Monday, July 09, 2012

Happy Hour and Dinner c/o Square Peg

At some point in the last few months I became aware of a new restaurant in Philly: Square Peg. I took a look at the menu and saw a few different things I found compelling. I was even more interested when I realized the executive chef was the same as the defunct Adsum, as I had enjoyed the fried chicken brunch very much last year. So I suggested to some folks that we check it out. BC and AS were down, so a reservation was made. Now on the actual day in question I got antsy. The reservation was at 6:30, but I had gotten out of work early and was ready for a drink and conversation. So I texted the ladies and suggested a slightly earlier meet-up at the bar to try out their happy hour deals. AS and I met up first. I ordered one of the drink specials, the John Daly: Rasperry Iced Tea, Lemon, Bourbon and Torn Mint. I can't say that I loved it. It was just a little too sweet for me. AS was similarly ambivalent about the Midtown Collins that she tried. We were far less ambivalent and far more enthusiastic about the deviled egg sampler that was also a happy hour special. I was particularly taken with the caviar version and would, if I were to return, inquire into having a plate of just that variety. After our first round of cocktails we switched to the happy hour white wine, which was far more to our taste. Then BC arrived and we chatted a bit more before settling our tabs and moving upstairs for dinner. The restaurant's space is interesting, lots of wood and light. A little cacophonous as far as acoustics, but not overwhelmingly so.
So then we had to get down to the decisions of the main meal. I expressed interest in the fried chicken tacos, the fried chicken entree and the meatball sub. In the end BC also had some interest in the tacos, so we ordered them as an appetizer. And they were the biggest hit of the night. The chicken morsels were tender and moist, but also crispy and had a nice sauce going on.
AS chose the poutine after checking that it did, in fact, have cheese curds. It was, as poutine often is, not the most attractive of dishes but not unsavory or untasty.
BC ordered the Mini Mayflower sandwich, which was actually three slider-sized sandwiches with roast turkey, sweet potato/marshmellow, stuffing, cranberry sauce served with a side of gravy.

For my main meal I went with the meatball sub. I was initially drawn to the idea of goat cheese, which was listed as an ingredient on the menu, but the server said that had been replaced with ricotta. I went ahead nonetheless. The meatballs were good, the sauce nice if not particularly memorable. I liked the inclusion of arugula to give it a little bite, but I would have thought that goat cheese would have been a better final note instead of the rather bland ricotta that stuck to the bun more than the balls.
It was a lovely meal with great ladies. While we didn't have any major gripes, we all felt like the prices were just a little too high for the actual food. My recommendation would be to come for happy hour and tacos but perhaps skip a whole meal. That said, I'd still be interested in trying the fried chicken and the idea of a cheese steak pot pie is also quite intriguing.

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