eating indy

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  • 86 th. Street Pub 006
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  • 9 irish brothers 012

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Sahm’s Restaurant & Pub

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Patrick does have issues with reading a menu in its entirety. He told me that if the Clam Chowder had no onion he would order that with a grilled cheese sandwich. If the  soup had onion he would go with the breaded fish sandwich. He assumed that all sans came with chips. So when the server asked his side he was lost. My stare was far from “impatient”. I merely wanted him to go ahead with alacrity; as the joint was full and the server busy. He opted for “curled carrots”. An interesting choice.

Pat didn’t write a review of his lunch except for the carrot curls. He said that would come in the form of a comment, once the post is published.

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As you can see the fish looked great. The curls were thin sliced carrots that were quickly deep-fried. Very curious. I found them to be an interesting side dish. I enjoyed my taste but I don’t know that I would enjoy a full side.

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As you can see if you peruse their menu they offer a big one. I have been to some of their other sites in the past and Pat and I have hit the place down town. Why that was never written about who knows. So I can say these guys know how a joint should run.

So they offer a lot of great comfort food options I decided on the meatloaf melt. That is a healthy portion of grilled meatloaf with sautéed onions, American and Munster cheeses on white toast, with a brown sugar glaze.

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I was curious how much the bells and whistles would detract from the center piece of the sandwich. The onions added to the over all taste. The cheese does what cheese always does. It brings another layer of flavor and is more complement that adversary. Now we come to the glaze. It tasted like catsup and brown sugar. Which to some folks is mandatory on meatloaf. To me;not so much. It did distract from the actual loaf itself. However only in the slightest degree. The size of the portion was such that it was easy to find a few bites with no enhancements. To me the meatloaf had both good flavor and a nice texture and density. If you are a meatloaf junkie this would be a great fix for you. They also offer it as a dinner. As far as the mushrooms go they were fine as a side. Pretty ho-hum. Standard mushrooms,cut in half and tossed in flour and deep-fried. Then presented with a pretty generic horse-radish sauce. Adequate as a side, you could at least taste mushroom.

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For dessert we each had a slice of their sour cream coffee cake, for $1.29. They serve the same cake with their salads. It is really nice. Not overly sweet and a great crumb. So we liked this place. Good and attentive service, good food and more than fair pricing. Pat’s cod was $9.49 and my meatloaf was $7.99. And no matter where you are there is probably a Sahm’s close to you.

Sahm's Restaurant & Pub on Urbanspoon

86th Street Pub

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Whatever you might say about our choices in places to eat you gotta’ admit we can sure find some interesting pubs.

The 86th Street Pub has been around since 1990. I have never heard of it. They have a “sister” joint on the South side; Pat’s turf; that had gone through some extensive remodeling, including a name change. Pat stopped in there for a beer and that’s where he learned about the place.

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It’s a nice sized place and they are far from shy decorating for Christmas. They have raised paneling throughout and they took the time to cover the recessed portions in gift wrapping paper. It makes the whole dining area look as though it is walled with presents.

Since they have hand breaded mushrooms on the menu; and since Pat and I both love good ‘shrums we ordered an appetizer.

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These beauties were as tasty as they look. Hand breaded mushrooms, when done right, are wonderful. These were done right. They were as good as the ones at the Checkered Flag Tavern. And they cost $5.50. You can also choose a combo of mushrooms and pickles for the same price.

I had a bit of trouble on what else to order. I couldn’t decide on their cheese steak or the French dip. They do a house roasted beef, which they use for their Pub Cheese Steak. Meat,peppers,onions and mushrooms all topped with Swiss cheese for $8.75. The French Dip was  shaved steak with Swiss and au jus for $7.75. Both come with chips or fries. I decided on the cheese steak with chips.

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The sandwich was big. Definitely able to handle the hardy appetite. Overall it was pretty tasty. However I think it would have been better had they not been so assertive in re-thermalizing the already cooked meat. Put the beef in the au jus to reheat. Drop on the flat top just long enough to transfer the veggies and cheese. I actually think that would improve an already good sandwich.

