Lunch at Imagine

One one of our Friday lunch dates, I decided that I wanted to branch out of the Rivermarket/Heights/Hillcrest neck of the woods and go have lunch in the wile world of West Little Rock. After a quick perusal of what might be a good bet, Jay decided on Imagine (see links page). I have been thouroughly impressed with Imagine in the past for dinner and brunch, so a lunch excursion sounded like a good plan.

On arriving, the place wasn’t that crowded, but by the time we left it was getting close to full. Nevertheless, even though the one waiter got stretched a little thin over all of the tables, other staff members (i.e. the host) filled in, and I never noticed a gap or lag in the service (maybe a little, but entirely attributable to the lunch rush, and if you know me, you know I’m not very forgiving on service mistakes).

We decided to forego appetizers on this lunch break (I think I was in a healthy kick). I ordered the grilled chicken-breast sandwich with balsamic-marinated red peppers and onions with a side of the sweet potato chips (per waiter recommendation and my fanatic enjoyment of sweet potatoes), and Jay ordered a steak and cheese sandwich, with another side of sweet potato chips. While not as “healthy” as I was shooting for, my lunch was phenomenal. The chicken was moist and cooked to perfection, and the red peppers and onions were absolutely delicious. The bread was likewise good, and the chips … wow, I could write an epic poem on how good those things were. Wonderfully seasoned, not greasy at all, and just a hint of that sweetness, which thankfully was not cooked out. Jay’s sandwich was also very good, and we both cleaned our plates entirely. I wanted to finish up the meal with an ice-cream sundae, but Jay voted against (much to my disappointment), so we left.

If you like Imagine but are weary of the prices (the dinner menu can be expensive), I highly recommend coming for lunch. The dishes are equally as imaginative as those at dinner and there are TONS of dishes to choose from, whether you want a salad, wrap, sandwich or burger. The service is also very attentive, even during the lunch crunch. As always, I highly appreciate the use of local, seasonal ingredients. Plus, how can you go wrong with a place that makes its own sweet potato chips and ice-cream sundaes? Will be back for more.

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