Some classic combos never grow tired, like the fat dude/skinny sidekick formula that produced comic genius from Laurel & Hardy, Farley & Spade, and Siskel & Ebert. For the timeless combo of great beer and great food, check out Essex Public House
Opening Thursday, Essex is a casual gastropub laser-focused on its menu and beer list, with two distinct interior sections designed by the Kitchen 24 dude: a patio-looking entrance room w/ red-brick floor, exposed-duct ceiling, and two monstrous chalkboards w/ food and drink menus, while further inside's an oak-topped, wrought-iron-bottomed bar, surrounded by high-top black leather banquettes and mismatched light fixtures -- so, much like your grandparents house, without the sneaking suspicion a Life Alert commercial is about to go down. Food's from a former Asia De Cuba chef, and spans all sorts of gourmetness: "Figs in a Blanket" w/ La Quercia prosciutto & goat cheese fondue; yam gnocchi w/ smoked duck confit, pea tendrils, and hazelnut sauce; and chicken and biscuits w/ sweet English peas & natural gravy, which will taste delicious on your beloved roll, Bun-derboy. Brew's from the ubiquitous "Beer Chick" (The Library Bar, Father's Office, etc), who put together a 50+ list including specialty draughts like Lost Coast Raspberry Wheat, Bruery Black Orchid, and Alesmith Nautical Nut Brown, bottles like Green Flash Le Freak Belgian IPA, Chimay Blue, and Hitachino Nest White Ale, and even hard-to-find and vintage bottles like the dense, dark Harviestoun OLA Dubh, which was aged in a whiskey barrel for at least 30 years, so its liver's probably doing worse than yours
They're only open for dinner now, but lunch hours'll come later this month. In other planned changes, the small patio's currently smoking-only, though they're hoping to secure permits for drinking out there too, guaranteeing another classic combo: stocking up on liquid courage before you bat your eyes winsomely for a cigarette.