Louisville Magazine

MAR 2014

Louisville Magazine is Louisville's city magazine, covering Louisville people, lifestyles, politics, sports, restaurants, entertainment and homes. Includes a monthly calendar of events.

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9 4 LOUISVILLE MAGAZINE 3.14 Big Four Burgers and Beer 134 Spring St., Jeffersonville, Ind. the DISH food bits drink Food Journal Bruce Ucán, 45, is Mayan Cafe's chef-owner. On Tuesdays and Thursdays, he stays home with his daughters, who are 2 ½ and six months old. Here's what he ate on Tuesday, Feb. 4. 8:30 a.m.: Honey Nut Cheerios with bananas and milk and Red Hot Roasters coffee from my espresso machine. 10:30 a.m.: Another coffee. Noon: Ritz Crackers with Smoking Goose smoked pork salami and manchego cheese, an apple and a Coke. 1:30 p.m.: Another cup of coffee. 2:30 p.m.: Please & Thank You chocolate- chip cookies. 6:30 p.m.: Chicken milanesa (breaded and pan-fried) with basmati rice and salad with tomatoes, cucumbers and olive oil. 7:30 p.m.: Graeter's butter pecan ice cream. 8:30 p.m.: Ginger tea with honey from the Yucat á n and lime. What We're Eating Now Munched on a bunch of tapas — mussels in spicy broth, artisan Spanish cheeses and grilled lamb with Madeira sauce — at La Bodega. And more mussels, these at North End Cafe, in a spicy tomato-basil sauce great for bread dunking. Organic prime beef burger on a pretzel bun at Game. Dark chocolate-covered caramel with Bour- bon Barrel smoked sea salt from Cellar Door Chocolates. Dark chocolate is too a health food. A brownie the size of a hockey puck at Grale- haus. Yeah, not a health food. Veggie plate at Yafa Cafe: hummus, baba ghanoush, grape leaves, falafel, salad. Extra pita, please! Brandy. Lots of warm delicious brandy. Flasks full of brandy. Pulled pork on apple-butter sweet-potato biscuits at Varanese. Pork and shrimp dumpling, stuffed eggplant and orange beef at Oriental House. A brisket sandwich, pulled chicken and sau- sage sliders, baked beans and macaroni and cheese at Momma's Mustard, Pickles and BBQ. And, like last month, Tums. Photo by Aaron Kingsbury Te frst foor of Jefersonville's Big Four Burgers and Beer is two tables shy of being totally packed. A couple of old men sit at the bar in back and talk about the government. A lady sips her beer and says something about football. A winded mother smiles at her son, a four- or fve-year-old who is enraptured by chicken tenders. A waitress hands out beers. Tey make a comfortable rabble that almost drowns out Kings of Leon on the radio. Matt McMahan opened Big Four in December, turning a former dive into a three-story water- front burgers-but-more dream. He says the building is "refurbished, reused and recycled like a steam pump," and hopes to pull business from Jefersonville and Louisville, especially with the Big Four Bridge opening (fngers crossed) on the Indiana side this summer. It is lunchtime, so Big Four is acting as a burger joint with style. Customers order from the menu on the wall, grab their drinks and sit at wooden tables. Mason-jar lights hang from the ceiling, and crinkled tin adorns the wooden furnishings. Te hip Americana culminates in the wine list; "Dream- ing Tree," a series of wines by Dave Matthews, is at the top. But the real supply is in the larger bar upstairs. It's a wide room with a view of the Ohio, but the river is the wrong liquid to ogle; at least 21 beers are on tap every night. A stage awaits the evening's band, and upside-down stools await the backsides of happy imbibers. Te two-month-old restaurant/bar already has a "classic" burger, but no one is thinking about the newness of the place when a skinny, 20-something waiter brings out the burger on a silver tray. It is medium-well with all the trimmings, surrounded by fat, home-style fries, crisp on the outside, ten- der on the inside, delicious. It's as if they've made this burger for two decades instead of two months. — Taylor Ichinose and Dylon Jones Ann Race, 30, is the executive chef at Jeff Ruby's Steakhouse downtown. What ingredient do you use most often? "Beef." Where are you a regular? "Double Dragon II, near U of L's football stadium. Beef and scallions, extra scallions." First alcoholic drink? "Budweiser at a high school party." What's always in your refrigerator? "Milk." Favorite cereal? "Fruity Pebbles." Last drink you had? "Diet Mountain Dew." Biggest drinking pet peeve? "Sloppy drunks." What makes a good drinking buddy? "Somebody who can maintain throughout the night." What do you make at home most often? "Chicken and potatoes, cooked any style." Which chef should we ask these questions to next? "Jason Roberts from Z's Oyster Bar and Steakhouse in the East End." Nibbles 84-120 BACK.indd 94 2/20/14 12:21 PM

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