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So in our estimation the 86th Street Pub is a keeper. Unpretentious. Honest food and honest drink. They offer an exceptional collection of craft beers. I’m sure that is due to the Manager, Brian, being a beer freak. For which I thank him. And in addition to all that they are not afraid to celebrate Christmas.

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86th Street Pub on Urbanspoon

Tortas Guicho Domingues y el Cubanito 641 Virginia Avenue

Now isn’t that a lovely name. Rolls off the tongue doesn’t it. Pat and I are late to the party for this joint, judging from the number of Blog posts. But here we are.

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The place was open in 1960 and the dining rooms reflect that era well. Except for the one masonry and brick wall and the exposed duct work

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As soon as you are seated you are given two small bowls of salsa and a grand bowl of pickled carrot and peppers.

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The carrot and chiles were excellent. Either eaten out of hand or put in your sandwich. Since they offered no chips I assume the salsa was intended as condiments. Based upon the amount of tiny seeds I figured the green salsa was a tomatillo sauce. It was so so. As for the red it was a red pod puree. Slight heat and a wonderful earthiness that dried red chiles give. However they were not strained. I wasn’t taught that way, so I really didn’t dig it.

They offer tamales, tacos and quessadillas. But their main bag are tortas. Mexican style sandwiches.

Their menu has the sandwiches identified by nationality, number or celebrity. They also have a build your own category. That’s what Pat opted for.

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I required steak and chorizo. So I ordered # 22. The Mexican. Grilled steak,chorizo,avocado, cilantro and bell peppers topped with mozzarella cheese. Very, very good. With all the stuff offered on the sandwich it could have been huge. This sandwich was a wonderful example of proportion. A great filling to bread ratio. The bread was nicely crusted and the interior had just the right amount of fluffiness. I love their bread. I loved this sandwich. Of course you all know that. I mean their spot on the Spoon shows a 94% approval. And all those bloggers? Well. As I said we were late. Don’t you be late. This joint is legit. Excellent sandwiches. They also have a great collection of Jarritos. So. Your move.

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Tortas Guicho Dominguez y el Cubanito on Urbanspoon

 

G.G’s Bar & Grill 5701 E. 71 st. Street

People that go to bars realize they can be placed into 2 basic categories. Bars that make you nervous. Those bars you never even think of eating at. So you finish your drink. leave and probably never return. The second category is bars that make you feel more relaxed. Places you wouldn’t mind having a second beverage or even order a nosh.

Well I think G.G’s falls into the second category. We stopped there for a couple of beers last week and liked the whole scene. The menu has your basic bar fry food and it also has a good selection of not so basic pub grub.

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I really had my eye set on the Ribeye steak. But at the last-minute I thought it might be too much food for lunch. As it turned out what I did eat was just as much.

One of the specials was a slice of New York pizza for $1.99. We decided to have that as an appetizer. They make their own crust and sauce so I wanted to try it anyway.

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This is one half of the slice. My guess is it was 1/4 of a 14 inch pie. I think they only offer thin crust. The crust was pretty good, it had a nice flavor and decent mouth feel. I would have liked it a bit crisper though. As for the sauce it too had a pretty good flavor it just needed a little more pizzazz. The addition of salt would be a good start,in my opinion.

As for Pat he had planned on ordering the filet. But the allure of the big pig was too much for him.

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They offered 3 lunch specials one of which was chili with grilled cheese sandwich for $ 5.95. Now that is as Hoosier as you can get.

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The sandwich was what you would imagine. Buttered Texas toast and American cheese. Something I would hardly ever order out but it was a cold day and I wanted chili. What is it about grilled cheese sandwiches and soup that sound so compelling?

As for the chili it was a very good example of Indiana style chili, nothing fancy just tasty and filling. Chili is one of the many cooking things that intrigue me. All the different ways people prepare it fascinates me.

