Though the chefs at Mandarin revere classically prepared Chinese dishes, they aren’t afraid to add a dash of inventive flair with internationally inspired twists. Hawaiian-style preparations of sweet-and-sour chicken join other Chinese comfort food, such as Chinese- or Singapore-style me fen, a mix of thin rice noodles with vegetables and meats such as pork and beef. Rice and noodle bowls from the Tour of Asia menu cull flavors from Osaka, Seoul, and Hong Kong, and traditional Chinese dishes such as chicken with snow peas and sesame beef round out the menu. Staffers pour martinis into curvy-stemmed glasses or help guests pair wines amid the dining room's mandarin-orange walls, bamboo placemats, and geisha statuettes.
Succulent aromas and a symphony of sizzling meat emerge from Cast Iron Steak House's kitchen, where sirloin, rib eyes, and T-bone steaks sear inside of cast-iron skillets. For each of these steakhouse favorites, the staff personally ages, cuts, and rubs slabs of USDA beef in house. Though it's their specialty, the chefs expertise extends beyond just steaks and steak-related mythology.
Maritime munchers can lounge in the soothing ambience of the Ohio River and passing boats while perusing the tasty sights of the menu. Sun-gazing feasters can grab a table on the expansive summertime outdoor patio to properly enjoy a three cheese burger ($9.50) or one of many sandwiches, including the oven toasted Mediterranean vegetable sandwich with zucchini, mushrooms, eggplant, peppers, sun-dried tomatoes, goat cheese, mozzarella and parmesan. Indoor diners can sit in the stone-walled lodge while satiating an appetite with a delicious medley of New York strip steak ($29), glazed salmon ($18) or a platter of fried or broiled cod, shrimp and scallops served with cole slaw and steak fries ($19). Thirsty sailors can cure a dry throat with one of four draft beers or more than 20 bottled selections, as well as a vast listing of white and red wines and specialty cocktails such as Captain's Lemonade, which is shaken up with Three Olives Citron, triple sec, sweet and sour mix and a splash of lemon-lime soda. Captain's Quarters Riverside Grille also regales guests with occasional live musical entertainment and tales of nautical adventures hunting mythical sea creatures such as the Lochness monster and Hulk Hogan.
At Zen Garden, many of the Asian dishes sound familiar, with adjectives like "orange," "sweet ‘n’ sour," and "kung pao." However, rather than tossing chicken or beef in with these classic flavors, the kitchen has adopted a meat-free credo. Chefs mix masterfully seasoned bites of tofu and other meat alternatives with fresh veggies, creating entrees such as green beans stir-fried with mock duck and the barbecued-soy sandwich. Noodles tangle around shiitake mushrooms in both the udon-noodle soup and the shiitake mushroom lo mein, and curry sauce imbues eggplant and shredded tofu with a spicy kick. Guests can pair their meal with a cup of green tea, prepped hot, iced, or in its purest form: emeralds that have not yet been juiced.
When Shahram and Gita Pouranfour—with the help of their sons, Farzan and Arman—first started a family-style restaurant in South Louisville, their main goal was to cater to families and seafood lovers. After years of success at this original restaurant, Fishery Station, they started adding more exotic food items, such as shark and alligator tail, to the menu alongside their traditional seafood and chicken platters. Along with the exotic fare, they incorporated Shahram’s Persian and Gita’s German cultural influences as well, adding basmati dill rice, gyros, and chicken schnitzel.
They’ve continued these same traditions at The Fish Fry House, where families can dine-in or carry out, and Shahram still enjoys cutting and hand-breading pounds of fish daily before it’s transformed to one of the popular platters or sandwiches.
Dancing Sushi Japanese Steakhouse knows the secret to a great sushi roll is freshness. That’s why it uses only the freshest ingredients and USDA Choice beef. Specialty rolls include the Kentucky Derby, made with deep-fried shrimp, cucumber, and avocado, all topped with spicy crab, tempura flakes, and unagi sauce. The Mango Tango roll pairs spicy crabmeat with tempura shrimp, topped with sweet mango and eel sauce. For a more dramatic meal, expert chefs with a flair for showmanship flip and sizzle meats at the fiery hibachi grill.