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Things That Make You Go, "What the......."

Hey Hounds.

There's a restaurant in the little town just south of us and I don't know what goes on inside but the signage reveals a rather bizzare combination.

Now I'm sure there's a simple and well known global explanation but on the surface this just sounds weird.


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  1. In this economy, one must diversify!

    1. In the UK I reckon about 25% of all fish and chip shops are also Chinese takeaways.

      2 Replies
      1. re: Peg

        That's what I was thinking - it's a British thing.

        1. re: Peg

          It is, been in the UK for three months now and this is pretty common.

        2. There's a little dive in Berkeley that has a similar sign, except it's "burritos...fish and chips." Hmmmm...doesn't give me confidence in either choice.

          1. Not quite as bizarre but definitely caught my eye was a new Mediterranean/Latin restaurant that opened not far from me.

            4 Replies
            1. re: Duppie

              Close to verbatim quote from an episode of Frasier:

              Niles: "I made a reservation for us at that new fusion restaurant."

              Frasier: "What cuisines are they fusing?"

              Niles: "Polynesian and Scandinavian. It's called Mahalo Valhalla."

              It was funnier at the time. Since then, when I see the amount of mango and lime used on the PBS Scandinavian cooking show, I think someone took it WAY too seriously

              1. re: greygarious

                The Scandinavians must have picked it up recently after getting inexpensive vacations to Thailand and Viet Nam.

                1. re: Duppie

                  FYI, some of the best Thai food I've ever eaten was in Sweden.

                  1. re: ferret

                    For me it was the Doner Kebabs in Gothenburg, and the Bu luc lac in Copenhagen.

            2. There's a place down the street from my parents that specializes in teriyaki chicken and fish and chips. Maybe they're owned by the same peeps.

              1. In my city as I imagine in other places too there are quite a few Greek/ other cuisine combinations too. Not too surprising since so many Greeks are prolific restauranteurs. Greek/ Italian, Greek/ Breakfast diner, Greek/ Ice Cream shop and even Greek/ Mexican in my neck of the woods. In fact at one of the most popular breakfast joints in the whole city I have had a gyro breakfast burrito smothered with green chile and everything and it was preposterously delicious!

                1 Reply
                1. re: LorenM

                  Greek/Italian makes a lot of sense to me, as the flavor profiles can be similar, as does Greek/Middle Eastern due to the use of similar ingredients (chickpeas, flatbreads, olives, lamb, etc).

                  Greek diners are pretty common in the northeast, and something I miss very much now living in FL. I somehow just assumed that it was normal to be able to have a few places in town where I could go at 2am and get a burger, snapper soup, pancakes, or moussaka.

                2. Del Dee Bistro, my favorite local pizzeria in Casselberry, Florida (a suburb of Orlando) specializes in Italian and THAI food. I always end up ordering their Brooklyn pizza to go (thin-sliced crispy fried eggplant and ricotta cheese), but one of these days I'm going to try the pad kee mao.


                  1. This billboard (picture not mine).

                    When has "caramel" screamed Vietnam?

                    4 Replies
                    1. re: ipsedixit

                      As I understand it, caramelized meats & fish are very common in Vietnamese cooking. Try googling "caramel vietnamese"

                      1. re: Chris VR

                        Right, Vietnamese clay pot dishes are flavored in part with a very dark caramel. A clay pot chicken recipe (a take on this is what I assume the billboard is advertising in ipsedixit's photo): http://appetiteforchina.com/recipes/v...

                        Here a CH poster shared her mother's clay pot catfish recipe: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/281485

                        So I doubt anyone would say "caramel" screams Vietnam, but it's an ingredient in a traditional type of dish.

                        1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                          Porc au caramel is one of my holy grail dishes in Vancouver. I had been tipped off by another Hound that a now-defunct restaurant had it so in I went and ordered it in English. Blank stare. Mad scrabble at menu. SO's iPhone deployed. Photos displayed. Knowing looks exchanged and item secured . I think it's called thit ko to, and the caramel thing is reserved for higher end Vietnamese places :-).

                          Getting back to the OP's thesis, there is a place in North Vancouver that does Indian pizza. I have not yet had the pleasure of sampling their wares, and it may be indefinitely postponed...

                          1. re: grayelf

                            We have Indian Pizza here, Grayelf! In the Bernal Heights area, right by the Mission area, and actually on Mission Street. It's great!!

                    2. there's a restaurant in Encinitas, CA called Chinatown that serves Italian & Chinese food...that particular combination always left me scratching my head when i drove by.

                      1. I think this place should have been renamed, "China Bye-You."


                        1. Here in my hometown in Ohio we have a place called "Fritz & Alfredo's" It's German and Mexican cuisine..shnitzel and tacos..

