A mosaic floor tile and brass wall sconces lend Barnum Publick House turn-of-the-century flair, but it’s the stamped tin ceiling that truly transports patrons to the early 1900s. Locally grown vegetables add their flavor to the menu of elevated pub fare, which includes sandwiches such as adult grilled cheese filled with brie and provolone, all-ages appropriate fish 'n' chips, and short-rib stroganoff. On Sundays, diners choose from inventive brunch options including banana-stuffed French toast and eggnog-infused pancakes. Fresh fruit enhances artisanal spirits in specialty cocktails, alongside herbs personally muddled by the Jolly Green Giant.
French-American cuisine and sumptuous wines make their home in Epernay Bistro's casual fine-dining atmosphere. Chef and owner Peter Wroe forages for the freshest produce from local growers and irate farmers' carrot patches to craft a dinner menu that highlights seasonal ingredients. Inventive evening entrees include the provence-lamb stew over herbed noodles ($20) and a seared-sea-scallop chowder that marries onions, carrots, and celery with red potato and bacon ($23). Meanwhile, the house-made country pâté with dijon and cornichon represents the more traditional end of the fusion spectrum ($10).
Though the brick bar and large, bright front windows immediately catch customers’ eyeballs, Bare Tapas & Vino is a restaurant best represented by its Mediterranean-inspired menus of tapas, pizzas, wine, and cocktails. Elegant small plates include grilled steak tips in a demi glaze, crisp, golden shrimp, or crab cakes. Flatbreads easily carry toppings such as roasted tomatoes, fresh basil, and mozzarella, or combinations of asparagus, roasted onion, and smoked peppers. In accompaniment, wines hail from the vineyards of California or Portugal, while cocktails of exotic fruit blends sport colors more vibrant than the cheek of a crying two year old.