This chili was mostly ground beef with the main seasoning being chile powder. A mix of chile peppers and cumin. It had kidney beans and diced green pepper, definitely a Hoosier and “near South” thing. But the one thing that brought back the memories was the sweetness and spiciness of the soup. A job well done.

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So once again we introduce to you a bar. A bar that has some very good food, very good prices and a very good bar tender/server. I believe her name is Nicole. Remember its name. G.G’s Bar & Grill.

GG's Bar & Grill on Urbanspoon

 

 

 

 

G.T South’s Rib House 5711 E 71 St. Street

Now this is a rarity for this spot. I bought a voucher for food for a joint and was able to use it. I purchased a voucher from Amazon Local for G.T.’s. Nine bucks for 15 dollars of food. Good deal. I don’t know why they ran the promotion, because the food is really pretty good.

As soon as you walk in you are seduced by the aroma. BBQ. Smells like a rib joint. The ribs are not available until dinner. However they have a very solid lunch menu.

They have a website but it doesn’t show any prices. I didn’t even try to scan their book like menu. But for what it’s worth their prices are very good.

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Pat’s platter was huge. We’re talking 12 inch oval with just enough room for a muffin. The sides were put up in 4 oz. ramekins and had to be placed on the side. A bunch of food for $11.50.

They serve the meat dry, with sauce on the side,which I like. They offer 3 sauces. Hot or medium red and a Carolina pepper, vinegar. I decided on a brisket sandwich. It comes 2 ways. Standard for,I don’t remember and a Jumbo for $8.50. With the sandwiches they provide chips and choice of side.

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I expected the brisket to be sliced, as that is what I am told that is how it is done for platters. Oops. It’s shredded on the sandwich. Actually they might have even said that on the menu. I don’t recall. No matter the sandwich was very good. The brisket was both moist and tender,with a nice smokiness. The Carolina sauce I asked for on the side was so-so. As were the greens I ordered to go with it. They were tasty enough but they needed an oomph. Maybe some hock or more cooking time. I was concentrating more on my cow meat. I can say the pot liquor for the greens was pretty flat. No matter. My sandwich was good. And I like ruffled chips served with sandwiches, more joints should do that. In my opinion.

Isn't that a lovely toasted bun.

Isn’t that a lovely toasted bun.

Our server tried to tempt us with desert. We were too full. She did manage to talk Pat into a cookie. And it was gratis. Cool. It was my turn to buy. On the service, it was spot on. Everyone I saw or came in contact with friendly and professional. I saw a busser walk through our dining area at least 3 times during our lunch. Each time he was on point. The last time he asked me if I needed a go box,as I was letting my food “settle” before I commenced eating. Our personal server was wonderful. All in all this joint has a great wait staff. So. In our opinion: Great food + Great service = Go there.

G.T. South's Rib House on Urbanspoon

Bearcats Restaurant 1055 N. Senate Ave. (Revisit)

Pat and I had lunch here in July 2013. We heard sometime back that the joint had changed owners and quite a few changes were made. I also heard that they were going to start corning their own brisket. Before they bought raw corned beef and cooked it off in-house. I haven’t heard any more about it so we decided to go today. As I understand it the fellow that originally opened the Living Room Lounge is the new owner. At the Lounge he perfected a technique to cook a burger on a griddle that makes it crispy on the outside yet tender and moist on the inside. Pat remember that and he was jonesin’ for a burger.

The last time we were here the place had a definite industrial vibe, concrete floors the whole bit. Now they have a wood floor. They also had mushrooms. The menu offered fresh breaded mushrooms both times. The last time they were out, not this time.

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Now these suckers were hot, fresh and delicious. An excellent appetizer.

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They had all the lunch specials typed out in the caddie on each table so you knew as soon as you sat down what the specials were. I opted for the Mahi burger. I really didn’t know what to expect. Our server wasn’t sure how to describe it. She did know they came in frozen and were good. As it turned out it was a round cutout of a fillet. It wasn’t chopped as you might expect from a sandwich called a burger. However it was a solid piece of fish and it was really pretty good. Of course this “burger” begs the question. What do they do with the rest of the fish? Don’t know. I liked this one and I really liked the sweet potato waffle fries it came with.

