Sunday, August 23, 2015
White Horse Tavern, Newport RI
You'd be dining with Chef Rich Silvia in THE most historic food setting in the United States, the very essence of 17th Century American architecture and the oldest restaurant in the country, one of the top eight oldest in the world. Lots of well-known people have dined here, from historical figures to movie stars. It is White Horse Tavern in Newport, Rhode Island, established in 1673 and still operating in the very same location.
Just to know you are dining at an epicenter of colonial life in New England is fascinating but the food is also excellent. We began our recent meal, guests of the restaurant, with the Strawberry Gazpacho, cooling and sweetish and a great start we highly recommend.
The Tuna Tartare was above and beyond the others we tried in Newport on our recent dining tour of this famed city, a fresh, tasty plate.
Excellent, as well, was the Beet Salad, a different presentation of the classic salad dish and bursting with layers of fresh flavor.
Greg opted for the Beef Wellington, the, again, classic dish with a thin layer of foie gras paté and wrapped in a perfect puff pastry, the beef tender and satisfying. Many times the portion of this dish is daunting but this one was just right.
My Lobster Risotto was also exemplary. Nice chunks of fresh lobster in a buttery-rich, creamy bed of arborio rice.
Dean's Ribeye was slathered in a delicious herb sauce, medium rare melt-in-your-mouth goodness.
And then there was dessert. The Chocolate Indulgence is a mix of white and dark chocolate, dense and flavorful, not overly heavy and just beautiful on the plate.
The stunner, however, was the not-to-be-missed Root Beer Float made with currently highly popular Not Your Father's Root Beer and finished with a hefty slab of bacon. We had planned to make our own root beer floats using this product but I guess Chef Silvia beat us to the idea! Needless to say it's a fantastic confection to end your feast.
Although the structure is old the menu is clearly farm-to-table, upscale American fare with some elegant twists. The myriad of excellent local ingredients and sources is listed on the menu. The wine list is impressive and the space has none of the kitschy, touristy feel one might expect. Service was totally professional, informative and fun. It's simply legendary dining suited perfectly to a special occasion, a real stunning example of dining in Newport. We give this a big thumbs up and strongly suggest making reservations in advance.
The White Horse Tavern
26 Marlborough Street
Newport, RI 02840
Here's a great, brand new video capturing the experience you will have at the Tavern and featuring some of the very dishes we enjoyed: White Horse Tavern.