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: sjahns

                            A now-defunct MA restaurant, L'Escargot, with a very European look to the lettering on the sign, had French food on one side of the menu and Thai on the other. Given the history of the French in southeast Asia, this makes sense, but the name and look of the place gave no indication of the dual nature of the offerings.

                            1. re: greygarious

                              In the other direction, does the name of Boston's French-Cambodian restaurant Elephant Walk give any indication of the French side of the menu?

                          2. I live around the corner from Golden Gate Pizza and Indian Food. Over the years the pizza has taken on a distinctly Indian flavor - I think they make it with naan dough. Still pretty good, though!

                            2 Replies
                            1. re: jdub1371

                              Actually, that sounds interesting.

                              1. re: Terrieltr

                                Here on the East Coast we have a South Asian influenced pizza chain called Singa's,haven't tried it yet but I hear it's not at all wholly Indian influenced and quite good.

                            2. A lot of Chinese restaurants also serve sushi. I've seen Thai and Chinese and Japanese and Thai.

                              1 Reply
                              1. Tons of delivery services / holes in the wall here in Berlin will offer chicken, döner, pizza, hamburgers, AND Chinese etc. Anything cheap and fast, regardless of national provenance.

                                I don't tend to eat there '-)

                                3 Replies
                                  1. re: Davwud

                                    I've been pretty damn drunk in my life, but it's never lead me inside that hell hole '-)

                                    Plus - there are several 'quality' purveyors (albeit specializing in 1 or 2 items as opposed to the whole sh-bang) I'd rather stumble into.

                                    1. re: linguafood

                                      Lingua, I've always noticed that the "one-size-fits-all" joints tend to be clustered near big train stations, too...the hallmark is the backlit sign full of dead bugs.

                                      I'm with you -- don't think I've ever been drunk enough to stumble into one of those places (although I've had darned fine doner from carts at the stations in Cologne and Duesselfdorf when it I arrived too late or had been working too late to get a proper dinner)

                                1. We have a place called Mr. Pizza and Kabobs. I have not yet eaten there but I am extremely curious about the place. Having the guts to name an eatery that makes it worth a trip.

                                  1. Tons of those in the DC metro area. Asian takeout/sub sandwich shop/and usually one more food group that I am blanking on at the moment. I've not yet tried one of these places.

                                    2 Replies
                                    1. re: Fromageball

                                      Two of the Italian restaurants in my city also have sushi bars. The focus is wacky fusion rolls, ceviche (huh?) with tortilla chips, and the very sloppy ceviche burrito, which is tasty, but would be much better with a corn tortilla, rather than flour. All this in addition to the Italian menus, which at one place includes excellent wood oven pizzas. I can't wrap my head around having a minestrone soup to start, the some kind of raw fish maki with pickled ginger and wasabi, wine to drink, then a pasta for a main. It's just too weird.

                                      1. re: Fromageball

                                        We joke that someone in DC made a bunch of signs years ago: "Chinese Food, Subs, Chicken and Seafood" and just left the actual name of the place blank.

                                        It seems like a terrifying combo of foods.

                                      2. We have a place in downtown Houston that does burritos and Vietnamese noodle soups.

                                        6 Replies
                                          1. re: monavano

                                            It would be a tremendous score to find a place that did four or five items very well. Let's see...sushi, pho, Italian subs, burritos/tacos and pit beef sandwiches. I would be there...a lot!

                                            1. re: flavrmeistr

                                              For awhile there was a place here in Albany that did fried chicken, heros, BBQ, burgers & dogs & cheesesteaks, Chinese and Japanese, all under one roof. Open late nights too.

                                              I thought , "What a great idea; it's about darn time!" Unfortunately , none of it was good.

                                              1. re: eclecticsynergy

                                                That is often the case with such a diffusion of offerings from a single establishment. I guess the answer would be a really high-end food court like they have in downtown San Francisco.

                                                1. re: flavrmeistr

                                                  Do you mean at Westfield ctr. on Market?

                                                  1. re: mamachef

                                                    I believe that might be it. My sister was raving about all the great stuff there, but I wasn't in town long enough to check it out.

                                        1. I went to a pizza place in Fla while visiting in the early 90's that was owned by Haitians. I went on a Sunday and they told me "No pizza on Sundays- only Hatian food". So I asked what they had. He said fish with wine sauce and fish with something else (don't recall. I was disappointed since I was craving pizza, but ordered the fish with wine sauce. It was a whole grilled red snapper, with this great wine sauce and peas and carribean spices for around $7 if I recall. It was a lucky day!

