Month: December 2006

Europe Delicious 

Once upon a time traveling to Europe meant an ocean voyage of several months. Then came steamships and that time was cut to weeks. Then came airplanes and it became hours. So when assigned to review a restaurant called Europe Delicious right here in Boise I figured just a few minutes of time to drive over there was all I needed. However, with numbers changing on Fairview Avenue at Eagle Road, we got lost. So, if after reading this, you decide to go, here’s how to get there: The address is 9958 Fairview, but you can’t see the restaurant from the street. Heading west, when you get to the 9900 block of Fairview between Mitchell and Five Mile you’ll see Capitol Sports Sales, which has a bunch of boats outside, and Scrub-A-Dub, a car wash. Across the street is a store called Parrots and Stuff. In between the boat place and the car wash is a small street. Turn there. Going right will take you to the Village Pub and going left will take you into the parking lot of Europe Delicious.

Europe Delicious was easier to find a year ago at when it was on Vista Avenue, but the new location gives it much more space. On the left side of the building is a European grocery stocked with candies, cookies, coffee, deli meats and other products. They also have a small bakery, where they bake their own wonderful breads that taste like nothing else you can get locally. My companion and I brought back several loaves to share at home. On the other side of the building is a small cafe. Four booths, three tall bar-style tables, a small bar with several stools, two small TVs, a large screen TV and a pool table fill the space. The menu is small with just a few selections of meat dishes that include minced meat on a stick, sausages, chicken shish kebabs and cheese pie. We ordered the goulas (goulash), the pileci raznjici (chicken shish kebob) and then asked owner/cook/waiter Sead Gracanin what ethnicity influenced the food. He replied in a lovely accent that it was Bosnian and southern Italian … European. Having been in the location for over a year, they’ve done wonderful things with the place. While still seeming newly occupied to some degree, a large banquet area–perfect for weddings and gatherings of up to 180 people–has been set up. The kitchen is huge and the grocery is packed with products you won’t see in other stores in town.

To drink, the small selection of domestic and import beers tempted us but we settled on a water and a macchiato served in a dainty little cup and saucer with small spoon. My traveling companion said it reminded her of being in Italy. She even drank it with her pinky finger turned out. The food was tasty, and we used the homemade bread to sop up the sauce from the goulash. Goulash is typically a Hungarian dish much like a stew with paprika and stewed meats. This Bosnian version is very hearty and filling. The chicken kebab, served on a large roll with peppers and a garnish of little gherkins and pepper sauce was tasty and filling. Nothing was fancy, but it was reasonably priced at five to six dollars per plate and an interesting experience to boot. What we were most excited about was the grocery: cheap prices, interesting candies and cookies perfect for loading up Christmas and holiday baskets. We walked away with several bags of goodies for our friends, but shhhhh, don’t tell them!

–Bingo Barnes never acts like a tourist