I consider myself to be a "local" of Lincoln being that I have resided here for some 18 years now. At the time I moved to Lincoln I remember being anything but a local. The people that were here for years before I moved here are even more local, if that is possible. It may be hard to envision that feeling of neighborhood and closeness that we shared. Today I would say that there is only 10-20% locals left.
The Lincoln invasion has brought so much growth to our town. Along with this has increased our options for food when deciding where to eat. I remember always wanting to go to Roseville because that was where the good food was, at least where the options were. I also remember the nostalgia that was felt when eating a slice of BJ's extra large pizza with ranch dipping and the standard butter sauce for the incredible crust! Oh how so many of us miss that place. And how about the old A & W that was then the Mexican joint and now houses McDonald's.
Today Lincoln seems flooded with an array of different cuisine; Mexican, Thai, Chinese, Sushi and Japanese, American Traditional Home Style, Italian, Pizza... you name it, our choices have increased to include it. There are some very good staples of Lincoln that we enjoy and we do have our favorites that I would like to share.
1) Mexican Deli - Excellent Mexican food with authentic feel. From the outside it looks a bit scary to some perhaps, but rest assured they keep a very clean kitchen. I pay attention to these things. This is one of the original Local places in Lincoln and still remains excellent and almost unchanged as ever. The Chile Verde is the best secret in town... so I am weary to tell those not aware as of yet. However I have yet to taste a better Chile Verde burrito anywhere in all my travels. I used to get the chile verde chimichanga but they are too big, so I changed to a crispy burrito special. They also make the best crispy beef and chicken tacos in Lincoln. Don't forget their classic hot sauce! I pray that this place never closes, I would be lost without it!
2) Thai Basil - We are lucky to have such a great place in town. It is not a Lincoln staple but it is darn good. We really like the "Sa-Tay" chicken satay with peanut sauce, a great dish with coconut milk flavored peanut sauce, it is great;"Gang-Keaw-Wan" green curry chicken served with vegetables and rice is one of the best, serves 3 people; "Som Tum" Green papaya salad is excellent and tastes of fresh papaya, citrus and a bit of heat; The very best jasmine fried rice I have ever tasted! Excellent freid rice... a must! Overall, really fresh tasting Thai food with excellent flavors. Make sure and ask for the special side plate of all their hot spices and sauces.
3) La Villa Mexican Restaurant - great for an enchilada or a few quick tacos. Good chimichangas. Try their Panaderia a few doors down located in the old Coconuts coffee building, they make a "cheesecake filled bread cover with sugar" that is super good!
4) La Fiesta - only eat there for breakfast and we split it! They have the best "chilie quiles" anywhere. They basically smother crispy tortilla chips with melted cheese and a special red sauce and you eat them with tortillas and rice and beans. Also, they have excellent chorizo and eggs, but a half portion is usually enough! The salsa bar is also very good and help yourself!
5) Persimmon Cafe - Housed where the old Lincoln Produce once was. Fresh sandwiches, salads, but the best thing is their roasted chicken dinner for 2. $6.75 I think gets you a fresh roasted whole chicken and a side salad of choice! Very good! They are warm and ready to take home and eat. Also, fresh homemade pies are their specialty and are excellent! By the slice or whole!
6) Zakuro Sushi - Really lucky to have a quality sushi house in Lincoln now. This may be our favorite new addition. Excellent rolls including "Red Bull", "Mike B-B", "HWY 65", and much more. Excellent miso soup and very good Gyoza, but ask for some srircha sauce for the gyoza! Drink specials like $1.00 sake nights and $3 beer nights....
7) Conchas - so sorry they are gone, they really made true authentic style food, not just tacos and burritos, but mole and flautas, chile quiles... all topped with quality Mexican cheeses... so sorry you did not have more support, now we are all missing you.... food fears anyone? You did an excellent job... Replaced by a current Mexican Restaurant which I will not comment on.
There are so many restaurants which I could give my honest opinion of, many which I could bad mouth or tell you something negative about from my point of view. Being that I appreciate food and appreciate good ingredients being treated properly, I could really dish it out. But I won't. I will tell you to get out and support your local business people and eat at their places. Spend your money with them, encourage them to do good and cook fresh.
It is important that we give back to our community!
I will tell you that there is a bakery in town that, in my opinion does not make good bread. This is only my opinion. They have one single dough that they shape 20 different ways and call it different bread. All baked bread goods taste the same, bland and not exciting. Especially after a trip to France, the bread capital of the world to taste "real" bread made with "real" flour and it was excellent! I would love an authentic bakery, but would we support it? If we really want good things then we must support them when they arrive!
I also used to really like Buonarotti, however have not eaten there lately. We used to eat the red bell pepper soup every Thursday evening. Last time we went we had a good tortellini dish with bacon and peas I believe. Will have to give them a go again. I hear Daniel has opened a beer and wine bar where he brews his own beer now! Good for him, hopefully you will all support him so he can keep his business running!
We miss Beerman's as well. Not as much for the food as for the beer and atmosphere. Although they did have good fries! And the Lincoln Inn, what happened to the classic Bar?
Anyhow, if you have any suggestions, please drop me a line and let me hear about it. I would love to add them to the blog! Happy eatings!