Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Dive Night - Jethro's

Dive Night is a once monthly adventure undertaken by me and Husby, along with our friends Ruthie and Ray. Each couple alternates choosing a restaurant, one which must come under the category of "dive." Our definition of dive: a neighborhood gathering spot hiding under the radar. Casual atmosphere and good food. We're out to find the best food in the Minneapolis/St Paul area without having to pay a fortune or dress up. A sip of beer or wine doesn't hurt either.  See a list and links to the previous dive night posts here.

Husby and I have been going to Jethro's (located in Mahtomedi, MN) for years.  Well, off and on at least.  It was pretty divey back in the day when you could smoke in bars and restaurants.  It was really, really smoky, but we loved it.  They had great food despite the hazy atmosphere.  So we decided to try it out again with Ruthie and Ray after years of being away.  It was okay, but it seems with the no-smoking laws came some mediocre food.

The beers seemed gigantic, which Husby and Ray could really appreciate.  Ruthie and I had wine, and unless I'm completely off my rocker I could swear it was watered down. 

Our waitress was about 80 years old, and didn't appear to have been in the business all those years.  She was cute and nice, but not too savvy when it came to doing the things waitresses do.  We gave her a big tip anyway. 

The appetizers came first.  We had onion rings and fried cauliflower.  The onion rings were fabulous.  The cauliflower was cold.  Hot on the outside, cold on the inside.  Like, out of the refrigerator cold.  I never send things back to the kitchen, but this time we had to.  You just can't eat fried cauliflower that has not been properly fried.  When the waitress returned with the cauliflower, it was perfect/hot.  My clam chowder was also very hot on its arrival.  It was delicious.

On to the dinners.

Ray and I got the fried fish (meh) which came with really yummy steak fries.  Ruthie got the shrimp and said it was good.  Husby opted for a bowl of chili and a salad.  Problem: he was not provided a spoon for his chili or dressing for his salad.  Of course our waitress was toddling around helping other patrons when he discovered his missing items.  I caught her eye while she was getting drinks at the bar and waved her down so she could get Husby what he needed to eat his meal.  When she saw my wave...she waved back and went about her business.

Eventually Husby got his spoon and dressing.

All in all I must say Jethro's was the biggest disappointment of all the Dive Nights thus far.  Our time was marvelous, however, as nothing can get in the way of good friends having a wonderful time together. 

Oddly, I couldn't take my eyes off this picture, part of the decor of Jethro's.  I guess it really isn't too surprising as I've always had a thing for ghosty ship ephemera.  I chose to believe this is a portrait of a sea captain.  Whatever.

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