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The special had cheese choice so I went with swiss. I probably should have gone with no cheese. The swiss was too mild to bring much to the table.

So Pat and I both think this new joint is an improvement over the old one. Better looking, interesting specials and a much friendlier atmosphere.

Bearcats Restaurant on Urbanspoon

Milktooth 540 Virginia Ave.

Modifications are politely declined.

We will accommodate allergies if possible.

From some reviews and comments I have read and heard, these two little lines have a few of my fellow citizens all worked up.

This is fly over country and folks here don’t like to be told what to eat or how to eat. As an occasional Libertarian I can empathize with that sentiment. However as a one time working chef I can see the reason for such a statement. A chef or cook spends quite a bit of time creating a dish for service. Taste, replication, presentation, sourcing, pricing all these things have to be considered.So naturally they want people to try it as they intended. That being said you must have some flexibility. If not you might just end up cooking for friends and family.

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This was my “first course”. This is their toast plate. It features a lovely baguette from Amelia’s, and a nice little tomato and cucumber salad. Hiding behind the salad is egg rillette,topped with pickled onion. Traditionally rillette is a pork pate. Here it’s a chopped soft egg. Great spread on hot bread. On the far side sets their house ricotta, and the show stopper on the plate. Clementine confit. That is one of the craziest things I have eaten in a while. It’s tangerine segments cooked in hot lard. It was damn good. All of the components worked very well together. The slight acidity of the tomatoes to balance the richness of the egg and cheese but to me the star was the confit. This plate was a definite hit. Had I known that was what I would get I would not have ordered as much as I did.

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After ordering the bread before it even arrived my server was back and I order chicken livers, bacon and a bun. I figured I would be safe since some folks were complaining that the portion size was “small”. This joint has changed their menu at least 3 times since they opened,approximately 4 weeks ago. So I jumped on the chicken livers they offered.

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Now this is a chicken lovers fantasy plate. Six crispy fried livers sitting on a schmear of liver pate. In between the livers were two-inch square pieces of toast. This whole plate of decadent chicken liver goodness was covered with hot sauce. Not just any hot sauce but barrel aged sriracha. Now I have had the regular form of this hot sauce,but never the barrel aged stuff. They put the mash in whiskey barrels and give it a couple of months to “mature”. The resultant sauce is as different from the standard sauce as Laphroig is to Passport. And to provide a subtle taste difference they offered sticks of pickled white turnip as well. This plate was more than enough to sate a luncheon appetite and definitely worth the 10 bucks I paid for it.

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I was about half way through the first plate when I received the second. I told my server, Natalie to bring food out as it came up. I would find a way to keep up.

While I was finishing my livers my other food appeared. A chocolate and hazelnut bun and sorghum glazed bacon.

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This bun was delicious. Period. The fact that it was $3 is remarkable. Almost as remarkable as the bun itself. I understand that their pastry chef is named Zoe. Well Zoe you have a new fan. What you do is possibly illegal in some countries.

The last thing I ordered was a $5 piece of bacon. Sounds crazy doesn’t it. What you get is a hunk of Smoking Goose bacon fried and then glazed with sorghum syrup.

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This  piece was huge. At first I thought it was a hunk of pig jowl, but after cutting it I would guess it was indeed pork belly. Fat, slightly smoky and sticky sweet from the molasses. An excellent job.

So as you can tell I enjoyed my lunch. A lot. I just have too questions. What is with the no capital letters on the menu? Also why the knit caps some of the help are wearing. Is that a fashion or a fad. I’m just curious. So this joint had an unequal amount of hype before opening. After eating here I can seen the reason for a lot of it.

Milktooth on Urbanspoon

Sister’s Place 215 Terrace Ave.

I am sure lots of folks were disappointed when this place closed several moths ago. Well now, after a change in ownership and extensive re-modeling they have re-opened.

I have eaten there pre-blog days and have never had a bad meal. I am happy to say that trend continues.

