurant was lively and full of excitement. The food is well priced, and the freshly made tortillas were some of the softest I’ve ever eaten. Overall, I feel that anyone traveling through Merrillville, Indiana should  experience some of this unique Mexican cuisine. Don Pablo’s strives to give its customers a good deal, along with great food. Yet, it offers even more than that. It simply is a fun experience that the family will enjoy, and could even change your minds on what new combinations of food you a willing to try.

-Nick Pluchinsky

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Traveling Northwest Indiana: Legends of Notre Dame – The Fighting Irish Sports Heaven

Legends of Notre Dame

54801 Juniper Road

South Bend, Indiana

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The entrance to Legends of Notre Dame.

If words could adequately describe The Legends of Notre Dame sports restaurant, it would simply be a Fighting Irish sports fan’s dream place to eat. Situated just 100 yards south of the University of Notre Dame’s football stadium, the Legends of Notre Dame boasts a lively atmosphere that caters to great American food, along with a cold beer. For any curious traveler coming to the South Bend area, the Legends of Notre Dame stands for the passion of all hungry sports fans.

Yet, what makes the Legends of Notre Dame stick out the most is that the food alone is good enough to inspire its own legion of fans. I had one of the juiciest burgers in my life while visiting there, and my mother says she will  never eat another open face roast beef again unless it is from Legends.  Even if you have no passion for sports at all, this restaurant’s food will make you run towards the smell you sense faster than a running back breaking for daylight.

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The inside of Legends took my breath away.

Legends of Notre Dame boasts that it is everyone’s favorite place to relax with family, food, and friends. With savory daily specials, a delicious menu to please every appetite, and one of the best sports environments in South Bend, Legends immediately struck me as a restaurant with a pristine image. Everything was spot clean, and the service always had a smile on their faces. The restaurant is large enough for family parties; special occasions, and has plenty of parking.

There are HD TVs in every corner of the restaurant that make sure the game is never far away from you. This makes Legends of Notre Dame one of the best places to enjoy a sporting event outside the stadium itself. However, all of that pales in comparison to their standout Buffalo wings. When I put one of these wings into my mouth, the sauce played a symphony with my tongue in a way that would make Beethoven jealous. Combined with an array of autographs, and surrounded by fascinating memorabilia, I literally thought I had walked into the heaven for sports restaurants.

                For anyone traveling through South Bend, check this place out. I cannot stress enough that if you are going there, you won’t just get great food, but a fantastic experience as well. You also just might be lucky enough to run into some real sports legends, and get their autographs. For me it was Jeff Samardzija, the Cub’s starting pitcher. Yet, from the service’s claims, there is usually a sports legend visiting there every day.

-Nick Pluchinsky

Traveling Northwest Indiana: Main Street Cafe – Bringing Simplicity Back

Main Street Cafe

111 North Main Street

Crown Point, Indiana

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Main Street Cafe – the soul of simple restaurants.
  • Best breakfast food in Crown Point
  • Good service
  • Cheap prices for great food
  • Welcoming atmosphere

In every city, there usually lies a family restaurant that is favored among locales. Whether it is their famous pancakes or juicy burgers, the food these restaurants serve always seem to bring people back wanting more. In Crown Point, Indiana, the restaurant that people go to first is Main Street Cafe.  Located on, and open from 5 am to 8 pm, Crown Point’s Main Street Cafe left an indelible impression upon me. Its laid-back style is perfect for anyone to bring family and friends to enjoy a slow-cooked meal reminiscent of any grandmother’s special touch.

Walking in, you first notice service is well trained. When I was there, every customer walking in got a friendly hello and coffee within a minute of sitting down. The cooking time is great as well. My table ordered Greek style boneless pork chops, veal parmigiana with spaghetti, and pancakes that overshadowed my own face. All of it was out on our table less than fifteen minutes. And the pancakes without doubt are better than anything I Hop will throw at you. To top it off, with all three meals accounted for, the tab was less than twenty dollars.

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No TV’s, No extravagances, Just simple food and family friendly.

One of the best aspects about Main Street Cafe is that it has a real homely feel to it. This is a place where the average Joe goes to enjoy not only great food, but a great environment as well. Everything there is conducive to enjoying the company of others, and is one of the best places to enjoy a meal with the family. This is confirmed by the testimony of the locales as well. You can tell a great restaurant by how many regulars it has. I’ve seen the same people in this restaurant every day I go back. The waitress’ go out of their way to remember these people, not just for tips, but because they care about them.

This is the main point of Main Street Cafe. The people who run it don’t want only your money, they want your respect by providing great service, with even greater food. This inspires loyalty out of their customers, as it did with me. If you are out by the Crown Point area and are looking for amazing food that caters to enjoying a day out with family, Main Street Cafe is one place I would recommend to any of you reading now.

-Nick Pluchinsky