Category Archives: Commentary

Robin Garr’s musings about food and restaurant matters that don’t fit neatly into the “review” category.

Jasmine Bistro impresses with Chinese regional flavors

I still vividly remember the excitement of my first tastes of Sichuan cuisine. We had to travel to New York City, San Francisco or Chicago to get such goodies back in the late ‘70s, but Sichuan, aka Szechwan, fare did get to Louisville finally, and for a decade or two, these spicy regional cuisines were among the city’s most popular dining options. Continue reading Jasmine Bistro impresses with Chinese regional flavors

However you pronounce SOU, we sure like it.

SOU might mean “South.” It could represent “soul.” Yet the proper way to pronounce the name of this new Plainview-area eatery is not “sow” or “soo” but “So-you.” Intentional ambiguity seems to lie at the heart of this upscale dining room in a thoroughly renovated former Skyline Chili parlor, and that’s all right. Continue reading However you pronounce SOU, we sure like it.

That’s Showbiz, Folks!

The scenario: An alarm goes off in a dark bedroom. A lamp switches on. A man arises, dons a starched white chef jacket, places a coffee pod briefly in a shiny, complicated-looking appliance, and enjoys the beverage that emerges. Before leaving home, he grabs a hand-made shopping basket he picked up on his last trip to Guatemala, and says goodbye to his faithful dog. Continue reading That’s Showbiz, Folks!

Shirley Mae’s puts the soul in soul food

Some say that the art of soul, in music or in food, can never be mastered by white folks, and I can buy this hypothesis: Lacking a history of slavery and oppression, we just don’t have the tools born of heritage. But we can certainly enjoy soul, and honor it, whether we’re listening to Aretha or dining at someplace like Shirley Mae’s. Continue reading Shirley Mae’s puts the soul in soul food