Elegant Edibles at 1149 Restaurant

11491149 Restaurant sure knows how to please the masses. It’s one of those places that always seems to be packed. They even have police officers directing traffic in and out of their busy parking lot on the weekends. With that kind of turnout, they obviously must be doing something right, so we decided to check out this popular hot spot for ourselves. We visited on a Friday around 5pm and their enormous bar was already bustling with after-work business professionals and a hip, lively weekend crowd. Whether sipping martinis or munching on some appetizers, it’s the perfect balance of casual meets upscale. And that same vibe flows into the dining room as well.

Surrounded by elegant decor, black leather booths and white table cloths, their modern interior is both simple and stylish. Judging on appearance, you might expect their prices to fall into the $$$$ category. Instead, their diverse menu offers everything from pub grub to raw bar, and build-your-own burgers to 28-day aged flat-irons…all at very reasonable prices. No matter what you are in the mood for, 1149 restaurant is sure to have it available.

BBQ Pork Tacos w/ Goat Cheese

These delicious tacos were overflowing with shredded pork and the BBQ sauce was both sweet and tangy. In fact, it tasted extremely similar to Sweet Baby Rays (suspecting they may have used this). The tart, whipped goat cheese was an awesome touch and really added a punch to each bite. The pineapple salsa was a bit tame and didn’t add any extra spiciness to the dish. Overall, definitely worth ordering this as an appetizer with a beer at the bar.

Spinach & Artichoke Dip

We were really looking forward to this appetizer but it just fell short. This might be hard to believe, but there wasn’t much spinach and artichoke. In fact, there so was much gooey, oily cheese, it tasted like some sort of veggie queso dip. The only saving grace were the chunks of artichoke at the bottom of the dip, but not even those succulent cuts of artichoke could save this appetizer.

RI Plum Point Oysters on the half shell

We ordered a half-dozen and immediately scarfed them down. Fresh, crisp and a slight hint of seawater made these oysters irresistable. However, for the $2.75 price tag, these oysters could have been a bit plumper in size.

Kobe Beef Burger 

Sometimes, no matter where you’re going to eat, there’s an inner urge to order a cheeseburger. And that’s just what we did. The Kobe beef patty was cooked to order and the “build-your-own” option allows you to get the creative juices flowing. Our advice? Throw a fried duck egg on it!

Braised Lamb Shank

This caveman style cut of lamb was braised overnight, making it more tender and juicy than you can possibly imagine. It fell right off the bone without even touching a fork or knife. Served over toasted orzo and roasted tomato jus, it had a combination of sweet and spicy flavors which paired well with the lamb. Highly recommended!

Sweet Potato and Carrot Mash

This side tasted both seasonal and comforting, but the ratio of carrots to sweet potatoes seemed off. The carrots were much more prominent. We also felt this side was under-seasoned and left us wishing we ordered the mac & cheese or sautéed spinach instead.

Hazelnut Flourless Cake with Brown Sugar and Bacon Flavored Ice Cream.

We have to admit, up until this point, we’ve never really understood the infatuation with adding bacon to dessert. We’ve tried it before and it was always kind of….weird. But this time was different. The bacon was used sparingly to create a touch of savoriness which you’ll taste towards the end of the bite. As soon as the sweetness from the cake and brown sugar ice cream escaped, the flavor of bacon quickly came and left. It did not linger or overpower the other ingredients. It was balanced. Bacon in dessert does work!

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