Ebisu 恵比寿

Ebisu SignageIn Japanese mythology and folklore, the Seven Gods of Fortune is characterized as a seafaring group that arrived in town by treasure ship each New Year in order to distribute fantastic gifts to worthy people. Ebisu, the only originating Japanese member was the God of fishermen, luck and the workingman.

In the spirit of Japanese tradition and the conveyance of good fortune to the workingman, Ebisu delivers on its promise to excite the neighborhood’s culinary habit! Ebisu offers a unique dining experience due to a creative and unabashed menu brimming with varied proteins, vegetables and noodle combinations.

Korean Pork Belly

Korean Pork Belly

Ebisu’s menu primarily  breaks down in three appealing categories. The first is Robatayaki, which literally means fire-side cooking, similar to barbecue, in which various meats and vegetable combinations are skewered and slow-grilled over coals. We had the Korean Pork Belly with a spicy honey miso sauce and Kimchee, which was so personally satisfying, that quite frankly could have encompassed my entire meal!  The pork belly was tender and juicy on the inside, and sweet and spicy on the outside. I’m a firm believer that food on a stick is just plain fun – ask anyone!

Spicy Tuna Tostada

Spicy Tuna Tostada

The second menu category is a Japanese style Tapas. Ebisu does a brilliant job of elaborating on the Spanish version of small plate appetizers, which in combination; offers diners a sophisticated option for combining varied flavors, textures and spices in order to enjoy a dining experience not traditionally centered on one entrée.

Upon our server’s recommendation, we ordered the Spicy Tuna Tostado on a bed of crispy seaweed rice crackers, with a spicy mayo.

Ika

Ika

The tuna was perfectly fresh and flavorful, and the rice crackers were homemade, crunchy and warm. Eat your heart out sushi fans, this was a home run!

Additionally, we ordered the Ika (grilled whole Surume squid) and Geso (the accompanying tentacles with a teriyaki glaze). The squid was tenderly grilled and beautifully presented. This is the perfect alternative to traditional fried calamari for which we have all come to knowingly love as our standard dining starter.

Nagasaki Chanpon

Nagasaki Chanpon

And finally, the third menu category is Ramen. Step aside Maruchan; this isn’t your college hot-pot, sodium-laden, block of pasta under cellophane! These are freshly prepared noodle dishes with rich and flavorful broths that bring sheer joy to the soup-slurpers among us.  We ordered the Nagasaki Chanpon (medium thick noodles in a pork broth, shrimp, squid, scallops, soft-boiled egg, bamboo shoots, cabbage and carrots). The seafood was perfectly prepared, the vegetables were fresh and crunchy, and the noodles firmly swimming in a bath of warm broth.

Tan Tan Men

Tan Tan Men

Additionally, a bowl of Tan Tan Men (egg noodles in spicy pork miso broth, soft-boiled egg, bamboo shoots, spinach, fish cake, seaweed, cabbage, carrots and seven spices) made a welcome appearance at our table. The addition of pork combined with a rich and spicy miso broth elevated this dish to a memorable category.

Whenever I exit a restaurant, the same question plays over in my mind; is this place worth visiting again, or would my dining dollars be best spent somewhere new? In response, I’m confident that I have not yet scratched the surface of Ebisu’s exciting menu, and feel compelled to return to a restaurant that I believe may quickly become an old friend! 果報

Ebisu 38 Pontiac Avenue, Providence, RI 02907 (401) 270-7500

The American

One of Rhode Island’s many 19th century contributions to the 2nd Industrial Revolution was a steam locomotive manufacturing company located in Providence. Historically, Rhode Island Locomotive Works produced more than 3,400 locomotives between 1867 and 1906.

The American - Providence

The American – Providence

It is within the walls of this impressively restored building that the Adirondack Restaurant Group has opened their third restaurant. The American embraces the history of its location by meticulously preserving some of her artifacts, and artfully incorporating them into the woodwork.

Our visit to The American was a happenstance. While on a break from a class we were attending in the same building, the lunch whistle sounded loudly on Valley Street, and curiosity got the better of us.

The Steakhouse

The Steakhouse

The aristocratic atmosphere inside The American is delivered to diners with a few significant exceptions;   the staff is warm and welcoming, and the lunch, dinner and drink menus are far from being pretentious. In addition to several daily specials, a mixture of classically named burgers, salads and clubs are available.

We ordered The Steakhouse salad (filet tips marinated and grilled over mixed field greens, crispy bacon, hard-boiled egg, gorgonzola cheese, and poppy-seed vinaigrette). The steak was perfectly grilled to the requested temperature and full flavored. The salad was slightly overdressed, but its components were fresh and delicious!

The Stanford

The Stanford

On the recommendation of our waiter, we ordered The Stanford (marinated blackened chicken breast topped with Wisconsin Cheddar, lettuce, beefsteak tomato – served on a fresh-baked sourdough roll with a homemade Cajun mayonnaise).  Although the slightly over-grilled chicken breast could have been disappointing, it was aggressively seasoned the way a piece of chicken should be! The ripened tomato and spicy Cajun mayo added the needed moisture, taste and heat to make my mouth hum!  Additionally, the sandwich arrived with homemade tater-tots! In the past, I’ve overpaid for poorly executed and previously frozen tater-tots with truffle oil.  Thankfully The American cares enough to shred fresh potatoes and perfectly fry them into something worthy of remembering.

American Bacon Burger

American Bacon Burger

It should come as no surprise that since The Abbey , a sister restaurant to The American which specializes in innovative burgers, also does a fine job in serving the same. Our Roosevelt with bacon and Wisconsin cheddar, served on homemade toasted bread was a noteworthy standout.

The American Bar

The American Bar

About two hours later, as our class was letting out, we headed back into The American to belly up to the bar for a couple of beers. We couldn’t resist an opportunity to make another appearance in a place where we felt so comfortable.

Train Light - The American

Train Light – The American

Many of the wealthy and powerful 19th-century American Industrialists (aka robber barons) such as Cornelius Vanderbilt,  J. P. Morgan,  Jay Gould and John D. Rockefeller adorn the walls of The American as if to keep  watchful eyes on the place.  I wondered if they would have approved having spent an afternoon at The American, and then it came to me … who really gives a damn.

All Aboard!

The American 311 Iron Horse Way Providence, RI 401-865-6186