Alas, this great little lunch place turned semi-swanky dinner place has gone under. Let’s hope these guys make another go at it.
I didn’t know this place existed for a long time, probably because it is a block or two away from the city market proper. However this is exactly the kind of restaurant that the neighborhood needs: table service, good food, decent prices, and great service. Located at the intersection of 3rd and Delaware just up the road a piece from the market, this is great alternative to the glorified fast food available down there.
The menu is a nice mix of high brow and low brow food. There are a few great salads, including my personal favorite, the Cobb. Whoever invented the glorious combination (Mr. Cobb?) of avocado, blue cheese and bacon is a culinary God. That’s like something I would invent if I came home drunk and hungry and happened to have such delicacies readily available. Anyhow, the Cobb is good at Delaware, with the notable exception of the vinaigrette — it was disturbingly thick and may have come from a gallon-sized plastic container. This makes me reluctant to try another kind. They need a simple but delicious homemade dressing, especially if you are paying ten bucks for a freaking salad.
The Fries are surprisingly good here–very lightly battered potato wedges. I know what you are thinking and let me assure you that these fries bear no similarity to battered fries you may have experienced elsewhere, delicious though they may be. Arby’s curly fries they are not. (remember that stupid idiotic oven mitt character?). Anyhow they have good soup as well and the sandwiches I’ve had were well above average. Speaking of which, this is not fast food and you will likely end up paying $15 bucks for lunch if you get a drink and leave a tip like the goodhearted person you are.
The Delaware takes up two storefronts, so they have plenty of space, even when it is hopping in the throes of lunch hour. There is also a nice patio on the north side of the building, but there was way too much sun out there last time I went. Like Harry’s, they need an umbrella at nearly every table.
In general, the Delaware is a good lunch spot, but you can’t get there late, since I think they close at 2pm. That’s actually a shame because they really should serve cocktails and stay open for dinner. They have a perfect set up for lounge-on-one side, dining-on-the other-side thing. Anyway, the real reason I like this place is because real cities have restaurants like this. It’s a locally owned, professionally run establishment that manages to avoid completely screwing things up and has a little bit of neighborhood character. That puts them pretty well ahead of the pack.