Tuesday, July 29, 2008
I ventured up to the far and mysterious lands of NoPo today for lunch with my dear friend and fellow foodie Butternut. We stumbled into 5th Quadrant, Lompoc brewery's northernmost establishment on N Williams. I was a little shellshocked walking in, as we had just jogged across the street and narrily escaped being run over by a truck coming around the corner. You can't always trust those pedestrian crossings... I was immediately faced with a large water dispenser and tray of glasses. Call me cheap, but quality, free water on demand makes me very happy. I get that from my dad. Wilco & Billy Bragg sang through the speakers - though not loud enough to cover the oldies on the kitchen radio (Ingrid Bergman vs. the Vogues... who will win?) We chose a seat next to the large street-facing window, and looked through the drink menu. I ordered a home-brewed Lompoc Root Beer. Now, I have some reservations about "real" root beer - ever since a childhood trip to Lancaster County for an Amish festival left me gagging on some terrible concoction touted as home-brewed soda - but this was delicious. Really refreshing and, unfortunately, far too easy to gulp. Luckily, water refills were plentiful and timely. B had a Centennial IPA, which was good, but we both preferred the root beer.
I ordered the Meatloaf sandwich, which was the best choice I could have made. I have no idea where the desire for a meatloaf sandwich came from, must have been divine inspiration, but it was one of the best sandwiches I'd had in a while. Made from local, Oregon Country beef on a perfectly toasted whole wheat from Portland French bakery, the sandwich was a great balance of smoky, crisp (from the fresh greens), and cool (big, red local tomato slices).
The meatloaf itself was great - reminded me of bbq ribs - though it could have been warmer. I really wanted BBQ sauce to dip it in, and I figured (because they serve BBQ pork) they'd have some extra in the kitchen. Nope. My waiter looked at me like I was crazy and asked if I wanted A1 sauce. Is BBQ sauce really that crazy? I didn't think so... No matter, the sandwich was worth the snarky service. Another thing - this sandwich was huge. I ended up taking half home and will be enjoying it for dinner. My sandwich came with a big pile of fries, which were tasty, but a bit soft for my taste. The few that were crispy proved my point - perfectly seasoned with flaky sea salt and a good crunch.
I'm not sure if I'm ready to jump on the NoPo trendbandwagon, but I had a great lunch here and I bet I'll be back.
Labels: Restuarant Reviews