1.25.2010

LAB (Lexington Avenue Brewery) Review

Jeremy and I went downtown Sunday to visit an antique store I found that is the closest resemblance I've found in Asheville to the flea markets we frequented in Arkansas, but unfortunately it was closed. To make our rainy adventure not a complete bust, we visited LAB, which we've wanted to try since it opened, but weren't exactly willing to fight the crowds to do so.

Lucky for us, it was nearly empty at 2 p.m. on Sunday afternoon. The place is absolutely gorgeous, and I'm sure the patio area will be great in the summer. The menu has some great looking stuff on there, and it's all reasonably priced in the $5-$12 range. I had a hard time choosing between the tempeh reuben and the veggie pot pie, but in the end the veggie pot pie won out. It didn't take nearly as long to get as I expected. It had a delicious puff pastry on the top with diced tomatoes and butter as a garnish. The inside was a bit soupier than I expected, and also very sweet, but absolutely delicious. It had chunks of squash (butternut I think), peas, and tiny cubes of chewy tofu and larger chunks of tempeh. The only complaint I had was the tempeh. The rest is incredibly sweet, so the tempeh's graininess just didn't compliment it well at all. I picked those pieces out.

Jeremy had the soup of the day, which was black bean with cilantro. It. Was. Delicious. I couldn't believe how strong the flavors in it were, and it was far better than any other soup I've had at any restaurant in town. The only criticism of it is that it didn't come with any chips or crackers or anything. The menu lists that the rest of the soups come with flatbread, so I'm not sure if it was an oversight or if the soup of the day just doesn't come with it.

As for the beer, I'm not a beer drinker, but Jeremy was quite pleased with both. The stout I tasted had a nice coffee aftertaste and a lovely dark color. He also tried the porter at the suggestion of our waiter, and he said that it was good.

The place was large, but well spaced out so the tables aren't all crammed together. I don't think it's large enough to require a hostess like some have suggested. It just seems to me that if you take a large group out during rush hours, you should expect to have to wait a bit for a table, especially at a brewery where people are likely to spend time hanging out and drinking.

We can't wait to go back and try more food and especially the desserts! Maybe I can get some photos next time.

4 comments:

kandicook said...

Mmm. And yes, photos next time please.

brandi said...

we can go here the next time you're in town! :D

Monica Hooper said...

I'm so jealous. There's no place like that in Jonestown. However, I actually had some yummy tofu at the new Thai place, Kumarn. I'm the only person that likes it though..

brandi said...

I was wondering how that Thai place was, Monica! I saw it when we were driving in from NC.