For all of Lexington’s cute shops and great atmosphere, I have yet to find a restaurant that really impresses me in town. On a recent trip to Lexington for an open house, we decided to stop in town for lunch. We headed to Nourish, a restaurant with an admirable mission: local, healthy foods with a seasonal menu. I had high hopes for this restaurant being a big fan of local farms and produce.
The dining room was dark, like dinner dark. I wanted to ask someone to turn on the lights. The restaurant was not that clean. The seating was comfortable. It was unseasonably warm so, the atmosphere instead was dead compared to the lively sidewalk space. I kept looking outside wishing we could be there or at least closer to the windows.
The menu looked appealing with a range of comfort foods and healthy options. I was excited at first when the waitress offered to bring me a gluten-free menu. Then I saw the menu.
The first issue was that the gluten-free menu no longer matched the seasonal menu. I couldn’t figure out what items were still available and which were not. The waitress was very disinterested, distracted and unhelpful, so I decided to just stick with the one thing on the menu that seemed to be available: salad. I ended up settling on what seemed to be the most interesting salad: the Big Baby. How appropo.
It was a plain salad: mesculin greens with toasted walnuts, blue cheese and slices of pear with a balsamic dressing. Nothing about it was great. It was small and unappealing. The green looked pale and anemic. I expected the local produce to be more flavorful.
Husband was equally unimpressed with his meatloaf special. I tried some of the fresh squash on the side, which was probably the best-prepared thing on either of our plates. It was lightly seasoned and sauteed, not like the over-cooked mush that most restaurants serve.
It took us a long time to get the attention of our waitress and get out of there. I am not sure I will bother to go back.
From their promotional materials, it seems Nourish is geared towards a dinner crowd with live jazz on Friday and Saturday nights. It’s a shame that there really don’t seem to be any great gluten-free options in downtown Lexington. It’s kind of a surprise and something I hope is remedied in the near future.
As a side note, unsatisfied by my lunch, I made husband take me to Rancatore’s, a local ice cream shop where I got an excellent salted caramel ice cream that was good enough to eat by the gallon.