Thursday, April 14, 2011

Queen Vic Pub + Kitchen (Upper Kirby)

I read of a new pub called Queen Vic Pub + Kitchen (same owners as Oporto) and put it down in my to do list some time ago but just never got around to it.  Recently, I ran into a friend named Charlie at Sonoma, who mentions the pub, bringing it to the top of my list.  He didn't say much about the place, just that he was there a few days ago.  Men!  They're just not descriptive at all.  So today, I'm coordinating with Ryan on a new place to visit and though I didn't think Queen Vic would be the coolest place, I more or less just considered it an option because it was new and not too expensive.  I called my girlfriend Syndi who had nothing but great things to say, so that was it! That was where we were heading.

While parking, immediately, I can tell I'm going to like the place.  There is valet, but I chose to park the next block down and really enjoyed my walk in. The most beautiful oak trees are set up around the pub.  I walk in and my first thought was wow!  Definitely not what I was expecting.  It was a combination of vintage and traditional.  Dark colors, perfectly lit recessed lighting, lots of people, and just great atmosphere.  I got there about 7pm and it was pretty busy.  It did start to die down in a couple of hours, which was much better, calm atmosphere.  They have 14 beers on tap, that I've not heard of, mostly, ie. "Bombshell Blonde".  But then again, I'm not a beer connoisseur.

It takes a little while to order as they're super busy.  We take notice of all the liquor they have.  An entire shelf designated to the good stuff, cognac, whiskey, etc.  They have the regular stuff, but the top shelves were very unfamiliar liquors.

I'm just taking notice of the decor, which I love.  I think this is my new favorite place!  Ryan says he's surprised I liked it so much because he doesn't figure me for trendy.  I like trendy if it's got a really nice atmosphere.  But still, I didn't think QV was trendy, more vintage trendy and I love vintage decor.  It is fairly small, not as small as Oporto, but it's super cozy.  I really really like the decor and atmosphere.  Great for small groups or groups of two.

It's just so cute and perfect.  It's cozy, just big enough.  A little more crowded than I like my hangouts to be, but it was a really diverse crowd.  I want to say the median age was probably 40s.  Business crowd, mostly.

The wine by the glass selections were pretty minimal.  It looked like they had maybe 7 or so to choose from for all Reds.  I ordered the 2007, Rule, Cab, which I really liked for it's full body, dryness, and wasn't bitter.  Ryan liked it too so he ordered one after his beer.  His third round he got the Bombshell Blonde, which I thought was good.  It was light and had a fairly clean finish.  Between the alcohol, liquor, wine, beer there are tons of selections.

I thought it was photo worthy to shoot the fact that their menu had a curry section.  Then we realized the connection between British and India, ahhhh.  The gm says they get a lot of Indians because of the food.  I look over and there is one big table of Indians.  I just think that's so cool, how their cultures are so mixed.

We got the only pizza they had on the menu.  The mix of cheese and basil and just enough sauce was nice, not too much.  The crust was so good.

Ryan didn't like the pizza so much, he thought it was ok.  He thinks Kenneally's Pub's pizza is much much better.  Kenneally's pizza is good for sure, but I like QV better for the overall experience, and since I'm more about overall experience.

We also got the short rib samosas.  Pretty good, but at the end of the day it is bar food.

For dessert we got the Triffle, I think it was called.  Doesn't it look so grocery store?  I kind of liked it.  It's basically super light whipped cream, strawberries and spongecake with sprinkles on top.  I thought the top part of it was really good because of the distribution of cream and strawberries and it tasted light.  Once you get to the bottom it's pretty dry because of the lack of whip cream.

My overall experience was really great.  I really liked Queen Vic's if you couldn't already tell from me stating it so often.  For the atmosphere mostly.  It's a really fun environment, really pretty to look at and gives me happy vibes.  It's a little busier than I like my hangouts, but the food, the environment, wine and spirits selections are pretty good.  We chatted with the gm, he's really nice and friendly.  A lot of my photos didn't come out very good because of the lack of flash.  He gave me his card and said he'd send me some photos.  That's so nice of him.  Seriously, this is my new favorite wine bar for 2011!  Go check it out!

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