Saturday, October 17, 2009

Moon Dog Tavern

So we randomly decided to go to lunch at this place the other day because we had read somewhere that they had good pork tenderloin sandwiches. Hubby has become a bit obsessed with tenderloin sandwiches because he grew up in Ohio where they aren’t such a tradition like they are here.

There were four of us, so we decided to start with the appetizer platter which consisted of chicken fingers, potato skins, portabella mushroom fries and some spinach seafood dip. We got this as a compromise because everyone wanted different stuff. And hey, it was decent pub grub. I used to have a thing for good potato skins when I was young, and then they all disappeared off the face of the earth and became these pre-made frozen jobbies that restaurants just threw in the deep fryer. These were more old school with a good amount of cheese and bacon as well as a potato shell with a bit of actual potato to it. I liked ‘em.

I also really liked the portabella fries—they were slices of portabella mushrooms that were hand breaded and fried and served with a creamy chipotle sauce. I really liked these too—and slightly different take on a fried mushroom. And the sauce really complimented them well. See, when a restaurant takes the time to actually hand make something themselves, they are so much better.

Honestly, I didn’t eat the chicken fingers; I boxed them up and took them home to the kids (and by the way, don’t bring the kids here, it’s a bar, and they aren’t allowed). They didn’t look hand breaded—more like straight from the freezer I would guess. I did try the seafood spinach dip. I wasn’t a huge fan of it, although others at the table liked it a bit better I think. Just nothing great…and I have to think any seafood hiding in a cheesy dip might be a little questionable... but maybe that’s just me.

For my lunch I had the California Club panini. Described as sliced chicken, bacon, avocado and tomato and topped with cheddar cheese. Ok, this sandwich was huge. I will start with that. Seriously enormous. Even if I had loved it, I wouldn’t be able to eat more than half. And I didn’t love it. Actually, I didn’t really like it either. The cheese was much more along the lines of Velveeta in its consistency. And that was what most of the sandwich was made up of—the cheese. The cheese was so overwhelming you couldn’t even tell there was anything else in there. And there wasn’t much of certain ingredients (avocado of course). Hey, everyone, if you list avocado as an ingredient, put some on there. Don’t give me one tiny slice. Okay? And the bacon was soft and pretty flavorless. I had the standard chips as my side. They were just chips from a bag.

Hubby had the tenderloin, and again, while also huge, he found it disappointing. Again, it was all the things I don’t like in a tenderloin (and the things I think he is starting to realize he doesn’t like as well). Really big and really thin and really dry and not much flavor. The one bright spot with the sandwiches (no one at our table really liked theirs too much) was the fries. Unfortunately, only one of us got the fries, but they were really tasty. They were the seasoned battered type and we all wished we had gotten more of them.

Unfortunately, while I like the fact that this place is an independently locally owned restaurant, and while a couple of the appetizers gave me hope, for purely food reasons, I probably wouldn’t go back. They do support local music though, which is always a good thing. So if you want a couple of good apps some night when you are going to see a band, check out the portabella fries and the potato skins. And maybe a side of fries.

Moon Dog Tavern
4825 East 96th Street
Indy 46240


  1. I'd be willing to bet everything you had was straight from the restaurant supply house with the exception of the sandwich pressed in one of those ubiquitous panini machines. Hand breaded chicken fingers? hahahaha! (But you knew all that already. :-)

  2. Bah - How can you call this a review if you didn't even try one bite of the cheeseburger soup.