Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Local Restaurants

Recently, my Friday night dinner friends and I have broken from our normal routine a little bit to check out some new restaurants. This might not sound all that unusual, except we are all very much creatures of habit. We could go to Chili's every night for a year. So to break from our small litany of chain restaurants is most unusual indeed.

So far, though, the results have been good. First, we visited Zozo's - a little Italian restaurant tucked away in the shopping center on the North-East side of Lakeside and Virginia. The service was excellent, and the food was quite good. One of their signature foods is the raspberry vinagrette salad dressing, which seems to be mixed with yogurt for a creamier texture. The whole meal for each of use was about $25 a person.

Fresh off our success with slightly-adventuresome eating there, we next visited Naan Kabab. It looks like an old fast-food restaurant (my guess - a Long John Silver's) that has been converted into a nice little hole-in-the-wall restaurant. It's next to Ruby River steakhouse, across Virginia Street form the Peppermill. It's run by a chef with many years experience cooking and teaching "culinary arts" and in my opinion, it shows. Instead of the common dinner-bread at the table, you get a basket of flatbread with a salsa that leave your mouth warm. The dinner was a good portion size, and the meat was quite savory, and unlike many restaurants, it felt like the meat was just a part of the meal - the meal wasn't "large side of meat with a couple other things." And for desert... they had a baklava a la mode called the "Awesome Dude" which definitely lived up to its name. It is... most tasty. And best yet, despite several people ordering desert, the whole meal was a little under $20 person, including tip. If you want to eat on the cheap, the large and filling pita sandwiches are under $7.

I like to support local restaurants, and Naan Kabab in particular seemed to be trying to drum up business. The chef visited us twice during the meal, gave out busines cards, and we got a carry-out menu too.

If you're looking for a place to grab a meal on a Friday night and want to try something different, I reccomend either of these restaurants. I don't think you will be disappointed.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the tip David. Have been to ZoZo's before but never Naan Kabob. I think we will try it. Aunt Nancy