You know the saying “everything’s bigger in Texas”. Well.. Truluck’s in Austin definitely supports this phrase. This city is filled with young professionals who love to eat. After I ate at Truluck’s, I may need to pack up and move there! Hold my bags y’all.. because I am about to praise the food in the post. It was truly a 5 star dining experience. Let’s get into it:

  • I started off with the Chilled Shellfish Platter. This massive dish had me shook when this was placed on my table! This included 2 jumbo shrimp, 2 oysters, 2 Florida Stone Crab claws, and blue crab cocktail. If you like seafood, you NEED to try this. The crab cocktail was so fresh, I could’ve hugged the chef to thank him.
  • For my entrée, it was a tough choice, but I had the Salmon Béarnaise. Whoever thought to put this dish on the menu needs a raise immediately. It was a salmon filet laid beautifully on a bed of mashed potatoes. The salmon was covered with a lump of delicious crabmeat and two plump shrimp. This was 10 out of 10, would absolutely recommend!
  • Top off it all off, I finished with their Chocolate Malt Cake. I do not have a picture because I ate it too quickly and forgot, but you can google “Truluck’s chocolate malt cake” and see why. This cake was wild! 4 layers of chocolate cake filled with rich chocolate icing spread between. Besides the fluffiness and great flavors, the fruit on top of the cake was so refreshing. They gave such a large slice, it could easily feed a family of 3. I wasn’t readyyy for how bomb this meal was, it really blew my mind!

Must I repeat, Haikan is HOT. Ramen is a popular dish that can be found in many Japanese restaurants. Haikan is cool little date spot, where you can eat and catch a vibe or order your food to-go and quickly get back to Netflix! If you still eat ramen out of a packet, this ramen will make you reevaluate your life thus far. Let’s get into it:

Spicy Shou
  • Haikan’s ambience easily separates it from similar style restaurants I’ve been to, with its mixed Japanese design with the modernization of Washington, D.C. The open preparation station and kitchen presented a homey vibe, because you could see everything being made! It’s almost like dinner and a show. The outdoor patio is nicely furnished and a great place to eat, drink, and take selfies during golden hour.
  • The menu is exquisite and offers you different items such as spicy shoyu (ramen), ramen cookie sandwich, and a giant shrimp burger that’s available during happy hour. If you choose to dine in, you should definitely try one of their signature cocktails. The frosé was a must for me, because who doesn’t like frozen rosé with their food???
  • The portions for the large bowl were great! I took some to go and BODIED the leftovers the next day. Treat yourself, don’t cheat yourself. A small would definitely still do the job though and is $5 cheaper! It’s a win win situation with whichever you choose.
  • The flavors from Haikan made me smile 🙂 The presentation of the bowl was very neat and crisp. AKA photo worthy! I ordered the Spicy Shou. Each and every components of the bowl was mixed together so well. I could not stop diving in for another bite, the flavors were so unique and tasty! AND the broth!! simply unmatched.. It was wonderfully potent, and the extra spice added the perfect touch. After a few bites in, you will without a doubt feel like..

Happy Friday! I hope your day is filed with happiness, gratitude, and food! Thank you to everyone who submitted a photo, because NOW I AM HUNGRY! If you want to be featured on the next Foodie Friday instead of drooling over someone else’s photos, please message me your photos on Instagram @marseatss or email me at marseats1@gmail.com. #CameraEatsFirst

  • Top Row
    • Sushi Kiku (Atlanta, GA)
    • South Block (Washington, D.C.)
    • Dulcinea’s (Washington, D.C)
  • Bottom Row
    • Vietnam Kitchen (Springfield, Massachusetts)
    • Busboy’s and Poets (Washington D.C.)
    • Veena Stores (India)

Shrimp Po Boy w/ Cajun Fries

Another one of my favorite local black owned restaurants is Po Boy Jim, packs a punch with their flavor and portions! Let’s dig in:

  • Po Boy Jim brings New Orleans to Washington D.C. Their menu easily will make your mouth water with their surf & turf po boy, voodoo wings, creole pasta, and shrimp & grits.
  • The ambiance at Po Boy Jim is smooth! The brick interior and intimate seating is perfect for taking photos of everyone’s food at once. They also keep their environment soulful with cultural music and tunes playing throughout your meal.
  • The freshness of the food is undeniable. After every bite of my shrimp po boy, I had to admire how full the shrimp were. It was definitely the most filling seafood sandwich I have had.
  • LETS GET INTO THE FLAVOR. The sauce on the po boy was exquisite. I could not tell you what it was, but I can definitely tell you that it belonged! Everything was seasoned to perfection, even the fries. They truly live up to that famous New Orleans reputation, because if I bit into that food and did not taste the creole then..

Have you ever looked for food on Yelp and decide to try a new spot, then you show up and it does not look like the image you had in your head? That is Sunrise Restaurant. Sunrise is a family owned Caribbean restaurant in Washington D.C. When you walk in, the authentic decor, Caribbean music, and the freshness of the food creates a comfortable, family oriented ambiance.

