Friday, October 14, 2005

Loosin' that Brutti's Feelin'

On a leisurely Sunday morning, DucCat and I can typically be found tooling around the Hampton Roads area on the ST-4. For the past couple of months, we always seem to be in the Portsmouth area for lunch, and have made it a habit of dining at the The Bier Garden.

A couple of Sundays ago, we decided to throw habit and comfort aside, and venture someplace new. And that's how we ended up at Brutti's.

Usually, their tiny, outdoor patio always bustles- today there were only a couple of tables occupied. After perusing the menu, which seemed to have a quasi-European flair to it, we went it, and were quickly seated on the patio.

Our server walked stiffly up to us, poured water, dropped off the menus, smiled wanly, and walked back inside. Okay. I was soon tempted by the Cashew Chicken Salad, "tender chunks of roasted chicken breast, cashews & veggies, sauteed, and served over a bed of fresh greens".

Just then, the server returned, and I placed my order. DucCat followed with a request for the Hot Pastrami & Swiss on rye. The server, with that curiously sphinx-like expression, took our menus and left again.

The patio was starting to fill up when he returned with our ridiculously large plates. Like clockwork, as soon as he deposited them and walked away, the flies began swarming and dive-bombing us.

My salad was composed of iceburg lettuce- very tired iceburg lettuce. The chicken had been rendered completely tasteless and dry. There was one cold tomato (damn you!), although the broccoli was passable. I was hungry, so nibbled some of the broccoli off my plate, no more.

DucCat's was much better, and he even let me have a bite or two out of pity.

The waiter returned to take our dishes, barely blinking an eye when my salad exploded with an angry cloud of flies when he picked it up. I was amazed that he took my almost-full plate back without a word, except, "I'll get your check." Nice work, dude. We paid, and quickly left.

As we walked down the street, DucCat asked if I was still hungry. A little, I agreed, and unison we turned on our heels and went straight over to The Bier Garden.

Ah yes, The Bier Garden. Let me count the ways in which I love you:

Weihenstephaner Hefe

Erdinger Heffe Weisse



Yeah, those are a few good places to start. So are these.

Knockwurst and German Potato Salad. Both were simply fantastic. I'm amazed that I never liked sausages until recently, and everytime I sample a new one, its with the same sense of childlike pleasure. Bite. Pop. Squirt. Wow!

I usually get the liverwurst here, but today I selected the teawurst, and cucumber salad. The teawurst was good, different in subtle ways. It was a litle more raw in taste, and very light. While good enough, I will probably stick with the liverwurst in the future, but it was nice to deviate this once.

We paid up, and took a little walk around the downtown area, before hopping back on the bike. I resisted giving the finger to Brutti's.

Just barely.


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