As a rule, I avoid using exclamation points in my writing. I figure if the sentence is dramatic enough, the exclamation
point isn’t necessary.
To see if that theory applies to restaurants, we’re going to spend the month
visiting restaurants that include exclamation points in their names. First stop: Oobatz! (1576 W. Oak St., Zionsville, 733-1234)
With October weather still behaving, we lucked onto one of the patio’s fire-topped tables and quickly
surrounded the flames with oversized offerings. Oobatz Crazy Dip ($9.29) featured crab, shrimp, spinach and artichoke served
in the crock it was cooked in. Flatbread pizza chips gave sturdy support to the delicious combination that didn’t taste
as busy as it sounds on the menu. We took equal pleasure in the Oobatz Signature Salad ($5.29 small/$8.79 large), a mix of
romaine lettuce, cranberries, sunflower seeds, almonds and gorgonzola crumbles.
at some outdoor tables at the new Zionsville eatery Oobatz! (IBJ Photo/Robin Jerstad)
All well and good (actually,
very good), but the true test would come with the pizza. The NYC Cheese ($7.59 for a 10-inch, $9.59 for a 12-inch, and $12.99
for a 14-inch) was thicker than the traditional New York style. And, conversely, the Chicago Deep Dish ($10.99 for a 10-inch,
$14.99 for a 14-inch) wasn’t as thick as one expects from a Windy City pie, but both are terrific additions to the local
pizza scene, fairly priced, and well worth returning for.
Does this handsome, comfortable place do anything wrong?
Perhaps, but we found nothing but pleasure deeper in the menu with a mozzarella-cheese-bathed Meatball Parmesan Sandwich ($8.49)
and a capable-of-feeding-a-small-family Chicken Parmesan entrée pasta ($11.79). The former was served on a hoagie roll
toasted just right—and brought to our table hot, even in the midst of a complicated order. The latter featured chicken
breast thick enough to feel substantial while maintaining the necessary balance with its breading, cheese and sauce. It arrived
on what seemed like a pound of perfectly cooked spaghetti. More than half found its way into the next-day’s lunch.
No room for dessert, but offerings included a Bucket of Italian Zeppellies ($5.89), Tiramisu ($4.79) and various
Sorbet served in hollowed-out frozen fruit ($5.25). Gelato, too ($2.89).
If the rest of the month is anything
like this, the exclamation point on my keyboard could be getting a workout. I mean, a workout!•