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

The slow-braised pot roast at Finn's Southern Kitchen

Finn’s pot roast is a feast for all seasons

In case you hadn’t noticed, summer has clamped down on us fully now. It’s 95 outside as I write this, and the central air is struggling. The humidity? Don’t even ask. It’s as if the giant evil spaceship in Independence Day: Resurgence is dropping down over the metro, only it’s a giant sponge dripping hot water.

Yuk. Nothing seems very appetizing when the weather is like this.

Wait! How about a big bowl of good old-fashioned pot roast? Continue reading

Gospel Bird's Southern Fried Chicken

We’re singing in Gospel Bird’s choir

What in the Hell is a Gospel Bird?

No, wait, better make that, “What in Heaven’s name is a Gospel Bird?”

I’m pretty sure it’s not a winged creature that knocks on your door and asks if you have found Jesus. It’s not a dove that comes down with wind and fire, either. Continue reading

The new calamari at Silvio's/

At Silvio’s, the calamari win redemption

When I reviewed Silvio’s last month, I praised everything it had … but had to declare the calimari “disappointing … competently fried, not greasy, but they weren’t crisp, and the tentacle bits were tough and rubbery. The marinara was the best part.” Proprietor Bill Melillo was quick to respond, assuring me that he was working on that. We returned, and I’m delighted to report: problem solved. They were great, piping-hot and crisp, as they should be. The rings in particular were tender and flavorful, with a nice crunch to the light breading. And the marinara remains outstanding. Good work, Silvio!
(silviositalianrestaurant.com)

The Hub's grilled-kale salad

The Hub is on a roll

Let’s get this right up front: I miss River City Tire. Nice folks selling good tires at fair prices, and whenever that stupid little flat-tire icon lit up on my dashboard, I could run by and get a free pressure check with a friendly smile.

But River City Tire is gone. There’s no use crying bitter tears over that. And I have to admit that the new building that replaced the old urban-grunge industrial facility fits nicely in to the upscale urban scene that promoters have dubbed The Avenue. Continue reading

Pad Thai at A Taste of Thai in Crestwood

How hot? That hot. They’ll tell you no lies at A Taste of Thai

“How hot do you want your Pad Thai?”

This can be a leading question in any Asian eatery where some of the dishes have the capability to scorch your palate. I raised an eyebrow, seeking more information.

“Scale of one to four,” our friendly server added, neglecting to mention the “zero” possibility. More about that later. Continue reading

A 14-inch Pizza Margherita at North End Slice

A Half Peach and a whole Slice

Some days I want to eat something healthy. Some days, not so much.

That’s why I’m glad that there is room in the world for places like North End Slice, where the bill of fare is all pizza, all the time; and places like Half Peach Bakery & Cafe, where there is nary a speck of meat or even any animal-based products like eggs or cheese on the premises. Continue reading

Oriental House's eggplant with garlic sauce

We look back at 2015, and way back at Oriental House

We’re just a few days into the New Year, and most of you foodies are probably already tired of reading many versions of the same basic story about all the new restaurants that joined the metro’s culinary community last year. So let’s not do that.

I’d like to tip my fedora to Baby 2016, though, by pulling up for a wider view: Was there any consistent flavor in the boiling, simmering, seething stew of the city’s eats beat in 2015? Continue reading