Meet Brooke & Andy. Yesterday was Andy's birthday, so we went out tonight to celebrate. Andy picked Surly Girl Saloon. Good choice, my friend!!! We had a great time with great friends and great food :-)
Okay, so maybe a few great drinks were consumed, too. It was all just so ... well, great!
Brooke ordered off the menu (she always has to be different, our Brooke) and Andy, Bob and I went for the Dine Originals menu. What a deal! For Andy who was "flying solo" (as the menu put it) his dinner was 3 courses for $20! Even better, For Bob & me it was 3 courses for 2 for $30!!! We were totally psyched. And then we looked at the menu. Oh lordy this was gonna be fun.
Andy began his meal with the "Wasabi Cream Cheese Ball". This was served with sesame crackers and slices of fresh cucumber. It was really good! I say this with surprise because we all know I am a total wimp when it comes to hot food. And wasabi is hot, is it not? So you can understand my hesitation. But in the interest of reporting fairly and not trusting someone else's opinion, I dove right in. I took a cracker and slathered a spoonful of the cheeseball on it. Then I topped it with a cucumber slice. Wow! This was good stuff! The cheese ball had just the right amount of wasabi; not too hot but it had a nice horseradishy quality. The cucumber was the perfect foil; cool & crisp. I have to say I wholeheartedly approved!
Bob and I chose the "Skillet Nachos". These were reliably delicious. The chips were topped with warm black bean & corn salsa and melted cheese. Okay, so what's not to like? They were just flat out yummy.
I chose the "Butternut Squash Ravioli" in a chile-pumpkin cream sauce with house-made focaccia. The picture does not do it justice. This dish was absolutely divine. I kid you not, this is the stuff that food porn is made of. Uh, I mean, dreams are made of. The pasta of the ravioli was perfect. The butternut squash filling was subtle yet substantial enough to stand up to the sauce. And the sauce? Well, excuse me while I swoon. It was one of the most incredible things I have tasted in a very long time. I have to admit that I didn't taste the chile part in it. What I did taste was pumpkin, so creamy and lucious that it should have been served with some kind of fanfare. I simply cannot get it out of my mind! Alongside was the promised focaccia. This was also delicious. And, it was essential to sop up every teensy bit of sauce that might otherwise have been left behind. I will unabashedly tell you that I scraped my plate clean ... something just short of licking it. I didn't want to embarrass my dining companions. Although I'm pretty sure Brooke would have just laughed!
Bob had "Cowgirl Carmen's Cherry Cola Ribs". These were served with creamy coleslaw and poblano mashed potatoes. Excellent. Just excellent. The ribs were falling off the bone tender, with a sweet cherry cola bbq sauce that left you wanting to lick your fingers. The slaw was just right and the potatoes .... well, we know how I adore potatoes. And these were no exception. Three words to say about this dish - yum, yum, yum!
Now for Andy's dinner. He ordered the "Spicy Thai Pizza". This was a pizza made with peanut sauce, broccoli, carrots, cheddar, peanuts and sweet chili sauce. I just need to say that his choice of this pizza following the "Wasabi Cream Cheese Ball" was dead on. The two made for an awesome combination! This pizza however, is not for the faint of heart. Andy advised me to wait until my drink refill came before I chowed down on it. Andy was oh-so-right. This baby packed some heat! But it was so incredible! The crust was thin and crisp and the toppings all worked in such harmony that there was truly a symphony of tastes playing out on my tongue. This was deemed an uber success by all of us!!!
Now on to dessert! Yippee!!! Cupcakes!!! Oh happy day! Andy and I both got the "Red Velvet with Cream Cheese Frosting". Awesome, awesome, and just totally delicious! The crumb was so soft, yet there was just the tiniest bit of crunch at the edge. The cream cheese frosting was not too sweet and the cherry on top was a like little red kiss.
Bob went with the "East" selection, which was a "Cherry Blossom Cupcake". I'm sorry the picture doesn't show it to full advantage. It was a delicate pink color with bits of cherry in the mix. It also had a soft crumb and Bob fully enjoyed it.
So happy birthday to Andy! What a fun and delicious way to celebrate our dear friend turning thirtysomething!
Surly Girl Saloon
1126 North High Street
Columbus, OH 43201-2440