Wednesday, August 15, 2007

The Wood-n-Tap

Mandy and I met my Mom, sister, and brother for dinner at the Wood-n-Tap in Farmington last night. Before you get too far into this review, this place isn't exactly a beer destination, so continue at your own risk.

The Wood-n-Tap has two locations: Hartford, the original, and Farmington (and after looking at their website it looks like they opened one in Rocky Hill and's really becoming a chain now, I guess). Both places are very similar, though I'd say the Hartford location has a more traditional English-pub feel too it...darker and more ambient. The atmosphere in Farmington is very comfortable with a lot of dark wood and tasteful decorations. It has a bar area to your right as you walk in with plenty of large TVs and tables to sit at. We generally stick to the restaurant area in front of you as you walk in. There is also a very nice outdoor seating area looking out onto a little lake/pond.

The food is very good. They have a special summer menu full of seafood and fish, the steamers are tasty and fresh. Their regular menu is full of your standard American pub food, but it's done very well...especially the burgers. The sweet-potato fries are extremely good, probably the best I've had. Service is generally very good. Last night our server was exceedingly pleasant, but made a few mistakes. I guess if you're going to make mistakes, at least be pleasant.

Now to the disappointing part of an establishment called the "Wood-n-Tap," the beer. I guess it has an above-average selection, especially for this part of the state. Unfortunately, there's nothing to really excite a beer-geek. I'm glad they have at least one local (Olde Burnside's Ten Penny Ale), although they could obviously do more. I had a Ten Penny, which seemed in OK shape. Mandy ordered a Harpoon IPA, which tasted a little off. There seemed to be a sharp sulfur quality to it. We asked to replace it with a Ten Penny, which the server had no problem doing, but we came back with another full pint of Harpoon. WTF? He left before we noticed and Mandy just decided to drink it because it wasn't nasty, just a little off.

Overall, the Wood-n-Tap is a step up from the chain restaurants that pervade this area. The food is definitely a huge step up. Unfortunately, they don't live up to their vast potential in the beer area and as such, we'll probably only eat there when meeting my parents.

No comments: