Industry Standard - Marsha Lynch

Industry Standard: Okay or Not?

Savvy restaurant patrons have heard of the practice of bringing your own bottle of wine to a restaurant and paying a “corkage” fee to have it poured and served for you and your guests. But some folks take things a hair too far in this area. Let’s play a game about dining out. A game I like to call “Okay or Not?”
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Griddled cheese at Craft House

Craft House: “You’re not really here for the food, are you, Bob?”

Remember the old joke about a hunter’s repeated efforts to bag a giant grizzly bear? It’s a little too long and risque to quote here in full, but it ends with the bear lovingly whispering, “You’re not really here for the hunting, are you, Bob?”

Craft House in Crescent Hill is kind of like that too. Continue reading

Slider showdown!

Signs of the apocalypse: The White Castle veggie slider

I can’t resist mentioning this briefly, since my mini-report on the HotBytes forum and Facebook on New Year’s Day blew up with “Likes” and comments, hinting that there’s public interest in this bizarre development: White Castle, at least for a while, now offers a veggie burger, of all things. They’re only 99 cents each, cheap, but like their meatful siblings, it takes a few to satisfy an appetite.
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Mitchell's Fish Market's Atlantic Cod Shang Hai

Mitchell’s Fish Market re-chains, stays about the same

Here’s one reason why I don’t often review corporate chain eateries: They’re generally predictable. Even the good ones don’t change much, unless the stockholders scream for change, and nothing good generally comes of that.

Take Mitchell’s Fish Market: I last reviewed it in November 2001, when it and its then-corporate partner Martini Italian Bistro had just arrived as anchor restaurants the new Summit shopping center. Continue reading

The sweet potato veggie burger at Bread and Breakfast

Can you say “Bread and Breakfast” three times fast?

Let’s head over to New Albany and get some bed and break … um … bed and break … DAMMIT! I mean BED AND BREAKFAST! No, BREAD! AND BEKKFAST! DAMMIT AGAIN!

Let’s face it. If I was mean enough to mark a place down because its name is hard to say, then this charming little bakery and b-r-e-a-k-f-a-s-t and lunch eatery at the corner of New Albany’s Main and Bank streets would be in a heap of trouble.
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Vit Phá Lau, the "real" duck at Vietnam Kitchen

Duck taunters all win at Vietnam Kitchen

Hey! Vietnamese Kitchen’s got duck! Succulent, delicious duck, fatty and rich! And they’ve got “mock duck,” too: an alternative invented by vegetarian Buddhist monks! Either way, if it looks like a duck and quacks like a duck, it must be … well, you know.

Naturally my mind spun a Pythonesque duck-taunting fight.
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Bistro 1860's Colorado Rack of Lamb

Hate winter? Warm your soul and tummy at Bistro 1860

I try hard to be open-minded. I really do.

Consider the evidence: I’m a U of L grad, but I’m willing to root for UK or even IU, assuming that they aren’t playing the home team. I’m male yet feminist, straight yet affirming. And even as a card-carrying liberal, I voted for at least one Republican on last month’s ballot. Hey, it’s something!

But all this tolerance stops when we talk about the seasons.
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Tarte de tomates

Brasserie Provence soothes the savage critic

“Music hath charms to soothe the savage breast.” Or maybe “beast.” Everybody thinks the Bard wrote this, but it was actually William Congreve, a decidedly lesser poet who lived a century or so after Bill Shakspear trod the boards.

Whatever.

My breast was savage, and so was my beast, the other day. I was crabby. I’ll admit it. And I showed few signs of getting better. What was gnawing at my liver? Let me count the ways. (The Bard really did say that.)
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Industry Standard - Marsha Lynch

Is perception reality?

Sometimes perception is reality. If a group of diners comes into your restaurant and has to wait a bit longer to be seated than they’d like, they will often naturally exaggerate that wait time when they relate the experience to other people. Their “45-minute” wait for a table might in reality have been 20 minutes, but they will still stick to that 45-minute testimony. Once things have gone this far astray, all bets are off.
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Toast on Market's spicy chipotle grilled cheese sandwich and tomato soup.

Toast on New Albany’s Market lights our fire

I should have known that Toast on Market’s spicy chipotle grilled cheese sandwich was going to be hot, because spicy chipotle.

But I didn’t quite expect flames to come shooting out my mouth while my endorphins took off in a wild and crazy rush around my brain. Wooee! That sandwich is HOT! In fact, even the accompanying bowl of roasted tomato soup boasted a distinct kick of cayenne. Let me tell you, that was one feisty lunch.
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