Let's eat out 6/6

Friday, June 6, 2003

For the last six months I have been watching the building of the new O'Charley's in Cape on my way to work. Wondering first what it was, then who O'Charley was and whether I would like O'Charley. Well, the last is not at issue. I like all new shiny things, like toys, boys and coins. Ooh, is that a quarter on the ground? Get out of my way, Fabio.

Building a new business in the neighborhood is like building a new home on your block. Everybody wants to come and see who you are. O'Charley's wanted to meet its neighbors and say, "Hello, come in and taste what's in our kitchen." So they had a party -- a really cool party. O'Charley's had a pre-opening event for vendors, managers, company executives and community leaders.

The event benefited the Area Wide United Way. How can you not like a neighbor who is willing to break fluffy yeast rolls served with real butter with you for a good cause? Mmm. What was I saying? Bread. Their hand-breaded chicken tenders are lightly fried. These are divine. They either come with hot and spicy Buffalo sauce or the sweet and spicy chipotle barbecue sauce.

O'Charley's has a new chicken item on the menu: Chicken Florentine, boneless chicken breast covered with a creamy spinach, artichoke hearts and parmesan sauce. Served with Alfredo linguini and fresh vegetables. It's very appealing to the eye.

If you are feeling adventurous this summer, try out O'Charley's grilled tuna. It is a grilled and seasoned tuna filet topped with spicy ginger sauce. Very perky. I liked the chipotle barbecued salmon, too. The sweet and spicy sauce brings out the natural sweetness of the salmon.

My youngest daughter came with me and tried out the kids menu. She liked the steak and fries and the macaroni and cheese, which brought up the question, "Mom, how come you can't make mac and cheese like this?"

"Give me a state-of-the-art kitchen with a great staff and I will," I replied. I got a look that meant I should be warmly received at Bedlam. I do believe the sarcasm gene is only activated after a child's first double-digit birthday. But the begging gene is in full force from the time they are born.

"Whatcha eating?"

"O'Charley's Original Caramel Pie."

"Can I have some?"

"No."

"Please ... can I have some? I will clean my room up for a week."

"I don't know, if I see your room clean for a week I will have higher expectations for you, like keeping your room clean all the time."

But I keep getting the blank look. I forget she's not 10 yet. I must be getting senile. The Home is rubbing off on me.

Quick review: new neighbor, new food, kid friendly.

Life is short ... It's still my dessert.

$$$

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