It’s an exciting time in the world of Raspaurants as owner David Rasp inches closer to the beautification award.

Heroes USA is looking mighty fine with its new parking lot, but don’t think the cosmetics end there. The back area has become a really nice spot for family gatherings with the new Sport Turf and a bit of landscaping. I’ll avoid the “grass is greener” cliché, but a few more tweaks to the interior and this facility will be gorgeous.

Speaking of Heroes, both locations are rolling with red beans and rice with Conecuh sausage. And if that isn’t enough soul in your belly, then try some bad-to-the-bone collard greens. Here’s the best part: This isn’t just a Monday special. You can break the NOLA rules and eat them all week long!

Royal Scam is preparing for a flood of people New Year’s Eve and won’t be running its regular menu due to expected volume. They will have the filet (one of the best ever) as well as their fresh catch plus shrimp and grits. Oh, did I mention the Parmesan-encrusted rack of lamb special? Wash it all down with a moonpie martini and your evening will be complete.

NYE at Fairhope Inn
Potato-leek soup with sage crème fraiche, Alabama oysters on the half shell, pan-roasted filet of beef with caramelized shallot demi, roasted garlic pureed potatoes and white asparagus, or tapenade-crusted halibut with lemon beurre blanc over winter vegetable risotto are some of the choices for this year’s New Year’s Eve dinner at the Fairhope Inn.

It’s one of the annual events I drool over every year. Your date will surely pucker up for that first kiss of the New Year after her choice of dark chocolate espresso torte or vanilla bean crème brulee with fresh berries.

The cost is $75 per person plus tax and gratuity and includes a complimentary glass of champagne. Reservations are required. Make yours now by calling 251-928-6226. More information is available at www.thefairhopeinn.com.

Wedgie’s cheeses it up
It was only a matter of time since the birth of my children that someone came up with the bright idea of opening a restaurant that focuses on high-end grilled cheese. Wedgie’s is located at 5955 Old Shell Road just across the street from the Mitchell Center and the University of South Alabama campus.

The menu mostly features grilled cheese options as well as salads, soups and dip. But there are other dishes too, such as grilled chicken, pulled pork (Cajun and Cuban versions), brisket and bacon. They serve beer and wine, so the recently opened restaurant is near perfect for someone you love.

Wedgies is closed on Mondays. Visit www.wedgiesgrilledcheese.com for more information.

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