Readers often ask for recommendations or thoughts on a topic in addition to whatever may get put forth in Dining A La King on Mondays.
They often know what I had for breakfast on a given day, but somehow readers still come up with interesting questions. I don’t print them all, but I gathered a batch recently that may be of interest to more than the individuals who asked.
Q. Marshall, we are having a discussion in the doctor’s lounge. Does The Chief make all of their own ice cream “in house” or do they buy from somewhere else? Laura M.
A. They make all their own ice cream. They buy the add-ins and the owners tell me that you can get about anything you want in terms of candies, cookies or nuts. But the ice cream is a 13 or 14 percent butterfat mix that is put through a machine that has been there since the start. It runs a lot during the summer as the stand at 502 W. Lincoln goes through about 56 to 70 gallons a day. And if you won a bet because of this answer, you owe me an ice cream cone.
Q. Hi, Marshall: I’m looking for a place to take my 95-year-old aunt to eat a birthday dinner. Seems to me, I’ve heard of some German restaurant closer than Chicago, do you know anything about that? Thanks, Mary S.
A. Great question, Mary. The place you’re thinking of is probably Moser’s Austrian Cafe in New Carlisle. It’s got a great reputation, and though I’ve never been there, I’ve continued to hear good things.
In South Bend, you can find Weiss Gasthaus, 115 Dixieway North. It’s a German restaurant, and the food I’ve tasted at some events in South Bend has been decent.
Q. I have subscribed to most of the 574 newsletters and find them very helpful in learning about the dining scene in this area. Thanks for the work (and eating) that you do. We have been enjoying trying new places with your reviews and recommendations. A question — in your opinion, what is the best Mexican restaurant in Goshen? Thanks, Duane S.
A. Goshen has some great Mexican restaurants. Elkhart County does in general. The most popular Mexican restaurant in Goshen would be Hacienda, but not even Hacienda would claim to serve the most authentic food. I like the dollar tacos at the several San Jose locations, but my favorite Mexican place in Goshen has become Los Primos, 122 E. Clinton Ave. The food is good and has a bit more flair than some other places. I’m particularly a fan of the ropa vieja, a Cuban dish with shredded beef. Translated, it’s “old clothes,” but eats a lot better.
Q. As all fantastic ideas start, a friend and I were enjoying a few at the bar we built in the basement. An idea for a blind-judging IPA contest was brought up. 1) have you ever done this? 2) if no, this could be fun if you’d want to do it. Matt S.
A. Hey Matt. This is a fantastic idea. It can be a lot of fun to do this kind of thing. I’ve done some blind tastings with wine, including where friends had a party and did this with only knowing the descriptions or the costs, but not which was which. People then guessed. It was a lot of fun.
I’ve not done it with IPAs, the cool kid on the craft beer playground. So yes, this would be fun. When?
Q. Hey Marshall! Hope you are doing well. I need some food help. I am looking for pupusas. I remember someone made them at The Window in Goshen for a fundraiser. Do you know who that was and where I can find them? Also do you know if they are Salvadoran? Thanks! Andreina C
A. Ah. I love this question. There is actually a restaurant in South Bend. Girasol makes these bundles of goodness that are cornmeal masa filled with cheese, meat or vegetables. They’re Salvadoran (which I know you know, but readers may not). If you’re looking for authentic homemade pupusas, I don’t have a source. I know that sometimes you can find someone to make you some and I’ll help if I can.
If you have other questions, I’m happy to hear them. Feel free to send them along to firstname.lastname@example.org or via social media.
I’m hungry. Let’s eat.