eating indie in indy

Posts tagged “biscuits and gravy

To the Nines 1999 US 31 South Greenwood In.

In the 21st Century there is probably more Culinary schools than ever before. I know more High Schools now have culinary programs. To the Nines is the student run restaurant for Center Grove schools. Way out in the country ( my perspective) down in Johnson County. When we decided to go we learned that they have buffets on Fridays and prix fixe meals on Tuesday. Since Tuesday wasn’t an option for us I made reservations for their “Lunch for Brunch” buffet.

As the man said we had no idea that there was a 50 % discounts for seniors. The students did a good job of setting up and refilling the buffet. Refilling chafing dishes can be tricky, especially with an endless line of eaters.

They offered the usual fare of scrambled eggs, bacon, sausage, and biscuits with gravy. They also offered a French Toast bake and a Breakfast Casserole. I passed on both.

They make the biscuits and pastries from scratch. The biscuits were as good as any I have had at a restaurant service. Same with the Cinnamon roll. The gravy was good not great. But that is the same for most joints that offer it. Overall the students did a very nice job. I would like to go back for the fixed meal. Even though it is a long drive.

 


Uptown Cafe 6404 Rucker Road

This place is a sister restaurant to one in Noblesville so it is tough to find any info about the menu. The only site that has a menu has the Indianapolis address but a website for a joint with the same name in Butte Montana! Those silly folks at Google.

I had planned on scanning the menu and posted it with the review but of course I forgot to bring my wand with me. I am adding a link to their place in Noblesville. It may not be identical but it should be similar.

https://www.facebook.com/SunriseCafeatUptown/menu/

They make several things in-house so we had to try a couple just to “sample”.

The first was a cinnamon roll.

It was a beauty and tasted pretty good. It was a bit tough, as though it had been microwaved to reheat.

We also got a half order of biscuits and gravy to share. The biscuit was a bit doughy but the gravy was pretty good. I second Pat’s thoughts about Ollies.

They also offer a series of Breakfast Bowls. That is simply a bowl with stuff in it and eggs on top. You can also get more stuff on top of the eggs if you so desire. I opted for a corned beef hash bowl.

They do their hash in a clever way. They offer a Reuben sandwich so they keep shaved corned beef on hand. They take that meat,chopped and add it to their shredded hash browns. Hash; with no onions. This particular bowl had onions in it, also Swiss Cheese. Actually I believe it was a processed cheese, white American cheese. In either event it was one heck of a breakfast. I really enjoyed their corned beef hash. The meat was tender and the potatoes were crisp. Make sure you have an appetite because it is a Big bowl of food.

Pat is still watching his carbs so he didn’t eat his jam so I did. It was sweet and had a strong strawberry presence. It also has a great deal of pectin in it. Which is neither good nor bad. Just an observation. It would be good smeared on some toast with a cup of coffee. Overall I think this little joint is going to do well. It is close enough to me that I will be back. When it gets warmer. As for prices both of our breakfasts were under $9. You may get it a bit cheaper at one of those breakfast chains but why would you want to go there?


Batters 5543 E. Washington Street

Well there is another new joint in Irvington. A self-described pancake house that serves breakfast all day. I hope this place lasts longer than the 2 previous tenants. If they don’t survive it won’t be because the food isn’t good or the prices are too high. Most of the dishes are in the $6 to $7 niche with specials going for $9 with soup or salad included. As for the quality of their fare the items we had were top-notch.

I opted for breakfast as well. For me it was “Bases Loaded” (?) for $7; the same as Pat’s omelet. Mine was biscuits and gravy with 2 eggs and 2 bacon or sausage.

I was quite impressed. I believe I have tried every biscuit and gravy in town and I think that Downtown Olly’s does it best. Now I may have to reconsider that proposition. The first bite was loaded with sausage flavor and a hint of bacon fat, as though bacon fat was used in the making of the roux. It could have been from the bacon on the side but what ever it was I hope they do it every time. The gravy had a very creamy quality that most country gravies don’t have. It was an excellent dish and bargain priced at 7 bucks.

