Lola, restaurateur Tom Douglas' take on Mediterranean and North African fare, is highlighted by kebabs delivered to your table in a sizzling skillet with a splash of ouzo.
Well, you can cross off happy hour on the list of things for Tom Douglas’ mini-empire to conquer. By late June, all five Douglas restaurants featured a happy hour.
His best and most interesting, though, is Lola, Douglas’ take on Mediterranean and North African fare, highlighted by kebabs (chicken, squid, pork or lamb) delivered to your table in a sizzling iron skillet with a splash of ouzo, a Greek anise-flavored liqueur, for a little showmanship.
All the kebabs were flavorful and distinctive, though the lamb, caramelized with garlic and red wine, was the tastiest. The juicy lamb sliders also stood out.
I thought the only subpar offering was the dolmades (stuffed grape leaves) — too tart.
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Even Lola’s happy hour cocktails follow the same cuisine theme — ouzo with orange and rosemary and a martini with olives stuffed with barrel-aged feta. I have a hunch some of those flavor profiles may be too exotic or not sweet enough for the gin-and-tonic crowd.
Lola sits across the street from Douglas’ Dahlia Lounge and Serious Pie (his second best happy hour after Lola, I think.) Perhaps to ensure those happy hours don’t compete with one another, their start times are staggered so that you could hit all three if you wanted to do a Tom Douglas bar crawl.
Lola, 2000 Fourth Ave., offers happy hour 4-6 p.m. Mondays-Fridays, when bar food costs $2-$6, beer ($3), wine ($5) and selected cocktails ($5-$6). 206-441-1430, http://tomdouglas.com/restaurants/lola
Tan Vinh: 206-515-5656 or firstname.lastname@example.org