Spur Gastropub

December 17th, 2009 by Lisa Murphy-Lamb

I am glad the temperature has risen and freed me from the bond I’ve developed with my oven over the past week. Happy to leave my filled cookie tins behind and step out into the sunshine I took a walk downtown. Admittedly though, it was just to trade one Christmas chore, baking, for another, shopping. Still, it was a glorious day to get out.

After a few hours of successfully checking off my to-do list, I was hungry. I’m not entirely sure if my hunger was owing from dodging the large numbers inside the shops or the necessary leaping over the shin-high slush puddles outdoors, but it was clear I needed to eat before my walk home. None of my trusty lunch-mates were available so I checked out Spur Gastropub on my own on the recommendation of a friend and because it was conveniently on my route.  After sliding into a secluded booth, I checked out the menu.

Out of habit, the drinks menu came first.  Wine selection is limited, shadowed by the more interesting Caesar list.  About a half a dozen tomato and clamato-based drinks are offered like the Cowboy Jack which replaces the vodka with Jack Daniels or the Dirty Vegas which comes with Jose Cuervo (well not the Jose Cuervo, I don’t think).  Another time, I thought, so I flipped the menu over to the food side.  The appetizers were the most appealing to me.  Bison Dry Ribs with napa slaw (13.9), a pint ‘o prawns with wasabi cocktail sauce (15) and lobster mac and cheese (15.5) all looked good but I wasn’t looking for a heavy appetizer this close to Christmas.  I was just looking for something to quiet my stomach and give me the strength to conquer a few more blocks of curbside puddles.

There are your standard salads (garden, caesar, cobb) and sandwiches (clubhouse, burger, turkey and steak) ranging in price from 12.8-23.6.  Plus there is a December feature menu which offers a grilled chicken and grilled beef dish both as more substantial meals with more substantial prices (25 &38).  I settled on the most unique of the salads, the Spinach and Beet salad with candied walnuts, bacon, goat cheese and honey flax vinagrette.

With that settled, I took a look around and realized I was the only female dining or drinking in eyeshot.  It was rather full and rather male and the waitresses tops are rather low.  The decor is dark and stylish and there are two TVs over the bar, both which were playing sports.

So what is a gastropub?  Hailing from London, England it is neither pub nor restaurant but a hybrid of both.  A place for food and drink but where the food is to be elevated above typical pub fare. So how was my salad?  I love spinach, which is good because there was plenty of it.  Sadly there was probably no more than half of a beet thinly sliced and very little goat cheese and bacon.  But what I really missed was the dressing.

I had hoped to eat something light because it is so close to Christmas.  I chose well (perhaps a little too well).  But I was nourished and ready to conquer the puddles and soak up the sunshine for the remainder of my walk home so I guess I can’t complain.

351 4th street SW


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