“Avenue” could be the name of a New York boutique, an upscale jewelry store, or a funky flower shop. But in Clayton it’s the name of a charming lunch spot. The Parisian-style exterior faces onto a sidewalk patio with its long row of colorful plants. Happily, a park lot across the street relieves the pressure of finding a place to leave your car.
With all that going for it, Avenue racked up bonus points on my gastronomic scale before I ever stepped through the door.
Lunch Time Leisure
For the lunch bunch, the menu offered the usual noon day fare: soups, salads, sandwich plates and a few entrees. I went with the veggie burger to see how it compared to those I make and freeze for home use. Cyndy ordered the spinach salad proteinized with the fish of the day. (Proteinized. Hmm. . . is that even a word? Well, it is now.)
As I returned my menu, I inquired of the server: “Why is it called the “Impossible” Veggie Burger? Because it’s impossible to eat? Or impossible not to eat?” (I later figured out that “Impossible” is the brand name of a highly regarded veggie burger.)
My server smiled and gave me that “you’ll see” look. When the ginormous platter arrived a little flag with the word “Impossible” flew from atop the bun. I tried to convince myself, that the sandwich was half lettuce, tomato, onion and pickles, and, thus, almost a salad. And if I removed the top lid, it would be more manageable to eat with a knife and fork.
I took on the “Impossible” with gusto, before having to admit defeat by flying my flag upside down and leaving part of the sandwich behind. The secret to a good veggie burger is juiciness and this one measures up superbly.
Avenue comes with a staff that cares about service and a kitchen that cares about goodness. A winning combination!