That cute little bistro in my ‘hood has undergone a dramatic makeover.
Cafe 5-Ten is now open in the space that was The Anaconda Grille (and before that, so many other things including a down-home barbecue joint and a Mexican restaurant). Walking in the front door, Anaconda regulars will be floored at the the difference. (The bar’s gone, for one thing, and the place is bathed in soothing neutral tones.)
Chef-owner Michael Waliser did all the renovation himself and at the same time dreamed up his menu that is Italian by Northwest.
The offerings at lunch and dinner will be ever-evolving affairs, but for starters expect a lineup of innovative salads (roasted beets with feta and baby greens, anyone?), a Tuscan-inspired white-bean soup flavored with fresh rosemary along with one of my favorite appetizers of all time. (With a gracious nod to its original creator, the dish is called Calamari Lanza, after Anaconda’s chef Gina.)
Entrees include a couple of pasta plates: a penne with grilled portobello mushrooms, roasted red pepper and goat cheese or a spicy puntanesca.
After a brief stint with Huckleberry’s, Waliser remains committed to “natural” meats, so the menu also includes roasted free-range chicken and a tenderloin of beef raised without growth hormones. The grilled yellowfin tuna is rubbed with black pepper and coriander and then served with poached roma tomatoes and a lemon-caper butter.
Prices start at $9.95 for an a la carte pasta to $21.95 for the tenderloin dinner. Salads and starters range from $2.50 to $8.95.
Dinner is served Monday through Saturday. Expect Cafe 5-Ten to be open for lunch weekdays beginning next week. For reservations, call 533-0064. The restaurant is located at 510 S. Freya.
Patsy’s new moves
Patsy Clark’s has a new general manager, new chefs and a new enticing menu.
This venerable restaurant has gone through a lot of changes the past few years, in the kitchen and the front office. The new manager promises things are back on track, food-wise and service-wise.
The new menu reflects the Southwestern training of chefs Mark Wilson and David Goldman, who both graduated from the Scottsdale Culinary Institute. These days, you’ll find lime-infused margarita duck and smoked chicken with the creamy seafood pasta or a bean burger at lunch alongside the classic steaks and ever-present escargot.
Other new entrees on the dinner menu include the three-mushroom moussaka, an Asian-inspired ahi tuna salad and a steak stir-fry with pasta.
Global influences on the starter side includes Thai chicken skewers and a classic Italian pairing of fresh mozzarella and tomatoes.
As far as I’m concerned, the jury is still out on Patsy’s latest revival. When I walked in for a recent lunch without reservations, I was told I would have to wait, even though it was early and the dining room was practically empty.
After I was finally seated, my black bean burger was fine, but bland and the texture a bit mealy. I also sampled the smoked chicken in a creamy ultra-rich fettucine. The smoky pieces of meat gave the dish a bold, exotic flavor, but tucked amidst the noodles was a piece of wrapper from a stick of butter. Details, details.
I’ll get back to you after checking out the intriguing dinner menu at Patsy’s. To scope it out yourself, call 838-8300 for reservations.
Smoke on the water
Track-coach-turned-chef Dave Klyzek has been smoking diners out with some flavorful treatments of meats at McDonald’s Hudson Bay Resort in Bayview, Idaho.
The season’s menu includes a house-smoked chicken breast and smoky ribeye steak, which is served with horseradish-spiked mashed potatoes.
Klyzek, 40, once coached track at Spokane Community College and at the University of Oregon before leaping into the kitchen. He graduated from the prestigious Culinary Institute of America about 18 months ago and worked for restaurants in New York and Arizona before arriving back on home turf. (He’s an EWU alum.)
He draws on his classical training to create stocks, sauces and desserts from scratch and to come up with a grilled halibut with a creamy shrimp sauce or a pork chop served with maple butter.
In addition to the regular offerings, Klyzek makes nightly dinner specials when he works Wednesday through Sunday nights at this waterfront eatery about 40 minutes north of Coeur d’Alene.
For reservations at Hudson Bay, call (208) 683-2211.
That’s a wrap
It seems everyone is jumping on the “wrap” wagon. KFC is now offering “The Twister.” Can the Big Mac in a tortilla be far behind?
Some places really do it up right, though.
Sonic Burritos has beefed up its lineup with several new stuffings including a Ragin’ Cajun with a spicy sauce and a Mediterranean with spinach and a Greek relish.
My favorite of the new bunch was the Screaming Lentil Veggie. These humble legumes were paired with brown rice, cucumbers and tomatoes, sprouts, mushrooms and the Sonic’s jalapesto sauce. It was wrapped up in a garlic-herb tortilla. This burrito had a great flavor and I felt so darned healthy eating it.
The meaty burritos run $4.75, while the veggie is $4.25.
Sonic Burrito is located on the South Hill at 2622 E. 29th (phone: 536-1170) and at 1209 N. Hamilton (phone: 484-4158). These places offer free delivery with a minimum $10 order.
More rap on wraps
Casey’s Pub and Grill in Post Falls has added a wrap of the day to its summer menu, which could include fillings such as Oriental chicken, hot chicken caesar and pork chili verde.
Other new dishes include a Southwestern chicken sandwich, a curried chicken salad with crunchy veggies and fresh fruit along with a hand-cut New York steak.
Casey’s, which brews its own hand-crafted suds that come with charming names such as Squirrel Spit, is a little tricky to find, so call for directions. The phone number is (208) 777-7047.
Take the whole famdamily
Bayou Brewing Company is reviving the fine old tradition of Sunday family supper.
Between noon and 8 p.m. every Sunday, you and your kin can feast on salad, corn muffins, vegetables, garlic mashed potatoes, jambalaya and then a choice of barbecued baby back ribs or oven roasted chicken or both. By all means, save room for the sour cream peach pie.
All these viddles are served on platters and bowls so you can help yourself. And, it’s all-you-can-eat or, as the menu says: “Just like Grandma, we’ll keep it coming.” No doggie bags, though.
The tab is extremely reasonable at $10.95 for adults, $6.95 for kids ages 6-10 and $8.95 for seniors. Children 5 and under are free.
The Bayou Brewing Company is located at 1003 E. Trent. Call 484-4818 for reservations. , DataTimes The following fields overflowed: SUPCAT = COLUMN, RESTAURANT REVIEW - Behind the Menu
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