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It’s Serious Business People February 22, 2013

Tuna Salad. I take it very seriously.

Until today I had one true love, one location, no other tuna salad existed. I’ve had others and always felt guilty afterwards.

Today…. A new tuna salad rocked my world and I’m not ashamed to say it.

My friend Jenn Lisak invited me to lunch at SoBro Cafe yesterday. I’ve never been to SoBro before so like any good food lover I checked out their menu before I went.

The first thing I noticed on their menu was their claim to have “Impeccable Chai” for a sorta spiffy price. I said out-loud (to myself) “they must be pretty damn proud of that tea.” When I arrived at the cozy spot I ordered the Impeccable Chai straight away. I think the server could sense a hint of sarcasm when I ordered it, she just smiled sweetly as to say, yeah, you’ll see. So.. I’m an ass because it truly is impeccable. Perfectly creamy and the right hint of warm spices. I was almost transported to another place when she asked if I “liked it?” I said “yes” sheepishly, and took another sip.

The lunch menu has a wide variety of sandwiches, soups, and such to nosh on (lots and lots of Gluten Free and Vegan options here my friends.) My eye went directly to the Tunisian Salad which I noticed after perusing the menu the night before. The Tunisian Salad is tuna salad with potatoes, lemon caper dill sauce on texas toast with harissa, boiled egg, and melted cheddar cheese. Ordering this meant I was going out of my tuna salad comfort zone. I’ve only been out maybe half a dozen times and have always been disappointed. Then I thought, if the Chai is that damn good, the sandwich has to be good. I asked the server if the sandwich was good, she said it was “excellent” – that’s a done deal. Chips came with it, but I opted for a kale salad. The kale salad was dressed nicely with olive oil and a pinch of sea salt.

When the sandwich arrived it looked so delicious. So much so that I lost my head and didn’t take of picture of it before taking a bite! Wow, that’s all I can say. There is some love in that tuna salad. Salty from capers, acid from the lemon, sweetness from the mayo, and heat which must have been from the harissa. It’s safe to say a changing of the guard happened in my tuna salad world. I’ll have fond memories of my old tuna salad, our times together, as I drive past it to go back to SoBro Cafe.

If that wasn’t enough, there’s more. After we finished our lunch the owner brought out a piece of cake for us. It was a slice of banana (thanks Gwen Stefani) cake with peanut butter icing.  It had the consistency of a carrot cake, it was sweet but not too sweet. I really enjoyed it. I wouldn’t typically order a piece of banana cake, it was a very nice surprise.

I’ll definitely go back to SoBro Cafe. They have brunch on Saturday and Sunday which always perks Mr. D’s ears up. If you’re not a fan of tuna salad, get the Chai and thank me later.

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Four Gems with a Extra Point February 1, 2012

While dining in Indianapolis during the week of the Super Bowl we want you to have a great experience.  We have several “heavy hitters” in town when it comes to restaurants.  You might have heard if you’re in Indianapolis, you must go to ____________.  Certainly true, and each of those restaurants deserve all the hype they get.  If you’re here all week, or part of it, I thought about suggesting a few places within walking distance of the Super Bowl Village that deserve some local love.

Cafe Patachou:  225 West Washington Street, Indianapolis, Indiana   “A student union since 1989”  know for their killer breakfasts, Cafe Patachou will leave you filled with Hoosier Hospitality!  Nominated for the “Super 46” sandwich contest their Broken Yolk sandwiches are an Indy favorite.  My suggestion would be the Broken Yolk Sandwich with Ham* Two fried eggs, Swiss cheese, ham and grainy mustard on your choice of buttered toast.  One word – Yum.  With an array of other soup, salad, and sandwich choices, Patachou is a first down winner!  *Breakfast, Lunch, (Dinner – during Super Bowl – Thursday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday until 5 p.m.)

Tata Cuban Cafe:  137 West Market Street, Indianapolis, Indiana.  “Our cafe offers all the right ingredients to create the magic food, atmosphere, and rhythms of Cuba in Indiana.”  Tata’s Sweet Plantains are worth the short walk over alone!  Sweet, light, and salty, these little devils will transport your taste buds straight to a warmer climate.  The Cuban Pressed sandwiches will make your mouth water just looking at the steam rolling off the fresh bread.  If you’re in the mood for something heartier may I suggest the Pernil Guantanamero, *Pork leg seasoned with tropical spices roasted to perfection.  Be sure not to miss this Quarterback sneak!  *Lunch, and Dinner service.

King David Dogs:  135 North Pennsylvania, Indianapolis, Indiana   “An Indy Original since 1941” King David Dogs has that “snap” that you crave when you want a good hot dog.  It all starts with their signature all beef 1/4 lb. hot dog.  With 30+ options, you can build the hot dog of your dreams.  My suggestion would be the “Indy Dog” of course, *topped with onions, yellow mustard, sport peppers, and french fries.  Or perhaps you might fancy the Boom Boom Dog *with a fried egg, and cheddar cheese.  If you like a little heat in your condiments you won’t want to miss the Jalapeno Mustard made fresh daily.  *Monday – Friday 11 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Tavern on South:  423 West South Street, Indianapolis, Indiana.    With “starters” like a Blue Crab Pot Pie, and “Hoosier” Cheese Fondue, you will look around this gorgeous setting and think “WOW.”  Known for their delicious and savory food, and gracious service, this is Hoosier Hospitality at it’s best.  For lunch, I suggest the Tavern Tenderloin Sliders *two hand cut pork tenderloins, panko crusted, with mustard aioli, lettuce, pickle, and shaved red onion, on  fresh pretzel rolls – seriously!  A dinner favorite is the Lobster Stuffer Flounder *Holland flounder, Maine lobster, with boursin cheese potato puree, and citrus buerre blanc.  Tavern on South also has a note worthy wine list with nightly drink specials.  Touchdown!  *Lunch, and Dinner service.

The Libertine:  38 East Washington Street, Indianapolis, Indiana  One word – Phenomenal.  Specialty Drinks, small plates, a perfect way to end your evening in Indianapolis.  You will fall in love with everything here, I suggest the Bacon Flight, that’s right, you read that right!  Artichoke Puffs that you would run over a defensive tackle to get to. Popcorn infused with bacon grease gives a new twist to a classic favorite snack.  Described as “Tall Dark and Handsome”  you won’t want to miss this calling card at the end of the night.    *Tuesday – Thursday 4 p.m. – 12 a.m.  Friday – Saturday 4 p.m. to 1:30 a.m.

Enjoy your time in Indy!