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a la lucie
159 N. Limestone. Lexington's special occasion address. Regarded as one of the region's best. Award winning menu with extensive wine list. Open 10-6, Mon-Sat.Reservations recommended. 252.5277

Billy's Bar-B-Q
101 Cochran Rd. At the corner of High St. in Chevy Chase. 269-9593. Genuine Western Kentucky style pit barbecue and fixins. Dine in/ carry out/ catering/ bulk deliveries. We're the home grown guys. Open M-Th 11am-9pm, F-Sat 11am-10pm, Sun 11:30am-8pm.

Cafe Jennifer
111 Woodland Ave at the Woodlands Condominiums, 255-0709. A cozy restaurant featuring Kentucky favorites, using locally grown produce. Lunch and Dinner daily, Mon.-Sat. Pub room atmosphere in the well-stocked bar and private room available for small gatherings.

Common Grounds

343 East High Street 233-9761 Voted #1 coffeehouse year after year by ACE readers. Fresh treats available daily in the bakery. Night life is great, too: Open mic Mondays, vinyl record night on Tuesdays (Bring your own jazz or blues!). Call about art exhibits.

Daniel’s Fine Food and Spirits
243 Broadway (across from the Old Capital in Frankfort), (502) 875-5599, Voted “Best Place to Have Dinner in Frankfort.”One of the region’s newest upscale fine dining adventures set in 150 year-old buildings. Enjoy “Traditional with a Twist,” extensive wine list, outdoor dining, private dining room, and the frequent special events. Check out our website for calendar, menu, map, and more. Mon-Fri 11 a.m.-2 p.m.; Mon-Sat 5 p.m.-10 p.m.

The Depot
128 East Main St., Midway 846-4745 Eclectic creations with a down home flavor serving Central Kentucky and beyond. Good times abound at “The Depot” in Midway, six days a week for lunch and Thursday, Friday & Saturday for dinner.

Ed and Fred’s Desert Moon
148 Grand Blvd. 231-1161 American Cuisine at affordable prices. Enjoy gourmet pizzas, fresh pasta, specialty salads and sandwiches, and a wide array of entrees in an informal yet elegant atmosphere. Wonderful wine list! Patio dining and banquet facilities. Lunch: 11a-3p Tue-Fri; Dinner: Tue-Sun.

Emmett’s Restaurant
Off Tates Creek Road, south of Man O’ War, offers innovative Southern cooking in a renovated farmhouse featuring a cozy bar, casual patio dining and seven lovely dining rooms. Dinner served Mon.-Sun. beginning at 5:30 PM and Sunday brunch from 11 AM-2 PM. Reservations accepted. 245-4444.

521 West Short Street. 455-9660 Where tradition meets style. Five course tea service at noon and 3 pm Wed-Sat. in an atmosphere of understated elegance. Reservations required. Greentree also offers graceful service and imaginative cuisine demonstrating fine Southern hospitality for professional meetings, club events, and every wedding occasion.

The Homestead
The Homestead Restaurant offers superb regional cuisine in a classic and beautiful setting. A warm and cozy ambience naturally complements the traditional southern dishes prepared by Executive Chef Tony Cortez. With a charming bar, a romantic patio, and laid back live entertainment, The Homestead is the perfect spot for any occasion. The Homestead is open for dinner six nights a week. They are closed on Sundays, except during Keeneland and on some holidays. Dinner: 5:30 Mon-Thur,, 5:00 on Fri & Sat.

Imperial Hunan
Woodhill. 266-4393. One of Lexington's oldest and finest Chinese restaurants. Voted Best Kung Pao by Ace readers. Don't forget the Sunday Buffet. " Hours: Sun-Thurs 11:30am-10pm, Fri 11:30am-11pm, Sat Noon-11pm

Jonathan at
Gratz Park

120 West Second Street 252-4949 Redefined regional cuisine served in our Southern dining room or in the English pub room. Signature items and daily specials, every entrée a Jonathan original. Festive Sunday brunch from 11:30-2 pm. Reservations suggested. Also call us for intimate dinner parties, fabulous banquets, business lunches, pre-wedding events to the reception.

Mancino’s Pizza
& Grinders

1590A Leestown RD. 253-2299. First in Kentucky with HOT oven grinders! A taste of New York right here in Lexington. Everything from the traditional Mancino’s Pride pizza to the “New” Zesty Ranch Pizza. All Grinders are oven baked and served Hot from the oven. Everything made to order. Mon-Fri 11am-8pm; 11am-3pm Sat

Natasha's Cafe
112 Esplanade. A look and a feel of the Bleeker Street in the Village. A taste of Mediterranean cuisine interpreted by talented poet and chef Johnny Shipley. Lunch Buffet 11-2, Dinner 5-9. Lighter fair and exotic coffees in between. Fine dining for any income bracket.

