The new restaurant in the North Butler Street space previously occupied by Cafe Porta Alba is now open: Old Market Bistro started serving breakfast, lunch and dinner last week. A patio with umbrella-shaded tables is also available for good-weather dining.
As promised by chef and co-owner Kipp Thomas, the menu is most tempting with the breakfast items and full of create-your-own options.
The breakfast menu starts heavily with the "Breakfast waffle," ($8), a Belgian waffle topped with your choice of egg, cheese and your choice of "Bistro Gravies" which are "American" (sausage and bacon), "Mexican" (a mole with chorizo) or a Hollandaise sauce. Hmm, one is tempted to observe that it's a good thing that Capital Fitness is right next door.
The waffles are also available with just maple syrup ($5) or with strawberries and as a sundae (topped with fruit or hot fudge, $7).
"Homestyle skillets" are homestyle potatoes topped with topped with your choice of egg, cheese and again your choice of Bistro gravies ($9/$8). Also on the breakfast menu are create-your-own omelets, breakfast sandwiches, biscuits and gravy, scrambles, and lighter options like grapefruit and granola.
Create-your-own reaches over to lunch and dinner with create-your-own pasta (with a marinara, a meat, a white and a basil pesto sauce to choose from, along with eggplant meatballs). Create-your-own pizza is not uncommon in the world of pizza, so we'll move on to create-your-own dinner.
Patrons choose a meat from the bistro's case, and "meat" includes a portobello mushroom, along with chicken, pork chop, rib eye, tuna and tilapia; then a method of cooking, including grilled, pan-fried, sautéed, blackened, or cooked in the wood oven; then a sauce, from a list of white, basil butter, olive oil, citrus BBQ, and white wine with lemon ($9-$14). Sides include steak fries, potato salad, cole slaw, Caesar salad, pasta, and stir-fried or steamed veggies.
There's also a whole page of signature dinners for those who don't want to create their own, including country fried steak ($16) and wood oven BBQ chicken ($11).