This is a joint we have been wanting to go to for quite a while. It has a reputation for very good food and a nice selection of craft beers. It’s not a very big place with the seating consisting of a few tables along the wall, a large bar and 3 very big tables in the center. Long and slender, like you would find in a banquet hall. It is an attractive place; all industrial chic with exposed duct work, dark walls, slate and black iron pipe fittings in the men’s room.
We had the bar to ourselves and had the most delightful server. Efficient, professional and attentive, and very knowledgeable of the menu. After much reassurance from the aforementioned server, that he would not get any onion Pat selected baked rigatoni. A pasta dish with butternut squash,kale and both house made mozzarella and focaccia, all for $10.
At time of service our waitress told Pat that they made a special sauce, just for him, sans onion. I went off menu and ordered their special for $11. That was fried perch with waffle. Served with baked beans, young curly kale and Sirachi butter. Odd ain’t it. This particular dish did not hit on all cylinders for me. I do admire their cojones for doing it though. I think restaurants should push the envelope; as far as they can. In this case I think it could have used a few adjustments. They used, what appeared to be black beans for the baked beans. Not the most attractive choice. That might be why it was buried under the kale. They also could have cooked the beans a mite longer and reduced the cayenne, especially with the Sirachi butter ; which was excellent,as was the perch. As for the waffle it was a wee bit dry. Actually I thought the whole dish was on the arid side. I am surprised they didn’t add some sort of syrup. Possibly a gastrique . I think a little sweet and sour would have fit in well. But; that is just my opinion. This was just one dish and a special at that. I will definitely be back first chance I get. I want to try their chicken pozole and the blue gill and grits. They both sound like a bunch of lip smackin’ fun.
Today is a beautiful Saturday; and, you know you have had a long, hot and hard week. So I think you and the whole family should hop into the car; jump on your bikes or pop into an IndyGo; and go to 25th and Oxford streets and have lunch. Taste Budds is a place you must go to if you like good cooking, think you like good cooking or like a lot of people don’t even know what good cooking is. Depending on your age a meal at Taste Budds is the kind of food your mom or grandma would’ve made for you when you were young.I don’t care who you are or what you prefer to eat; I think you’ll find something to like there.They offer small plates for $8.18, tax included and large plates, for $11.99. Either size comes with two sides and choice of bread; one of which is hot-water cornbread; or some would call it Johnnie cake. They also offer $3.99 lunch specials,that are served with fries and coleslaw.
Normally I don’t order, rib tips ; when I go out. The quality as well as the technique is hit and miss. This time,I asked the young man where they got their meat and how they were cooked. That might sound extreme, but believe me, I’ve been burned before by fatty and/or bony tips. I ordered the small plate of tips with collard greens, mac & cheese, and of course cornbread. When I opened the clamshell I was astounded by the big pile of beautiful pieces of pig inside. The pieces were small enough you could pop one into your mouth and chew around the occasional small bone before discreetly depositing it in a napkin. At the same time the pieces were tender enough to cut with a plastic fork.You could taste the slight smokiness from the grill and the sauce did its job properly;enhancing the flavor of the pork not overpowering it. As any good backup singer should.The greens were as good as you would expect from a kitchen this good. They used smoked turkey to season them;a pleasant alternative to the more usual smoked ham hock. As for the mac & cheese all I can say is, it is hands down,the best I’ve eaten in any restaurant I have been to.
Pat opted for a small plate as well.He chose herb roast chicken, mashed potatoes, greens and cornbread. He enjoyed the greens as much as I did, this being the first time he has had them with smoked turkey. And if the speed at which he ate the mashed potatoes and gravy, he must have liked those too. At the risk of sounding gushy the chicken was beautiful. It was a lemon and herb crusted and roasted airline breast. That is to say it was a breast half with a wing attached. The skin was golden brown and the flesh inside moist and tender. Now that I was able to try since, Pat couldn’t finish his meal either.It always amazes me how something so simple could be so delicious and so hard to do by so many folks.The only thing that Pat and I could not agree on was a cornbread. He thought it was the best we have had and I thought it was a tie between , theirs and Dee’s and Pa and Ma’s.
Since the number five bus stops right in front of the place I’m going back, soon. I have to try their liver and onions. To date, every place I’ve gone to always overcook the meat and undercook the onion’s.So folks this place is the real deal.So to all those folks who “whine” about how the chains are taking over; get off your back sides and get to Brightwood and support this great little independent café. To paraphrase myself in my post about Kountry Kitchen: These guys have the skill of a master carpenter and the soul of a church choir.
05 – Bungle In The Jungle (2001 Digital Remaster) There’s a new place in broad Ripple.it’s the SoBro Cafe, it’s on 52nd St. just around the corner from the Red Key. There were three of us this time when we went, Pat’s, wife Fran joined us.It’s a cute little place, cozy not all pretentious considering it’s locale.Their big deal are pancakes, both savory and sweet. I think it’s a Dutch thing.Fran tried one of their pancakes, I think it was called the Popeye, full of spinach peppers and onions and I can’t remember what else. She thought it was pretty good however she would’ve preferred the peppers and onions to be sautéed. She did try the soup of the day, bean soup; and declared it the best she had ever eaten, that includes her own. Patrick had his usual grilled cheese, pretty exciting. They have a house soup which is a Thai coconut, the broth was delicious. The stuff inside I thought was superfluous. Tiny diced chicken, mushrooms and corn kernels just seems unnecessary. I also think toast fingers would have better suited the soup then fried wonton. I also had a salad, they offered it with chicken, steak or tempeh. I chose tempeh and it was nicely done. The only thing I can add to their salad prep is possibly refreshing the salad mix with cold water and draining it for service; and change your carrots to shredded.They make all their own dressings, I used tahini lemon; it too is pretty tasty however I think adding some lemon zest to the dressing would increase the lemon flavor.Their chef definitely has skill when it comes to vegetarian cooking. Oh I almost forgot one of the most important parts they sell Sun King for four bucks! ***A few weeks back I made a solo trip back to Sobro.I tried Chai for the first time.I have no idea what it is” supposed ” to taste like; but WOW it was like a festival in my mouth.Sweet,then cardamon then cinnamon with a final hit of clove.Very cool.I also ate their Good Burger.I am hardly an expert on veggie fare but this was a GOOD BURGER no matter what was in it.From the mixed greens to the Roma tomatoes to the buttery avocado I think it matches up with any burger around; animal or vegetable.Also the home-made ketchup is great to dip your Lays chips in.I down loaded the pictures right after my visit;tardy me just now got around to write about it.If you haven’t been there why?Oh,back to the Chai.I hear it’s the owner’s own special blend.