                                          2 Replies
                                          1. re: LorenM

                                            In Northern VA, we have Bolivian-owned Italian restaurants that do all Bolivian on Saturdays. Great saltenas!

                                          2. There used to be a chinese-jewish delicatessen on Whalley Ave. in New Haven. On State St. was a large simple sign that read "GOOD COFFEE SANDWICHES", but in fact they roasted their own roast beef every morning, a dozen or so, and sold out every day. It had a cult-like following. Bagelman01 and mucho gordo would remember them. I think both were victims of urban redevelopment.

                                            2 Replies
                                            1. re: Veggo

                                              probably best not to order that sandwich on a date...no one's gonna want to kiss someone who has all those coffee grounds wedged between their teeth ;)

                                              1. re: Veggo

                                                My kids and I used to drive past a Chinese-Italian restaurant, but never went in. It had two big windows that faced the street, separated by a big chimney. They used the windows to advertise their wares.

                                                | |
                                                Hand Pulled | | Noodle
                                                Fresh Baked | | Pizza

                                                We called it the Noodle Pizza place.

                                              2. I always wonder if this type of thing comes about as a result of people living in different countries or people marrying into different cultures. I cook mostly Asian food but my husband is Chilean so I am learning to do both so that our future children can benefit from both heritages.

                                                8 Replies
                                                1. re: S_K

                                                  The opportunities for Asian-Latin American fusion are endless, and as a rank amateur I have fun with asian ingredients in some of my mexican dishes - ginger, sesame oil, wasabi, items totally alien to Mex - C.A .- S.A.

                                                  1. re: Veggo

                                                    One of my favorite places in the 80's was a Cuban Chinese place on the lower east side called La Chinita Linda. It's still around but the food is really uninspired now.

                                                    1. re: Duppie

                                                      There are a lot of Cuban Chinese restaurants in South Florida, and even Cuban Chinese bakeries. Apparently, there is a large Chinese population in Cuba. Many of the traditional Cuban cafeterias also offer fried rice with ham and pineapple and othe quasi-Chinese dishes, indicating that Chinese cooking is part of the mainstream cuisine in Cuba.

                                                      1. re: flavrmeistr

                                                        There is a Peruvian-Chinese restaurant called Chifa in Kendall (a Miami suburb), and every Chinese buffet in Miami and Orlando is sure to serve maduros, sweet Cuban-style fried plantains.

                                                        1. re: Big Bad Voodoo Lou

                                                          Peruvian Chinese is not uncommon actually. The Chinese influence - one of many influences on Peruvian cuisine - is most obvious with the "chaufa" rice dishes.

                                                          1. re: bulavinaka

                                                            I had lomo saltado for the first time last month and was blown away. Chinese stir fry and french fries. Who knew??


                                                            1. re: Davwud

                                                              IMHO, Peruvian cuisine is one of the most underexposed/underappreciated cuisines that I'm aware of - is there an oxymoron in there? I plead guilty to the -moron part...

                                                          2. re: Big Bad Voodoo Lou

                                                            In Guayaquil Ecuador in the late 80s, there were a number of hole-in-the-wall restaurants all called Chifa China. I'm not sure what all was served, but I pretty much only saw people order and eat fried rice. After all, we were in a rice growing region and most families served rice with every meal.

                                                  2. In Middle Tennessee there was a store called Shoes and Cheese. I never had the courage to go in. Now that it has closed, I'm sorry that I didn't.

                                                    9 Replies
                                                    1. re: Boudleaux

                                                      Now that's intriguing! I love cheese, my wife loves shoes. We might have been very happy there.

                                                        1. re: BobB

                                                          I'm so glad nobody crudely connected the dots on this one, with a warning about toe cheese.

                                                        2. re: Boudleaux

                                                          In Western Wisconsin, amid the many roadside signs advertising "Cheese Curds, Next Right," one stood out: "Taxidermy and Cheese."

                                                          Time ruled out stopping, and I too regret that. I have a vivd imagination, though, so it may be for the best!

                                                          1. re: cayjohan

                                                            Cheese heads, deer heads, one can appreciate the corporate vertical integration here...

                                                            1. re: Veggo

                                                              A deer head carved of cheese and mounted as a trophy would be Pretty Dang Cool, no? But then, I'm a Midwesterner. <g>

                                                              1. re: cayjohan

                                                                It worked for The Laughing Cow....

                                                                1. re: Veggo

                                                                  And don't forget the butter carved Dairy Princesses at the Wisconsin State Fair!

                                                            2. re: cayjohan

                                                              There is a place on US Alt. 40 in Middletown, MD--"Rudy's Welding and Cold Beer". Makes perfect sense to me. Welding is some thirsty work. I must have the t-shirt.

