|I’m delighted to announce a new partnership between LouisvilleHotBytes and The Voice-Tribune, Louisville’s suburban weekly newspaper. We’ll publish monthly restaurant reviews and wine-tasting reports in The Voice, which is available on East End news stands and by subscription.
For many years, Westerners who craved a taste of truly authentic Chinese food have been pretty much out of luck. Even if we followed the traditional wisdom for tracking down the finest Chinese fare (“look for the places where Chinese people eat”), our round eyes and pink complexions gave us away.
Invariably, even the most impassioned request for those exotic, delicious-looking dishes we could see all around us would meet kind but firm resistance. “You won’t like that. Try this.”
But the times are a’changing as a new generation of Chinese-immigrant entrepreneurs comes into the restaurant business; and nowadays at least a few Asian eateries are willing to give diners of European heritage a peek at the Chinese-for-Chinese menu.
Here’s news that may surprise you if you haven’t been paying attention: One of the best places in Louisville to find genuine, home-style Cantonese fare the way the Cantonese like it is the Oriental House in St. Matthews.
Continue reading Old chop suey house goes authentic
U of L basketball coach Rick Pitino, whose flashy new Website, RickPitino.com, has become a must-visit bookmark for Cardinals hoops fans, has added an unexpected feature: A series of restaurant reviews, currently featuring his thoughts on a number of Louisville steakhouses and high-end Italian eateries in New York. Now online are Rick’s comments on Morton’s, Ruth’s Chris and Pat’s steak houses, as well as reviews of the trendy Babbo, Campagnola and Bravo Gianni in New York. An earlier report on Louisville’s Porcini appears to have scrolled off the list.
His reviews are light, bright and consistently positive (“I have never had a bad meal there,” he says of Morton’s, and of Ruth’s Chris he goes on, “You’ll find it difficult to find a bad meal”). But he’s got an unerring eye for value, correctly zapping both chain steak houses’ wine lists as “extensive and overpriced.” Speaking of Morton’s, he advises, “Make sure you bring plenty of money or plastic …”
Continue reading Look who’s reviewing restaurants!
Gail Schwartz, co-owner of Louisville’s Artemesia restaurant, died on Jan. 7 after a long battle with cancer. Gail was one of the people in the Louisville restaurant community who people seemed to genuinely appreciate. She’ll be missed. Expressions of sympathy may be directed to The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society c/o Finance Department, 1311 Mamaroneck Avenue, White Plains, NY 10605, (800) 955-4572, http://www.LLS.org/donate.
Click for her obituary in The Courier-Journal.
Springing back into action after way too long a break (forced by the demands of my WineLoversPage.com website and wine-related travel to Portugal early in the holiday season), I resume this journal with excellent news for local fanciers of good things to eat: Saffron’s, veteran restaurateur Majid Ghavami’s classy Persian spot that I rank among the city’s best places to dine, is about to open a second downtown location.
Saffron’s Buffet will open soon in the space at 558 S. Fifth St., just north of Chestnut Street, that had housed Manoosh’s until the latter put up the shutters last autumn. (It was originally scheduled for opening in January, but significant renovation needs have prompted some delay. Watch this space for more news.)
Saffron’s Buffet will feature many of Saffron’s popular Persian dishes, styled for buffet service and priced to enjoy at $7.95 for all you can eat. Continue reading Saffron’s, Part Deux
If you haven’t yet got around to checking out Gumbo A Go-Go, what are you waiting for? Just about all the “foodies” I know share the opinion that this popular new New Orleans-style spot features some of the best spicy Cajun and Creole chow around, and best of all, just about everything on the short Louisiana-style menu goes for a highly affordable $5.
Continue reading Festive fun at Gumbo A Go-Go
Kevin Nelson, the new executive chef at the just-reopened Jay’s Cafeteria, got a few chuckles when he told a Courier-Journal business reporter, “My goal here is to make it the African-American Vincenzo’s.”
I’ve got news, folks: Based on the polished and professional service we received when we dined here at midday today, Vincenzo’s might just want to start thinking about trying to be the Italian-American Jay’s. The food was excellent, too: Urban soul food, served cafeteria-style – at least for now, it’s an all-you-can-eat deal at $10.99 a person for adults and teen-agers on Sundays – very well prepared by skilled chefs, several of whom I noticed proudly wear the Sullivan University culinary school logo on their whites.
Continue reading Jay’s is back, better than ever