Category Archives: $$ Modest ($20-$40)

Dragon King’s Daughter achieves enlightenment

The dragon king’s daughter, ancient Buddhist tradition tells us, was an eight-year-old female dragon who became the first woman ever to reach enlightenment. Female, young, in the form of an animal? It seemed impossible for such a creature to attain Buddhahood – and yet she did it.

There could be no more appropriate spirit animal for Toki Masabuchi, proprietor of the popular Dragon King’s Daughter restaurants on Bardstown Road and in Southern Indiana. We crossed the river recently to check out its new, larger location on New Albany’s Market Street. Continue reading Dragon King’s Daughter achieves enlightenment

Expand your Ethiopian food horizons at Abyssinia and Addis

To gain real insight into other people, walk a mile in their moccasins. This simple old wisdom still feels fresh, maybe more than ever these days. Here’s another saying, not so famous, because I just made it up: To get to know friends from around the world, sit down to a meal of their food. While you’re there, talk to the owners and workers if you can, and thank them for making our town a more diverse and interesting place.

This is easy for me. I’ve always been excited by the opportunity to try food from all over the world, and to get to know the people who make it. I recommend it to you, too. Here’s a good way to start: drop by either – or both – of the downtown Ethiopian restaurants where I’ve enjoyed lunch recently: Addis Grill on the north side of the business district, and Abyssinia Authentic Ethiopian toward downtown’s southern end. Continue reading Expand your Ethiopian food horizons at Abyssinia and Addis

Get your power bowl at plant-based Inwave

I’d been meaning to make a stop at Inwave, a locally owned fast-food spot near Middletown that features power bowls, acai bowls, vegan fare, juices and smoothies. It’s a fast-casual setup in which you walk down the line choosing grains, nuts, seeds and toppings for your individualized bowl. It’s an interesting concept, with the glitzy look of a chain-in-the-making. Continue reading Get your power bowl at plant-based Inwave

Naïve’s sustainable ethos yields delicious fare

It is so tempting to start with a joke about a restaurant named Naïve that I’m just going to resist temptation and not even go there. Seriously, the ethos behind the name of this charming new spot on the edge of Butchertown is so sweet that it deserves to stand on its own:

“We see the world as a place of hope,” Naïve’s owners write on the restaurant website. “Maybe that’s naive. But maybe it’s one of our greatest strengths. Because we’re not afraid to think big, with no preconceived notions. With a connection to what’s real, from the food we eat to the relationships we nourish.” Continue reading Naïve’s sustainable ethos yields delicious fare

Go East to Con Huevos and Joella’s

Three years ago two interesting new locally owned fast-casual eateries came to town, and I loved them both: Con Huevos set a new standard with its delicious, chef-driven Mexican breakfast and lunch. Joella’s first introduced us to Nashville-style hot chicken, a feisty genre that might remind you of Indi’s hot fried chicken but that’s really not the same.

Both eateries have recently opened branches in the metro’s eastern suburbs. Naturally I had to check them out. Continue reading Go East to Con Huevos and Joella’s