Monday, October 29, 2007

Ghosts and gouls uptown on Friday

A flasher, a grand opening party, a birthday party and eating breakfast at a strip club.
And that was only Friday night.

I kicked off Halloween weekend at the 23rd annual Halloween Thriller Costume Ball at Woods on South, formerly Southend Brewery. That’s where I met the flasher, along with Vinny Testaverde, a sepia photo, a freaky priest, the pied piper and so many others.

Mostly everyone wore costumes, except my friend Road Dawg and a handful of others. Costumed partiers crowded on the dancefloor in the bar area to groove to dusty rap hits such as “Bust A Move.” The dated music was the event’s only drawback.

The layout worked well with the dancefloor on one side and three bars to buy drinks on the other side of the restaurant.

After leaving Woods, Road Dawg and I hung out at Madison’s to help Larken Egleston celebrate his 21st birthday. Our next stop was Hom’s club level, Play. DJ Lee Burridge headlined Friday’s grand opening party which drew Andy and Lesa Kastanas, Noah Lazes and John Love among other local tastemakers.

Inside Play, huge pieces of original artwork adorn burnt orange walls. The slide is gone and so is the pole. The DJ booth has been rebuilt. There’s a small lounge area up the stairwell near the dancefloor, and the front room has a fireplace, illuminated by candles, and a piano.

Fans of Tonic will love Play’s patio. There aren’t any firepits, but the oversized ottomans and couches make for great lounging. The club’s coolest feature is the wall behind the main bar. It’s made of light panels that illuminate to the beat of the music. It looks like a giant equalizer.

Our last uptown stop was to meet Larken and his entourage at Uptown Cabaret. There was a costume contest that lasted a little too long, but it was worth watching the Burger King guy. He was toasted and nearly knocked over the pirate ship onstage. Then he tried to climb one of the stripper poles and couldn’t pull himself up. He hung there and slowly slid down the pole.

After the contest, they opened the buffet line. This might be my new late-night breakfast spot. The $6 buffet had eggs, grits, bacon, hashbrowns chips, pancakes and biscuits and gravy. It’s not as good as the Men’s Club late-night buffet, which is all-you-can-eat and has an omelet station, but it’s closer.

If you didn't party this weekend for Halloween, Wednesday is your last chance. See the list, which will be updated, of Halloween parties on

What was the best Halloween party this weekend? Post your replies below.

Back to Woods on South

I'm beginning to learn that the food served at a restaurant’s grand opening party is always way better than the food served on any given night.

I recently learned this at Intermezzo in Plaza-Midwood. My latest lesson occurred last week at Woods on South, where I ordered chicken wings, creme brulee and bread pudding.

The chicken wings were crisper and tastier for the grand opening party. On Wednesday, they were saucy and were about as good as the wings at Cans. The bread pudding was good, but a little dry. The sweet potato creme brulee was the biggest disappointment.

For some reason, probably my own craziness, I thought the dish would be warm or at least room temperature. It wasn't. It tasted like they pulled it out refrigerator, burnt some suger on top and served it. Plus, the caramelized sugar was a bit too caramelized.

I'm going to give them a few weeks to work out the kinks before I return. There's a lot of stuff on the menu that I want to try.