(ELV note: Ever since he returned from Dallas, ELV has had an uncontrollable urge to talk like a Texan. As you will soon find out.)
Itsy Bitsy Ramen and Whiskey has done what something we thought impossible: bring a steady stream of downtown diners to the north side of The Ogden building. Between the somewhat obscure location, and the bad juju of the former occupant, this space was permanently jinxed in our minds, and destined to become a vacant storefront for years to come.
But you’ve got to hand it to the folks behind the redesign (see above) and to chef Ricardo Romo, because between them, they’ve reinvigorated a challenging spot, and rounded out your dining options whenever a downtown pub crawl captures your fancy.
How wrong could we be?
In the months it took Glutton to open, we predicted its downfall for a number of reasons. One, it seemed to take months too long to get launched; two, there was the name (and that awful logo); and three, just who in the hell was this Bradley Manchester fellow anyway?
In case you haven’t noticed, we’re in the midst of another restaurant revolution. A mini one, if you will, but one with far greater benefits for locals and those willing to travel downtown (and to the ‘burbs) for refined, personal, chef-driven cuisine.
Consider the following: When was the last time you can remember this many good restaurants opening in one month?
Lago by Julian Serrano
Tapas by Alex Stratta
The fact that three of them are downtown also says something about a remarkable, recurring renaissance in our humble ‘burg. It also does our little pea pickin’ heart proud to see restaurants starting to catch up with the bar scene around East Fremont Street.
We haven’t had time to sample all of them, but here’s an hors d’oeuvres platter of opinion based upon some early bites: