There’s a joke in here about how many Basement locations we can honestly review in the course of our blog before we just accept that the menu is actually the same at all of them and it’s kind of going against our rule of no chain restaurants. But I’m not going to make it right now, because we needed a pick for this week, and as long as Mother Nature is continuing her quest of keeping us off patios for the time being by making the weather either a torrential downpour or 9 billion degrees outside, well … this is what we get.
To be clear, this Basement location actually does have a decent patio. We know this, because it was once Johnny J’s in the Valley, home away from home for us for many a weekend evening and a few St Patrick’s Day drinkfests in our first few years of living in this area.
Shane and I ordered take out from this new location once during our year-long take out spree, but I really just walked in to grab the food and pay for it and honestly didn’t look around all that much.
Which is why this time around, we really noticed how much the interior had changed. They added a full bar with multiple TV screens along the back wall by the patio windows and changed a lot of the booths out to high top tables, which definitely opened the space up quite a bit. If we wanted to play “guess the clientele” just from the look of the space I would put my money on catering to the sports/game day and drinking crowd for sure.
Now, lets be honest, that was also the crowd that used to frequent Johnny J’s – but now it just seems like they will have an easier time doing those things that they’ve always liked doing there.
Although it’s sad to see that the area has changed considerably since our last trips down here. Whether it’s from a year of reduced hours/staff or just a lack of interest, most of the bars in the immediate area seem to have closed. Which is sad because the shared patio space between all of them used to be a pretty happening place.
This location features the same short novel of a menu as all of the other Basement locations – which we already know we like items from so fortunately we didn’t have to spend 30 minutes just trying to digest all of the various offerings before we placed our orders. I mean, what with Shane’s usual hunger that could cost him an appendage and all.
See also: how we ended up with loaded tots as our app, following a heated discussion in which Shane indicated he was hungry enough to pretty much eat anything on the menu. Or maybe that was everything on the menu. It’s a little foggy now.
They were very good. Super cheesy, which of course equates to Ted’s worst nightmare, but we liked them.
And it worked out, because Ted’s app was Shane’s worst nightmare, the Boom Boom shrimp. Which, if Shane would’ve tried, would’ve earned us a nice little side trip to the ER. No thanks.
Ted was not a fan of the shrimp this time around though. Even though he’s ordered it before and always iked it, this time he said it wasn’t very flavorful. All he really tasted was oil and breading.
Fortunately Ted’s sandwich made up for his app. He got the Pianso chicken sandwich. Which he had to point to on the menu because the server taking our order didn’t recognize the name of. Always a good sign, no?
When asked for his side Ted basically told the server to just pick something because he didn’t care. For future reference, that answer equates to fries.
I got the classic Philly with a side salad.
My side salad arrived with the apps. And I hate when that happens. Even more so when it’s the saddest salad I’ve probably ever seen. It was basically some wilted lettuce and some mushy tomatoes. Sounds delicious, I know. I mean, I’m sure glad I was upcharged for this and all.
Could we not have even spared some cheese to help this poor side salad? For shame.
Shane got the ultimate Reuben. He commented that he thinks he’s ordered that sandwich every time he’s been to the Basement – except of course when he orders wings. But since you pretty have to take out a small loan just to eat wings on the regular anymore – who had “wings as a luxury item” on the 2021 Bingo board? – a Reuben it was.
And we added on a basket of onion rings just for fun. Because that’s how we roll.
Shane and I both liked our sandwiches. I couldn’t eat all of mine because I wasn’t hungry enough – even with leaving most of my wilted lettuce salad – but it will be a good lunch leftover later this week.
Overall the food this time around was just average – I believe we usually expect a bit better from our Basement visits as a whole, but this one was pretty hit or miss I guess. Maybe it’s because we didn’t order the best thing on the menu this time around – FUNNEL CAKE FRIES! You know we’re still out of practice with eating out places when we forget that’s usually about 75% of the reason to visit The Basement.
I mean, we would’ve been too full to eat them this time around, and I’m not sure they reheat well, but dammit I’m still mad we forgot they even existed for this one evening. WTF universe.
It will be interesting to come down to this location for a game sometime, having been to some of the others for games in the past and seeing the crowds there. I’m honestly not really sure we need two Basement locations within about a six mile radius of one another, but being that our house is almost exactly smack in the middle of them I guess we’ll just chalk it up to having options?