Southern Goods is located walking distance from where I work in the Heights, so when a friend of mine was raving about it, I told him the next time he wanted to go back to count me in. His reply was something to the effect of what are you doing tonight? This guys is a serious foodie, and has lived all over the world, so when he says something is good I listen.
Inside meet outside
The architecture of the building is really striking. The patio is covered with a metal roof set to a sharp angle, but the coolest part is the bar inside the restaurant opens to the patio. It reminded me of an icehouse designed by Edward Scissorhands. The weather was great on the night we went so we opted to sit at the bar on the patio side. There was a nice happy hour crowd inside and outside on the patio, and when I saw the tap beer wall, I knew why. They had two dozen well curated craft beers on tap. I love IPAs so I’ll cheat on my diet from time to time if I see a good one, and I saw several good ones. The Deschutes Pinedrops IPA is the one that lured me in. What a great beer. Like I have said in previous posts, if you are going to cheat make it count, and the Pinedrops was worth it for me. As the name suggests, it has hints of citrus and pine plus the bite you expect from an IPA.
The menu is focused on southern cuisine with a modern twist, and it changes regularly. The Crispy Pork Belly looked great, as did the Texas Hot Quail, but the dish that I couldn’t pass up was the Gulf Catch. This dish features the fish of the day on top of snow peas leaves, two large gulf shrimp, and finger chillies. Red Fish was the fish of the day, and I couldn’t resist. Besides, this is the dish my friend recommended. The bartender also suggested their ceviche appetizer. Now, raw fish is not your typical bar food, but the bar tender really sold it so we opted in.
When the ceviche arrived, it looked like a work of art: Ample chunks of white fish in a bowl of grapefruit juice with paper thin slices of cucumbers, red onions, chilies, and large orange fish eggs sprinkled on top of it all. Southern Goods was off to a good start in my book. The dish was light and refreshing. The fresh-squeezed grapefruit juice was a fantastic touch. It added the citrus flavor you expect with ceviche, but sweeter, and less tart. My friend and I split it, but I may need to apologize, as I probably eat more than my half in my exuberance.
The main course
With such a great appetizer, I had high expectations for the main course, and the Gulf Catch did not disappoint. The red fish was well seasoned and cooked to perfection. Laying on top of the fish were two of the biggest shrimp I’ve ever seen. Under the magnificent pile of seafood, was the snow pea leaves sautéed in garlic and olive oil. I’ve had snow peas lots of times, but never the leaves. If you like greens like collard or mustard greens that are on the bitter side, you will like snow pea leaves. The texture is a bit hard to describe. I guess it reminded me of really thick spinach. The bitterness added complexity to the dish when paired with the salty and slight smokiness of the fish.
Go to Southern Goods today before it gets too hot to sit on the patio. There are plenty of paleo-friendly dishes to choose from and the quality of the food is indeed, very good.