Birthday dinner (KC)
- amyzan Feb 11, 2009 01:39 PM
My mom requested dinner at Justus Drugstore restaurant for her birthday, which falls on a Saturday this year, but they happen to be closed that day. I'm looking for suggestions on a good second choice. She says she should leave it to me, because I know restaurants better (ha!), but I'm unsure. She didn't care for Bluestem, though she mostly liked the food. The American is too formal for her. She used to like 40 Sardines for weeknights. I'm not sure where we can get a similar combination of relaxed atmosphere, attentive but homey service, and fantastic food, the way Justus excels. I was thinking of Michael Smith, but she really doesn't care for trendy places where she feels out of place (she's in her sixties,) and I'm concerned she won't be comfy there on a Saturday night. I've also considered Room 39. I'm thinking of taking her out for lunch and making dinner at home at this point, because it's hard to find a relatively quiet, relaxed place on a Saturday evening. My other thought is seeing if she'd go for an early res, so there'd be less chance of a boisterous crowd earlier on. Any thoughts, places I'm overlooking?
She chose Avenues after I showed her the menu online. We went early enough for the special, since we'd seen an afternoon movie. We were a bit surprised to see the dining room about 3/4 full, but the atmosphere was still pleasant, not noisy. I think she enjoyed herself, the service was good, and the food was good, too. I appreciate the portion size there--it's just right to feel satisfied but not overfull, which is not so common. Mom had lobster and crab cakes with what she described as perfectly cooked buttery green beans. I had a nicely cooked grouper fillet with crabmeat, crispy at the edges and tender and moist inside. The potato gratin wasn't overly rich, but eggy with just a little cheese. The wine by the glass selections were good, though my pour was just a bit stingy at that price. That's okay, though, I don't need to get much of a buzz on Mom's bday!