In the 19th century, the North Shore’s salty breezes, rocky beaches, and elegant estates drew New York City’s elite out of their Manhattan apartments and into the captivating towns of what was to be called the Gold Coast. The remnants of this storied past still stand and the shore breezes still blow, as diners at Bliss Restaurant enjoy what Zagat deemed “creative American cuisine with a French twist”. Guests seated on the blooming outdoor patio swirl the ice in their seasonal cocktails, dine on baked brie and seared diver sea scallops, and listen to the melodic strumming of a live musician. Other menu items include pignoli-nut-crusted red snapper, half-roasted chicken with wild mushroom sauce, and banana and chipotle-braised short ribs, which can all be paired with sides such as chive and brie mashed potatoes or kielbasa and sauerkraut. Inside the restaurant, diners enjoy candle-lit tables with white table clothes and dark wood accents. It’s a contemporary ambiance that, like the Gold Coast, harkens back to a time of romance and refinement.
Tasty Crêpes's capable crepe craftsmen flip sweet and savory griddle cakes, artfully dressing them in delectable toppings that include local and sustainable fruits and vegetables. Strolling down a cafeteria-style line, patrons belly up to the serving counter to admire cooks as they sizzle traditional or whole-wheat batter on hot plates and then shout out specialty ingredients to customize their edible pouch. In honey-mustard crepes ($6.50), chicken, honey mustard, and herb crème shimmy through fluffy caverns, and chocolate brownies and bananas sweetly cohabitate inside the Brownie Passion crepe ($5.50). For satiating self-expression, diners can color a plain flour canvas ($3.99) with an assortment of cheese, meat, fruit, and nut toppings ($1 each). To wash tender morsels down hatches, nibblers can sip a 100% juice fruit smoothie—a much safer way to get your daily dosage of fruit than ransacking a still-life art class.
At The Brasserie, chef Patrick Jean captures a balance between gourmet and relaxed dining, reflected in a menu bearing delectable but unfussy European-bistro-inspired fare. Unlike the timid american burger, which cowers inside a bun under a blanket of cheese, the french burger ($9 for lunch, $10 for dinner) invites public scrutiny while showboating around in a cape of savory black pepper, white mushroom, or blue cheese sauce. Seafood dishes unite unlikely plate mates, such as the tilapia ($18.95 for dinner) festooned with mango, cilantro, and lemon sauce, resulting in a combination bolder than the font of an angry letter typed by a 12-year-old. The most important hybrid meal of the day, brunch fuels bellies with a array of midday munchables, such as pancakes ($7+), including banana, chocolate chip, and blueberry, eggs florentine ($10), or the brunch platter, which comes with a waffle, pancake, piece of french toast, and an omelet ($14).
Brasserie Persil emulates the classic French caf?: it has rich wood paneling, stone-inlaid floors, and a wide variety of traditional French food. Brunches of goat cheese and mushroom crepes or croquet monsieurs make way for elegant dinners of steak tartare, filet of sole meuniere, and beef bourgignon. Feel free to sip a French wine, beer, or espresso martini as you finish up a dessert or a doodle of yourself scaling the Eiffel Towers on your placemat.
A wood fire crackles in a stone hearth, the warm glow of the flames lighting the inside of a cozy Victorian house. Visitors might think they've stepped into a New England country inn, if it wasn't for the white-linen-swathed tables that populate the room—not to mention the aromas of French-inspired, New American cuisine that hang in the air. The genteel space serves as the dining room of Barney's Restaurant, the brainchild of Executive Chef Mitchell Hauser. He waxes Continental with succulent foie gras, goat-cheese-crusted filet mignon, and duck confit, while also paying homage to closer-to-home culinary motifs with crab cakes, crispy-skin salmon, and mussels from Prince Edward Island. Colorful and artistic platings bring each dish to life, but the presentation is not the only area in which Barney's goes the extra mile: Mitchell and his staff scour local markets for the freshest produce to work into their menu, ensuring that each dish pops with flavor and has a passing allegiance to the region's sports organizations.
"Treat folks special." That was the mantra of Country Kitchen's founder, Bill Johnson, a mere teenager with an eighth-grade education when he moved to Cincinnati in the 1930s. But by the end of that decade, both Bill and his aspirations had done a great deal of growing up. With some experience flipping burgers beneath his belt, Bill and a friend opened their own restaurant?Country Kitchen. It was the first time Bill could put his treat-folks-special philosophy into practice as he pleased.
Today, Country Kitchen no longer sells burgers for a nickel apiece. But Bill Johnson's legacy still lives on in friendly customer service at each of the restaurant's locations?they now span the country. And Bill's preference for simple, homestyle grub is still apparent in the menu: pancakes for breakfast, burgers and sandwiches for lunch (or supper), and country-fried steak or roast turkey for dinner.