Tag Archives: Dinner
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October 9, 2013 by Ashlee Clark Thompson
Lilly’s Bistro is a pretty fancy restaurant that provides opportunities to sample the menu without increasing your personal debt ceiling …
June 3, 2013 by Ashlee Clark Thompson
Malls are a gift and a curse.
The convenience is the most redeeming quality of a typical trip to a Louisville shopping mall. In terms of one-stop shopping, I can’t beat having 50-plus retailers at my disposal when it’s time to find some shorts. Everything else, however, is awful – loud corridors filled with oblivious teenagers, pushy sales associates, and racks and racks and racks of clothes that I really don’t even need. I have a headache just thinking about the sensory overload.
To soothe my sensitive psyche, I’ve made more frequent meal-time visits to Oxmoor Center so I can stop by Yang Kee Noodle, a Louisville-grown pan-Asian restaurant in that mall. Yang Kee Noodle is a rarity – a local dining option in a shopping mall. Its location away from Oxmoor’s main corridor (it’s next to Dick’s Sporting Goods) and fast-casual concept make for a nice oasis when I’ve had enough browsing and buying. Plus, the food is tasty, fresh and affordable, especially important when I’ve treated myself a little too well on a shopping trip.
April 1, 2013 by Ashlee Clark Thompson
Two things to remember before you visit The Irish Rover:
- Ten dollars will take you a long way at this Louisville Original, but $15 goes so much further.
- Don’t wear Spanx during your meal.
The Irish Rover delivers food hearty enough to stretch your waistline while your budget remains fairly intact. I say “fairly” because it’s hard not to sample a variety of dishes from a menu bursting with descriptions that make everything sound delicious. And the good (and bad) part about it is that everything lives up to its introductory prose.
The restaurant’s atmosphere is well-worn and humble, thanks in part to its location in a 150-year-old building on Frankfort Avenue. The entrance thrusts patrons directly into the bar area where drinkers mingle with folks just waiting for their table. It got a little cramped during my weeknight visit, but Rob and I were rewarded for our brief wait with a quaint table for two in a dim section of the restaurant. Lots of hardwood? Low lighting? A handsome date? I was a fan.
I quickly snapped out of my romantic lull when the waitress handed me the menu. This is when things got real.
I don’t know much about Irish cooking. But if I use The Irish Rover as my definitive guide, I would say the diet of our friends across the pond is filled with lamb, fish, potatoes and cabbage. In short, stick-to-your-ribs food.
Irish food is more than just Guinness Beef Stew ($6.95), fish and chips (market price) and bangers and mash ($6.95). The Irish Rover takes (what I assume are) traditional Irish ingredients like fish and rabbit and presents it in dishes that make the ingredients more accessible to those not used to this genre of food. For example, the Welsh Rabbit sandwich slides this meat into a grilled cheddar cheese sandwich on sourdough bread (with Irish chips, $6.95); salmon is presented in casserole form with potatoes, cream and Swiss and Parmesan cheeses (smoked salmon and potato gratin, $8.95); prawn are paired with cashews in a light salad ($9.95). I wish I could say something more poetic than, “Everything looked good.” But it was true. Everything on the menu did look good, from the appetizers to the desserts.
I wanted a little taste of everything. We started with the Cordon Bleu Fritters ($4.95), little balls of ham, chicken and Swiss cheese batter and deep fried. They were crunchy, gooey and delightful. I followed with a cup of leek and potato soup ($2.95), a rich soup that was a soothing chaser to the sharpness of the fritters.
I was all set to order the lamb-stuffed cabbage ($12.95) until our nice waitress began to list the evening’s specials. I heard the words “meatloaf,” “stuffed with bleu cheese” and “brown gravy” before I blacked out from disbelief that such flavors could exist in one dish. When I came to, I ordered the bleu-cheese stuff meatloaf with mashed potatoes and gravy ($12.95).
At this point, my abdomen was screaming at the Spanx that was supposed to hold me into my date-night dress. I couldn’t possibly dive into this plate of deliciousness, could I? Oh, yes, I could.
This was a meal for the record books. A rich brown gravy covered two thick slices of meatloaf and hid the mixture of bleu cheese and mushrooms stuffed in the center. The creamy gravy and moist beef balanced the tanginess of the bleu cheese, a wonderful combination I would have never considered without The Irish Rover.
The mashed potatoes were lumpy and filled with onion and hunks of potatoes that escaped the masher. The mashed potatoes’ thick consistency was perfect for constant dipping in the gravy sliding along the edges of my place.
The steamed vegetables were the Michelle Williams of this Destiny’s Child of a dish — an ingredient that rounds out the trio, but you could honestly do without it. But I dutifully ate my vegetables to help balance all the meat and potatoes I put back in the course of my meal.
By the end of the night, I wasn’t sure what I was more excited to do — eat the slice of meatloaf and hunk of potatoes in my to-go box or change into more bloat-friendly sweatpants. I may have regretted my choice in foundation undergarments that evening, but I was happy I went over my $10 benchmark. I left with a second meal that reheated wonderfully and a taste of Ireland.
The Irish Rover, 2319 Frankfort Ave., Louisville
Cordon Bleu Fritters: $4.95
Leek and Potato Soup: $2.95
Bleu Cheese-Stuffed Meatloaf with Mashed Potatoes and Vegetables: $12.95
Total (without tax and tip): $20.85
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March 29, 2013 by Ashlee Clark Thompson
I enjoy my theater with a side of food. A live art exchange will provide that this weekend.
Motherlodge is an organization that creates spaces or “lodges” for artists to present their work and collaborate. Motherlodge has brought the theater group Conni’s Avant Garde Restaurant to The Rudyard Kipling for performances of Irina’s Naming Day Party, a rework of Chekhov’s Three Sisters.
Here’s where things get fun — the show includes dinner and cake.
The first night of the show was Thursday, but there are additional performances at 5:30 p.m. Friday, March 29, and 7 p.m. Saturday, March 30. Tickets are $25 (includes the dinner and cake), and you can buy them here. All shows take place at The Rudyard Kipling, 422 W. Oak Street.
Motherlodge will host a lot of other events around town this weekend, including a Jesus Christ Superstar singalong, NCAA men’s basketball watching parties and an ongoing fundraiser to help pay for medical expenses for The Rudyard Kipling’s “patriarch,” Ken Pyle. For more information, visit Motherlodge’s website.
January 27, 2012 by Ashlee Clark Thompson
I’m not a big drinker. And I hate going out to the bars. A night with a bar stool up my …
August 13, 2011 by Ashlee Clark Thompson
Folks have a lot of different definitions for what dishes can be correctly labeled as “soul food.” For some, it’s …
July 12, 2011 by Ashlee Clark Thompson
The chef behind Proof on Main in the swanky 21c Museum Hotel will debut a new restaurant in NuLu at 5 p.m. …
June 28, 2011 by Ashlee Clark Thompson
The only thing more aggravating than replacing a perfectly good “s” with a “z” in a restaurant name is waiting …
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February 21, 2011 by Ashlee Clark Thompson
A “B” letter grade is acceptable in most areas of life – except for restaurant health inspection ratings. In the food arena, …
February 10, 2011 by Ashlee Clark Thompson
Still looking for something to do for Valentine’s Day? February 14 is a great day to spend with people you …