Monday, November 14, 2011

Detour An American Grille: Carmel, IN

110 W. Main St.
Carmel, IN 46032
(317) 571-0091
Detour: An American Grille

Before I go on about what I hated about Detour, let me preface that with what I enjoyed. Detour is a sports bar located in the heart of Downtown Carmel. There is ample seating and many televisions. They also have a nice patio for the summertime with live music. So as a sports bar, they are great. I wouldn't mind sitting down and watching games there. To no fault fault of Detour, ESPN needs to stop showing the World Series of Poker. Its not 2003 anymore. They can fill those useless hours of the WSOP with more 30 for 30 movies. We had to ask our waiter to change the WSOP to the Monday Night Football game. More on that guy later...They have good drink specials every night of the week. Its also nice that it is family friendly, as they are catering to the neighborhood. The menu is typical for a bar and grill: sandwiches, burgers & wraps, and limited entrees. More and more bar and grills have these over bearing menus where you get lost in pages of food, Detour has a very simple menu to navigate. I just wish I would have picked something different to eat on this very simple menu.

There were four of us meeting to celebrate DJBG's birthday. RFS, JJS, DJBG, and myself. At first the hostess sat us in a corner where we really couldn't see a TV, so we asked to be moved. Our waiter came and took our drink orders as 3 of us were waiting on JJS. (Shockingly, DJBG made it on time. For those of you who know him, know that he says he will be somewhere in 20 minutes, but then shows up 3 hours later. Shameless plug for him after ripping him a little bit. He DJ's at Blu Martini on Friday nights, and he does a damn good job.) Dos Equis was on special for $2 for a pint, and I had one of those (I did say the drink specials were decent, right?). We also decided to put in an order of the fried dill pickle chips to start. It comes with a side of horseradish sauce or ranch, we got both. The pickles were lightly breaded in flour. There wasn't a whole lot of seasoning on the pickles. I did manage to eat a few without dipping in the sauces. I would have to say the dill chips are better at Scotty's. Detour has one of those eating challenges that you see on Man Vs. Food. It's called the Triple Bypass. It is 2 pounds of Italian beef, giardiniera, mozzarella & parmesan cheeses on a French Baguette with a pound of waffle fries. You have to finish the sandwich within 45 minutes to get your picture on the wall AND your finishing statistics listed in the menu. DJBG suggested I try this endeavor, I respectfully declined. There is no chance in hell I'm even going to try to attempt something like that. A: It's $35. and B: That's disgusting. I instead opted for the Single Bypass, the smaller version of the Triple bypass. It has the exact same toppings as the Triple. Now I am still searching for the best Italian beef sandwich in this city. Portillo's is by far and away the King of Italian beef sandwiches, with Al's Beef a nice second. The problem is both of those franchises are in the Chicagoland area. The closest Portillo's is in Merrillville, IN. So where does the Single bypass stack up to the Kings of Italian beef sandwiches? I just finished The Wire today. So in the words of Omar, "You come at the King, you best not miss.". Well, Detour missed. I'm a traditionalist when it comes to the sandwich, and I think that cheese ruins it. A good Italian Beef sandwich is: Gonnella brand bread, slow roasted beef, spicy giardiniera, dipped in au jus. MWF's family introduced me to this sandwich at his high school open house, and we had it catered for BWL's bachelor party. My frustration's with the sandwich at Detour start with the bread. I'm used to the bread dipped in the au jus, so its not as crispy. Instead, they give you a tiny cup of au jus to dip or pour on the sandwich. Also, when I ordered the sandwich, our waiter said, "It comes with giardiniera, which is a spicy blend of celery, carrots, and peppers. Do you want that on there?" I'm thinking to myself, "Hey Dummy, I know what giardineira is. If I didn't, it clearly says what it is on your menu, so if I didn't want it I would tell you." I was over this waiter from the second we arrived. He was awful. We asked for waters 3 times before he brought them out to us. He wasn't very timely, and DJ and RFS had to ask twice for their beers. As you can see in the picture, there isn't a whole lot of giardineira on the sandwich. I had to ask for some more, because I couldn't taste it. The beef itself was good. It had good flavor and was very tender. More often than not, the beef is too salty. They at least got the taste right. The star of the meal, for me, was the waffle fries. They were nice and crispy and had better seasoning, that lacked in the dill chips. But even the fries had their flaws. There aren't a whole lot of fries that come with the meal. Also, they gave you the same small cup for ketchup that they gave for the au jus. MWF would not like this place for that reason alone. At the time, I thought that they are looking out for your health and monitoring your portion size. Then I remembered they are offering a sandwich named after a heart surgery to relieve clogged arteries...

So for what its worth, I would go back to Detour, but not for the food. As I stated before, it is a great place to hang out with friends. I'd like to go out in Carmel more often, because I think the downtown is beautiful. I guess our problem is that not a lot of our friends live their, only their parents, so it would be awkward to go crash at their house after a night of partying. As I always say, Drink Responsibly. **Especially in Carmel. The Carmel fuzz are the worst. I've seen someone get pulled over for stopping past the stop line.**

"I went on a diet, swore off drinking and heavy EAting, and in fourteen days, I lost two weeks." - Joe E. Lewis

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