At the old place it was typical to order pie before ordering anything else. Pie was very popular and it was not uncommon for it to be sold out during lunch. We continued that tradition today.

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That is pecan pie. Pat wanted that as a palate cleanser. I was slow in taking the shot, as you can see. I was able to get a couple of bites and it was excellent. Buttery, rich and sweet. A great pie.

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It’s at this point I would post a shot of Pat’s lunch. Well I was late once again. It has been awhile since I’ve done this. I took a shot anyway.

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I enjoy good liver and onions and I invariably order them when ever I see it on a menu. Knowing that more than likely that I will probably be disappointed. The liver is over cooked and the onions under cooked.

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Yeah I did it again. The plate looked a lot better when it first came out. The plate lunch came with potato choice and VOD and a roll with butter. They don’t have bakers until the evening, so my choices were instant mashed with mix brown gravy or french fries. The veggie was California Blend. That misnamed mix of broccoli, cauliflower and carrot that you can always find in your grocers freezer case.

My taters and gravy were adequate. Well prepared and tasty. The veggies were what you might expect, providing texture if not flavor. As for the liver and onions is was by far the best I have had in a restaurant in Indianapolis. Of course the list of joints around here that offer it is a short one. That doesn’t detract from the fact this liver was nicely done, as were the onions. They did the job they were supposed to do. A little sweet and a little crunch. The roll they offer was your everyday fluffy hunk of white bread. Good for sopping, one of my favorite things. They do provide real butter which is always a treat. All in all I would eat it again, instant potatoes,frozen veggies and all. After ordering I checked out the desert case, something Pat did upon entering.

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They offer more than pie as you can see. Any picture I took of the rest of the case didn’t work out. The glass reflected too much light. I did get a nice shot of the piece of Coconut Cream I ordered.

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This pie was really good. I am not even going to try to give any more description than that. They do not make any of the desserts in-house. I was told that they buy them from the Chicago Pie Company. When I googled it I came up with this http://www.hoosiermamapie.com/

If that’s the right place it must be destiny. The prices are excellent. Both plates were $8.95 and the pie was $3.00. So you can still get great food on Terrace Avenue, and it won’t break your budget.

Sisters' Place on Urbanspoon

The Ripple Bagel Deli 850 Broad Ripple Avenue.

Now this place has been open since 2003. I first noticed it 1 year ago, and just now we visit. I guess we wanted to wait until they got all the opening bugs worked out. Well if they have any bugs in the beginning I don’t know. They certainly have a slick operation now.

I tried to take a shot of the exterior, however I couldn’t get the whole view in without stepping into the street. Since my momma always told me not to play in traffic this is the best I could get.

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The place isn’t real big but it is colorful

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You order from a long counter and they call you when it’s ready and you pay at the end. The counter has stools, so I guess it also serves as overflow seating. They have a few laminated menus lying around but the focal points is the huge menu chalkboard on the wall behind.

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They offered a bialy as an option on the menu, so naturally I had to inquire if it was the real deal. Well the young lady behind the counter was informed enough to satisfy me that it was indeed the real thing. It is refreshing to find someone who really knows what is going on in the joint they work. So many restaurant workers are McDrones that don’t have a clue. But the people we interacted with had their stuff together.

The young lady told us that the bialy comes from Cincinnati, and the bagels come from Bagel Fair in Nora. Those folks have been making bagels in this town for more than 30 years. They have, in my estimation the best bagels in Marion County, if not the state.

Pat was happy that they had so many onion-less options. He decided on The Natty Dread.

Now that is Bacon, Colby and smoked Cheddar cheeses, lettuce,tomato and sprouts on a bialy. Since this particular bread had onion in it he subbed a whole wheat bagel. This whole thing was only $ 6.00.

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When it was my turn I knew exactly what I wanted. A Tape Your Ankles, subbing bialy for an onion bagel. This tasty bite consists of ham,pepperoni, salami, provolone, red onion, banana peppers and Italian dressing. And it was only $6.95. I also ordered a cup of Santa Fe chili for $3.50.

