Flyover Friday - The American experience

Ran a little behind on this one, but as you may know, our pug Monty had another health issue over the Independence Day weekend that required some attention at the time, as well as in the days that followed. Dude always manages to come down with something on holiday weekends. So before I give you this most recent week's roundup, take a wistful look one more week back at a very American Flyover Friday.

Mike Sula's review of Pub Royale for Chicago's Reader

An unusually breezy review from Sula. But it's not a huge menu at Pub Royale, so I guess you work with what you eat. (The restaurant has a pretty slick website, btw.) Weird appearance by Nashville hot chicken, but there's an Indian cognate in chill chicken that I guess gives the American reference a foothold.

Gavin Pirnia's review of 16-Bit Bar + Arcade for the Cincinnati CityBeat

I wouldn't normally consider a foodless bar review for Flyover Friday, but A) we hit an arcade bar in St. Louis and I'm feeling warm toward the genre, and B) the CityBeat didn't publish a food review this last week, and have this slotted as if it were any other review. Still looking for a functioning Hercules pinball cabinet to play, though.

Douglas Trattner's review of Dynomite Uptown and Slyman's Tavern for the Cleveland Scene

Half of this joint review covers a restaurant opened in the Cleveland suburb of Independence. A LITTLE ON THE NOSE THIS WEEK, SCENE. I found the review a little confusing; it wasn't immediately apparent that we were discussing new locations of existing restaurants. Another slick website, though, from Dynomite. Looks a little like a font shop.

Carlos Acevedo's review of Draught House 50 for the Des Moines Register

Well, look at this. Mr. Acevedo -- who I had, for a time here, referred to by his full name because I googled him and the "C." seemed pretentious -- has liberated the rest of his first name from the tyranny of abbreviation. This is not the best debut for Acevedo as a named commodity, however; it's a touch hokey.

Aaron Egan's review of Cornerstone Barrel House for the Detroit Metro Times

It's been almost a week, and unless there are two Aarons with homophonic names writing for the Metro Times, the paper still hasn't fixed the spelling on Egan's byline. He hits a lot of targets on Cornerstone's menu, but from the sound of things, this doesn't appear to have been a hardship. He's right; everyone needs a place like Cornerstone. Why the disbelief at beer/meatball pairing?

Lindsay Christians' review of The Boathouse at Edgewater for Madison's Capital Times

Nice beat for Christians lately, a lot of waterfront dining. (See also: Waypoint Public House overlooking Lake Monona.) Can't help but think Caddyshack when I consider Edgewater's Boathouse/Statehouse casual/formal dichotomy. Slobs vs. snobs. "I want a hamburger, no, a cheeseburger. I want a hot dog..." 

Cheryl Baehr's review of Lascelles Granite City for St. Louis' Riverfront Times

Lascelles Granite City review, take one. I do tend to forget that St. Louis, MO, is pressed right up to the border with Illinois. The review is a little choppy, and doesn't always follow clearly from point to point, but I get the gist. It's a fascinating reclamation story.

G.A. Benton's review of Knotty Pine Brewing for the Columbus Dispatch

It's pretty clear that the inconsistency Benton mentions with regard to the one (one?!) house brew at Knotty Pine is an unintentional negative execution, but the reader has to assume that since it's addressed so obliquely. This is a very damning-with-faint-praise review.

Amelia Cook Fontella's review of PaintBar for Madison's Isthmus

A brief review owing perhaps to the slender kitchen offerings. I admit this is a restaurant concept that befuddles me slightly, but I guess if you lose some arugula in your acrylic landscape, you can call it mixed (greens) media.

Samara Kalk Derby's review of 1847 at the Stamm House for Madison's Wisconsin State Journal

Good thing the State Journal waited the customary 4 weeks before publishing this review, since the headline of "Good things come to those who waited" would be TOO PRESH otherwise. (You can, of course, turn around a "review" in 6 days when you only visit once. Ahem.)

Ian Froeb's review of Lascelles Granite City for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch

Lascelles Granite City review, take two! Froeb is less complimentary than Baehr, and perhaps more parental in his tone. Maybe the soundalike wordplay between the developer's name (Lance Callis) and the name of the restaurant is already obvious to everyone, or maybe I'm crafting a false reference point, but neither review mentions it either way.

Blade staff's review of Kengo Sushi & Yakitori for the Toledo Blade

This is tough. The reviewer(s) clearly ate a lot of the menu, so there's a good effort being put forward. Toledo is a bigger city than, say, Madison, but it's not known as a food city the way Madison is. So when the critic here describes gastronomical hesitation over eating beef tongue, or has to google "uni," I'm torn between thinking "Well, it's Toledo after all," and "A critic should know better!"

Polly Campbell's review of 15 North for the Cincinnati Enquirer

One more border-hopping review this week, as Campbell steps into northern Kentucky. Nice little spot, with apple pie pizza, appropriately enough for this week's holiday. I'm going to guess she meant that the pizza oven is 4,600 pounds, not tons, because otherwise, suck on THAT, Naples. USA! USA! USA!