I don't penalize chain restaurants, so I've long been a fan of J. Alexander's. The fish and scallops dinners are famous in my memory; the interior is intimate without being cheesy, it's even a good place to watch sports. When I read on Twitter recently that the location in West Bloomfield had a new menu, I wasted little time in figuring out my next available time to sample the wares.
Perhaps thankfully, it was explained to me, J. Alexander's has no new menu. Rather, staff told me at lunch time Monday that the lunch and menu options had been better separated to accomodate for a larger lunch crowd. Well, then, just my luck.
I sat at the bar to order my Thai Kai Salad — chicken, mixed greens, and peanuts tossed in a cilantro vinaigrette with Thai peanut sauce ($15) — and immediately regretted it. That is to say; I didn't regret the salad, which was as exciting to the taste (all those crunches!) as it was filling to the stomach; rather, I regretted my choice to stay inside.
I noticed that the outdoor seating area's few tables were almost all filled, but there were a few left for the lunch time crowd. Indeed, with the last few days of warm weather, I hope that our neighbors take these opportunities while they can to remember all that they enjoyed over the summer. Great food, great times.