Some Random Notes

LITTLE BACCH (REDUX) 

Mrs. C. and I recently paid another visit to Little Bacch, for the specific purpose of sharing their roasted chicken, presented head, feet and all. As luck would have it, the couple with whom we shared our last dinner there had the same idea, arriving thirty minutes after us. They apparently have returned often, just for the chicken. I will go out on a culinary limb here, but I think that dish is singularly the best execution and presentation of a common ingredient (chicken) I have had in any restaurant anywhere. Under the skin is a layer of truffled bread crumbs. The dark meat is done without drying out the breast and the skin is so crisp that I would almost describe it as bark. The dish is easily enough for three people to share. I am not enamored of the wine list, which while expansive is also expensive, and those wines that are affordable I would describe as mediocre. We paid a visit to Perrine’s Wine Shop across the bridge, picking up a beautiful Beaujolais and paying their corkage fee ($25.00). Little Bacch could take a hint from Marcel’s, whose prices far exceed theirs, but who charge a very user friendly corkage fee of $10.00. In the alternative it would be a nice touch to have them partner with Perrine and waive or reduce the fee for any bottle purchased there. In any event, if you don’t treat yourself to their chicken you are missing a rare culinary adventure. 

 

PURE TAQUERIA 1 – CURMUDGEON 0 

It’s rare that your restaurant curmudgeon suffers a defeat at the hands of a waiter, but this past week Pure Taqueria in Inman Park was the scene of this rare debacle, and the sad part is that he had no idea he had won or that a battle was actually in progress. Immediately prior to my visit I had the sad duty of assisting my aged Rottweiler slip peacefully across the Rainbow Bridge at the Inman Animal Clinic (thanks to the clinic and Sacred Paws for easing a difficult task). Not having much of an appetite but in serious need of a drink I stopped at Pure for a margarita and bowl of cheese dip. Having never been there before I found that the waiters all appeared to be Mexican and the food delivery people all appeared to be gringos – an interesting role reversal.

Any of you who may have read my martini post should surmise that I am a bit of a purist when it comes to my drinks. Confronting a drink menu listing many variations on what I consider to be a margarita, I told the waiter that I wanted a margarita with only three ingredients – tequila, triple sec and lime juice. He studied the list and then suggested one that included pear juice. Telling him again that I had no desire for pear juice, pineapple juice, champagne or any other ingredient besides the holy trinity he then suggested the house margarita.

Slightly skeptical I asked if it contained simple syrup or any type of “mix”. He then told me they were pre mixed in large batches and probably did.  It was at this point that I realized the only viable option was unconditional surrender and I ordered a Negra Modelo. Had I been on top of my game I would have left the table, sat at the bar and told the bartender what to do, but he caught me in a weak moment. Arriving at home I made a large batch of proper margaritas accompanied by wings, crudites and blue cheese dip. All is well. 

 

MEAT AND GREET (NEWNAN) 

Last Sunday after a ride at Bear Creek in Moreland with our friends Shane, Cort and Wendee we were looking for a dinner option that included space to park both of our horse trailers that was also on the way back to our barn at Bouckaert Farms. We settled on Meat and Greet in Newnan and found adequate trailer parking one block behind the restaurant. On one side is the bar and on the other the kitchen and regular seating.

Their burgers are sourced from organically raised beef and there are many interesting options. Each of us ordered our burger medium, described as having a pink center. Our dinners arrived 45 minutes later, a bit of a wait considering it’s only a burger, but the reason soon became obvious – they had been on the grill the entire time and far transcended well done, to the point they were crumbly.

The waitress offered to have them re-made, but it was getting late and we were hoping to unload the horses before dark. The manager came to inspect the burgers and apologize, and shortly thereafter the waitress came to offer us a free dessert. Before I could comment that some transgressions can’t be remedied by a free dessert, Mrs. C. (reflecting the results of her rigorous training program) looked up and said she would prefer a free hamburger. 

With the exception of the preparation, the burgers were creative (mine was topped with pulled pork) and the French fries were excellent, as were the onion rings. When the check arrived, it was accompanied by a $25.00 gift certificate for each couple and a $10.00 certificate for our single guest. We shall return. 

 

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