IBJOpinion

DINING: Thunderbird cruises in with cocktails and creativity

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share
Dining - A&E

The Ford Thunderbird had a style all its own. And while the brick interior walls, funky lighting and exposed beams of Thunderbird (1127 Shelby St., 974-9580) might not be as original, Fountain Square’s newest nightspot seems built to last, fitting comfortably into the neighborhood while carving its own niche with creative drinks and unexpected entrees.

No question, the emphasis here is on craft cocktails, with such T-Bird Original offerings as the Slapped Actress (vodka, apple brandy, lemon, lime and sugar) and Boneshaker (bourbon, Averna, Amaro, lemon, sugar, heavy cream and egg) tempting those with $9-$11 to drop on a drink.
 

ae-diningmainthunderbird04-15col.jpg Biscuits come slathered in duck-neck gravy at Thunderbird.(IBJ Photo/ Aaron P. Bernstein)

For me, the primary lure was the interesting food lineup, sporting a decidedly southern accent in portions sized in that nether region between full entrée and tapas, including Hush Puppies ($6), Croquettes ($6), Shrimp & Grits ($10) and Biscuits & Gravy ($10), all looking tempting on the one-sheet menu. On a crowded Saturday night, friends and I opted for the B&G—after all, where else can you find quality biscuits and gravy at 11 p.m.? The Thunderbird version features a substantial house-made biscuit—neither overly fluffy nor overly dense—topped with duck-neck gravy and a fried egg. The dish proved the undisputed winner of the evening.

We had mixed feelings about the Chicken and Hoecake Sandwich ($10), although we agreed on how much fun it is to say “hoecake.” I found the fried buttermilk chicken thigh, smoked cheddar and bacon honey butter a textural treat, especially when softly sandwiched in the cake. A guest, though, thought it needed another element and wasn’t satisfied with the dab of pickled items barely siding it.

We agreed that the Fried Golden Beets ($10) would

have been better as a smaller side dish instead of being ambitiously presented as an entrée. Goat cheese, radicchio, slivers of pears, pistachio and a stone ground mustard vinaigrette sounded good on paper, but failed to excite on the plate. Some of the best supporting actors, remember, disappoint when playing leads.

As a side dish, we tried the Corn Bread ($4), which, even with a tasty spiced maple syrup, seemed to be resisting asserting its flavors. Other options include Fried Black Eye Peas, Crisp Hominy and Pickles (each $4).


ae-diningthunderbird01-15col.jpg When you order Pickles, don’t expect standard burger toppers. (IBJ Photo/ Aaron P. Bernstein)

The kitchen was already out of both house desserts—An Upside-Down Pear Cake with Whipped Cream ($4) and Beignets ($4)—by the time we attempted to order.

I should warn you that Thunderbird doesn’t serve lunch, instead opening at 4 p.m. each day. Of course, if you are having biscuits and gravy at 11 p.m., traditional meal times are irrelevant.•

—Lou Harry

ADVERTISEMENT

Post a comment to this story

COMMENTS POLICY
We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
 
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
 
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in IBJ editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
 
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
 
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.
 

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by
ADVERTISEMENT

facebook - twitter on Facebook & Twitter

Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ on Facebook:
Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ's Tweets on these topics:
 
Subscribe to IBJ
  1. Uh, sorry Johnnie, but you are incorrect. Despite the assertions by yourself and various defenders and captains, sports attendance is NOT off significantly at most sporting events in the US. Variances in attendance has been in the range of single digits, both + & - for years now. MLB has had most of its best overall attendance nubers in the last decade, and that trend has been consistent for most major sporting events. The number one issue cited by most fans when asked about attendance is the overall cost of attending. The presence of HD and big screen televisions in home doesn't even register, as a factor for not attending an event. VALUE in the product is the key, and apparently is something lacking in the current ICS. What other explanation is there when with what is routinely touted as the "best" racing on the planet, fans are staying away in DROVES. A "close" title battle into the last event at Fontana, with the "cars and stars" of the ICS, and who showed up? MAYBE 8K. Sorry, but HD TV isn't to blame for that kind of fan apathy.

  2. Do you need finance to establish your business ? Are you interested in getting a loan at 3% from our private company? If so please Email: suntrust_oil@blumail.org

  3. If she was worth the $ the public outcry over direct tv dropping them would have kept them on their dishes as we have seen with other companies. I too quit watching channel 13 after she showed up since I left channel 8 because of her all show rather than production results. When Randy on 8 corrected her she had a big head and incorrectly challenged his correction for pronunciation of a city. Other antics while she matures was too much for me with her very inaccurate forecasts. All the forecasters were predicting rain until Thursday except Chris. They predicted sunny on Thursday but instead of rain until Thursday upon which the sun would finally make it out in full glory Chris was right on the money just as I too predicted looking at the radar on weather.gov. One thing I love about Angela is the fear you can see in her every time it thunders in the winter. It far exceeds the entertainment value of her body language (high heel noise drags, depression, etc) when her forecasts are so incorrect. Her hair stands on end, you have to see it!!!

  4. Good Day, Apply For A Loan I am Mr Fernadez Antonio, a private Loan lender and a cooperate financial for real estate and any kinds of business financing. I also offer Loans to individuals, Firms and cooperate bodies at 3% interest rate We offer any kind of loans. email us via fernadezloaninvest@outlook.com LOAN APPLICATION FORM First name:......................... Middle name:......................... Last name:........................................ Date of birth (yyyy-mm-dd):....................... Gender:........................................... Marital status:................................... Total Amount Needed............................... Loan Duration.................................... Address:.......................................... City:............................................. State/province:................................... Zip/postal code:.................................. Country:.......................................... Phone:............................................ Fax:.............................................. Mobile/cellular:.................................. Monthly Income.................................... Occupation:....................................... Best Regard, Mr Fernadez Antonio.

  5. i will love to share my testimony to you all the people in world i got married to my husband about 2 year ago we start having problems at home like we stop sleeping on the same bed,fighting about little things he always comes home late at night,drinking too much and sleeping with other women out side i have never love any man in my life except him. he is the father of my child and i don't want to loose him because we have worked so hard together to become what we are and have today .few month ago he now decided to live me and the kid,being a single mother can be hard sometimes and so i have nobody to turn to and i was heart broken.i called my mom and explain every thing to her,my mother told me about DR.okoro how he helped her solve the problem between her and my dad i was surprise about it because they have been without each other for three and a half years and it was like a miracle how they came back to each other. i was directed to DR. okoro on his email:okorospell@gmail.com and explain everything to him,so he promise me not to worry that he will cast a spell and make things come back to how we where so much in love again and that it was another female spirit that was controlling my husband he told me that my problem will be solved within two days if i believe i said OK So he cast a spell for me and after two days my love came back asking me to forgive him i Am so happy now. so that why i decided to share my experience with every body that have such problem contact Dr okoro the great spell caster on his email addresses spellcasterforlove@outlook.com

ADVERTISEMENT