If you’ve been reading my gustatory musings for any time, you know that I bring a strong locavore sensibility to this work. I like to eat local food, and I prefer to dine at local restaurants. When I do business with a bank, grocer, optician, investment adviser, newspaper and, most definitely, restaurant, I like to know that the owner herself is available for a conversation, will look me in the eye, shake my hand, and offer me a fair deal.
Everyone likes Mexican food, don’t we? But what do we mean when we say “Mexican”?
If our grandparents in Louisville knew Mexican food at all, they probably meant chili con carne, a spicy mix of beans and beef served over spaghetti.
When you’re buying a car, a suit, a pair of shoes, a watch, or even a hamburger, quality makes a difference. Leather seats or plastic in your family limo? All-weather wool from Armani or shiny polyester from T.J.Maxx? Mephisto loafers, or sneakers from Payless? Tag Heuer or a fake Rolex?
Oh, hell, this is too complicated. Let’s go get a burger.
Menudo, the fabulously strong flavored and fiery Mexican stew made from pork chitlins (“chitterlings,” to the prissy, or, if you insist on a definition in English, pork intestines) is one of the world’s most trusted hangover cures.
This may relate to the truth that, no matter how bad you feel, if you can hold down a stenchy ration of menudo, you can probably hold down just about anything.
Mary took a bite of her sandwich – no easy task considering its oversize girth. She chewed gently, looked thoughtful, then firmly opined: “This is almost too much meat.”
Yes, this is one of those things that no one said, ever … until someone said it.
And it betrayed a basic failure to comprehend the simple reality of delicatessen tradition: “Too much meat,” meaning “generously, gloriously piled high,” is just what delis do.
“My name is Robin, and I am a pizza snob.”
There. I said it, and I’m not even sorry.
Frankfort Avenue – or just plain “The Avenue,” as its neighborhood business association likes to call it – has come a mighty long way in the generation since the late, lamented Deitrich’s started serving creative cuisine in an upscale environment in the old Crescent Theater, a place that at the time had seen considerably better days.
Has Louisville reached the saturation point for pizza? Some of my foodie friends are aghast at the seemingly endless march of pizzerias that keep arriving in town. The Baxter Avenue/Bardstown Road and St. Matthews strips are particularly pizza-rich environments, but they’re everywhere – even, in today’s excursion, the far East End. Continue reading
Middletown’s Main Street, a quaint strip of Victorian houses, steepled churches and storefront shops, served as the suburban community’s main drag for many years as its commercial center and a slow-down, look-around opportunity for traffic on the old U.S. 60.
Then came the age of the suburb. Middletown got a four-lane “bypass” that sped traffic around the old town center and that quickly sprouted with shopping centers and strip malls, and Main Street settled into a quieter, gentler place. Continue reading
“I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream.” Once a popular ditty of the “Roaring Twenties,” this folk wisdom has grown into a simple truth.
Who doesn’t like ice cream? As Mary’s father used to say, even after an ample meal, “There is always room for ice cream.” And with Spring belatedly breaking after one of the most relentless Winters in recent memory, the signs of the season include, in addition to green buds, bright flowers and insane allergy-pollen levels, long lines of hungry supplicants forming around just about every ice-cream shop in town. Even the perennial ice cream trucks have brought their clangy rendition of “Camptown Races” back to the streets of our fair city. Continue reading
Hay!! Chi Wa Waa!? Chapinlandia? What the heck is going on here? Did someone just yell, “Alex, I’ll take ‘Restaurants with Unusual Names’ for $500″? Nah.
Wow! I’ve got to tell you about the cozy little place where we ate on a trip out to Oldham County the other day.
It was a small space, intimate but surprisingly comfortable as we sat surrounded by walls of glass that let in plenty of sunlight and the suburban view. The colors were muted, almost spartan, wsoft upholstery and crisp edges in shades of gray. The seating was most comfortable of all, form-fitting and even adjustable; and we could take our pick among scores of entertainment channels. Really, about the only downside I could see was the the big steering wheel in my lap that made it kind of hard to get at my food.
Yep, we were dashboard dining! Continue reading