Like a metamorph in the Witness Protection Program, Ice Restaurant & Bar has undergone several name changes and taken a number of forms. It began as a coffee shop and later grew into a restaurant called Eddy B's before settling on its current incarnation--a nightclub where the furniture is clean and angular and the cool gray walls are peppered with modern art. Guests dig their forks and teeth into towering club sandwiches, lightly breaded lake perch, and hearty grilled steaks and pork chops.
Equal parts sports bar, event center, and dance club, The Venue soothes the entertainment itch with its constant offering of things to do. Live performances frequently energize the facility, as does karaoke every Friday night. Amid the music, guests face off in pool or various other games, taking breaks between rounds to sip on beers and munch on finger-friendly foods.
The culinary wizards at Sidelines cook up hearty helpings of pub grub that patrons can discover on the extensive menu. Limber chomping muscles for a marathon meal with starters such as zesty battered and fried pub pickles ($5.79) or garbage fries, a savory mélange of bacon, tomatoes, and jalapenos lounging atop a bed of waffle fries and blanketed in melted mozzarella and cheddar cheeses ($7.59). The selection of five pizzas allows diners to indulge their craving for a disk without having to endure the gamey texture of a frisbee. Table visitors can also wrap tongues around the Porkzilla sandwich, staffed by grilled ham, slow-cooked pulled pork, and bacon ($8.99), or munch on the Knock-Out burger, a bunless wonder that packs the space between two grilled cheese sandwiches with bacon and a half-pound steak burger patty ($9.79). Feel free to lubricate a parched palate by sipping one of the beers cascading from the Sidelines tap, such as Labatt, Killian's, and Blue Moon.
Before meats are ready to face the crowd at Backyard BBQ & Booze, they go through rigorous preparations. Chefs rub their signature, flavorful rub onto each slab of protein, then they slowly smoke the meat over apple and pecan woods for up to 12 hours. The finished products amount to full racks of rubs served dry or slathered in barbecue sauce and pork chops covered in a bourbon-caramel glaze. Handhelds include catfish tacos and the Backyard Stacker?a trio of hamburger patties stacked with cheddar cheese, pulled pork, baked beans, and smoked slaw.
Diners open Pat & Dandy's eclectic menu before deciding whether they will cut through thick steaks or munch on ribs, seafood, and burgers. Wing appetizers invite dining duos to share 10 chicken morsels coated in a choice of eight sauces, including P & D's sauce which, like a kiss from the tasmanian devil, is both sweet and hot. Entrees include a 16-ounce T-bone steak grilled to order. Barbecue chicken breasts and five bones of the eatery's signature ribs balance out plates, and chefs batter and fry eight butterfly shrimp before shedding a single tear as they flutter away. For lunch, teeth sink into forkless fare such as the Cajun burger's half-pound patty and two slices of bacon. Idling eaters can turn their brain containers toward sporting events shown on 43 TVs lining the casual eatery's walls, or venture out to the patio to nibble eats with a side of sunlight and active listening clouds.
South End Grille?s chefs hand cut white-chicken tenderloins into specialty chicken balls. They may be covered in a Hawaiian glaze and smothered in melted cheddar cheese, among nine styles. The grill's handhelds include nacho-cheese-blanketed burgers and pizzas topped with mashed potatoes, sour cream, and bacon. Chefs also mix up a dozen signature sauces to slather atop their popular breaded and fried chicken wings. And on Friday nights, patrons can relax on the outdoor patio while being entertained by live musicians.