The Keeper opens in Plano with fresh seafood and tiki drinks

The Keeper, located in Plano, has options for everyone…. for lovers of fresh seafood, for large groups of parties, business meetings and happy hour fans. It’s a win-win for all!


Stop by for happy hour and enjoy the specials noted below.



The Painkiller cocktail, shown below, was very refreshing and puts your worries and pain away! It’s a nice blend of rum and pineapple. You will think you’re laying out by the beach and soaking up the sun!


The cute tiki theme continues on the drinks menu. The Pali Kai Punch was an inviting and refreshing blend of rum, passion fruit, guava and mango rum.


Below is the Copacabana with house blend cachaça, giffard wild elderflower, macadamia orgeat and lime cordial. If you’ve had a long day at work, this is the drink for you to boost your spirit!


Another drink we sampled was the delicious Singapore Sling with Waterloo Gin, Koeing Huckleberry Vodka, Giffard Wild Elderflower, Luxardo Marachino, Lime Cordial, Pineapple Juice and Tikki Bitters.



Moving onto the food! Serious seafood lovers will appreciate the menu, which includes shared plates, seafood classics and fresh-caught seafood and more.

First we tried the Lobster Bake. This savory yet light entree with fresh Maine lobster with delicious! Enjoy fingerling potatoes and more sauteed veggies on the side.


If you want something really fresh, order the Mahi Hanhna. The Costa Rican fresh line-caught mahi was topped with to-die-for lobster butter sauce. I won’t be forgetting about this one for years to come!

The Keeper’s catches are delivered fresh daily from the world’s best fishing regions.


Another savory item we enjoyed was the crab cake (on the shared plates menu) with its finger licking sweet corn green goddess sauce.


Next time you’re in the mood for great seafood and tiki-themed drinks, hit up The Keeper in Plano. We hope you enjoy it as much as we did!


(Disclaimer: Our menu sampling was complimentary, and all opinions are our own.)


There is no wonder why sizzling hot pot has 7 locations. They have 5 in the west coast area, 1 in Chicago, and now in Plano! If you have been wanting to try authentic Asian food. Here is the place. It isn’t too out of the norm of flavor. They do have some items that require an acquired taste but you can customize whatever you like in your pot.

So if you haven’t been to a Hunan-style place before, they ideally serve a pot of mixed meats, noodles, and veggies. The whole pot is customizable! They have a variety of meats to choose from such as bullfrog and snails but if you are aren’t feeling a little exotic then sticking with your familiar shrimp, beef, and beef tongue is just as good too! They serve it with a burner underneath the pot so that way your food stays warm, almost like a fajita platter you see at most Mexican restaurants. For the meats, I customized some of the best recommendations from the owner which included beef tongue, duck, and pork belly. For the veggie portion, the pot included potato, celery, bean sprouts, cauliflower, and broccoli. I wouldn’t have thought the celery would give off so much flavor but let me tell you, it did. I highly recommend adding lobster balls and crab sticks. They soak in all the spice and add a chewy texture to the dish. All the meats were perfectly cooked especially the quail egg. The quail egg added a nice creaminess to the dish. I had my dry pot spice level of 3 and the flavor of spicy. I recommend toning the spice level down a notch because I initially I thought I could handle a 4, but they suggested I try a 3. They assured me if it wasn’t enough spicy they could always add more. Boy, were they right! I was hitting my limits with a level 3!


Beware, this dish is spicy. This is a sautéed shredded beef with wild pepper. The first unexpected bite of spice made me tear up a bit. It may not look spicy but if you love spice, you will enjoy every bite of this dish. The cilantro stems add a surprising crunch to it. The pickled peppers go well together with the other spicy peppers.

When they offered us coconut drinks, I wasn’t expecting fresh coconut! With all the different types of spice that were going on in every dish, I was still able to clear my palate with this drink. It was very refreshing, it calmed down my taste buds after my mouth got a bit too heated.

This dish brought me back home. This is chef magic tofu. My father use to make this dish a lot back at home, but he didn’t add sauce on top. This dish is very soft and light but the red sauce makes a huge difference and adds the flavor it needs to it. Underneath the red sauce is a mixture of egg and tofu. Although it is red, it isn’t spicy at all. It has a touch of sweetness to it, but it doesn’t taste like sweet and sour sauce. I asked what’s in the sauce because I have never tasted anything like it but they said it was a secret so, you’ll have to try it yourself.


Down to one of my favorite parts. The dessert! Now, I am not a huge dessert fan due to some desserts being too sweet but I tell ya. This sticky rice cake creates the perfect ending to the entire course. You can certainly taste that they are handmade every morning. These pumpkin and taro (yellow and dark purple) sticky rice cakes are something that I will be grabbing on my way home from work. They make it like no other Asian restaurants. The owner informed us that their taro ingredient is from a natural source and is not enhanced or altered with purple food coloring like other places that sell taro. Each sticky rice cake has a hint of everything, a hint of taro or pumpkin flavor, a hint of sugar, all lightly coated with fresh coconut flakes. It’s not too sweet at all. If you have never tried sticky rice cake before, the texture is almost like you are biting into a lightly flaky crunch with the contents of a gelatinous/marshmallow texture with hints of flavor, sweetness, and freshness of the coconut.




(Disclaimer: My menu sampling was complimentary, and all opinions are my own.)


We’re BULLY for BULLA!

When Plano was founded in 1845, the early settlers mistakenly named the town with the word they thought was Spanish for ‘plains.’ But now, over 170 years later, residents and guests can enjoy some authentic Spanish at Bulla Gastrobar, the beautifully styled tapas destination in Plano’s Legacy West. Bulla adjoins the beautiful new Renaissance Legacy West, and guests can valet park for free at the hotel, which was quite a coup on a busy Saturday night.


We opened our meal with a selection of Bulla’s new cocktails, including an effervescent white Sangria kissed with peach, strawberry and blueberry and a well-blended Spanish margarita, which owes its complexity to a hint of Amontilllado Sherry.


A meal at Bulla is best started with a custom meat & cheese platter. Ours featured a house marinated and cured Coppa and a tangy, flavor-forward Leonora, a soft goat cheese. The attractive platter is accompanied by flatbreads with membrillo and glazed walnuts.


Next, we shared a dish my companion decided was reminiscent of what the gods must have for brunch. Huevos Bulla starts with delicate, crispy house made potato chips topped with two perfectly poached eggs, potato foam, paper-thin slices of Jamon Serrano and truffle oil. The dish looks awkward when it comes out, but it’s blended tableside and then served. Appearances notwithstanding, Huevos Bulla was a delicious, well-balanced dish, and we wanted to do everything short of licking the bowl.

On the recommendation of our server, we tried a seasonally beautiful dish next. Bulla features a section of seasonal menu items and we tried the simply named Peas and Ham. Salty, smoky Nueske’s bacon is cut into manageable lardons and crisped with carefully cut spring peas and then tossed with perfectly al dente orecchiette pasta with a fresh tasting pea puree. The simplicity of the dish really showcased the editorial eye of the culinary team and reminded that with great ingredients you don’t need to manipulate them too much. Bulla features a nice selection of Spanish wines, including a good number offered by the glass, and a Verdejo from Rueda was a perfect complement.


Our evening was capped off by a seasonal dessert offering. A delicate honey and ginger poached pear rested atop fresh berries, and was capped with additional honey, cinnamon syrup tableside. While the pear came with a scoop of ice cream, our server wisely suggested we add a delicious sherry to complement the pear, and it was the perfect way to end a very tranquil and tasty date night.


(Disclaimer: My visit was hosted, and all opinions are my own.)