Last week we finally got out to try Avenues Proper & Publick House – which I have been meaning to dine at for some time. We went with a few of our close friends and were ready to try just about anything. On a Thursday night, the restaurant was pretty mellow, inviting, and warm. We were also happy to see that our good friend, Jackie, was serving us – which made our experience pretty great. If you head to Avenues Proper – make sure to see if she is working. You won’t be disappointed with her great service.
Avenues Proper was opened by brothers Rio and Liam Connelly, and partner Andrew Tendick. Liam serves as the Executive Chef and was previously the chef at Niche and Meditrina. He also owned and operated Eatery 1025 in Bountiful. Rio, Avenue’s brew master, helped opened Epic Brewery. Andrew has roots in the biz as well, having worked the Moab restaurant and coffee circuit; he now serves as the front-of-house boss at Avenues Proper. Between the three of them, they have an extensive amount of expertise in food, beverage, and customer service. And I hear they have a lot of fun doing it.
The Avenues Proper menu has both an interesting and wide selection of small plates and entrèes, so we shared everything at the table.
We started off with a few “bites” – the duck fat popcorn and pale ale potato chips ($3 each). Both were great for munching while we looked over the rest of the menu. The duck fat popcorn was pretty tasty and very original and the chips were delicious and salty.
Next up was a few items off the small plates menu. The Shellfish Frites ($14) was a delicious concoction of mussels in an amazing red curry broth with lemon grass, and came with a side of thin-cut fries. The broth was really outstanding. We also ordered the Fish Sticks ($8); these ain’t your frozen fish sticks, friends. The lightly breaded cod was flaky and delicious and the tartar sauce was light. We also ordered the Pork Belly ($9) served with peaches and chili emulsion. The peaches and sauce were great and the pork belly had nice flavor, although we did find it just a little more chewy than we were expecting. However, all three of these small plates were tasty and different.
Next came some lager plates. We ordered the Gnocchi (herbed gnocchi, ginger-sweet potato sauce, winter greens $16) (because when do I NOT order gnocchi if it is available?), the Lamb (braised Morgan Valley lamb, root vegetables, cabbage, jus $19), and a special of the evening which was Salmon on a bed of barley, squash, and greens. While everyone enjoyed each dish, I especially liked the flavors in the Gnocchi. Also, the texture of the Gnocchi was great – not too gummy. The lamb was interesting – instead of being a specific cut of lamb, it appeared to have been shredded and then put into a kind of patty. It was really unique and the flavor was great – but there did seem to be some dry spots. The salmon was cooked perfectly and we all loved it!
But let me talk about my favorite part of the night. It was when this amazing dessert came to our table and made me the happiest girl ever. Buttermilk and goat cheese cake with beet ice cream. People – it blew my mind. If you don’t like goat cheese (you are crazy, but ok) then skip this one – there is quite a bit of tang and tartness from the goat cheese itself. However, the heaviness of the buttermilk really evens things out. And let me tell you about this beet ice cream – it was heavenly. This was a perfect dessert and I want to eat it every day. We also had a chocolate cake with meringue crisps which was also delicious, but honestly, the goat cheese cake was out of this world. Go and eat it. Now.
Now, since I am pregnant and currently not partaking of alcohol (le sigh), I had to take everyone’s word on the brews. Since Avenues Proper is also a brewery, they offer some tasty beverages. From what I have heard, the beers are bold and flavorful! Here is a quick list of their current selection via their website. I could really go for one of those Skittlebraus – that sounds incredible!
Proper Beer – English Golden Ale
Oatmeal Red – Irish Red Ale
Benches Brown – Belgian Table Beer
Sam Dogger Lager – Zwickel Helles Lager
Skittlebrau – Strawberry/Plum Saison
Hopspital IPA – American Session IPA
Patersbier – Belgian Single
We had a great time at Avenues Proper and Publick House. Not everyone was blown away by every dish – but the food was all unique, interesting, and flavorful. The service was fast and attentive. The atmosphere was cozy and sophisticated. Also, the prices were very reasonable, which is always appreciated. We will be back – I can’t wait to try their Sunday brunch!
Find Avenues Proper at 376 8th Avenue.
Also, thanks to these two for fantastic company! They both gave their thumbs up!
And, you know, we liked it too.