                                                          2. There's a place by me that cannot keep a tenant for more than 6 months. Whoever keeps opening shop there just doesn't understand.

                                                            Last year it was Thai, burgers, and pizza. Then they closed and someone opened shop there serving Thai, pizza, and burritos. Then they closed, and as of now it's Thai, sushi, and pizza.

                                                            Someone's not getting the hint! LOL Stick to one style of food and make it the best you can!

                                                            1. Just saw a new restaurant in Montreal called Mani's that serves Indian and Italian food!

                                                              I wonder if the menu is Butter chicken Fettucini or Meatballs curry!

                                                              4 Replies
                                                              1. re: westaust

                                                                Shrimp Alfredo on basmati with a side of garlic naan.


                                                                1. re: Davwud

                                                                  All of that sounds pretty good to me. Is that just wrong?

                                                                  1. re: flavrmeistr

                                                                    I've always maintained, taste trumps all.


                                                                2. re: westaust

                                                                  I'm home sick and just ordered in a Veggie Korma pizza from Panago!

                                                                3. I thought of this thread when I brought the mail in today. There was a coupon book, and on the back cover was an ad for a family owned and operated place selling pizza and Indian food. The only thing I could think was curry pizza? Pepperoni chutney?

                                                                  5 Replies
                                                                  1. re: gaffk

                                                                    That's a naan-starter for me ;)

                                                                    1. re: Veggo

                                                                      I was going to wonder if naan was the base crust--actually might not be too bad.

                                                                      1. re: gaffk

                                                                        There's a place i've tried that offers a chicken curry pizza, garnished with cheese, tomatoes and coriander. It works, (I've ordered it more than once,) but they refuse to make it on naan.

                                                                        1. re: davekry

                                                                          Maybe if you enlist enough people to request it?

                                                                          1. re: gaffk

                                                                            Might have something to do with the fact that it's the only "Indian" item on the menu - kind of like how you have Mexican pizza.

                                                                  2. I live near a Chinese / donut shop which I think is almost as bizarre as what I found at the dollar store the other day.

                                                                    4 Replies
                                                                    1. re: foodworthy

                                                                      Saw that at Target and it was waaaay more than a dollar.

                                                                      1. re: foodworthy

                                                                        For some reason Chinese/doughnut shops are common around my area (though they still strike me as slightly odd in a cool way). Great doughnuts for breakfast, various tasty rice/veg/meat bowls (with the most awesomely perfect sticky rice.....) for lunch (^_^)

                                                                        There is also a place nearby called Noah's HofBrau (sp?) owned/run by some folk of some Eastern descent (I'll not be so pretentious as to take a guess as to their nationality lol). They have really good "Thanksgiving" type food (turkey sandwiches with gravy and such) as well as really good Chinese food.

                                                                        1. re: Popkin

                                                                          Your area must be the East Bay. There are a ton of these places in Oakland/Berkeley (or Broakland, as my sister calls it).

                                                                      2. There is a place in Tucson called Antonio's and it serves Mexican food and Italian food. If you order a Mexican main you get chips and salsa, if you order an Italian main you get bread and olive oil. The food was surprisingly good even for the strange diversity, they essential served two separate menus.

                                                                        1. 20 years ago while my brother was back in town visiting on Christmas break we met up with some of his buddies from UVA and ended up at a restuarant in Adams Morgan that was Italian / Ethiopian. We figured it was the whole Mussolini thing. The Ethiopian food was good the Italian so-so, I guess it was there for picky eaters not willing to try Ethiopian food.

                                                                          1 Reply
                                                                          1. re: HokieAnnie

                                                                            Ethiopia was once colonized by Italy so this makes perfect sense. Some Ethiopian places I go to serve kitfo on italian bread, spaghetti, lasagna, or salads with oil and vinegar.

                                                                          2. We have a great donut / Mexican torta / burger / Chinese food shop in Vancouver, BC. The donuts and tortas are top notch. The rest - not so much.

                                                                            1. There are quite a few Tex-Mex/Chinese places in NYC...its kinda cool to watch a bunch of Chinese guys hack away at your taco fillings with cleavers...the food is usually only so-so

                                                                              Apparently, the idea can be traced back to one guy


                                                                              1. Place in Denver that calls itself a "Pub & Bistro." Needless to say it's neither.

                                                                                2 Replies
                                                                                1. re: tatamagouche

                                                                                  My favorite was a bar I went into years ago in the Keys; "Church of the Wholly Conch and Bar & Grill". The bartender was an ordained minister. He had a special bloody Mary breakfast on Sunday mornings for hungover penitents.