Posts tagged ‘Reviews’

June 25, 2011

Welcome to Nashville: Taziki’s Mediterranean Cafe

Taziki’s is an old Birmingham favorite of ours. Every Friday, I would head over to their Mountain Brook location for the special, and now every time my husband and I get a chance while we’re in town, that is one of the places we like to frequent.

The great news is that we don’t have to drive to Birmingham for Taziki’s anymore! Yay! They have franchised their multiple locations in Alabama and they are now in Nashville, Arkansas and West Virginia.  They have two locations, in Cool Springs off McEwen Drive (south of the new Whole Foods) and  the soon to be open West End location, behind the Panera and Which Wich.

The Friday Special is definitely my favorite thing on the menu. Light, fresh and a little tangy. It’s grilled chicken with penne pasta, served on a bed of lettuce with homemade, creamy balsamic vinaigrette and topped with feta, diced tomatoes and a fresh chiffonade of basil.

Taziki’s Friday Special – personal photo

Other favorites are the Chicken Basil-Pesto-Gyro, Tiger Shrimp Greek Salad and the Taziki Dip. Or grab a sweet iced tea and have their great hummus on their patio.

Another great option for families who want to eat at home is their take out Fresh Feasts for 4. Grilled Chicken Breast, marinated for 12 hours in their homemade Greek dressing with Taziki sauce, Roasted Port Loin, Sliced Roasted Leg of Lamb or a Whole Baked Chicken. Served with sides like fruit, pasta salad, tomato-cucumber salad or basmati rice. They also do catering – a good option for a non-pork or red meet Friday business meeting.

They’ve only been open a little over two weeks down in Franklin, so go down and see them! We’ll be there next Friday, for sure.

TAZIKI’S – COOL SPRINGS
http://www.tazikiscafe.com/

4091 Mallory Lane
Franklin, TN 37067
615.791.4465

STORE HOURS
Mon – Sat | 11 to 9 Sunday | 11 to 8

$5.95 per entrée

top image taken from tazikiscafe.com

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June 23, 2011

Diamond in the Rough: Andrews at the Westbrook

I mentioned in my original and initial post that we visited a restaurant worthy of a review in Paris, IL. We were in town visiting some friends in Terre Haute, IN (45 minutes west of Indianapolis) for a golf tournament. They secured reservations at this restaurant and just raved about it. I knew it would be good. The wife is a fabulous cook herself, they have traveled the world and are also self proclaimed foodies.

So, we took off driving to what seemed like nowhere towards Paris, Illinois, through some very flat fields. At some point, I even asked where they were taking us, in disbelief that this little gem existed.

Andrews At The Westbrook – personal photo

I won’t go through the entire history of this historic home, but you can read about it here. It was built in 1866-67 on family land of the original owner. Double brick walls, a fireplace in every room, 8 rooms, and it originally sat on 1600 acres of land.

photo courtesy andrewsatwestbrook.com This was actually our table right there on the left.

You walk into this home and you can see the beautiful craftsmanship. The curved staircase and woodwork is breathtaking. Each of the eight 18’x18’ rooms is your cozy dining space, with a lounge off to the side for enjoying your last glass of wine or a chat while you wait.

The chef, Andrew, has a small and delicious menu. If the menu is this small, you know it is all good.

Hors d’oeuvres start with New Orleans BBQ Shrimp, Steak Vealie and the Soup Du Jour. We ordered the shrimp. It was delicious and different from a traditional New Orleans recipe. Buttered with herbs and spices. These were huge prawns and you could see the bay leaf and Cajun seasoning just floating in the butter and oil.

Once all the shrimp was gone, we asked for more bread to sop up the rest. I was also eyeing the Steak Vealie, pieces of beef filet with gorgonzola blue cheese sauce.

That same gorgonzola blue cheese was the dressing on the salads too. Delish. They actually make blue cheese using gorgonzola. It’s a very different, sweeter dressing. The ladies chose a creamy balsamic, but I couldn’t keep my fork out of my husband’s dressing.

We ordered 2 fabulous French table wines from Côtes du Rhône. I’ve posted a little review of those in another post here.

For entrees, there are choices of filet, rib eye, veal, crab cakes, salmon, chicken and lamb. Every one of them looked amazing.

I ordered the “Chef’s One and Only Barbecue Salmon”. Folks, this was one of the best pieces of salmon I’ve ever eaten. It’s grilled with a sweet and tangy BBQ sauce, baked and finished with a honey, cilantro sauce. Yes, honey-cilantro. It spilled out all over the plate and made the super farm fresh asparagus and Parmesan roasted new potatoes even more delish.

My husband got the Scallopinni of Veal with Shiitake Mushroom Cream Sauce. The veal was so tender and the cream sauce was almost like a white gravy with a little kick of spice.

Our other diners go the Herb & Cheese Filet of Beef, with herb cheese, seared and served with a red wine shallot sauce. I was lucky enough to grab a bite of that steak before it was gone! It is really hard to over salt a steak. This was the perfect salty filet. And the red wine shallot sauce was super.

On to dessert. Thousand Layer Cake. We actually had to reserve 2 pieces of this prior to dinner. If you don’t, it’s gone. Or there is 1 piece left and your table fights over it.

It’s layers of baked puff pastry, baked separately and constructed layer after layer of alternating, soft and light vanilla mousse. They make one a day of the 3 days that they are open (Thursday, Friday, Saturday) and that’s it. It is so delicate, it doesn’t last any longer than that. We also got a chocolate layer cake, but it seriously sat in jealously while we each shared the 2 large slices of Thousand Layer Cake.

It’s finished with a dusting of powdered sugar. When you dive in, the flakiness of the puff pastry is sticky and crumbles through the layers of mouse. It’s so rich but light at the same time. I devoured the entire thing.  This is the only pictures I got – dug in really quick! A couple of glasses of wine in, and I’m not really caring about quality of pictures at that point. haha

This sleepy little restaurant off Rt. 16 is definitely worth the drive out to Paris, IL if you are in the area. Perfect for a special occasion or when you just in the mood for a good meal.

Andrews at the Westbrook
www.andrewsatwestbrook.com

7397 north 1200th Street
Paris, IL 61944
(217) 465-2003

Call for reservations.
Open Thursday-Saturday.
$$$$
$25+ per entrée

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