Thursday, January 30, 2014

Art's Skillet

Recently a rep for a new restaurant reached out to me online to ask me about reviewing several different restaurants. I don’t do scheduled reviews because I like to be anonymous, but I actually don’t mind getting these types of messages because sometimes it opens my eyes to a place I didn’t know was out there—and so it goes with Art’s Skillet. Apparently, it has only been open a couple of months, and even though it isn’t super close to me, it’s close enough to go if I think it’s a good new option.

Its right on Pendleton Pike in a building that obviously used to be some sort of chain fast food restaurant, but for the life of me, I can’t figure out which one. Nothing makes me happier though than seeing an out-of-business chain taken over by a local. I walked in and was greeted immediately and seated.

The menu is 75% breakfast and about 25% lunch items and I was in the mood for breakfast, which is listed as their specialty. My server was extremely friendly and was so enthusiastic about the place, he was practically busting at the seams. It was nice to see. The menu is also quite large and covers pretty much every aspect of breakfast. I was having a hard time making up my mind, and zeroed in on the “Art’s Favorites” section of the menu figuring if they’re his favorites, they have to be good right? I went with the Huevos con Chorizo burrito ($7.29). I knew it would probably be huge, and it was. There was a lot going on in this thing. There were light and fluffy scrambled eggs, spicy chorizo, onions, jalapenos and green peppers on the inside, and housemade salsa and lots of melted cheese on the outside. It was spicy, and hearty, and you certainly got your money’s worth of food. No way I could finish it all. You also had a choice of hash browns or peasant potatoes—I went against my server’s recommendation and got the hash browns, just because they’re hard to find in town. They were ok, nothing special—a little too crispy believe it or not (and I usually complain they’re too mushy). He said the seasoning on the peasant potatoes was better and next time, I will have to give them a try.

I really wanted to try “Art’s famous fried biscuits” as well. They are $4.95 for a full order, but they were kind enough to make me just a half order, even though it isn’t an option on the menu (and look how huge even a half order is!). Totally not what I was expecting—when I hear fried biscuits, I think the brown county ones with apple butter. These are more like chunks of actual biscuits (like are used in biscuits and gravy) that are fried and then coated in powdered sugar which turns into almost like an icing. They are sweet on their own for sure (almost like a beignet) but the honey marmalade was over the top for me. I couldn’t do it. My server suggested I dip them in the cream cheese sauce that they serve in the crepes, and I tried that and liked it better—not so sugary sweet, but honestly, I think they were probably fine on their own. I am pretty sure my kids would like these things, but I’m not sure I would eat them again. Just a little too much sweet for me.

The prices are right, the place is exceptionally neat and clean, and the owner’s story is great (he started the business after working in the restaurant industry for 22 years and then suddenly losing his job). I think next time I would just go with straightforward breakfast-bacon and eggs. I think they probably do everything pretty well, but I bet they do the usuals really well. I look forward to taking the family back and trying it again.

Anyone else been there yet?

Art’s Skillet
8255 Pendleton Pike
Indy 46226
317/672-2367

www.artskillet.com 
Art's Skillet on Urbanspoon

11 comments:

  1. Hey. You don't have to post this, but I wonder if this guy used to work at Lincoln Square? They used to have a dish called Art's Skillet, and it was awesome. But the last time I was there I noticed that they had renamed it. Hmmmmm. HKU

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    1. Yes he did. His name is Arturo Ugalde and his brothers own the Ugalde reataurants in other parts of the state.

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    2. Used yo be Captain D's Seafood years ago.

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  2. It used to be Lawrence Baking Company before the moved to the strip mall behind it... Prior to that, not sure.

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  3. I live in an assisted living facility right off Pendleton Pike (Westminster Village North) and a group of residents had brunch at Art's recently. Everyone was pleased with their order and the owner could not do enough for our group. He told us that in February he plans on being open for dinner. We try to avoid chain restaurants but some of our residents still like to visit these. Art's Skillet is a welcome addition to our neighborhood.

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  4. I tried them out for breakfast and quickly became a regular. Art's Famous Skillet is the dish for me.

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  5. Yes it is the same guy from Lincoln square the food is really good similar to Lincoln both good in there own ways but its always good for something good and different give it a try u won't be disappointed

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  6. Back in the day, the building was a Captain D's seafood joint. Being raised in Lawrence, its good to see local businesses popping up instead of the usual franchise restaurants. Arts Skillet is a wonderful addition to Lawrence and we are happy to have them here!

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  7. What's better than taking your family out for brunch on the weekend? Art's Skillet is a great place to take your kids. My daughter loved the kid's twisted grilled cheese and my son went for the chicken dinosaurs. The husband went for Art's famous skillet and I choose the spinach and fresh fruit. The server was very kind. We'll make this one of our regular take-the-kids to brunch place. A+

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  8. I went on Sunday based on your review. I decided to order the corned beef hash (because it was described as being homemade), as well as the peasant potatoes. The hash was CLEARLY out of a can, and the peasant potatoes were the frozen, cubed potatoes. There was no seasoning at all on the potatoes. The toast was essentially lukewarm bread, and arrived ten minutes after everything else. I had to ask for my check twice, and after still not receiving it, I went to the counter myself. I had to interrupt my waitress and the hostess to pay. I will never go back.

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    Replies
    1. wow, that's too bad! Did you complain?When I was there, they seemed to really want to make people happy. I hope they see your post.

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Thanks, Erin