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Okay, that's it. Turn in your credentials and surrender your access to any and all word processors. You call yourself a food critic, yet you go to Louis' and don't even order Spaghetti? Would you also go to Peter Luger's and not order the porterhouse?
You see, some places are all about "one thing." It's what they do. Sure, to appease those who don't like the "one thing," but are nonetheless obliged to accompany those who do, these establishments may make some halfhearted attempt to offer other things. However, to judge a restaurant on the basis of these silly concessions to the unlearned is akin to judging a restaurant on how well it maintains its parking lot. It's entirely, utterly and inexcusably beside the point.
Louis offers the finest plate of non-traditional spaghetti to be found on this planet. I say that without fear of contradiction by those who know. Spaghetti is entirely about the sauce, and Louis brings you a generous amount of the richest, meatiest, spiciest sauce you could ever hope to experience. The stuff sits about halfway between a fine marinara and a full blown chili (ala Cincinnati). It is a unique and special flavor not be had anywhere else. Over the years, I've become entirely spoiled by it. I cannot abide the spaghetti found in any other restaurant now, especially the fancier Italian places in town with their miserly dollops of thin, watery tomato paste - little more rice cakes in cheap ketchup.
Oh, and if you must have something other than a huge oblong platter of Louis spaghetti, go for the old "Louis Plate Number 4." You get a generous helping of the legendary spaghetti with a broiled chicken breast parmigiana - a thick, tender chicken breast unspoiled by unnecessary breading and untouched by a frying pan. Delicious.
Finally, two other quick points. That not at all garlicky garlic bread is only there to help you sop up any sauce that might remain on your plate once you're done with the spaghetti. Judged by that singular function, it performs admirably. And you really, really shouldn't have said anything about that shredded iceburg salad. Unless you are inimately acquainted with both the Original Louis and Louis Inn and the devotees of each and their reasons why... you really didn't want to open up that sore topic.
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