I liked Brix. Brix was good. We forgot about Brix a lot, being all the way north in Zionsville, and then Brix became Noah Grant's. Now it's really good. And I'm sure we'll forget about it less.
Okay, let's get the bad stuff out of the way first. Their Signature Oyster Raw Bar was out of…all together now…oysters. But I've heard from enough chefs with oyster-having menus that oysters are tough. When you have them, no one orders them. When you don't have them, everyone wants them. And the little guys aren't exactly known for their keeping power. So we decided to forgive.
And I would have forgiven some really heinous things when we met the BBQ ribs. Oh heavens the ribs are so good. They're from local purveyor Mark Turner Farms, which is apparently so local that I could have winged a picked-clean bone and hit it from my table. The sauce (here is not the time to quibble over whether REAL barbeque has sauce or not) is both sweet and spicy, thick but not tomatoey. There was maybe a touch too much, especially when the ribs are this meaty and flavorful on their own, but that's a nit I'm picking.
My esteemed colleague went for the lamb chops, which were very good. The surprising revelation had to be the asparagus, though. Simple – grilled and yummy. Hopefully this is a sign that restaurants in Indy are finally learning that not everything has to come drenched in butter and sauce and blue cheese dressing and bacon bits. Not that there's anything wrong with those things, just not covering every available food surface until you're not sure if you ordered the grilled fish or the roasted chicken. On that note, to Noah Grant's, please don't put cheddar in the French onion soup. The flavor's fine, but the texture is off. Try the classic Gruyere or something that melts better, like Asiago or Fontina. The soup itself is quite good, or so said my esteemed colleague, who was on his third bowl in as many places that week.
And I can't end this without mentioning the people. I know some people don't like it when they become a part of your evening, but we love it when our server is enthusiastic about the food, when the chef comes out and talks about it, when the excitement about what's going on is palpable. We left very much looking forward to not forgetting Noah Grant's.
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