I enjoy buffets. It may because they remind me of my time in Vegas or maybe they just appeal to the Glutton in me. In either event here we are at the Garrison. Home to what may be the Mac Daddy of Sunday Brunch Buffets in Indianapolis. They have a smaller buffet at lunch during the week. We reviewed that about 18 months ago. It was because of that trip that we are here today.
I have said before that taking pictures of a buffet can be awkward and this was no exception. I did manage a few shots but for the most part I just took shots of our over stocked plates.
They offered everything you might need for a first or salad course.
And of course a dessert table that would make any casino proud.
The main buffet line is immense, featuring all the protein and veggie options you would ever want. Baked white fish, BBQ ribs, fried chicken and of course sausages and bacon. They also have a separate carving station featuring glazed salmon, ham and roast beef. In the opposite corner is a waffle station and an omelet station.
My first plate of protein was actually a bowl with ribs, bacon and sausage. Underneath was a fried chicken breast. The food was all very good. I discovered their fried chicken on my first visit. It is salty and crisp and the white meat is surprisingly moist; considering that it is warming in a chaffing pan. Some of the ribs were a bit chewy but were still good.
These may be ready-made salads but they were still tasty. The 3 bean and Tortellini salads are not often options on a buffet.
I know the height of gluttony. One piece at a time just would not do for me. I had to shove 3 into my bowl. All of their pies and cakes are done in-house by their pastry chef who spent several years at the “Dutch Oven”.
The buffet is staged in the Blue Heron Ballroom with 2 adjacent dining area for over flow. It is a spacious and beautiful room. One whole wall is nearly all glass with large double doors leading to a grand terrace.
I would also like to comment on the service. I don’t think I have ever seen such an attentive team of servers at a buffet before. Prompt refills and removal of dishes. I also would like to compliment Marsha, our server. Thanks from me as well.
Forgot to mention the price. It is $19.99 per person drink included.
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.
I have read reviews of this joint on the old Urbanspoon and the “new” Zomato. The ones from last year,and earlier: no bueno. The more current ones were much more complimentary. As a matter of fact I had planned on taking my Granddaughter there for lunch prior to viewing the Force Awakens,in IMAX 3D. Time constraints prevented it,we ended up going to some chain place.
Anyway,Pat and I had lunch here today. The building is huge and the exterior does make a dynamic statement. I always find taking pictures of buffets to be challenging. Especially this one as it covers a great deal of territory. Nevertheless. I tried.
This is part of the salad bar; featuring both fruits and vegetables.
These shots are from the Asian station; featuring Teriyaki clams, spicy fried octopus and a nice bone in baked fish, as well as more stuff than I had a chance to name or sample.
They offer a stir-fry action station. That is where you pick your ingredients and they are cooked to order. They also offer a more Mid Western comfort station where your are served ribs and smoked sausages and help your self to the sides.
They also offered a cook to order Udon noddle station;and pizza. Their sushi was what you would expect. An array of nicely prepared rolls relying more on veggies than fish.
I had a marvelous time. The foods I ate were more than satisfactory. I had at least $15 worth of satisfaction for $8.50; less the senior discount. That comes down to $7.85. Hell a salad bar is worth that. Am I satisfied? Yes. Would I go back again? Yes. The only thing negative I can say is that someone burned a batch of the Chocolate chip cookies. You couldn’t tell until you saw the bottoms. Of course the cook knew. Shame.
I am sure very few people are familiar with this name as it didn’t open until August 18.you. It is a buffet open from 7 AM to 11 PM Monday to Friday and 7 AM to 3:30 PM on weekends.It was built for; but not exclusively for; IUPUI students. The building, a former hotel now offers housing for students as well as class rooms. In addition to the buffet. So this outing is a first in 2 ways. It is the first time we intentionally set out to eat at other than an independent joint and it was also our first foray out for breakfast. Pat had lunch there the first day and was quite impressed.
In all honesty my initial impression was disappointment. The first station I hit was the heat tray station. It features the immediate foods. Scrambled eggs, sausage etc. It was in total disarray. It doesn’t take much to fluff up a buffet. As for the food. The eggs were quite good. Moist and fluffy. Their sausage was beautiful to look at but only mediocre to eat. They also offered the worse excuse for bacon I can imagine. As for the potatoes. Well they were more hash tan than hash brown.
While I was eating I was able to look around and realized how large a venue it is. They do indeed have all the bells and whistles that you might expect in a breakfast buffet. They offer a first-rate omelet station. A make your own Belgian waffle area with several toppings and of course a plethora of dried cereals. From granola to Fruity Pebbles.
After coffee I had a very nicely made egg white omelet, with spinach, mushrooms, tomatoes and a touch of white cheese.
So…In a nut shell I think this place has possibilities. It definitely needs some tweaking ( NOT TWERKING). More attention to detail. Maybe a change of product. And definitely the boss needs to put the proverbial clog up some bums. I am pretty sure Chartwells will sort things out. Someone has a lot of money invested in the place. And at $6 and some change it is well worth some patience. I am planning on trying lunch. I hear that is where the action is. They have all of their stations going and it is priced under $8.
On a Sophomoric side note. Pat informed me that University changed the name of the building to Hines Hall, and the 2 letter designation is HO. That gives a whole new nuance to the question. “Where you having lunch”?