Pacific Pearl
Chinoe Plaza. Boldly fusing Asian and American flavors. Coconut fried lobster, King Crab legs in ginger butter, and Grilled Yellowfin Tuna are just a few of the items that represent this extensive menu. Dining room, patio and bar offers elegant decor. Open 5-10 pm, Sun-Thu. and 5-11 pm, Fri and Sat. Reservations recommended. 266.1611

Scarborough Fare
355 Romany Road. 859.266.8704. A gourmand’s delight, featuring an array of entrees that will tickle your fancy and menu changes daily. Sample the mouth-watering desserts and you’ll be back to feed your newest addiction. Special dinners prepared daily. Café dining, or gourmet carryout for those on the go. Open Monday-Saturday 10-8.

l Festivus for the Restofus

The royal wedding on October 12, 1810 of Crown Prince Ludwig I and Princess Therese of Saxony-Hildburghausen was a grand affair. Munich, Germany was filled with citizens invited to a festival in the couple's honor that ended with (so appropriately for October) horse racing. The horse races and festival were repeated the next year to celebrate the royal anniversary and, thus, the tradition of Oktoberfest began. Unfortunately the races are no longer run, but the happy tradition of beer, food and community has survived.

In our area, we are fortunate to have access to several German fall events such as Cincinnati's Oktoberfest, the world's second largest, and Christ the King's Oktoberfest, which is great fun. Sadly, they have already come and gone this year - BUT there is still one more weekend of fall festival at Marikka's on Southland Drive and on Hartland Parkway so that you can enjoy a stein and reminisce upon the motherland.

In Munich, Oktoberfest is called Wies'n and held on 103 acres for two weeks starting the second to last Sunday in September and ending the first Sunday in October which is close to the original anniversary date. This is a huge event: 7 million visitors, 6,500,000 litres of beer, 19,000 bottles of wine, 680,000 broiled chickens, 240,000 pairs of sausages, and 62,500 pork knuckles. From a food service point of view, this sounds like a nightmare.

There are amusement park rides, eleven beer tents that hold up to ten thousand people each, and parades, very long parades. Beautiful costumes, decorated carriages, harvest garlands, beer tent bands - it is a sensory explosion (especially when combined with beer).

On a realistic note, and one of which we are becoming increasingly aware, quite a bit of this year's events were affected by the terrorist attacks enacted here in the U.S. and in Munich in 1980 during Oktoberfest. Many parades, events that combined the city with the celebration, and fireworks were canceled. A victim's relief fund was established and the Lord Mayor suggested that the multinational parade should not be one of rejoicing but of understanding.

But, back home, we seem to be trudging along and we will be celebrating this weekend, October 12th and 13th, at Marikka's Restaurant und Bier Stube. Frau Irmgard Kindler will be playing the accordion quietly in the corner and waitresses, thrilled to be wearing little hats and suspenders, will bring glass boots filled with beer.

Marikka's is separated distinctly into a restaurant and a bar, if this is a concern for you, and is not very big so I would suggest making reservations early in the week. Food is also served in the bar, but we wanted to sit in the restaurant for the whole Oktoberfest feeling and we barely, only by using the magic word, got a table and there was long wait as customers filed in.

There are hundreds of beers to choose from at Marikka's and in celebration of Oktoberfest, you can choose to drink Spaten beer out of ceramic steins or a glass boot. The steins are served as 1/2 litre and 1 litre but the glass boot is a fabulous, ostentatious 2 litres of beer and I am sure will be a lovely addition to your mantle at home.

I probably do not need to tell you that this is a meat and potatoes kind of restaurant, characterized by unadorned heaping plates of food. Not only are there are nine different types of sausage dinners, served with sauerkraut, mashed potatoes, or potato salad but sauerbraten, goulasch, and many types of schnitzel such as schweineschnitzel, which is fried, breaded pork. Add mushroom gravy and you have jaegerschnitzel. Take away the gravy and add colorful diced bell peppers, onions, and mushrooms and you have zigeunerschnitzel.

There are two specific items on the menu that always grab my attention. My husband always orders Schnitzel à la Holstein (2 Spiegeleier un Sardellen) Bratkartoffeln und Salat. This is veal schnitzel, breaded and fried, topped with two eggs, sunny side up, and anchovies served with fried potatoes and salad. He loves it and most importantly, this is something that he will never eat at home, so we must travel to Marikka's. The one thing with this entrée that I will try to make are the fried potatoes. They are boiled until almost done and then fried with dill and are delicious.

The other item is the Roulade mit Speatzle und gruenen Bohnen, which a friend always orders, and is only served on weekends and during Oktoberfest. It is sirloin stuffed with mustard, pickles, and ground beef, served with spaetzle, which are German noodles, and green beans. It really is what it sounds like; meat wrapped in meat, and is as decadent as death by chocolate.

Not only is the food interesting and for varied tastes, Marikka's is casual and friendly, so, this weekend, if you have a chance, try to lift a stein or boot to Ludwig and his bride Therese, and enjoy our last weekend of Oktoberfest.

Marikka's Restaurant und Bier Stube
411 Southland Drive, 859-275-1925
4750 Hartland Parkway, 859-245-8584
Opens at 4:00, Monday through Saturday

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