There’s a new restaurant on Pennsylvania just north of the central library. There is an apartment building with a ground floor space that appears to have a revolving door for restaurants.First, it was going to be a Yats, that never happened. It became The Bar instead. However, The Bar had some identity issues so it didn’t last long. After that it became a Mexican style restaurant, I forget the name. I ate there once and they had pretty good mole sauce. I wanted to try the homemade Tamales but they closed before I had the opportunity. Now it has reopened as The Diplomat. So, with that in mind I shall try to be as diplomatic as possible.The first question I have is, WHY?The place is really quite attractive and the two ladies we interacted with were both quite charming and enthusiastic. However, I think they have some problems they are not aware of. Their menu is on the small side, which is good, it is both interesting and familiar. Which I think is a good thing. All their sandwiches are in the eight dollar range, and come with your choice of fries or salad. The menu says that the house salad is spring mix. Spring mix is a specific blend of spinach and various lettuce varieties. None of which are iceberg.When I got my salad it appeared as if they had chopped up some iceberg and mixed it with a bag of spring mix. I was a wee bit disappointed but I did not say anything. I figured someone not nearly as nice as I would inform them. But before we even got that far. We had a little dance regarding dressing. I asked what low-fat dressings they had. Our charming server said she didn’t think they had any. So I said, don’t worry I’ll just take oil and vinegar. She wanted to check to make sure she was right. When she came back she told me that though they had no low-fat options they could “fix me up” with oil and vinegar.I expected a cruet of oil and one of vinegar. When my salad arrived, I had two cute monkey dishes one with olive oil and the other with malt vinegar. Evidently, they possess neither cruets or red wine or balsamic vinegar.
Now,as for the rest of lunch. Pat ate a hamburger with pepper jack cheese and fries. The burger was a hand-made one-third pounder, frankly, a little small for eight bucks. Even “downtown”. The fries I believe were held under a heat lamp. Sometimes that makes them a tad bit limp.And since they were not that busy I thought were that the case it was not necessary.I tried the turkey burger. It was pretty good.Again a 1/3 pound hand formed Patty on what appeared to be a toasted multigrain bun. With fresh spinach leaves and melted goat cheese. That was the hook for me, the goat cheese. It also came with a cranberry aïoli. THIS INSANITY MUST END! I think I know what they tried to do.they wanted to marry the turkey and cranberry tradition with hip spinach and upscale goat cheese. But I really think they would’ve been better off making a cranberry relish or chutney, if you will. I really, thoroughly believe that doctoring up Kraft mayo and calling it something or other aïoli is way past being over.The general consensus for us is the Living Lounge has a much better lunch. Of course, this new place might be worth a try at dinner. Oh, one more thing they spent quite a bit of money on glossy cards and a fancy website that doesn’t include a menu but they don’t own cruets. So in closing, I wish them all the luck in the world.