Brave Horse Tavern
As we walked in to Brave Horse Tavern it was hard to miss the enormous menu on the wall. It looked almost like a magnetic wall with mangnet letters to form the menu? Not sure. Even people with really bad eyes will be able read this menu!
You can either order your food to go at the entrance or you can seat yourself in the tavern somewhere if you are 21+. Sorry youngsters, you will have to get your food to go! There is everything from two person bar tables to long ten person communal tables. The four of us found a spot at one of the tables towards the front.
The lighting at night is extremely dim, so dim it's even difficult to see the food. Bummer, no pics this time! The crowd on a Friday night was older, I would say 30+, which seemed appropriate for the venue. We ordered our drinks and food fairly soon after we were seated.
I started with a Hot Monkey - Hot Monkey Vodka, Lemon, muddled bell peppers. The server commented that it sounded like some kind of bedroom activity! Ha ha! I wasn't sure what to expect, it sounded kind of strange... So turns out Hot Monkey Vodka actually is hot! It's vodka infused with hot peppers. The Hot Monkey at Brave Horse Tavern is served in a martini glass and kind of tastes like a Bloody Mary, without tomato - It's spicy, and a little sour, with the freshness of the bell peppers. Interesting. It was a little strange, but good. The drink went really well with the food!
I ordered a Pretzel with Little Smoked Porkies and Mustard BBQ ($9). First the pretel was fantastic! It was hearty, with a smooth slick exterior and a soft and chewy inside. Goodbye Auntie Anne's! The Little Smoked Porkies were served on the side in a small cast iron dish, swimming in the mustard BBQ sauce. The smokies were soooo good!!! The mustard BBQ sauce was spicy and sweet and had tons of finely sliced onion, it was so good for dipping the pretzel, the cheese curds, the fries, anything in to!
My friend had the Pretzel with Theo Chocolate and Toasted Hazelnut ($9) - So this essentially was one of the pretzels ($4 for just a pretzel) and a little shot glass sized cup of fancy Nutella. I was surprised that this one and the one I ordered were the same price. The chocolate dip was good, worth $5? I don't know...
My SO had a burger and fries - the burger was really good! Palace Burger Royale good? Not even close, but it was a great burger. You can choose your toppings, everything from Cheddar Cheeese and Bacon to Avocado and Corn Fried Pasilla Chiles. Even Oxtail Marmalade. There are soo many choices. There's a vegetarian burger, chicken fried turkey and even seared Ahi!
The fries are fabulous - they are the same recipe that is served at Palace Kitchen and Etta's... So glad they stayed consistent! These are my favorite fries anywhere. I have yet to find better!
We shared the Fried Cheese Curds ($9) - these were really good, but heavy, definitely for sharing! They tasted like Beecher's, but I am not sure if they are. They are super crispy on the outside and soft and gooey inside. The Cheese Curds are served with a sour cream dip. They were actually better dipped in the mustard BBQ.
There were a few delayed/forgotten items, and we were charged for additional stuff, but our server fixed all of it, no biggie. It was opening weekend, so I expected a few mistakes. Overall service was great, the food was even greater and the ambiance is fun, maybe a little mature. This is not the kind of place you would find drunken idiots falling over themselves, and that's a good thing!! We will definitely be back soon, maybe even again this weekend!
Brave Horse Tavern
South Lake Union
301 Terry Ave N
Seattle, WA 98109
Hours: 11:00am - midnight
I also love Tom Douglas's cookbooks for inspiration and recipes for some of the famous dishes are even available in the books! I've provided links to the ones I own below...