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Central, Lima Peru

I had the baby goat and (I think) tirade to. My friend had the ceviche sampler andvavseafood stew. It was ok, but nothing special.

Central, Lima Peru

Recently got back from Lima where we tried the two top 50 places - Astrid y Gaston (14) and Central (50). Central was by far superior in all respects - food, decor and service. It truly was an exceptional meal. Astrid y Gaston was good, but absolutely nothing special. (Not even remotely in the company of Alinea, 15 on the list). The service was perfunctory, the food was just very good but not special, and the decor wasn't interesting.

In all fairness, we had the tasting menu at Central and ordered a la carte at Astrid. Most of the people at Astrid seemed to have the tasting menu and that seemed to be the better choice - probably dictating the kitchen's pacing and where it put its effort. Maybe the experience would have been different without the tasting menu at Central (although I doubt it). I'd rush back to Central in a heartbeat.

So - for anyone looking - I'd suggest Central as a first pick for dinner and advise getting the tasting menu at either place.

Birthday dinner for 20?

My mother is celebrating her 90th birthday this fall and we're planning a dinner for about 20 people. We'd like to have it in a restaurant and would like to keep the price to about $100/person. Location isn't key, but the Loop or Michigan Ave. areas would be best.

I'm from out of town and need help! Any suggestions would be very much appreciated.

Jul 06, 2013
Piranha in Chicago Area

Acre Restaurant in Memphis, TN.

I went a few weeks ago and it was great. The service was excellent, without the snootiness that I hated about Wally Joe. The food was excellent. I can't wait to go back. A friend who was with me went back more recently and said everything was just as good.

Aug 30, 2011
Piranha in Kentucky & Tennessee

Spicy food near Broadway shows?

hi! I'm in town for a theatre weekend and am looking for a place to eat between a matinee and evening show on Saturday. I love spicy food, especially Thai, so I know I'm in the right area, but I have no idea where to go. I'd welcome suggestions.

Aug 05, 2011
Piranha in Manhattan

In Germantown, TN (near Memphis) for 8 months - need eats!

There are a few places I haven't seen mentioned that are worth checking out. Bari (on Cooper, near Restaurant Iris) has very good to excellent Italian, mostly seafood. There are some good places in Cooper Young - Beauty Shop, Tsunami & Do. Emerald is probably the best Thai in the city - on Mt. Moriah not too far from where you're staying.

Restaurant Iris
2146 Monroe Ave, Memphis, TN 38104

Feb 10, 2011
Piranha in Kentucky & Tennessee

Celebration Dinner

I'm looking for suggestions for a group celebration dinner (7 people) - ideally somewhat near the W Hotel - somewhere nice with great food.


Feb 10, 2011
Piranha in Greater Seattle


We'll be in Reims later this month - never been in the area. I welcome suggestions on where to eat - probably nothing super fancy because we will have just arrived in France and will be exhausted.


Jul 07, 2010
Piranha in France

6 days in Memphis

Circa, McEwen's and Felicia Suzanne's are good bets for rather upscale places within walking distance from the Peabody. I've had some great lunches at McEwen's recently.

The most interesting food in the city is in Cooper Young, but you'd need to drive there.

Felicia Suzanne's Restaurant
80 Monroe Ave Ste L1, Memphis, TN 38103

Apr 15, 2010
Piranha in Kentucky & Tennessee

Business Celebration for 8 - Downtown SF

Hi all,

What's the best place for a business celebration for 8 in SF? We're staying at the Westin on Powell but can take cabs.

It's been a long while since I've been to the city. I ate at Gary Danko and absolutely loved it but their web site says they don't take parties larger than 6. What's second best?

Price is not a real issue, but some place not much over $100 each would be most welcome.

Thanks a lot - and I can't wait to get back to the city.

What's new in Vegas - and what's open Christmas?

I haven't been to Vegas for about two years and will be there over Christmas.

What are the good new restuarants? I'm open to anything - but sushi/Asian are favorites.

Also, are most of the restaurants open Christmas dinner?


Dec 02, 2009
Piranha in Las Vegas

Where to eat in Montgomery Alabama?

Thanks for the advice and links.

We got some good food, although there wasn't much time to travel or drive around. Had a great lunch at Green Papaya and good pulled pork at Dreamland. The grilled oysters at the oyster house near the Marriott Renaissance were great. Ate at the fancy restaurant at the Renaissance. The service was terrible, but the food was surprisingly good - especially the foie gras and the kobe steak.

Nov 22, 2009
Piranha in Central South

Where to eat in Montgomery Alabama?

