Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Gators in Central Indiana?

Brothers Bar & Grill
910 Broad Ripple Ave.
Indianapolis, IN 46220

Sports bars are all the same. They all have 5000 plasma screen TVs, cheap beer, and not too exciting menus.

Sure, occasionally, you will find a gem where the atmosphere is fun, the beer selection is respectable, and the food is tremendous.

Of course, most of those are not chains, and unfortunately for me, I was unaware that I was walking into a chain when I visited Brothers Bar & Grill in Broad Ripple Village.

Broad Ripple Village is a nice neighborhood of Indianapolis, filled with unique shops and restaurants. If I knew Brothers was a chain, I would not have bothered visiting this location, rather I would have gone to one of the unique restaurants.

Allow the disappointment to ensue...

Okay, it really wasn't that bad, but it wasn't that good, either. I should have listened to my instincts when I walked into the place and saw Miller Lite and Bud Light signs all over the place.

Thankfully, this chain has enough sense to serve some good beer, so I ordered a pint of Upland's Wheat Ale, a local brewery out of Bloomington, Indiana. This beer was delicious, as always. You'll come to learn reading my posts that Wheat Ales top my list of beer.

Being that it was a busy day and I was pretty hungry, I decided that it would be appropriate for me to have an appetizer with dinner. Like most sports bars, they have everything deep fried that you could imagine: onions, mushrooms, and chicken. And, of course, the obligatory pretzel and tortilla chips.

The menu suddenly got interesting when I saw the appetizer named "Gator Balls".

First off, I'm in Central Indiana, where in the world are the going to find the poor alligator to complete this recipe?

As it would turn out, they are not actually "Gator Balls", it is a chicken breast wedge wrapped in bacon, and stuffed with pepper jack cheese and jalapeno peppers.

Well, being that this seemed to be the most interesting item on the menu, I figured it would be appropriate to try it. I had no idea what these things were going to look like or taste like. I should have known that my appetizer would come out looking like a phallic object.

Let the sexual innuendo begin...

Now, let me just say, bacon-wrapped anything is glorious. In fact, bacon can pretty much go with anything. Bacon in chocolate chip cookies? You betcha. I had those at my Bachelor Party. Bacon in ice cream? Haven't had it yet, but it is on my list. Basically, as soon as I saw the balls, I knew I made a wise choice.

From the outside, they look pretty normal, right? Nothing to spark the imagination or gross you out. Well....that suddenly changes when you cut one open. There's a reason why they put pepper jack cheese in it.

I won't explain, I'll let the picture do the talking...

Anyway, the appetizer was pretty good.  The bacon, chicken, cheese and peppers combination dipped in a creamy ranch dressing worked out well. Like I said, bacon goes well with anything. In fact, it was probably the bacon that made this appetizer possible.

Now, on to the main event. Like I said before, sports bars usually do not have the most exciting of menus and this place was about par for the course. I tried as hard as I could to find the most unique dish on the menu.

I ended up going with the Louisiana Pork Sandwich. It sounded interesting enough. It had pork tenderloin, provolone cheese, a spinach and artichoke spread, as well as peppers, all piled on a hoagie roll.

Unfortunately, this flavor combination was not really that exciting. In fact, it was a little weird and kinda bland.

It looked delicious, but it did not taste delicious.

My overall opinion of this place was sub-par. Sure, it would be a great place to watch a ball game, drink cheap beer, and eat onion rings, but fine dining it is not. I don't expect to be visiting Brothers ever again, especially considering that I can cook my own bacon and buy Upland beer anywhere else.

Rating: Wouldn't Wear A Shirt If They Paid Me.

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