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Thursday, November 4, 2010

Peels Schpiel

As much as I've wanted to, I have not yet tried Freeman's Alley.  However, that did not stop me from trying their new sister restaurant, Peels on Tuesday night.  Peels is bringing the South to the Bowery, but it's a fancier, trendier South.  This two story restaurant is all white paint and wood with large lighting fixtures, sort of like a fancy farm.  Take it from me, the South is not so glamorous, but I'll take the added glitz to enjoy this food.

Instead of bread, we were treated to a small ramekin of pickled veggies (mostly carrots) with crispy flatbread.  The vegetables were very lightly pickled so they would not be overpowering to the pickle haters out there.  It was a welcome change from the bread basket.

For my entree, I couldn't help but order the fried chicken.  True, fried chicken is the new, fashionable food item of the moment but until recently, it was difficult to track down so I still grab it when I can.  This particular fried foul was extra extra crispy with a good bit of spice in the batter, just the way I like it.  It was served with honey for dipping, which is something they got right - Southerners love honey with their fried chicken.  I'm glad they didn't skip that important detail.

My entree came with creamed collards, something I've never had before.  It's like if creamed spinach and collards got married.  I am now proud to say I am a big supporter of greens' marriage rights.  Yum.  It also came with squash that was sweet and very smokey.  It was a healthier alternative to the squash casserole my Mom makes, though I can't really talk about being healthy when I'm picking at every bit of fried skin I could find.  I only wish my meal came with a biscuit.  That would have rounded it out perfectly and made it just like home.

The rest of the menu is not overly Southern.  A few dishes (e.g.: shrimp and grits) are, but don't worry if you're not a soul food person.  There is plenty on the menu you'll the desserts.  I was sad I didn't save room for the over-the-top desserts.  I think next time, I'll take a tip from a girl I saw sitting at the bar who came just for a drink and a massive ice cream concoction.

Sadly, I didn't get any pics so you'll just have to use your imagination.

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