The only thing I would do differently is order a side of toast to sop up all the gravy and egg yolk. I was able to used Pat’s crust from his toast so none of it went to waste. I think I will be back again. They do list their specials on Facebook so I am keeping my eye open for liver and onions. I have it on good authority they do a respectable job with that diner classic.

 

 


Ruth’s Cafe 3443 E. 86 th Street

We had a very pleasant breakfast today. The restaurant is open from 7 AM to 3 PM and serves breakfast all day as well as lunch. We took advantage of that by ordering some of both.

Among their specials for the day were two different Quiche. One had no onion so that is what Pat ordered. I know it had artichoke in it and cheese as well as other stuff; but I don’t recall the other stuff. I also have no idea what it cost. It was Pat’s turn to buy and I neglected to ask.

This is the half order of B&G Pat got for $6.

This is the Quiche Pat ordered, price not known. They give an option of salad or fruit. As you can see he opted for the greenery. A very nice looking salad with lots of Spring mix.

I was intrigued by their hash. It is made with smoked brisket. You can order it as a side for $4.75 or as a Not so Old School breakfast for $8.50; which is what I ordered. They have several bread choices for toasting as well as muffin and all come with house made berry jelly. What berries? Haven’t a clue but it was pretty good.

This was a very respectable hash. Big chunks of beef and potatoes cooked just right. Tender yet with enough texture to give your teeth something to do. The only minor flaw was my eggs were not quite over easy; more over medium. They worked out though. All I wanted was some yolk to mix in.

Since they make their own scratch biscuits I got one for an extra $1.75. It was very light and fluffy. One of the better biscuits I have had around town. In addition to the jelly they also make their own sausage. We thought it was quite good. Lightly spiced and tasty which made for an excellent taste. However there is just something about Ollie’s that makes their B&G; in my opinion; the best in town.

They also have an interesting lunch menu; which you can reach here:

http://www.ruthscafeindy.com/menu/4589349372

When I get time I am going back to try lunch; hopefully soon. On a “side note” Zomato classifies this joint as a diner. Of course like with a lot of things Zomato does that is debatable.

Ruth's Cafe Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato


Jimmy’s Diner 3301 Shelby Street

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About 2 years ago this place was doing business as Ma and Pa’s Diner. It was just sold and re-opened as Jimmy’s on August first. Pat goes by it regularly and told me about it last week. We decided to try it out with our buddy Jimmy, who has lunched with us a couple of times.

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I didn’t make a copy of their menu and I honestly can’t remember too much of it. They serve breakfast all day and the menu starts out with JJ’s Special. Two bacon, 2 sausage, 2 eggs and potatoes. With a half order of biscuits and gravy and choice of pancakes,waffles or French toast for $9.75. That I remember. That and a double cheese burger and fries sell for $5.75 and on Fridays they have all you can eat Flounder for $14.

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Pat couldn’t wait to try the B&G.

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The biscuits and gravy were pretty good. A decent tasting gravy ( that could have used more sausage) over a ready-made biscuit. The pancakes were of the usual mix variety. Tasty but nothing to get overly excited about. The hardest thing for me to review are breakfast foods. Most biscuits are pre-made and the pancakes come from a mix. There are a few exceptions but this holds true for most joints. For breakfast the execution is everything. People are as finicky of their eggs as they are of their steaks. Most folks will let it slide over a med rare steak ending up more medium but don’t dare break the yolk on their over easy eggs. For my breakfast the preparation was flawless. The eggs were beautiful and the bacon had the proper crisp. As for the sausage I commented to the owner how I liked it and he told me that when he opened up he was using a fresh sausage but folks complained. They didn’t like the pinkness of the meat;so he went back to the pre-cooked patties the previous owner used.

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As you can see the potatoes are crisp and brown. The other potato option was a home fry. If they are as crisp as these that would be the way to go.

