A friend recommend their tenderloin, so I made a point to stop here on my way to a downtown music gig.
The night we visited was a cold, snowy night, and also a federal holiday, so downtown was almost deserted, but Bourbon Street was hopping with a steady stream of customers in and out. It was obvious that they have a very loyal following, because the staff seemed to know most of the customers by name.
Their menu has a definite cajun influence, with a number of blackened dishes on the menu. The menu is quite varied, with everything from seafood to steaks to typical bar fare.
The meat itself was simply over the top good. Nice, moist, and tender, and the flavor of the meat was among the most I’ve ever had. And although the meat was pounded thin, it wasn’t paper thin. It was the perfect thickness to get the texture of the meat in every bite.
And the breading was just as good as the meat itself, if not better. REALLY nice and crispy, yet not overdone. I detected just a hint of cornmeal in the breading, which only added to the already outstanding flavor.
So, the breaded tenderloin itself was certainly a 5 out of 5. However, in this case, there were a couple of things that detract from the sandwich as a whole.
First, notice the bun. They smash their buns, and apparently on every sandwich. I realize this might work for some people, but for me, it didn’t. The smashed bun became soggy pretty quick, and soggy buns are a no-no for this guy. About halfway through the sandwich, I discarded the bun and finished the meat alone.
Secondly, the condiments were lacking. I ordered onion for my sandwich, and got two very small rings, and one of them was quite wilted. This lack of attention to detail is what will keep many customers from coming back.
And, thirdly, another lack of attention to detail. Bourbon Street’s breaded tenderloin sells for $8.25, and that includes your choice of french fries or what they call “hot chips”…their version of home made potato chips. I thought those sounded awfully good, and opted for them, but was served french fries instead.
So, although I’m giving the meat/breading itself a 5 out of 5, the lack of attention to detail brings the sandwich as a whole down to a 4. Add to that a borderline rude waitress during the first half of our meal, the score for the experience as a whole drops to a 3.5 out of 5.
All that said, this restaurant has some really shining bright spots. Holly chose a steak special and I do believe it was one of the best steaks I’ve ever tasted. And, their dessert featured sugar cream pie. That’s a rarity and I was VERY glad to see it on a menu.
Bourbon Street Distillery is located at 361 Indiana Avenue in Indianapolis. It is a 21 and over, smoking restaurant.