Following Bridge Road for Restaurant Week
By Danny Forinash
Alarm. “You’d better bet I’m gonna Get Found!”
Snooze. Get ready. Head downtown. “Good morning to you!” Puddle.
I’ve had a week full of experiences in Charleston, WV – Day 1 … Day 2 … Day 3 … Day 4 … Day 5
– but I keep waking up to the same date. No matter how I switch routines, the day begins the same.
Might as well try something new, though.
So this morning, I rented a car and drove to South Hills. Bridge Road was one of the areas I’d not visited.
Nestled in the midst of winding roads, hills and neighborhoods are the Bridge Road Shops. There, I discovered Sarah’s Bakery, which houses a mouthwatering array of pastries. Eclairs, quiches, cakes, cookies. Even chicken pot pie.
Sarah’s creations are variable, but the constant is awesomeness. For breakfast, I enjoyed a blueberry muffin speckled with sugar, along with a spinach and feta scone and coffee.
The Bridge Road Shops dot both sides of the charming street. You can easily spend a full day there and find a wide selection of boutiques and eateries. From Eggplant, to Geranium’s, to Petit Jewelry, to Yarid’s Shoes, to Kelley’s on Bridge – these stores offer high-quality items and a plethora of selections unique to the area. You can find a full list at bridgeroad.org.
Bridge Road’s restaurants, I’d heard, are excellent. I picked Wheelhouse for lunch. This local favorite has something of a nautical theme and offers fast, sit-down service. The Anchor – which is grilled chicken on a ciabatta roll with provolone, tomato and mayo – is outstanding.
Three other locations were on my radar – Bridge Road Bistro, South Hills Market and Lola’s. I’d read stories about all three and wanted to try at least one.
I’d let the alphabet make my decision.
After a few hours of perusing and sightseeing, I sat down at the Bistro, which has a cozy, loungey, elegant personality. Booths and tables separate the kitchen and sleek bar area, which regularly hosts live music. And it’s a Restaurant Week spot – three courses, $30.
My appetizer choice was French onion soup with crouton and Swiss cheese. Sounds simple enough, but I hadn’t tasted French onion soup quite like this. It’s superb.
For the entrée, I could’ve gone with the braised short ribs over parmesan polenta.
As in bacon-wrapped pork medallions with whipped potatoes, haricot verts and toasted almonds, along with a huckleberry demi glace. They had me at “bacon,” obviously, but the whole creation was fantastic.
And for dessert, crème caramel with fresh berries. Thumbs up!
I could really get used to CWV – and getting used to it was becoming a necessity. But how would I break out of this day? After all, I’d like to experience Charleston’s other seasons.
I shifted lodging again. I’m now staying at the Brass Pineapple Inn, a relaxing and quiet bed & breakfast on the East End.
Maybe this change will do the trick. I kind of doubt it, though.
Check out Part 7 tomorrow. In other words, I’ll be posting again today.
… Hey. Wouldn’t Groundhog Day be approaching?