I experienced fried goodness last night at Rocket to Venus. Located in Hampden on Chesnut Avenue, I’m told that it’s fairly new and for a while was the hip place to be. I’ve never been on the same page as everyone else when it comes to popularity, but it was still pretty busy last night. There was a 30-45 minute wait for a table for two, so we waited for a space at the bar until two stools opened up and we ended up eating at the bar. This was fine and the bartenders were friendly and very attentive, but probably not suitable for a larger party; reservations are recommended for a reason, thus I’d recommend making one if there’s more than a few of you.
Wasabi peas grace the bar instead of peanuts and the bar itself is made of soft copper tubing. I was pretty pleased for noticing that. The menu is very eclectic, serving up a variety of Asian and seafood dishes in addition to some typical bar fare. It was difficult deciding what to order until the couple next to us got their desert. As soon as we saw the Deep Fried Peanut Butter and Jelly we were sold, especially after seeing the couple’s initial reaction after the first bite.
The three courses of fried goodness included:
- Fried Pickles ($3) - I couldn’t determine the pickle provider, but the buttermilk batter was pretty good as was the chipotle ranch dipping sauce. As good as they were, I prefer the dip-friendly slices at Cheeseburger in Paradise. Because the three pickles are fried/served in spear form, the batter tended to chip off when cutting the thing up into easily dipped pieces.
- Wimpies ($8) - Their 2 ounce version of miniature cheeseburgers. Cooked medium and served with fried onions, these burgers were really good and much better than some of their competitors. The fried onions make a big difference, instead of having minced onion bits falling off the bun. The four burgers came with a side of spiced fries, though besides salt I couldn’t tell you what they were spiced with. That’s not to say that they weren’t tasty.
- Deep Fried PB&J ($7) - This desert was the finishing touch. Take two peanut butter and jelly sandwiches made on Challa bread and deep fry them until slightly crispy, then arrange around a large scoop of vanilla bean ice cream and drizzle the entire plate with caramel. Oh yeah, baby. Words can’t really adequately describe how delicious this big-enough-for-two desert was. The only disappointing note is that it isn’t always on the menu, so I’d recommend getting over there right quick to try it before it isn’t available anymore.
All of the food looked and tasted great, I wish I had taken some photos. Despite being busy, the atmosphere was still good. Enough lighting to see the color of what you’re eating and not a din either; you can easily hear and talk to the person next to you without having to shout. I’d definitely go back again, for food and/or drinks.
They have real ginger ale there, too.