If thereâ€™s one thing you can say about Mesh â€“ one of the cityâ€™s latest culinary additions situated on Brownsboro Road, on the edge of Mockingbird Gardens â€“ itâ€™s that itâ€™s a breath of fresh air. Its cuisine is rooted in the traditional but has delicious contemporary twists everywhere you look.
To start, we sampled one of two beet salads. The first consisted of yellow and red beets, with an added crunch of crushed pistachios. The salad was fresh and light, while fried goat cheese added an exceedingly filling element and a rich creamy texture to the dish. Meanwhile the other salad â€“ The Mesh â€“ consisted of a mix of greens from local grower Grateful Greens, and a tarragon vinaigrette, as well as crushed walnuts, a generous sprinkle of quinoa and golden beets topped with crumbled goat cheese. The dazzling array of colors that adds so much to the impression and anticipation before the devouring can begin.
For those in the mood to continue with something relatively light, a delicious sampling of smoked salmon came with a butternut squash and onion tart, as well as pickled red onions and asparagus. The salmon, from the Faroe Islands (situated in the southern edge of the Atlantic Ocean), was cooked perfectly. It was flaky, soft and not overly fatty, as some salmon can get. The tart, with a crisp but forgiving crust was a perfect accompaniment, as it added a buttery taste to the dish, which was accented with the sweet flavors of the butternut squash.
With the food department headed up by executive chef Tim McIntosh, Mesh hopes to bring vibrant and interesting food to Louisville. The original Mesh, based in Indianapolis, was named one of the top-25 restaurants in the city by Visit Indy. The menu is full of endless delicious choices.
The real undoubted highlight, though, was the roasted pork chop â€“ a two-bone-in cut of pork of gigantic proportions, cooked perfectly and served up with a maple bourbon glaze adding sweetness to the meat. A huge smear of blended carrot and ginger added an exotic flavor, especially when matched with the creamed kale spaetzle and a crunch courtesy of an apple slaw thatâ€™s served atop the chop.
Fundamentally, the food McIntosh serves up can be seen as traditional on the surface, but on closer inspection, there are little unique twists and additions that add much needed and exciting left-field elements. McIntosh, a fresh transplant from the West Coast, has been able to add personal touches while getting the lay of the land, with the invaluable help of his two sous chefs â€“ Jake Stearns and Robert Temple.
â€œThey have been so important to what weâ€™re doing here, because they know the area, the suppliers, and where to get the best ingredients,â€ McIntosh said.
Under McIntoshâ€™s guidance, Mesh hopes to diversify the menu more and more by adding local flavors, while also keeping the core dishes that you can find in the Indianapolis and Cincinnati locations.
To finish up, we gobbled down a sumptuous, spongy and moist bread pudding, served with the requisite scoop of cooling vanilla ice cream. It was a perfect end to a meal cooked with verve and finesse. Mesh has a large darkened dining room, and also houses an expandable private dining room with more natural light than perhaps any other room in the city. Itâ€™s a great spot to eat, unwind, relax and enjoy Meshâ€™s great food â€“ and will be for years to come. VT
Mesh Louisville â€¢ 502.632.4421
3608 Brownsboro Road
Louisville, KY 40207
Photos by CHRIS HUMPHREYS | The Voice-Tribune