I've been very excited about this opening. Although I never had the chance to eat at Roaring Fork or Renegade when Chef McGrath was there, I'm a big fan of Chef Matt Taylor. We walked in at about 8 pm on a Tuesday night and the place was hopping. Fortunately we snagged the only two seats open at the bar. With a full house, the atmosphere and vibe was energetic and fun, and we heard more than one person comment how glad they were to have it in their neighborhood.
I started off with an excellent Sazerac by Rich. They do have a barrel-aged Sazerac on the menu, although it won't be ready for a couple more weeks. Later on I asked Rich to surprise me and he paired my scallops with a cocktail so good, I had two, made with Espolon reposado tequila, R&W Orchard Peach, simple syrup, lime juice and orange and peach bitters. He also suggested a rosé that was lovely. I can't remember the name; I'll have to check our bill.
Between the two of us, we tried: Cheese and charcuterie (wild boar salami, La Quercia prosciutto, Benton country ham; Mt. Tam cheese, Haystack Mountain Red Cloud, Mélodie chevre, and Paški Sir from Croatia), scallops, chopped salad, mussels, green chili mac and cheese, and filet with "whiskey shellac". We were chatting the whole time with friendly barmates and Rich, so I actually didn't concentrate on the food as much as I should have. We also ordered too much so most of the filet and mac and cheese came home with us. I just asked E what was his favorite and he said he loved the chopped salad (with rotisserie chicken, blue cheese, bacon and Maytag ranch dressing). My favorite were the mussels - plump, almost creamy, in a smoked ham hock and cipollini broth. I also really liked the spicy jalapeno sausage served with the green chili mac. Skipped dessert, and Chef Matt treated me to an after-dinner Fernet. Great night.
Like others, I'm really looking forward to the rotisserie items. One of the reasons we went last night was because Tuesdays feature "air-dried duckling char su barbecue with Colusari red rice". Unfortunately, they were sold out. My bar neighbors, however, had it and both said it was their favorite of everything they had. It looked and smelled fantastic, and now I wish I had taken them up on their offer for a bite
OTOH, now we have the perfect excuse to return next week!