Sunday, December 30, 2012

Beaver Creek Tavern, Downingtown, PA

We were visiting our daughter and son-in-law's new place in Downingtown on a Friday night during the holidays and decided to try someplace nearby for dinner. We've hit most of the places in the Downingtown area and wanted someplace different. Nicole suggested The Beaver Creek Tavern and for some reason the name rang a bell, as if someone had recommended it once. 

We got there and the place was hopping. Most of the tables were full and the ones that weren't had reservation tent cards on them. The owner knotted his brow, gave a warm smile and said, "I have a table for you." He took a reservation card from a five top and said that was our table, and that he'd rearrange the reservation. I kept an eye out through dinner and didn't notice anyone displaced, so he must have known what he was doing.

The restaurant looks old fashioned, clean and bright in a timeless style with pastoral wall paintings and plenty of wood. As I looked through the menu there were plenty of comfort foods listed, like chicken pot pie (that's what Teresa ordered) and meat loaf (what Brian ordered) as well as sandwiches, burgers and steaks. There was one thing on the menu that was simply screaming 'Try Me!' It was the eggs benedict burger. I was really tempted, but I was on the backside of the flue and my appetite wasn't all that strong yet so I went with the bacon cheddar burger (shown above).

The burger was really good. Quality meat, cooked right, on a fresh roll with just the right amount of juices flowing from it. The fries were nothing special though, I think I'll go for the onion rings the next time. Everyone else was quite happy with their choices as well. 

Overall, nice homey atmosphere, warm friendly service, good comfort food at reasonable prices. We'll be back again soon, I want the eggs benedict burger. Stop by and give them a try.

Update- I did get that Benedict Burger and it was amazing.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Cosimo's Brick Oven, Middletown, NY

Cosimo's Brick Oven in Middletown has been around since 1995. That's seventeen in human years, and close to a hundred in restaurant years where the life expectancy of a restaurant is less than five years (seventy percent of new restaurants close within the first five years). I've only been there a few times, but I was satisfied each time. 

We stopped by today after nearly walking into an Olive Garden. You see, I was in the mood to try someplace we hadn't been to in a while and Olive Garden seemed worth a visit. As we were about to enter we both had the same thought, that we were going to regret it. We got back in the car and went down the road to Cosimo's.  

I decided on the tapenade flatbread pizza shown above at $13.00. It had shrimp, olive tapenade, cherry tomatoes, plenty of cheese and zucchini. It was quite tasty with a crispy crust and just the right flavor notes. Everything had a fresh, clean taste, especially the shrimp which made me think they were fresh not frozen.

Teresa got the half Margherita pizza and Caesar salad for $9.00. She said the pizza was okay and the salad looked to be of good size. 

We tried an old favorite and we were not disappointed. What I found interesting was that there was a line inside of the Olive Garden waiting for a table while Cosimo's was not all that busy at two in the afternoon. This simply proves that mediocrity sells if the name is familiar. Cosimo's is a small chain (four restaurants of that name and Torches on the Hudson) but it is locally owned and managed.