Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Summer Food Fun at Jax Kitchen

In the local newspaper's food section last week, I had read about the chef's fried chicken and thought we would try it at one of her restaurants, Jax Kitchen www.jaxkitchen.com .  It is located in the same strip mall as the Alphagraphics office on North Oracle where we had just picked up the new book, Writing at the Paradise Cafe.  When we got the menu, we discovered that the fried chicken is only served at The Abbey on the eastside of town, so we had to adjust our expectations.  We did and still glad we took a chance on a new-to-us, but really five year old locally owned fun food place.  I say "fun" because they use that tag on their business card and, although it took me a few minutes to connect the "jax" with the vintage "jacks" ala childhood sporting game I used to play with my cousins, the ambiance was relaxed (flip-flops accepted), casual and the orange/black decor (with light green touches) made me smile. Another smile came as I walked to the restroom and scanned the black and white and color "snapshots" hanging on a clothesline-type wire and "clipped" on with office clips. The bar is open and connected to the seated tables but the noise wasn't unacceptable for early eaters such as are.  We also were able to  enjoy a 1/2 price appetizer.

The bar: 

Here are the photos and descriptions of our items.

Homemade chips from russet potatoes and seasoned with garlic and celery salt.  A yummy, crunchy surprise:

Bread, from a California bakery (wish they would "buy local"--we have great bakeries in Tucson), served with garlic infused olive oil andsea salt, seasoned with chives and parsley:
An appetizer we loved: baby artichokes flash-fried in buttermilk batter (the same batter as the fried chicken), seasoned with parmesan and chives and served with lemon aoili (note: another "fun" detail--the artichokes served in small mason jars and wrapped in crinkle paper):
Mark enjoys soups and so tried the chicken and green chili with cilantro and goat cheese bits.  The broth was seasoned with garlic, shallots, celery and bay leaves.  He loved it.
We split the entree--pan-sheared rainbow trout with orzo pasta and bacon, served with hericots verts, a sauce of blackberry gastric, fennel fronds, julienne-cut Fuji apples, blackberries and truffle oil.  Absolutely divine--and, as you look at this picture, it's a half portion!
Bon Appetit at Jax Kitchen!

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