I was excited to hear that New Albany had a new barbecue joint for several reasons. The first and most obvious, I love barbecue. The second is my lack of satisfaction in the barbecue joints here in Louisville. Granted, I haven’t ventured beyond my surrounding neighborhoods too much, and I am open to suggestions. My favorite spot on this side of the river has been Smoketown USA.
Feast is located at 116 West Main Street in New Albany, IN. Make sure you note that address so you don’t accidentally walk into The Exchange Pub and Kitchen, another new eatery in the rapidly expanding New Albany downtown. We arrived at 11:25 am only to find a small line of people already lined up outside the place, waiting patiently while staring into the large windows. Well, that’s promising...
Feast has a hip and charming interior of antique wood and high ceilings. At Feast, you order at the counter and find yourself a seat. The menu is written on a large chalkboard over the condiment station. Offerings include tacos, sliders, sandwiches, and assorted sides. There are heftier offerings on the dinner menu like a full or half bird and baby back ribs. I also really liked that they had two kinds of slaw; creamy or vinegar. The kicker for me, however, is the tots. Feast offers tater tots as a side order or an appetizer.
We ordered two tacos and two sliders, the tots appetizer, and a side of mac and cheese. The meat is served without sauce so you can add the sauce to your liking. The options at the condiment station were hot and regular house barbecue sauce, ketchup, and hot vinegar. The sauce was sweet but not overly sweet. It was a nice sienna color and had a thicker consistency. The pulled pork and pulled chicken were good but didn’t really stand out to me. What really knocked my socks off was the brisket, the tofu, and the tots appetizer. Yes, I said tofu. Their smoked tofu was ridiculously delicious. It seemed to be lightly rolled in flour or cornstarch and fried after being smoked. The result was a crispy, slightly salty and smoky cake of tofu which was meaty in texture. The tater tots appetizer was piled high with creamy slaw, drizzled with their thick barbecue sauce, and garnished with green onion. The tots were dusted with sea salt and perfectly crispy, the kind of crispy that holds up to creamy slaw. When we looked at our brisket slider, it looked like someone had plopped a fatty filet on a bun and called it supper. However, when we finally picked up the burger and bit in, we were overjoyed at how the meat yielded and melted in the mouth. Bravo!
I followed up my meal by asking one of the employees why Feast reports to have no vegan options since the tofu, if ordered without cheese, seemed a delicious vegan option. The employee replied that the tofu is fried in a fryer that is used for animal products and therefore didn’t qualify as vegan. He also added that their vinegar slaw uses regular refined sugar. (In case you didn’t know, a lot of regular refined sugar is not vegan due to the use of animal bones in the purification process) I found this attention to detail on the vegan diet in a largely meat serving establishment, quite impressive.
Another place worth crossing the border for. If you want to know more, check out their website here.