The Red Barrel serves wines from around the world, but takes special care in the presentation: red and white sangria are poured into frosted carafes, and flights of bright white and dusky red wines are served on wooden paddles. Glasses glint off of the low, romantic lighting from candelabra-like wall sconces, and the dark wood tables clustered together invite whispered conversation. On most nights, live music ranging from a Latin jazz trio to a spunky young black-metal band completes the scene.
Knowing that every wine needs a pairing, The Red Barrel's chefs prepare seafood-centric fare in the style of a classic French bistro. The daily menu often changes, but wine-marinated clams, rosemary-crusted lamb chops, and filet mignon with buttered lobster often fill the intimate space with their inviting aromas. At brunch, French classics such as croque madame?french bread with prosciutto and a sunny-side-up egg?pair with refreshing mimosas.
Wall-to-wall plasma TVs flicker with broadcasts of high-intensity sports as guests to Beach Club Sports Bar & Grill bite into burgers piled with pastrami, chili, or bacon. When not urging on their team, visitors can also create competition of their own, sending pool balls flying or throwing down a foam finger to challenge rival fans to a duel. On weekends, mimosas and bloody marys wash down morning breakfast fare on a sunlit outdoor patio.
Riley's Pub & Grill puts a spin on familiar pub fare with a menu of internationally inspired appetizers and entrees. Diners can dig into pulled pork tortas piled high with avocado and queso fresco, or savor grilled pizzas topped with mushrooms, feta, and balsamic vinaigrette. Comfort food favorites such as mac and cheese and chili share the stage with lighter salads topped with blue cheese, apple slices, and walnuts. Despite the eclectic, international menu, a traditional pub atmosphere pervades—the grill sizzles with juicy burgers, the beer flows freely, and the TVs buzz with broadcasts of professional athletic and knitting competitions.
When you step into Boubouffe Grille, you can feel the Middle Eastern influence all around you, which is exactly what owner Wally Nasser wants. Floor-to-ceiling sliding glass doors open onto a relaxed outdoor patio, giving the space an open, airy feeling reminiscent of the Mediterranean seashore. On the walls, spotlighted vases in recessed shelves hark back to the antiquities of ancient Greece. Guests talk and laugh as they share mezze—small plates that originated centuries ago in Turkey—while playing tabletop soccer with falafel.
And the food is just as representative of the Mediterranean region as the decor. Diners can crisscross the Mediterranean Sea via stuffed north african peppers, lebanese grilled lamb chops with warm harissa, algerian chicken tagine, and traditional baklava. The eatery also serves classic breakfast dishes such as smoked-salmon-topped bagels and french toast with fresh fruit.
K.C Branaghan's menu puts burgers and sandwiches alongside five different boxty (Irish potato pancake) dishes and a hearty list of traditional Irish fayre, including fish and chips ($12.95), shepherd's pie ($12.95) and corned beef and cabbage ($13.95). To start, dig into a bowl of creamy house-made potato leek soup ($6.95 for a bowl) or a plate of Irish nachos, freshly made tortilla chips smothered with corned beef and melted cheese and topped with a jalapeño cream sauce with avocado ($10.95). Wrap mitts around a Stilton blue-cheese pub-burger ($11.95) before summoning a serving of the grilled Atlantic salmon topped with a raspberry-port coulis ($17.95). Branaghan’s special cottage pie is stuffed with vegetables and tender beef, slow-cooked with Guinness in rich brown gravy, and topped with mashed potatoes ($12.95). Pair your eats with a side of fresh homemade Irish brown- or soda-bread ($3.50), a glass of wine, or one of more than 12 draft beers.
Gallons of craft beer from the States and beyond flow from taps at Brix at the Shore. Always changing, the ales, stouts, and sakes efficiently slake thirst and inspire new and experienced beer fans alike to pair a glass with one of the deli-style specialties. Appetizers, including soft pretzels served with jalape?o-honey mustard, pave palates for the arrival of pizzas, deli sandwiches, and kobe- and Angus-beef burgers. The menu transports eaters to the East Coast?not just because it unfolds into a giant wind sail, but also because its dishes express a whimsical sense of New York City nostalgia. The Fuhgeddaboudit pastrami sandwich, The Mitzvah corned-beef sandwich, and the Verklempt?an Angus patty on challah with pastrami, swiss, and slaw?keep Big Apple cravers happy while firmly planted on Golden State soil.