I'll be in Montgomery for a few days in early November? What are the best places to eat? I'm looking for the best food overall and other interesting places for lunch and dinner. I'm staying at the Marriott and will have a car.


Sep 26, 2009
Piranha in Central South

Encore (Memphis) closed

I second the recommendations for Iris and Bari.

Whatever you do, do NOT go to Flight. It is as bad a meal as I've had in Memphis for a place that fancies itself a real restaurant (and I've had a lot of mediocre food in Memphis over the years). The food varied between mediocre (okay soups) and inedible (potatos that tasted like salt and nothing else; overcooked beef, etc.). The service was terrible (a combination of understaffing and poorly-trained waiters). The manager was unbelievably rude. I feel sorry for the Nashville Flyte, which is very good - someone might think they're associated. As it is, it seems like the Memphis place has tried to rip off the concept but can't begin to execute. Stay away.

Sep 25, 2009
Piranha in Kentucky & Tennessee


I've been to Iris about 5 times now. It's definitely the best place in Memphis. (I say that not having to been to Erling Jensen's in quite a while because I never liked the service and there was nothing exciting.) I've only had bad experiences at Encore, although I guess I'm in the minority.

I really like Beauty Shop. Tsunami is very close and has some of the best seafood in town and a fun vibe. Do, next door to Beauty Shop, has great noodle bowls for lunch.

Also, no one's mentioned Bari. It is very regional southern Italian and ranges from very good to excellent and isn't that expensive.

And no Memphis places are Zagat rated. They don't know that Tennessee exists.

Jun 16, 2009
Piranha in General South Archive

Best Place for Dinner Downtown Memphis

What's the best place to eat dinner in downtown Memphis? Is Sole any good? Hunt Phelan? I've been to most of the restaurants that have been open for a while - Felicia Suzanne's, Encore, etc. and want to try someplace new.


Jun 09, 2009
Piranha in General South Archive

Bitter Lemon and Gin

One of my father's favorite drinks was gin and bitter lemon - it was probably the first drink I ever really tasted. He made it with Scweppes, but I like the Stirrings blend. It doesn't have the real strong taste of tonic and I think it's a better drink.

Oct 06, 2008
Piranha in Spirits

Memphis Recs near Cook Convention BBQ plz!

Hope I'm not too late - but I didn't see a mention of Automatic Slim's. That's one of the best downtown places - basically across the street from the Peabody. I've always had great service there, which certainly isn't true of most of the supposedly good downtown places (Encore and Felicia Suzanne's). I echo the rec. of Gus's for chicken.

Oct 06, 2008
Piranha in General South Archive

Bar Advice for Memphis and Louisville

Two additions to all the good Memphis advice above: for a great dive bar with great burgers, try Alex's Tavern (I believe it's on Jackson) and for a student scene (if that's what you're into) try RP Tracks near the U of Memphis.

Aug 14, 2008
Piranha in General South Archive

TNFNS winner! spoiler

I agree with nosh. I'm not sure I'd watch any of them, but I'd never watch Aaron. Predicting four episodes is generous.

It all seemed like a set up. Didn't the public vote all the times before? At least then there's somewhat of a market out there. This show never had any real credibility, but now it's nothing but a two-month long commercial for a show that the network knows won't sell.

Jul 27, 2008
Piranha in Food Media & News

Top 5 Memphis places to eat!

I'm glad this thread was revived recently because it's time for an addition - Restaurant Iris. I've been there twice now, once soon after it opened and then yesterday. It was good the first time, great the second. It's mostly New Orleans style menu with some nice twists - a great brussels sprout salad (and I don't usually like them) and amberjack "cafe au lait" with an amazing sauce really stand out. Also excellent service and a very reasonably-priced wine list with wines I haven't seen elsewhere in Memphis. It's a great addition to the Memphis dining scene - up there with the best in the city.

Jun 29, 2008
Piranha in Kentucky & Tennessee

Tourin Blanchi? French garlic soup

Here's the result of the adventure. I ended up going through a bunch of French recipe sites. They called from anywhere between two cloves and two heads of garlic, no to two onions, water or broth, etc. So I pretty much averaged everything and came up with a great recipe.

7 large cloves garlic, minced
1 onion, small dice
a few TBS fat (recipes say duck or goose, I used chicken and olive oil)
2 eggs
1 TBS red wine vinegar
about 10 cups chicken stock

Cook onion and garlic in fat over low heat until soft. Don't brown. Add stock, salt and pepper to taste and simmer with a sprig of fresh thyme (and a bay leaf?) for about 20 minutes. Separate eggs. Whisk whites and slowly whisk into stock. Whisk yolks with vinegar and put at bottom of serving bowl. Slowly add soup, stirring hard, to mix. Some recipes say to serve with grilled bread in the bowl.

