Gleeful At Memphis Taproom
Elisa Ludwig drinks and dines at the Memphis Taproom and certainly has a better time of it than Adam Erace of Philadelphia Weekly.
Chef Jesse Kimball (of Matyson and Lacroix) has crafted a smart day-to-night menu that distinguishes his kitchen without overshadowing the liquid refreshments. Indeed, if there’s a theme to the cuisine, it’s how to incorporate beer into as many menu items as possible.
In the house version of Cornish meat pies (“PAs-ties have tassles. We serve pAH-sties,” our server says. “I have to make the joke so no one else does”), starter-sized, coarse salt-crusted pockets of golden flaky dough are filled with shredded Belgian beer-braised beef, then set over a slather of creamy horseradish-dill sauce. Beer brines hot wings and brightens hummus. Mixed with a little oil, it makes a delicate vinaigrette for the house green salad. Malty Old Peculier ale is swirled into molten cheddar for the “King Rarebit” sandwich; the tangy fondue is layered with sunny-side-up eggs between two thick slices of grilled Texas toast. At weekend brunch, a rotating wheat beer even replaces champagne in the house mimosa. Recently, it was TrÃ¶egs DreamWeaver, the cloudy ale’s banana perfume playing nicely to the orange juice. Ingenious.