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Don’t expect anything fancy or pretentious here just expect some good cooking.

Jimmy's Diner Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato


Downtown Ollys 822 N. Illinois

Well here we are at Christmas Week already. Since Pat and I both have other stuff to do we realized that Monday would be the only day we could get together to break bread before the Holiday. We further decided that breakfast would fit our schedules much better than lunch. And no joint says breakfast to us like Ollys. During the week they offer a special of 2 eggs, your choice, with bacon or sausage and toast for $2.99. Pat and I have both taken advantage of the special on many occasions. Pat with his wife,Fran, while bike riding. Me after “working” out at the gym. In addition we stop in after lunch for adult beverages when we dine in the area. It was one of those times;last week;we discovered they had changed their menu. So it was due for a re-visit anyway.

Pat won’t have his usual epic note this week since he forgot his pad. Being the Holidays I made an Administrative decision and gave him a pass. Anyone reading this blog regularly knows Pat’s eating habits. He likes his food simple. For his breakfast he ordered a special and a half order of biscuits and gravy. His standard breakfast special is scrambled eggs, crisp bacon and dry wheat toast.

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Another thing about Pat and his food when he is hungry he doesn’t mess around. He started eating while I was still picking up my phone.

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For me I ordered a full biscuits and gravy with 2 over easy eggs perched on top.

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I believe they serve the largest biscuits and gravy in town. For the half order they use 3 biscuit halves and on the full order 5. The amount of gravy they pour over is almost excessive. It is definitely some of the best if not the best in town.

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I also got a side of bacon. I went ahead and got mine crisp like Pat;normally I don’t care. One comment on the bacon. I nearly always order bacon because they always do a fantastic job with it. It is consistently well done;as in properly cooked not over cooked. I think the prices are just as nice as their food. A half order of biscuits and gravy is $4.50 and a full is $5.95. A side of 4 slices of bacon is $2.50,I think. I know ala carte eggs are $1.50 each. So I feel that for the quality and amount served this joint is a great place to try for breakfast or lunch. Keep in mind they are open 24/7 serving food. So Pat and I liked this place last year and we like it even more now.

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Downtown Olly's Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato


Oasis Diner 405 W. Main Street Plainfield Indiana

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This place is as American as you can get. The diner was built in New Jersey in 1954 and then shipped to Indiana where it opened along US 40; The National Highway. It served food until 2009 when structural issues forced its closure in 2009.The Historical Society intervened to prevent its destruction. New owners were found and it was moved down the road and re-opened last year. A link to their website is below. There you can find a short video of the move as well as its menu.

http://www.oasisdiner.com/

According to the reviews on Urbanspoon folks haven’t given a lot of love to this little diner. Of the 3 reviews from this year 2 didn’t like the joint. So I was really interested in eating there.

They do a lot of scratch cooking from biscuits to pies and pastries to gravies. They also make their own sodas. So in that they certainly are following in the diner tradition. And like any self-respecting diner they serve breakfast all day.

We started lunch with an appetizer of fried mozzarella with house made marinara for $6.50.

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As you can see they do it themselves. The cheese is cut into triangles and then lightly battered and deep-fried. They were really pretty good. The sauce they serve with it is has a bit of cream added to it, a nice little surprise.

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Pat went with biscuits and gravy for $3.50 and I decided on a turkey Manhattan for $10. We also had a side of coleslaw each.

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I had a bite of Pat’s food and it was right on and they didn’t skip on the sausage, which is nice.

As for my Manhattan; It was huge.

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They also offer a beef Manhattan but the turkey was cooked in-house which is why I decided on turkey. They shred and not slice their meat, which I find interesting. Regardless the meat was both tender and abundant. They toast the bread which imparts a taste like dressing or stuffing to the dish after it sits under the gravy for a while. An effect I like. As for the gravy they sure do use a lot. So much I really couldn’t tell too much about the potatoes. Also they used a bit of chicken or turkey base which made it very salty. That is something I think they can work on.

