Dragonfly Artisan Tea Cottage’s tearoom wouldn’t be out of place in a Victorian dollhouse: delicate fine china teapots, fresh flowers, and doilies dot lace-covered pink tablecloths. Vines creep up mint-green walls and heavy wooden columns, and sunlight pours through picture windows. This ultra-dainty tearoom is ideal for afternoons spent sipping black, green, and herbal teas and nibbling freshly baked scones and finger sandwiches. It also serves up heartier housemade dishes that often feature organic, local ingredients, including vegetarian black-bean burgers and gluten-free fig, spinach, and gorgonzola pizzas.
In addition to hosting daily tea parties, Dragonfly Artisan Tea Cottage serves as a welcoming community hub where acoustic musicians gather to serenade patrons. Local artists display jewelry and paintings in the front room and, on some evenings, even attract craftsters and lost kittens by teaching knitting classes on the front porch.
Jasmine's culinary crew wrangles traditional Eastern ingredients and fresh cuts of seafood to masterfully craft decadent sushi and authentic Japanese and Thai cuisine. A master sushi chef draws on 25 years of experience to create a hodgepodge of sushi delights, such as mixed maki rolls ($12.95 for 18 pieces) or a Chirashi-sushi feast ($19), which tucks celebrated sea treats into a bed of rice after humming a lullaby about Herman Melville’s goldfish muse. Bowls of udon or soba noodles ($9.95 each) arrive festooned with golden pieces of tempura to engulf tongue buds with flash-fried glory, and more than 25 Japanese dinner entrees—such as tender hibachi steak ($16.95) and chicken teriyaki ($12.95)—subdue appetites with a headlock of sustenance. Thai spices infuse a lineup of 50 traditional entrees, such as red-curry chicken or pork ($12.99), which surround succulent proteins in a pentagon of flavors including coconut milk, bamboo shoots, green beans, and lime and basil leaves.
Ski's provides a flavorful foray into authentic, Polish-American edible delights with a variety of hearty comfort food. Feel free to solicit the culinary advice of the friendly servers as you scan the menu. The golden-brown sauerkraut balls ($5.99, lunch) are deep-fried concoctions of diced ham and sweet and sour cabbage that create an accordion concerto in your digestive music hall and act as a delectable lead-in to the Chicken a la Ski Bake ($8.99 lunch, $10.99 dinner) and its cheese and cream flow atop mashed potatoes, vegetables, and chicken. Sample the family-recipe potato pancakes ($5.99 lunch, $7.99 dinner) or colonize a mound of mashed potatoes and gravy with a juicy kielbasa sausage ($7.99 lunch, $11.99 dinner).
The culinary wizards at Sidelines cook up hearty helpings of pub grub that patrons can discover on the extensive menu. Limber chomping muscles for a marathon meal with starters such as zesty battered and fried pub pickles ($5.79) or garbage fries, a savory mélange of bacon, tomatoes, and jalapenos lounging atop a bed of waffle fries and blanketed in melted mozzarella and cheddar cheeses ($7.59). The selection of five pizzas allows diners to indulge their craving for a disk without having to endure the gamey texture of a frisbee. Table visitors can also wrap tongues around the Porkzilla sandwich, staffed by grilled ham, slow-cooked pulled pork, and bacon ($8.99), or munch on the Knock-Out burger, a bunless wonder that packs the space between two grilled cheese sandwiches with bacon and a half-pound steak burger patty ($9.79). Feel free to lubricate a parched palate by sipping one of the beers cascading from the Sidelines tap, such as Labatt, Killian's, and Blue Moon.
Quimby's dinner menu is stuffed with more upscale American fare than Abe Lincoln’s top hat was stuffed with money. Meaty morsels include an 8 oz. herb-encrusted filet mignon ($19.99), a rib dinner ($12.99 for a half rack), and The Delmonico, a 14 oz. center-cut rib-eye steak topped with onion straws ($15.99). Pasta, seafood, gourmet burgers, and a selection of eclectic home-style eats (such as jambalaya, $10.99, and Italian meatloaf, $9.99) round out the selection. Treat your sweet tooth to homemade crème brûlée ($5.99), and you’ll hear it serenading incisors with John Fogerty lyrics. Enjoyment of Quimby's delectable eats and comfortable, neighborhoody atmosphere is amplified by [weekend musical performances] (http://quimbysfoodandspirits.com/currentevents.htm).
With its jovial atmosphere, spice-laden food, and endless drafts, Jed's Barbeque & Brew makes it easy to please a crowd. Their menu spotlights burgers, steaks, and pizza, but perhaps no Jed's dish has cultivated its own reputation quite the way their Fireballs have. The cooks hand-cut chunks of chicken, and then bread and fry them to tender perfection before slathering them in fiery flavor combinations. Though they coat some in just sauce, like zesty garlic, Jed's, or Superfly honey barbecue, Fireball specialties feature toppings, such as Fungus Balls' mushrooms four-cheese blend. And they deck Phillyballs in onions, peppers, mushrooms, mozzarella, and American pride.
Though the Fireballs pack a spicy punch, the bartenders mix drinks and serve drafts to cool off tongues. And their atmosphere is just as lively as their food. Diners can catch the game inside or start a game of their own thanks to the patio's sand volleyball court and full bar.