Let’s get into why they are a hidden gem:

Jerk Chicken, Rice and Beans, Mac and Cheese
  • The taste of Sunrise’s food is ridiculously good. Caribbean food is known for its flavors and spices, which is exactly what Sunrise provides. From the oxtail to the jerk sauce to the plantains, everything is seasoned with love!
  • Sunrise has Vegan options, and i’m talking about the whole shabang. Their is no let up in terms of flavor between their vegan jerk, curry, and stew! Also, they put their foot in that vegan Mac N’ Cheese. You have to try it!
  • Sunrise gives you enough food to eat for the rest of the day. I never leave this place still hungry. If you give good portions, then I will always stan.

Happy Friday! I hope your day is filed with happiness, gratitude, and food! Thank you to everyone who submitted a photo, because NOW I AM HUNGRY! If you want to be featured on the next Foodie Friday instead of drooling over someone else’s photos, please message me your photos on Instagram @marseatss or email me at marseats1@gmail.com. #CameraEatsFirst

Shrimp & Chicken Chorizo Pasta

Top 5. Top 5. Top 5.

Since moving to D.C. and eating at Busboys and Poets, my life has changed for the better. This food will make you dance, call your mom, and stay there until they turn off the lights on you. Let’s talk about 5 reasons why you NEED to go!

  1. The food here is appetizing! I love the variety of dishes they provide. From nachos to paninis to pastas, they cater to every crowd. I have not found a dish that does not go crazy yet. I must say that the shrimp & chicken chorizo pasta sits on my mind often!
  2. VEGAN FRIENDLY! To my friends who are vegan, Busboys and Poets has some the best vegan comfort food you will try. A snippet of their vegan options consist of nachos, Korean barbecue “beef” sandwich, and mac n’ cheese!
  3. The ambiance of their restaurants is always smooth! As you walk in, you will immediately feel like you’re a part of a community. Busboys and Poets is filled with great books, soulful music, and cozy seating. You may not know who works there at first, but all of the employees are kind and vibrant.
  4. The uniqueness of Busboys and Poets sets it apart from most restaurants. You could walk in and buy Becoming by Michelle Obama, chow down on shrimp and grits, and perform a free verse poem all before you leave. Their culture is what makes them.
  5. Busboys and Poets stands up for the community as well. They bring together racial and cultural connections through up providing a space for everyone to come together. They believe that building a community around shared dialogues over food and drinks creates meaningful and lasting relationships.

#CameraEatsFirst

The country has been going crazy for the past 3 weeks trying to obtain a Popeyes’ chicken sandwich after social media exploded. After Popeyes created beef between themselves and Chick-Fil-A on social media, people obviously have to get their hands on the sandwich immediately to see for themselves! So, it is only right that we can compare Popeyes to the King of Chicken Sandwiches, aka Chick-Fil-A. Lets dig in!

I have some necessary categories for us to look at before I make my final decision.

  • Chicken Filet
    • Popeyes: The spicy filet was FIRE. The filet was juicy and breaded impeccably. With every bite, I had to look at the sandwich because I was falling in love.
    • Chick-Fil-A: Their filets are consistent. I always know what I am getting when I go here. A nice size filet that is breaded lighter than Popeyes but gets the taste buds excited every time.
  • Sauce
    • Popeyes: As I was eating the spicy sandwich, I deeply appreciated the spicy mayonnaise that showed up to the party. The balance between filet and sauce was great! However, other Popeyes’ sauces also made the sandwich great to dip in. I recommend the blackened ranch or sweet heat.
    • Chick-Fil-A: If I have to tell you how good Chick-Fil-A’s sauces are, then this article is not for you. But seriously, I enjoy the variety of sauces they provide since they are all great. You can freak the sandwich by spreading the sauce on the bun or dipping the sandwich.
  • Pickle
    • Popeyes: I can not stress this enough, but that pickle on the spicy sandwich was better than any pickle you have been served. I am not a big pickle fan, however that pickle paired with the sandwich PERFECTLY. It had a nice crunch and complimented the sauce too!
    • Chick-Fil-A: Their pickles are decent. They are not crispy and juicy but do add an extra layer of flavor. They aren’t something to rave about, therefore I must say they could take notes from Popeyes on this one.
Popeye’s Spciy Sandwich

IN THE END: Popeyes definitely presented an adrenaline rush for me after all the hype. The sandwich was absolutely delicious. It was a bit more heavy than the Chick-Fil-A sandwich though. The Chick-Fil-A sandwich is like wife material. It is consistent and proven itself to you over time. The Popeyes’ sandwich was like the person you met at the club. Looks attractive and everything seems perfect, because you just met each other. That sparkle may fade since you have not been on other dates yet. Let me know how you all feel! #CameraEatsFirst

Hello! I am Marcus Hall. I am a senior Marketing major at Howard University. I am also a 6 foot 7 inch 21 year old college student who loves to eat! I am currently living in Washington, D.C. Not only do I eat a lot of food, but I also eat at a lot different restaurants.

Mars Eats! will serve as a blog covering Grab N’ Go food, Wine N’ Dine, and friend submission Fridays. I am a millennial with an expensive appetite but lives off a budget. Going out to eat may be my favorite type of date because even if we do not connect after this date, I still had something delicious to eat. Life Hack: never order the same thing your friend is ordering. With that being said, LETS DIG IN! #CameraEatsFirst