CLOSED: The Tavern at Bridge Street [4/5]
4 (80%) 1 vote

The Tavern
The newest restaurant to take over the old Ketchup spot at Bridge St, Tavern at Bridge Street is going for a vibe somewhere between pricey, date night spot and trendy, hang out spot. One Friday night the hubby and I stopped in for a light dinner.

Our search for small portions and fresh fare lead us away from the steaks, ribs, bbq chicken and burgers. Instead, the hubby opted for a cobb salad and I fashioned a meal from the appetizers section choosing the half smoked trout and a side of snap peas.

It was perfect patio weather and we enjoyed people watching as we waited for our meal. The patio is well equipped to be an ideal nice weather hang out spot. The bar opens out onto the patio and several fans spin above the outdoor tables. The only downside to the outdoor dining was that the live music provided by Bridge Street was rather loud which made conversation difficult. The indoor seating is spacious with a wide range of seating which spans from small high tops to one table capable of seating a dozen or so.

Our food came up quickly and we happily tucked in.

The Tavern
My snap peas were fresh, slightly crunchy and sweet. But what really made the dish was the generous sprinkling of onions and red bell peppers which added a real depth of flavor. My only complaint was that there weren’t more of the onions and red peppers.

The Tavern
My half smoked trout was served with crispy crostinis, and a thin, zingy house made horseradish sauce that would make a perfect sandwich spread. The trout was served still in half of its skin and it was readily apparent that salt had been generously applied between the two. Eaten alone, I found that the trout could easily get too salty. However stacked on a crostini spread with horseradish sauce, the saltiness disappeared. The combination had a wonderful texture–the crunchy bread, the creamy sauce, the falling apart fish–and a mellow flavor.

My husband enjoyed his salad (shown at the top of this post) and was especially intrigued to find that Tavern seems to have solved that age old problem of how to both toss a salad in dressing and present a beautifully plated dish. They tossed the lettuce in the dressing, and then arranged the cobb toppings. That’s one trick I may just steal for home cooking. The dressing was applied with a light hand, ensuring that his lettuce wasn’t left swimming, but the bacon was generously applied.

We were waffling on dessert, but when the server mentioned “cheesecake”, my mind was made up. It was available with raspberry sauce, chocolate sauce or both and you had your preference as to whether the sauce was applied on top or served on the side.

The Tavern
What I wasn’t expecting was how absolutely gargantuan the slice would be. One slice was the size of two slices at most other restaurants. It was worth boxing up the extras though because the cheesecake was clearly house made–soft and dreamy. It could have been a touch firmer but the tangy, tart raspberry sauce made me forget that. The coarse graham cracker crust added a touch of flavor but was not overly thick or distracting. (And I am generally not a fan of graham cracker crusts.)

The food was fresh and the flavor combinations were either innovative or old standards done well. The ambiance is tailored to allow adults to socialize. The menu includes fine dining staples such as filet mignon but at a lower price point and with less ambiance than most fine dining establishments. Tavern would be a good choice for a place to enjoy a quality lunch or meet friends for drinks and appetizers.

Total for the meal: $35.69 (Includes one cobb salad, one half smoked trout, one side snap peas, one slice cheesecake, and one soft drink)

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