I was hoping to add a post or two from outside of the greater Detroit area, but I really haven’t been traveling for work lately. It’s kind of a bummer, and I miss traveling to see coworkers across the nation, but that’s the deal with respect to my current role. Hopefully, I’ll still be able to get to South Carolina (CLEMSON!) and to Singapore (for fun) this fall! At least then I can mix things up a bit!
In the meantime, if you’re interested in contributing to http://www.sheorderedwhat.com, please feel free to shoot me a note, tweet, Facebook post, etc. I’m happy to oblige!
Now, onto the latest great meal I had out…
(No, all of my meals are not great – I’ve had people ask me that. Two rather lackluster experiences were documented here and here)
A couple of weeks ago, the girls who were featured in my first post came into town for a visit. Megan and Sharon (who was also featured in this post) have been really good friends of mine for many years.
We’ve had tons of dinners together – at each others’ homes, and out on the town. In the picture above, counterclockwise: Sharon, Ker, Megan, and Dana (local friend).
That Saturday night, Sharon agreed to “take one for the team” to support Megan’s craving (pun intended) for sushi. So, I made reservations at Crave Lounge in Dearborn. Sharon has never been a fan of sushi, and in particular, the nori (seaweed) used in making maki (rolls). She figured some of the small plates Crave offers would be just fine for dinner – trooper that she is!
We started off with one of my favorite appetizers, the Watermelon Napoleon (three time award winner + healthy choice award, consisting of seedless watermelon, French feta, toasted walnuts, Michigan tart cherries, organic Mediterranean olives, Mediterranean micro herbs, organic olive oil, and Balsamic vinaigrette). I’ve made my own versions of this dish at home when I want a tasty, yet light meal.
We also munched on edamame (doesn’t everyone do that at a sushi joint?) while chatting, laughing, and giving our server, Phillip, a complex! When he came back to take our dinner order, we decided to try one roll with soy paper rather than nori, to see if Sharon would like it. Our other friend, Dana, has an aversion to soy, so we had to balance things out. Note: Phillip did not charge us for the first substitution, but soy paper is typically a $1 up charge per roll at Crave.
At Phillip’s recommendation, we ordered a couple of “off the menu” rolls. To the left is the “Crave Roll” (made w/ traditional nori) and on the right is the “Care Bear Roll” (affectionately, renamed the “Ker Bear Roll” and made with mamenori (soy paper). As you can see, I’m never quick enough to catch a photo before we dig right in!
The Crave Roll is basically a fried California Roll, with light seaweed on top, seared Ahi tuna , jalapeno, Wasabi aioli, and a sweet drizzle. We all enjoyed the roll, including Sharon – who couldn’t taste the nori. Great flavors, folks!
*Oh, and it’s worth mentioning that Sharon received “rookie chop sticks” from the owner – he made them for her on-the-spot! A total MacGyver move…the chop stick wrapper, a rubber band, and VOILA! She can use chop sticks!*
But, the big hit of the night was the “Ker Bear Roll” which was comprised of spicy tuna , shrimp tempura, asparagus, crunchy flakes and mango Albacore tuna aioli. Folks, it was tremendously flavorful! So much so that we ordered a second serving! (see below)
While that was closing in on the end of our dinner, Sharon and I should have taken the hint that Megan and Dana had bigger plans in mind! (Those two are mentioned in the post I referred to earlier)
Yup, folks. Those are lemon drop shots in their hands (and their wine in the foreground!). Just the start of the evening for these two crazy ladies! And, I love them for knowing that Sharon and I wouldn’t “hang”, so we were better off at home later that night, and into the next morning!
Finally, I have to post a picture of the fabulous man who was our server that night. Phillip was not only an incredible sport (y’all should have heard some of the conversation he overheard that night!), but he made great recommendations, AND, he was pretty nice eye-candy! He’s preparing for a teaching career, and I can already see that he will be the most popular teacher in school! 🙂
I’m a fairly regular customer at Crave Lounge (though I don’t frequent it as much as I’d like to!), and I’ve never left disappointed. This night, however, was particularly enjoyable because we tried some new rolls, we had a delightful server, we chatted with the management (great people!), and we were amongst dear friends.
If you’re in the area, and craving (pun intended, again!) sushi, I do recommend Crave Lounge. The atmosphere is cool, the staff is great, and the food is delicious! I’m also told that the menu has been changed up a bit over the past week. New Carpaccio items, new appetizers, small plates and rolls. And…anyone who’s known me for any period of time knows that my intel is rock-solid! 😉