The Music Mill

Alas, such high hopes for the Music Mill. It’s that store that looks like a big shiny box just past Keystone at the Crossing, and I’d read several sterling reviews of the food. Apparently these diners had far different experiences from what we encountered.

To his credit, our waiter was very friendly. The problem was, he was working alone that evening and seemed fairly stressed. To be expected, seeing as how he had two large tables (ours being one of them) among his other clients, and our dining companions were less than discreet about their displeasure.

We started out on a high note, though. We dined on a Thursday (half price appetizers), so we were little piglets and ordered both the bacon‐wrapped scallops (awesome, but what could possibly not be awesome if wrapped in bacon?) and the Yuzu sesame fries. The sauce on the fries was borderline too salty for a teriyaki‐type sauce, but the fries themselves were great. Not soggy, not too greasy. Our friends also tried the corn fritters with maple sauce, and I totally wish we had gotten those instead. There would have been no sharing, and I would have licked the plate.

Unfortunately, it was mostly downhill from there. I tried the Imperial chicken Suzza, a house specialty. Take my advice: don’t try it yourself. The “thin crust” that wraps the “nine inch pie”? Yeah, we call it a flour tortilla. The “Parmesan‐coated crust” that was supposed to come with my Suzza? Not there, but I did get some sort of sweet and spicy Asian glaze with the frozen peppers, onions, and chicken pieces.

Another friend ordered the Roasted Vegetable Foccacia Suzza, and here’s a word of advice that should have tipped her off: pesto and salsa just. don’t. mix. Plus, the “roasted vegetables” came straight of your grocer’s freezer and were overcooked to borderline mush before being placed between the aforementioned tortillas. Granted, she was borderline rude about not enjoying the dish, but I can’t entirely blame her. I would have felt ripped off, too.

Chris’s New Orleans Mufaletta sandwich was pretty tasty, although he felt so greasy after eating it he said he needed to take a shower. it came with homemade potato chips which weren’t bad, but when the highlight of the dinner is the chips, something’s not clicking.

Other mishaps included incorrect orders being brought out (two wrong sandwhiches at various ends of the table, a sausage wrap that should have been chicken, etc). Again, I realize the waiter was swamped, but there were some major miscommunications between our table, the waiter, and the kitchen, and there were just too many of them to be ignored.

Had it been just the two of us (and had I not been the one to choose the restaurant), perhaps it wouldn’t have seemed so bad. However, it was not the best experience we had, and the quality of the food was such that we probably won’t be too willing to give this place a second chance. Unless they wrap everything in bacon and serve it with a side of corn fritters.

Sullivan’s Steakhouse

Thanks to a gift certificate from Chris’ work, we were able to enjoy our 2nd anniversary dinner, compliments of someone else. We probably wouldn’t have gone to Sullivan’s otherwise, but it was fun and every bit as “old boy’s club” as they make themselves out to be.

We started with the iceberg wedge (and yes, there was lettuce underneath the gallon of bleu cheese dressing), which, surprisingly, had some flavor. The sourdough bread was, as Chris would say “good nasty”. Chris ordered the 16oz strip steak (melt‐in‐your‐mouth goodness), and I committed the cardinal sin of steakhouses: I ordered fish. My mahi‐mahi was excellent with avocado‐jalapeno salsa on the side. We probably could have passed on the broccoli with ©arnaise sauce (nothing memorable) but the horseradish mashed potatoes were awesome…made with all sorts of things we don’t usually eat at our house (like butter and real sour cream). We put in our dessert order early so we could enjoy the Grand Marnier souffle, and thank goodness we saved room…excellent, orange‐y, and creamy.

All in all, this was a fun evening and a good excuse to get dressed up (and wear the new sparkly jewelry I received…thanks, hon). The service was attentive (four people asked us how we were doing with our food before we even had a chance to taste any of it) and friendly. I don’t know if we’d visit again (without a gift certificate) but it was a pleasant way to spend an evening with the one you love.

Update: We returned about a year later on a Wednesday evening to find the atmosphere a lot less smarmy than last year, and not nearly as bad as, say, The Oceanaire, another expense‐account competitor downtown. Our server stayed out of the way, but he was friendly and helpful in guiding us to selections that would fit our tastes that night exceptionally well.

Emily ordered a filet which made her do that thing where she rolls her eyes back in enjoyment. I had the Cajun rib‐eye, and oh my lord was it char‐licious… absolutely awesome char and so perfectly melty‐tender inside. It was a lot salty and not so peppery at all, but absolutely delicious, let’s be clear on that. At our waiter’s counsel, we forewent the hash browns (probably more greasy than we wanted) in favor of the potatoes au gratin (greasy, but with the added bonus of cheesiness). Lumpy shards of potatoes in oozy, creamy, cheesy—you get the point. Delicious, of course. The creamed spinach was just what you’d expect: it was good, but didn’t exactly stand out. Dessert tipped me into slightly‐uncomfortably‐overstuffed territory, but the deep‐dish apple pie was worth it. Sweet, tangy, buttery crust falling over the rim of the soufflé dish, and cinnamon ice cream. Delightful.

The “anything goes” bar, as described by our waiter, did not have Harp lager. I’ve been trying to get a Harp at a restaurant for months around this city! Help! The next restaurant that has a Harp for me might just get an extra star or something.

Capri

You’d never expect to find such a nice restaurant tucked away behind the Wal‐mat on Keystone, but Capri (a member of Indianapolis Originals, so bonuis points to start with) is a great way to get your Italian fix. The decor is warm, there’s a large fireplace in the bar, and a recent patio additionwould make for a lovely evening dinign al fresco. With a location close to Keystone at the Crossing, Chris guessed that “a lot of power lunches happen here”, and the atmosphere has that dark‐wood‐yellow‐wall rich sort of feel to it. Staff is excellent with wine reccomendations, and we enjoyed glasses of merlot and cabernet. It was a cool rain late summer afternoon, so reds seemed appropriate.

Chris ordered and loved the pollo con salsiccia (chicken with sausage). The rosemary was excellent, and who doesn’t love italian sausage? My pasta, penetta boscaiola, was penne, tomatoes, and portabella mushrooms—very fresh, very light, and just what i wanted. It just takes a look at Capri’s menu to see that they cater to many tastes. Several meatless entrees make this a very vegetarian‐friendly menu, and the offerings go from spicy to beefy to light to creamy.

In our never‐ending quest to find the city’s best tiramisu (sigh…still looking…we’ll just have to keep ordering dessert), we were pleased but not convinced. We may have to try it again, just to make sure. And we probably will. Although Chris did bring his parents back to Capri for a repeat visit, he regrettably forgot what they ordered. This may be because they returned home to find nine inches of water in the basement (it was a dark and story night) but at least they had some carbs to work off…

Maggiano’s Little Italy

Raucous, yet surprisingly romantic dinner event. Go with a slew of friends and family, and order family style, it’s an orgy of food and wine. Make reservations early, the good times can book up weeks in advance. This is by far one of our favorites (although again, regrettably, a chain).