Review of The Exchange in New Albany
The revitalization of downtown New Albany is one of my favorite things to happen in the Louisville area. Seriously, if you haven’t taken a day (or a week!) to explore SoIn you should be doing so.
The Exchange is one of my more upscale places in New Albany. The inside of the building reflects that, all brass and wood and exposed brick. The place is seriously gorgeous, and if I hadn’t been dining with a sober friend I would have tried their excellent-looking cocktail list. As it is, we started the meal of with Korean BBQ ribs with kimchi ($10). They were served with basil-apricot vinegar, which I wanted to take like a shot. A great beginning to the meal.
Next came our “for the table” sides: wilted spinach with shallots and fresno peppers ($6) and Brussels sprouts with bacon and parm ($6). These were by far the most disappointing part of our meal: the wilted greens were ice cold when they came to the table and the sprouts were so raw they were crunchy.
We waited about an hour for our food, but I won’t judge the Exchange harshly for that. It was a busy Friday night, and halfway through our wait the manager came to our table to apologize. Honestly, I don’t mind waiting for a good meal, and we were having a good time.
Then came the main portion of the meal: blackened U10 Scallops with white cheddar grits ($24) were cooked perfectly. I hate it when scallops come out slimy or tough, and these were tender, silky and lightly blackened. The pan seared salmon ($22) had great garlic mashed potatoes with it, but was a tad overdone. The pork chop ($20), with bourbon brown sugar glaze and braised green was thing of beauty, gorgeously prepared and presented, wonderfully balanced flavor-wise.
But my favorite part of the meal: my double smoked ham salad ($10). It was one of the most delicious salads I’ve ever eaten: with pink lady apples, ricotta, smoked ham and smoked pimento ranch. I will absolutely be back for that salad.
Overall, despite our wait, the Exchange was a beautiful place to spend a Friday night, the staff was incredibly nice, and I can’t wait to go back and get that salad again.