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SET at Theater Square

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Kris Billiter

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SET at Theater Square

by Kris Billiter » Mon Oct 16, 2017 8:19 am

So I really thought about whether or not I should write this, but ultimately decided it was the best thing to do. Four of us went to SET Saturday night before a concert at the Palace. We had reservations and were seated promptly. Our server was kind and helpful as I informed her about a mustard allergy I have that is pretty severe and I am very careful about. She explained that she had a shellfish allergy and understood completely.

We started of with a fried green tomato app that the table loved and green chili wontons that were good, but not the Bristol. Then things got bad. They do a limited menu on Palace event nights to keep ticket times down so some things we had seen online were not available.I ordered a burger that comes with Pimento Cheese. I asked our server to check and see if the cheese had mustard in it (mayo often does) and if so, I'd just go with cheddar. Two of our group ordered a corn cake dish and the other also got the burger. After a very long wait my burger, the other burger and one corn cake dish came out. The corn cake dish looked...interesting? A study in grey. We were told the other dish would be right out. A few minutes later still no dish but our server ran toward us and asked if I'd eaten my burger. I hadn't just because I was waiting on my wife to get her food. She grabbed it and said even though she told the kitchen, she just found out there is mustard! Thankfully I hadn't had a bite yet, since I was waiting on my wife t get her food.I was one bite away from a trip to the hospital. My burger goes back. In the meantime, my wife's plate comes out and immediately we notice a problem. Her dish had the butternut squash mentioned. My sister in law's didn't. We didn't realize it was missing till it showed up on my wife's plate. They each had one bite and that was it. My wife could not eat it. My wife lived in poor areas of the Philippines for two years. She can eat anything and couldn't eat this. The supposed corn cake looked like a frozen veggie burger that had been marked on a grill. It was 100% grey. It was the most unappetizing dish I had ever seen.The burgers themselves were bland and weren't seasoned. I never got my mac and cheeses and the "garlic" fries were anything but.

I assured out server that we didn't think this was on her but we needed to speak to the manager. I friendly man came out and I calmly explained what happened. He assured me those were corn cakes but maybe they had sat too long in the back and become hard because that happened if their food doesn't get out quickly. He was actually the new owner and said that only one kitchen member had been there more than three days. I felt for the guy as he was nice but man was it bad. He comped our bill and we took care of our server. I don't write this to be mean but you may want to give this new team some time before you go there. They do not have their stuff together yet. Even their reduced menu made it more of a lunch place than somewhere you'd want o go before a show.Hope they get it turned around but until they do, we won't be back.
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Jeff Cavanaugh

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Re: SET at Theater Square

by Jeff Cavanaugh » Mon Oct 16, 2017 9:54 am

Ugh, sorry to hear that. I've been to SET many times for lunch and never had a bad experience, but haven't been in the last few weeks.
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Robin Garr

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Re: SET at Theater Square

by Robin Garr » Mon Oct 16, 2017 10:24 am

Kris, I appreciate your posting. You showed your conscientiousness by expressing the issues clearly but kindly; but it's really just as important for the rest of us to hear about issues with a local place as it is for us to hear raves about a local place. Thanks for making the decision to go ahead.
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Leah S

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Re: SET at Theater Square

by Leah S » Sat Dec 09, 2017 3:53 pm

Open Table has SET listed as Permanently Closed. When did that happen?
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Robin Garr

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Re: SET at Theater Square

by Robin Garr » Sat Dec 09, 2017 9:41 pm

Looks like their Facebook and web pages are gone, too. It must have been very sudden, and recent I think. No news accounts anywhere, and sites like Zomato and Yelp don't seem to be aware.

I'm not sure why, but it just never seemed to take off.
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James Natsis

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Re: SET at Theater Square

by James Natsis » Sun Dec 10, 2017 10:51 am

Its unfortunate to see such a pretty, well-located restaurant bite the dust along that corridor. However, I must admit that the downtown food scene has held pretty strong in spite of the convention center being closed for as long as it has. I don't think many cities would dare to take the same risk.

There has still been a surprisingly steady flow of people out and about in the downtown area throughout that period. The reopening of the convention center in the coming months along with the launching of the Omni will have a large impact on the immediate area. It will also raise the cost of doing business there as well as making it tougher to park a car! All-in-all, it should be pretty exciting.
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bob.durbin

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Re: SET at Theater Square

by bob.durbin » Sun Dec 10, 2017 12:52 pm

Perhaps I can shed some light on the closing of SET. I took over as executive chef at the beginning of August. Previously to me taking this position there had been very little to no kitchen management happening for close to 5 or 6 months. The story of this restaurant was very similar to a lot of businesses that open and close so quickly. It was opened by a business person, with no former restaurant experience, who thought he could just keep throwing money at it and it would be successful. As those of us who have worked in this industry know, this was not the case.

New owners took possession of SET in the middle of September. Instead of closing immediately and doing a remodel, food and drink overhaul, and rehire and training of staff, new ownership decided to continue operating as SET while these changes were being made in order to keep their employees with jobs. We closed as SET the Tuesday before Thanksgiving and spent the following 2 weeks making the change over to the new concept, Encore on 4th. We quietly reopened last week, with the mayor's office holding a ribbon cutting ceremony on Friday, and are looking forward to establishing ourselves as one of the premier downtown dining destinations in Louisville.

If anyone has any questions I would be glad to answer them. You can also check out or food and drink menus at encoreon4th.com
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SilvioM

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Re: SET at Theater Square

by SilvioM » Sun Dec 10, 2017 2:42 pm

Wow, the menu looks very intriguing, and I always appreciate restaurants that put time into thoughtful, attractive websites. Best of luck, hope to make it there soon.
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Robin Garr

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Re: SET at Theater Square

by Robin Garr » Sun Dec 10, 2017 2:48 pm

That's great news, Bob! Thanks for filling us in.
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James Natsis

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Re: SET at Theater Square

by James Natsis » Sun Dec 10, 2017 3:03 pm

That's a relief to hear. Its such a nice addition to that part of 4th St and to the general downtown scene.

Congratulations!
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Terri Beam

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Re: SET at Theater Square

by Terri Beam » Sun Dec 10, 2017 6:11 pm

Just a head's up from an obnoxious spelling/grammar police officer, at the bottom of most of the website's pages, the restaurant is spelled "ENORE ON 4th." Someone might want to correct that. :)
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bob.durbin

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Re: SET at Theater Square

by bob.durbin » Sun Dec 10, 2017 10:10 pm

Terri Beam wrote:Just a head's up from an obnoxious spelling/grammar police officer, at the bottom of most of the website's pages, the restaurant is spelled "ENORE ON 4th." Someone might want to correct that. :)


Thank you so much. I hadn't noticed. I'll definitely let our IT person know so that can be fixed.

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