Sometimes you know when you arrive at a new place you feel almost pre-destined to like it. Just like the plating of your food is important to your enjoyment, a restaurant has to set the right mood from the moment you enter. This month’s restaurant is right out of gastropub central casting. It’s in a refurbished historical space with sophisticated (yet classic) food, some of the best cocktails you’ll find.
Location: Redwood City, California, about a half hour drive South of San Francisco in Silicon Valley.
Style of Food: Contemporary spin on traditional Scottish pub fare using seasonal ingredients.
Chef: Michael Dotson: “We have a Chef-driven menu which highlights the best of the season — local and fresh. We serve a contemporary interpretation on classic European techniques and recipes while paying an homage to history. My cooking is driven by the many cultures which in turn have influenced the cuisine of modern Europe, as well as the beautiful ingredients that Northern California has to offer.”
Must-Have-Dishes: Scottish Eggs off the Pub Snacks menu — Quail egg, battered and fried. ‘Nuff said. You will need a cholesterol test the next day, as you will not be able to stop at only one order. While the menu changes often, two staple items are the Ale Battered Fish & Chips and the Prather Ranch Organic Beef Burger.
Must-Have Drink: Martins is on the short-list of must visit places in Silicon Valley for those who love good cocktails. Their Moscow Mule is a local favorite, but trust me you will not go wrong with any of their signature drinks, such as a Pimm’s Punch or Lone Wolf…of course, you may find it difficult to make it past the perfectly poured pint of Guinness on tap.
Must-Have-Server: You can always find co-owner Moira Beveridge out front with a smile. Her career in the restaurant business is on full display, even if she hides her diploma from the California Culinary Academy and her recently awarded sommelier pin.
Seat-to-Request: Grab one of the tall bar tables in the front of the house and enjoy the sophisticated bar vibe.
More Information: www.martinswestgp.com
Bonus: Martins is located in the historic Alhambra Theater, which first opened in 1896 — don’t worry, the team completely refinished the wood and brick interior, keeping the best of the old and pairing it with modern amenities. They used only reclaimed materials, reflecting their strong commitment to sustainability.
Filed Under: Food & Wine