Downtown Dining and Drinking Discoveries, plus today’s news

For today’s post, I want to catch you up on some of the yummy things I’ve had to eat and drink Downtown over the past five days.

Last night I had the Goat Cheese Stuffed Pepper appetizer at Aldo’s Pizza Pies. Two poblano peppers, stuffed with goat cheese and covered in marinara. One thing I’ve learned about peppers is that you never can tell how spicy an individual pepper will be until you bite into it. The one on the right was SUPER HOT!!! The flavor of the goat cheese really worked well with it, though. The bread that came with the appetizer helped take the edge off the heat. The pepper on the left was about average in heat. I really enjoyed this dish and would order it again. Some appetizers are big enough to be meals in themselves, but this is not one of them. However, splitting the pepper appetizer and a 12″ pizza with a friend or a date would be just about right.

Friday night I was in City Market to see what was in their refrigerated case. Afterward I started digging through their selection of international snacks. Owner Hamida saw me and came over and handed me a bag of masala peanuts. “These are on me,” she said. “I think you’ll like them.” She was right. I grab a bag of hot peanuts at the convenience store on the way to work all the time, and these are even better. They’re spicy hot but not salty. A good snack to munch on throughout the day.

Since I had the day off Friday, I got to the Flying Saucer about 3 PM. I decided to work on some beers for my next plate, and I decided to knock out a Green Flash beer or two while they had 8 of them on tap. I went to the computer to print out tickets and discovered there was a Green Flash flight. A flight is a way to try a number of different beers for an affordable price, with five 5 oz. servings. The beers on the Green Flash flight were the Trippel, the Double Stout, the Imperial IPA, the IPA, and the Hop Head Red. If you like hoppy beers, you will enjoy this flight. It was $10, which was a good value considering the rather high alcohol content of the beers.

By the way, there’s a news story out that America’s craft brewery count has surpassed a level last seen in 1887. Congrats to great breweries like Green Flash on making that happen.

Earlier in the day Friday, I stopped in the Majestic Grille for lunch. Most every Friday they have a seafood flatbread as their flatbread special. Shrimp, scallops, salmon, red onions, spinach, garlic olive oil, and mozzarella topped this delicious flatbread. This masterpiece of cheesy goodness was exactly the base I needed before going over to the Saucer to drink Green Flash beers. If you’re Downtown on a Friday, this would be one of my top lunch recommendations. Follow the restaurant at @MajesticGrille on Twitter to keep up with their other specials.

I’m not the only one who thinks a lot of this flatbread. I posted a pic of my lunch to Facebook and my food panhandler commented, “that one is my fav.” A few hours later, she texted me and said I didn’t pick up on the hint that she wanted me to buy her a seafood flatbread. Geez.

So, today the Peabody had a job fair, to fill 30 vacant housekeeping positions. They tweeted this photo about 10 AM of approximately 1000 (!!!!!) people in line to apply! Wow it is tough to find full-time work in this economy. I’m grateful I have a stable job, even if I do have to drive to Horn Lake every day.

The long-vacant building at 387 S. Main will not be vacant much longer. A $200K loan has been approved to turn the building into the Downtown Athletic Club and Atmosphere Eurocafe. The MBJ has more details about these new businesses, which could open as soon as January.

Tonight is Elvis glass night tonight at the Flying Saucer. Their glass designs are hit-or-miss (the Col. Parker design last year was a real miss), but this appears to be a pretty good one. These glasses go on sale at 7 and will run out pretty fast. Best advice is to be there before 7, and tell your bartender or server you want to order one as soon as it’s time.

It’s also candlelight vigil night out at Graceland. Most definitely worth seeing at least one time in your life. If you go out there, be respectful – these people take their Elvis seriously.

I hate reporting bad news about Downtown, but there was a stabbing at the Renaissance Apartments last night. This is not a reason to be alarmed about Downtown being unsafe. I have been in that building, I know several people who live there, and it is a very safe place to live and to visit. There’s security on duty, and card access is required to enter the building. This seems to be a random case of domestic violence, which can happen anywhere in the city. The Renaissance is one of the more affordable apartment buildings in the Downtown core, and I would definitely recommend it to anyone wanting to move here.

Time for a nasty but quick Taco Bell lunch, then back to work for a fun-filled afternoon of clip art. I’ll be out about 6 tonight.