Saturday, August 31, 2013

You can go home again

"Walt's Hitching Post", Madison Pike, Ft.Wright, KY has hit it "on the head" in coming up this the same food it's predecessor served, at least on the basics; Ribs, Sauce, Toasted rye bread, tossed salad, dressing ( tomato-garlic ) or hot slaw and potato's, either baked or "home fries with onions". It's the experience that loyal customers have been looking for since Bill Melton closed his doors. The new owners have spent time and effort to recreate the taste customers have craved. They hired some of the old kitchen crew to recreate the salad dressing and Bar-B-Q sauce and have researched the original items down to the type and size potato's used. They warrant support.
There are several new sides and we tried only one, the "onion straws" which were crisp and plentiful but on the salty side for my pallet. Other sides include: macaroni and cheese, creamed spinach, sweet potato's, etc. "Walt's" give the customers a chance to "mix and match", sides, so ask your server. Our server was most accommodating and made the meal a very pleasant occasion.
We intend to return but probably will stick with the basics and might sample one side at a time.

"Mahogany's at the Banks" 180 East Freedom Way, Cincinnati aims to fill a niche. They have built their menu around a certain type of Southern or "Soul" Food and from the looks of things seem to be catering to a mostly mid-level African American audience. Not that the place is in any way is restricted but the food, which I felt came from some prepared items, lacked the flavor fullness of foods elsewhere being offered in this same vain.
My Salmon Croquettes appeared and tasted like salmon patties which come prepared from suppliers. The Corn Bread muffin was very good and the fried cabbage, heavily peppered, was acceptable. My Southern Aunt, from Helena AK used to heavily pepper her fried( sauteed) cabbage, which I have copied. The listed "fried potato's and onions" were a disappointment. The potato slices clung together and the onions were no where to be found.
It may be my white trained taste buds, although all the women around as I grew up, cooked "southern" but I think for my "soul food" I'll stick with the "Greyhound Tavern" fried chicken, green beans and biscuits.

Once again we went with a group to "Zula", 1400 Race St. 45202, and were most pleased. Our server was very professional and did not push the group into ordering before we had fully discussed several options.
I ordered Eggplant Fries, for the table. They came with a crisp batter, well browned and sprinkled with powder sugar. A small side bowl contained a very hot sauce, not for the timid, but also not needed to enjoy the fries. The helping easily served our group of 5.
I shared the "Beet Napoleon", plenty for two, and it was terrific. A mixture of golden and red beets tossed with pistachio nuts, in a mild olive oil based dressing, and topped with sprigs of fresh greens make a wonderful tasting and looking salad. In my opinion several of the "cold dishes", salads, are one of the outstanding features of "Zula". Our table had several main courses, Crispy Amish Chicken and Mussels Mariniere, plus small loafs of warm crisp bread( extra) as well as several "tapis" sized orders of "Forest Gump Risotto", rice, mixed with "bay shrimp" and peas and slivered carrots. Red wine, from and extensive, reasonable wine list accompanied everything.

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