Before a recent Midtown Lunch Happy Hour, a bunch of us gathered at Daisy May’s for dinner. Just an avenue away from the happy hour spot, some of us pigs wanted food before the drinking commenced… so we found ourselves 6, then 8 strong at the large tables in the back.
(Please excuse the unfocused photos. I was the recipient of a brand new camera, and am still learning my way around the controls. Sorry!)
I decided to share food with BeerBoor, who told me that the Memphis dry rubbed ribs were excellent here. I have to admit that while the meat was very tender, I found myself wanting sauce. This comes as no surprise to me – I like my meat saucy.
I chose the rustic creamy corn with NY state cheddar for my side, but I was disappointed when this wasn’t as good as I remembered from the last time I’d eaten here. It just didn’t seem quite as cheesy delicious… I’d really adored it last time and this time, not so much. Ot at all.
BeerBoor chose collard greens, but these woefully lacked salt, and so tasted just like boiled greens. Satisfying the veggie requirement, but not quite the taste requirement.
I took pictures of (and probably sampled) everyone else’s food, though I’m currently totally forgetting who ordered what. In any case, I think TC ordered the mac&cheese. My bite was dreadfully soft, but the cheese flavor was spot-on. Not too sharp and not too blah, it was just right… the only shame being the macaroni cooked within an inch of its life. However, sometimes you just want mac&cheese, and I’ll be honest: I can eat mushy mac&cheese over eating mac&cheese made with subpar cheese ‘sauce’ but perfectly al dente noodles. That’s me, though; you might feel the exact opposite.
My poor darling Casey ordered without the benefit of having heard my rant about the ‘creamed’ spinach here and accidentally wound up with two containers of the stuff. I find it absolutely horrifying how they whip the spinach into a frothy fluff, baby food (or softer) in consistency. However, TC rightly pointed out that this reminds him texturally of saag (an Indian spinach dish), which he likes a lot. I guess if I opened my mind to what I think creamed spinach should be, I might be less offended by the texture of this.
Cheese ordered mashed potatoes, and at first, peering at the container, I mused that Daisy May’s must really like pureeing the heck out of food items. It looked watery almost, creamed to the point of being baby food again. However…
After a few swipes and scoops into the container, he discovered that the top was just gravy, while normal consistency (by which I mean, consistency more like what you’d expect from mashed potatoes) potatoes were hidding underneath. I didn’t try this, but he seemed perfectly happy with the dish. Checking the online menu, I see they claim the gravy is red-eye gravy; being made with coffee, I’d expect it to be darker, but oh well.
He also ordered pulled pork, which I’d enjoyed last time insomuch as it had enough sauce on it for my tastes. The bite I tried this time however was the opposite – slightly over-sweet, and a bit dry even. I don’t think he had a problem with it, though.
I think he also ordered beans. I didn’t try these, but they look pretty good (or it could be that I’m hungry right now… nah, those look tasty!). I liked these last time I was here, too.
A few other people ordered the Kansas City sweet & sticky ribs. Saucier, though less tender than the dry rubbed ones, I wished I could switch: saucy and tender, dry and not so much. Unfortunately, it is what it is: the saucy ones tended on the chewier, drier meat side, while the dry rubbed were tender, falling off the bone, but I wanted sauce on the meat.
Cole slaw that I didn’t try.
Casey also ordered pulled chicken, which is a dish I make frequently at home… and better. This one was too much like the pulled pork, which was weird; we could hardly tell the difference when we put them side by side.
Though I enjoy the laidback atmosphere of Daisy May’s and the Mason jars the sweet tea comes in (that you get to bring home with you), this visit was less than what I expect from them. Everything seemed just a tad bit off – it was a slow Wednesday night, but that shouldn’t affect the quality of the food. Bah.
Yvo says: Though I won’t hesitate to return at someone else’s suggestion or if I’m in the area, I must say that had this been my first visit, I’d be less than inclined to return. A night of miscues and everything being only OK make it not destination dining – afterall, it’s really, really far west and far from the train station – and I’m in no hurry to go back. The food can be very good but now I know it can also be dreadfully mediocre, and no one wants to walk 3 avenues for food that is only OK.
inconsistency is a b*tch; eat at your own risk, cuz it could be an off night or it could be a good night