Central Avenue buffet lines

113_foodLook at that plate o’ grub. That’s from the Crescent Moon Bakery’s Friday buffet. I’m not exactly sure what all that stuff was, except for the gyro meat. The yellow pile was a tasty cauliflower something, and green/brown pile a sorta bland eggplant something, then there were the beef and chicken dolma-ish things, sans the grape leaves. And some kick-ass, take-no-prisoners, we’re-not-dumbing-it-down-for-Midwestern-palates red and green spicy sauces. And the soup. Don’t forget the soup. I don’t know what it was, either (and they don’t have any little signs indicating what it might be) but it smelled good. So I ate it.

It was my first time at the Crescent Moon on Central Avenue in Minneapolis, Harold had been raving about it and its Afghani cuisine for some time, so to shut him up that’s where we went for our Friday lunch. We’d tried it before, and it was always closed during the lunch hour on Friday. But last Friday, open. The owners explained that they are leaving their sign—which reads that they don’t open until 2 p.m. on Fridays—up because they don’t want to get too crowded. I didn’t get that. We stopped because there was a big BUFFET sign propped on the sidewalk.

Whatever. The food was damn good. Although as far as buffets go, Holy Land Bakery, Grocery & Deli has a bit more variety. Now Harold and I have hit Holy Land many, many times. It’s the go-to lunch spot when indecision has seized our minds after a week of trying to reinvent the same ol’ story for our respective publications. There’s other ethnic lunch buffets along this Central Avenue strip, including the Chutney Indian Grill and, a bit further up, Sahib’s Gateway to India. At all of these places, you can get a great plate of food like this (Holy Land):

or this (Chutney):

for about eight bucks. Then you can refill it. And it’s not just the quantity, folks, this is good grub. And, yes, you vegetarians out there can count on good eatin’ at those spots, too.

Our office is at a point equidistant from chain restaurants to our east, and the Central Avenue global village to our west. Maybe some of y’all out there have a similar geographical anomaly. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again. The choice is simple, folks. Have a bit of an adventure. You’re not getting your food any faster—and certainly not the same quality—at Chili’s. Anyone who thinks otherwise will be beaten!

3 comments for “Central Avenue buffet lines

  1. January 19, 2006 at 1:31 pm

    Man, I really need to get into the crescent moon… I like like 2 blocks from that joint, and here about it all the time.

  2. lyle'sat9
    January 25, 2006 at 2:57 pm

    If you head way north on Central up to Columbia Heights, the Udupi Restaurant Buffet is not to be missed. All Vegetarian, North Indian cuisine. It’s worth the trip.

  3. McGeary
    January 26, 2006 at 6:31 pm

    I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but Udupi has been closed for a couple of months. The owner was arrested and charged with employing and harboring illegal immigrants. It’s a shame — I loved that place, too.

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