Jan 26, 2008
Piranha in Home Cooking

Tourin Blanchi? French garlic soup

Does anyone have a recipe for the French garlic soup that I believe is called tourin blanchi? It's a specialty of the Dordogne region. It has garlic, onion and egg whites (maybe yolks?) in a slightly thickened chicken broth. After one eats the soup I believe one's supposed to put bread crumbs and red wine in the bowl and drink the mixture. I'm trying to recreate it and I'd love some help.


Jan 17, 2008
Piranha in Home Cooking

Umai - Memphis

Had dinner at Umai the other night and had the best sushi that I've had in Memphis. I haven't seen the place mentioned in any of the sushi posts (actually, I think they just added sushi to the menu) so I thought I'd recommend it. The service was great. The room, however, leaves something to be desired. Turns out I agree with Koeppel on this one - he gave a great write up on the CA Whining and Dining blog recently.

Dec 05, 2007
Piranha in General South Archive

Vegas - Dining alone


I've been to Vegas quite a bit, but usually with a crowd. I love LOS and Nobu; I've been to L'Atelier and was thinking of that. I love spicy food, almost all ethnic food, and don't mind a good steak.

I'm not familiar with a lot of the newer places (those that have opened in the last year or so). I'd love to hear about the best new places.

Thanks again!

Dec 03, 2007
Piranha in Southwest

Vegas - Dining alone

What are the best places in Vegas for a single diner (middle-age woman), preferably on the Strip? Great food counts; price isn't a big deal.

Dec 03, 2007
Piranha in Southwest

Best Food in Nashville?

I know there are a lot of Nashville posts, but if I can add one more:

What's the best restauarant in Nashville for a nice dinner? I'm looking for great food and a nice atmosphere. Price is irrelevant. Something within walking distance of the Embassy Suites near Vandy would be ideal, but we'll have a car.

Also, what are the best lunch places near Vandy?


Nov 05, 2007
Piranha in General South Archive

Tunica Casinos - Where's Good to Eat?

Is N'awlins still open? I thought I had read that it was closed and it's not on the Horseshoe web site. The site refers to a Magnolia Grill instead. Anyone been there?

Oct 10, 2007
Piranha in General South Archive

Top 5 Memphis places to eat!

Okay, I'll take the bait. Let the battle begin:

I've been here for over 20 years, since Memphis was a wasteland. Things have improved. I'm going to do two lists. One of the places I go to whenever I can, and one of the best meals I've had here in the year or two.

Where I always go when I can:

Gus's Chicken - I loved the Mason place but haven't been since the fire. Good food downtown also.

Pho Saigon - I go there all the time. I love the eggrolls and the Spicy Hue Style Noodle Soup. Very friendly and huge portions for little money.

Automatic Slim's - The go-to place for downtown. I've never had a bad meal there and the service is usually top-notch.

Bari - Maybe I go there all the time because it's near where I live. But the food has been very good recently. They're sort of up-tight about odd stuff (like the no butter rule) and the service is iffy, but it's usually a good meal for the money in a great location.

Sekisui - No, it's not always great but most of the outposts are consistently good. I've lived in Memphis since sushi was virtually non-existent, and this has filled the void. I go to Midtown most often, but also the original and Pacific Rim.

Honorable Mentions: Lobster King - because I think it's the most authentic Chinese in Memphis and usually excellent.

Rendevous - not because the food's that good, because it's not, but because it's an institution where you usually will get something at least decent and a fun experience. Perhaps this is more for tourists.

Best Meals -

Tsunami - My best meals in Memphis have been here. Yes, I've been to Erling Jensen's and the like, but the only dishes I've had in Memphis that have wowed me have been here.

Stella - I've had great meals here and always had fun. Maybe Felicia Suzanne's or McEwen's or Grill 83 (or even Circa) can be as good, but this is where I want to go.

Beauty Shop - The menu seems always to be in a state of flux, but I always want to go back. I've had some amazing dishes here (duck, guacamole) and always want to return.

Folk's Folly - It can be a crapshoot, but when it's on it's totally on. Yes, it's a totally different environment from the others - but if one's stuck having a business dinner it's hard to think of a better place. I've been disappointed there, but also very impressed. And the service never fails.

RIP - Cielo - It's where I always wanted to go. I haven't been to the replacement, but I memorable meals there.

Oct 05, 2007
Piranha in Kentucky & Tennessee

Tunica Casinos - Where's Good to Eat?

Please do! I have another week to decide.

Oct 05, 2007
Piranha in General South Archive