So Pat and I were both pretty happy with our food. I think they have some room to improve but don’t most joints? The fact that they make their own fried mozz. app. makes me think this joint is capable of following the tradition of the American diner.

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Oasis Diner on Urbanspoon


Unleavened Bread Cafe 3003 N. Central Ave.

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This little place sells their food for the greater good of their ministry. They are very upfront about that. They have the cafe to spread the word and to make the money for their works.

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They are open from 6:00 AM to 2:00 PM for breakfast and lunch only. You won’t find any sauce reductions here and their idea of local sourcing is whatever the neighborhood grocery sells. But what they offer is well made and reasonably priced. And don’t expect any urban chic or otherwise trendy decor.

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We were on the road today before 10:30 so naturally our thoughts turned to breakfast. This cafe has been on our radar for some time, but we were never able to catch it open before today. As you can see their breakfast menu is very straightforward.

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We split a full order of biscuits and gravy, for $4.50.

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My eyes were bigger than Pat’s. I chose pancakes over French toast and added potatoes and a sausage patty to the bacon.

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Well their bread may be unleavened but you can’t say the same for the biscuits and pancakes. The pancakes I had were nearly one inch high. Now that is fluffy. The same goes for the biscuits. The gravy was loaded with sausage and quite good. It was the sort of biscuits and gravy you could eat with regularity and enjoy every time.

I thought the hash brown was the weakest link of all the food. You can buy shredded patties like that in the meat case of several grocery stores. That was hardly a deal breaker though.

So if you’re in the area and are hungry you know where to go. I think if you ask them nice they may be able to add some blueberries to those fluffy pancakes. There is room, and you know you want to.

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Unleavened Bread Cafe on Urbanspoon


Biscuits Cafe

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This place has been opened for a few years, but just doesn’t get the play it should. It is at the end of a strip mall right off of the strip in Broad Ripple. The fact that it is hidden by Three Wise Men doesn’t help much. Also they have nada in the way of public out reach via a website or even Facebook. There is a “menu” on Urban Spoon but it is not even close. The food is listed as Mediterranean. Well no it’s not. It is a joint that offers both Mexican and what you might call Ameri-Mex breakfast food. The menu is huge. From pancakes, to skillet to enchiladas they have it. Oh and pancakes too.

The last time anyone reviewed it was about 6 months ago. So It seems they are due for another review.

With the name Biscuit in the name they better have some great biscuits. Right? Pat stayed clear of the Mexican style fare due to the onion content and opted for a half order of biscuits and gravy for $4.50. In addition to the half and full orders they also offer a single biscuit and gravy for $2,50.

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Several things caught my eye. They offer mole, green sauces and pastor. All of which I am a sucker for. I decided on the lunch chimichanga with shredded chicken and mole. The lunch comes with beans and rice and a small salad,topped with  cream for $7.95. It was pretty good. The tortilla was full of juicy shredded chicken and the sauce was really pretty good. Slightly spicy from the chiles, a little sweet from the chocolate, a good execution. The beans and rice were decent. Probably better than what you normally get from a Mexican joint in Indy. All in all I would say that this is a solid choice for a lunch dish.

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Of course I had to try the biscuits and gravy. A single biscuit with spicy gravy. The biscuit was excellent. Large and fluffy. The gravy was good as well, just not real spicy. Of course they had several different bottles of hot sauces available to add to the kick.

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Once again my pictures don’t do the food justice. The mole comes out as black in the picture when it is a deep and rich mahogany. Also today would have been a perfect day to bring my scanner. The menu they have just loves being scanned with a wand. Sorry but the pictures and words will have to do for now. In a way this joint reminds be of some joints I have been to in New Mex and Texas. American sandwiches, Mexican fare and Breakfast. Breakfast food is a language all its own. A good joint to hit anytime.

 

Biscuits Cafe on Urbanspoon