August 4, 2011
Located in the Green Hills area, Shintomi used to be one of the best places in town to get sushi. Today, we were running errands and stopped by for lunch–only to see that it has been shutdown.
August 4, 2011
The restaurant is a homey space with built-in wooden booths on the periphery and a long communal table in the middle. The design and the conceptualization of the restaurant is meant to cater to families. The menu offers classic American dishes at a good price point. There are appetizers and salads to start; main course options include pizzas, sandwiches, or entrees. Burgers are offered at half portions, for $5.5 (regular portions: $9)–a good option for kids or not-so-hungry adults. Basic food, basic pricing makes for good family dinner pit stops, but some of the dishes were a bit too basic.
We ordered three starters, all ample in size to share: The tempura vegetables had a nice texture on the outside and the veggie insides had the right temperature and consistency–but the accompanying jalapeno gouda and onion dip seemed to undercut the dish’s lightness. The tomato stack ($6) had mozzarella and basil with balsamic dressing. It was light an refreshing. The fried calamari ($8) was served with a peppercorn aioli. I appreciated the inclusion of squid tentacles, but the dish’s taste overall was nondescript.
Our entrees, all ordered to be shared, did not get off to a good start. After a thirty minute wait–with no explanation for the delay, the Wild Hare pizza ($8) came out. It was undercooked, so the slices sagged in our hands as we picked them up, and the pie’s caramelized onions, bacon, and ricotta cheese just didn’t seem to come together. Our dining companions, Nick and Nora, had been before and they concluded that it was best to stay away from the pizzas. The fried catfish ($9) had a nice, cornmeal-textured coating that contrasted nicely with the delicate fish, savory and peppery throughout. The roasted whole chicken ($13) came halved, and was delicate enough to easily take off the bone. Some at the table liked the flavoring and moistness, though I found it to be somewhat bland.
Wines are now available. Management has remained true to its vision–keeping the prices low, while selecting great wines, such as the Alamos Malbec ($7). They’ve even gone so far as to carry the canned Sophia Coppola bubbly Blanc de Blancs ($8) to stay consistent with their selection of canned beers.
We went arrived at the restaurant around 6:30 when it was just beginning to fill up. When we left the lines were out the door. Get there early for a table.
For another review, see Nashville Restaurants.
August 1, 2011
We had barely visited Pontes’ latest venture LB’s Market House on 12 South, but walking by it today, we saw that it was short-lived. Butcher paper covers the windows, with signs saying that something called Sloco is coming soon. Sloco has a Facebook page, with some info and intentions for the new place, like bike delivery and a “virtual” butcher shop.
August 1, 2011
Ginger Thai Restaurant
2861 Logan Street
Nashville, TN 37211
These days, when we don’t feel like cooking and we don’t feel like putting up with any restaurant fuss or crowds, we head to Ginger Thai restaurant, right off of Thompson Lane. The food is good, there’s never a wait, and the prices are reasonable. We’ve eaten there a number of times, tried an array of soups, main dishes, whole fish specials, and it always taste like home cooking. Last Sunday we were there for a quick lunch, and had duck soup, one of our favorites, and the house fried rice with squid (pictured below). The total for those two dishes after tax, before tip was $23. Normally, however, we pass on the appetizers.
Note: the link to the menu on their website takes a Borgesian turn and sends you to the Thai Palace in Bloomfield, CT.
P.S. As Rose, a commentator, notes below: on both sides of Ginger are amazing “International” markets. On one side is the Lanexang Oriental Market which stocks SE Asian goods and supplies provisions for Ginger. On the other side is a wonderful Middle Eastern market that provides everything from spices (at great prices) and fresh pita to Amish halal chickens.
July 12, 2011
4501 Murphy Road
Nashville, TN 37209
Since hearing rumors that Local Taco would be opening up a restaurant in 12th South, we decided to head to Sylvan Park for lunch. I had been there a few times but my erstwhile Fried had not. I really like the vibe there, the list of local ingredients, and seeing groups of Nashville women drinking margaritas at 12:30 in the afternoon. We ordered the Korean BBQ, the Southern Fried, and the Fish tacos. We started with tortilla chips and salsa, and had sides of rice and beans. The Korean BBQ taco tasted more Teriyaki than Korean, topped with sesame seeds, cilantro, and a spare amount of Asian slaw. The meat was fresh and well cooked, but the taste was bland. The taco demanded some sort of Korean topping like pickled radish. The Southern Fried was good, but it was dulled by wilted lettuce pieces. The same with the Fish taco. I am not sure why they went with tartar instead of crema, and some slaw would have been appreciated. The black beans were not to my taste, they had a strange taste and texture. We each got the lunch special, two tacos and a side for $6.75, which is a great deal because the tacos are $3.50 each and the sides $1.75.
I am not a taco purist, but these tacos needed some jazzing up. However, the fresh ingredients and the lunch prices make me want to give the place a second go.
Korean and Southern Fried tacos with rice:
Korean and Fish tacos with black bean:
July 11, 2011
We love summers at the Nashville Farmers Market. This year the peaches have been spectacular. We are big fans of JD Country Milk for their drinkable yogurts and other delights. This week we indulged in heavy cream. You have to get there by noon on a Saturday or else they will have sold out of most of the good stuff. This week we also bought Alabama peaches, which have more tang than the furry South Carolina peaches we’ve been eating lately. We bought them from the back shed where we also found some sweet ripe, local doughnut peaches. Those we devoured before we could take a photo. This morning we indulged in the peaches and cream with some local blueberries. It was decadent. If you go to the market check out the new Louisiana Seafood Company. Their fresh yellowtail, grouper, and shrimp have been selling out weekly.
January 4, 2011
We spent Christmas in Monteagle and rented a cabin from some folks who seemed on the up and up. We arrived on Christmas eve got snowed in and lost heat. These folks were charging $200/night for the cabin. They refused to refund us any money for the loss of heat. Do not rent from them!
On the flip side, when we finally got out from under the snow we had some might fine bbq pulled pork at The Smoke House and then purchased belated Christmas gifts at the Dutch Maid bakery, the oldest family owned bakery in Tennessee. Although a new family has purchased the bakery, the goods are still delicious. We especially loved the sweet pumpkin loaf and the rosemary bread.