Good beer, good food boost Pints & Union’s cozy pub vibe

Every now and then a new local place to eat and drink makes me exceptionally happy. Sure, I’m always glad to see any new eatery come to town. But now and then a fresh arrival delivers such pleasure in its food, drink, and mood that it makes me jump up and down in delight.

Consider, if you will, Pints & Union in downtown New Albany, the utterly lovable restaurant … er, no, beer bar? … um, no, not that, nor a brewpub either. It’s a public house, a European-style pub, then, built into the beautifully renovated shell of an 1880s-era general store that later served as a neighborhood saloon. Continue reading Good beer, good food boost Pints & Union’s cozy pub vibe

Brasserie Provence takes us to France, très bon!

Say what you will about the French, they are a carnivorous people. French cuisine is full of beef, lamb, pork, chicken, fish, toutes les viandes! All the meats!

But I’m pretty sure Julia Child’s recipe box never contained a recipe for tofu. When I walk into a French restaurant, I expect a bill of fare centered on meat, poultry, and fish, because that’s how the French roll. Or cook. Continue reading Brasserie Provence takes us to France, très bon!

Is it Safe?

I am, in modern parlance, “an old,” so I remember the unsettling scene from 1976’s “The Marathon Man” in which a Nazi war criminal, played by Laurence Olivier, repeatedly asks Dustin Hoffman “Is it safe?” while laying out dental instruments with which to torture him with. Hoffman – terrified, sweating, strapped to a chair – replies “Yes, it’s safe, it’s very safe, it’s so safe you wouldn’t believe it.”  Whenever I see the blue polo shirt of a Metro Health Department inspector slip into my place of employment, my brain coughs up this scene.   Continue reading Is it Safe?

Looking backward: A retrospective progressive dinner

“Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards,” the great 19th century philosopher Søren Kierkegaard once said, and Kierkegaard should have known: The founder of existentialism, he coined the word “angst.” He called out for us to live passionately, worrying more about the problem of living life than trying to fit the social order.

What’s more, Kierkegaard came from Denmark, which also gave us the great film Babette’s Feast, that deep dive into human nature that is also perhaps the greatest foodie flick ever.

There has to be a message for us here. I think it’s calling on me to take a late-summer pause in the neverending flow of reports on eateries old and new, just for this week following the philosopher’s counsel to look backward as a way to guide our journey forward. Continue reading Looking backward: A retrospective progressive dinner

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