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March 16, 1995 - Image 15

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1995-03-16

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The Michigan Daily - Weekend etc. - Thursday, March 16 1995 - 7
.Nice packaging, nothing special j

By James M. Nash
and Maureen Sirhal
Daily Staff Reporters
The unassuming exterior gives way
toabrightly lit, elegantly sculptedmock
art gallery. But while Levy's ArtCafe
projects a slick yuppie sensibility, the
ood is all too conventional.
Whilethefood is sophisticated and
is a true palate-pleaser, its price is not
reflected in its elegance. Each dish is
prepared carefully and presented well,
however, the quality and taste is noth-
ing betterthan the bestkitchenfare. All
the fancy wrapping cannot disguise
what is essentially a fairly plain dish.
Theportionsaremoderate andnone
of the entrees are accompanied by an
,ntree or salad -a major disappoint-
ment for an upscale restaurant.
The ArtCafe is no total loss. The
food is well-prepared. The grilled
chicken is grilled with no drying or
over-cooking and it comes with a
generous mix of vegetables lightly
steamed in a butter sauce. The roasted
potatoes are coated with a very tasty
blend of seasonings. Yet this dish is
othing out of the ordinary.
fThe steak tenderloin is tender, true
to its name, but hardly unique. The
portions of meat are adequate but far
from generous. The meat is bathed in
a tasty sauce that enhances its natural
flavor and goes well with a less-than-
generous serving of red-skinned po-
The pasta primavera is served hot
with plenty of parmesan cheese - a
ood thing, considering that the pasta
and vegetables are bland.
The desserts are a fitting conclu-
sion to a meal, although a bit on the
pricey side. Expect to pay $4-5 for
"Decadence" - an ultra-rich slab of
chocolate mousse in raspberry sauce
-- or any of about a half dozen cakes

or ice cream dishes. The white choco-
late mousse is dense and creamy, laced
with a pungent rum sauce that all but
overpowers the delicate chocolate fla-
Yet for a meal priced between
$9.95 and $13.95, the servings are
less than adequate.
Lunches are more reasonably
priced, with most sandwiches running
around $5. Among the selections are
the traditional club sandwich and a
trendy hamburger topped with
carmelized onion, calamata olives and
Ementhaler swiss cheese.
Both the lunch and dinner menus
are sparse in the number of offer-
ings, although the selections run the
gamut of American cuisine. Patrons
seeking a departure from the ex-
pected will probably be disap-
pointed, however, as few of the en-
trees are unique to the ArtCafe.
champagne brunch with arange ofrich
entrees,juicesanddesserts. The under-
stated trendy atmosphere is a perfect
complement to the contemporaryfoods.
The unique aspect of this restaurant
definitely lies in the atmosphere and
the decor. Countless paintings, photo-
graphs and murals adorn the walls of
the ArtCafe. Jewelry and other assorted
crafts lay open for examination and the
proprietor welcomes patrons to look
throughout the "gallery." But the art
appears crammed on the wall, making
the restaurant somewhat cluttered.
Overall, the ArtCafe is a unique
alternative to the traditional restaurant
if the decor and atmosphere is all that
you appreciate. With the price and the
style of dishes, you are probably better
off elsewhere. If money is no object
and you are not looking for anything
too wild then the ArtCafe may just suit
you perfectly.

211 E. Washington St.

Hours: Sun.-Thurs. 11 a.m.-l0p.m.,
Fri.-Sat.I Ia..m.-IlIp.m.
Price: $9.95 to $14.95 for entrees,
$3.95 to $4.95 for desserts and
Vegetarian-friendly for lunches
but not for dinners
Smoking and non-smoking seating
Visa, MasterCard
Handicap accessible
Dress: Informal
Reservations accepted

Style Is certainly apparent at the ArtCafe. Isn't It beautiful?

1. '

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