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The soup is house made. Just not in this house. I was told they buy it from, I thought she said Bagel Fair, but I am not positive. In either event it was pretty good. It tasted like a lot of chili I have had in Indiana. I don’t have any idea why it was dubbed Santa Fe. Maybe it was because of the addition of black beans and corn. Some folks think adding black beans and corn into a dish turns into a Southwest offering. Well, not anymore than adding soy sauce makes a dish Oriental. But as I said it was pretty good.

As for my sandwich it was very tasty. I could taste the salami and pepperoni as distinct and separate meats. The ham sort of blended into the background, but I think were it not there it would be missed. the cheese delivers a nice unctuosness and the peppers do what pickled peppers always do. They bring a hint of both vinegar and heat. I found it to be a great bite and a great value. So. I am sure Pat and I are one of the last to learn about this place but just in case we aren’t you should check this joint out. Great bagels,creative combinations and nice folks working there.

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Oh one last thing. I don’t make a habit of taking pictures of bathrooms but I made an exception here. They offer one facility and all the walls are covered in old record albums, that’s right old school vinyl. So here you go.

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Oh one last thing. This might be a clue to the deliciousness of their bagel creations, After they build them whey foil wrap them and then steam the whole damn thing. Crazy huh? Crazy good.

Ripple Bagel Deli on Urbanspoon

9 Irish Brothers 575 Massachusetts Avenue.

Okay. This joint hit Indy this summer. It’s a home-grown “chain”. Which means they started in Lafayette Indiana, expanded to West Lafayette and eventually opened another joint in Indy. They managed to secure a spot at the corner of Boardwalk and Park Place. That is to say they found a very nice location and did it proud.

The place is large and nicely appointed. You can tell they have a good idea as to how to run a business. From what I could read on the reviews the place was not received very well. Pat and Fran went there at opening and had mixed thoughts about food and prices. They have a nice presence on the Net however there are no prices listed. I find that somewhat disconcerting. What I found was a fine little pub with some decent food and competitive prices.

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We ordered the goat cheese fritter appetizer. Little croquettes of breaded goat cheese on a bed of mixed greens with a raspberry vinaigrette. Actually it was not too bad. The slightly sour cheese, bitter greens and a sweet raspberry dressing made for a tasty bite. Cost: $ 8.45.

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Our server, Holleh did an excellent job at service. She was on top of Pat’s onion aversion. She told him that the mashed potatoes had onion in them. Imagine that. He ordered a half order of corn beef and cabbage subbing house chips for the mashed potatoes. Their chips are thick slices of fried potato.

 

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This is my lunch. It is a new addition to the menu. They call it a Fisherman’s Pie. A take off on a Shepherd’s Pie. It was very interesting. It came out in an 8 or 10 ounce crock. A healthy portion for $7.45. It was a blend of salmon, white fish, shrimp and veggies in a cream sauce. Covered with mashed potatoes and cheese. Well. Your first taste, naturally was tater and cheese. Then you hit the cream sauce. Tasty, but overwhelming. There was no texture in the dish. The salmon was like the white fish. Which was like the shrimp. Or the vegetables. The flavor was all about the  sauce. . I thought it was tasty I just didn’t taste the fish. I probably would not get it again, the way it was prepared. The soda bread rocked.

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Now this joint is noted for its Whisky, Whiskey flights. As well as their Guinness pours.

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Now this is really difficult to read. That is my fault. I still have not learned the proper way to use my scanning wand. Sorry about that. Any one with suggestions; let me know.

I opted for the Lesser Know Great Flight. It had single malt, blended and pot still. All the basic whiskey ( whisky) groups. I though it was great. And a bargain at $14.

I know Shelly. I should have tried the Single Malt Scotch Flight; but I was confused. They were playing the Rover Boys. And I was drinking Guinness. I didn’t have a chance.

But for real. This is a good joint to visit. The food is good, prices are fair and the service is on point. I have to give a shout out to Holleh. Excellent job.

Nine Irish Brothers on Urbanspoon

 

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