~Review by Chuck Bradley
The interior is decorated in warm inviting tones and with furniture rescued from previous uses, beautifully refurbished, restored and coordinated. Ingeniously modular partitions afford a measure of separation/privacy for parties of varying sizes. The place combines an upscale flavor with family friendliness. I found the acoustics a little lacking, but they would not, I’m sure, be a problem for someone with normal hearing.
There’s a cozy bar ensconced in the rear of the landmark building where they have fun with capricious flights of fancy such as “Crossing Bell Drink Specials”. Evidently the train schedules are random, so you never know when the bell will ring! It has a pleasant atmosphere conducive to fun and good times.
We were promptly seated. Carol (she who must be obeyed) upon discovering they were out of Braised Oregon Lamb Shanks, ordered Spiral Pasta & Clams (A generous portion of tender and tiny butter clams in a light rustic marinara, finished with a touch of cream & gremolata all on a bed of plump pasta.). We started with an appetizer of Pan Fried Oysters with green goddess & lemon aioli. I’ve noticed that often large oysters equate to strong tasting oysters. Not tonight. They were delicious! I had Catfish in Parchment, a first for me. The fish, potatoes, broccoli, cauliflower and green beans were all prepared together in parchment paper. Interesting and very good. I paired my meal with an excellent glass of Willamette Valley Vineyards Pinot Gris. Also, being a French Onion Soup junkie, I had to try a bowl which tipped my desires just beyond my capacity. But no regrets here! I understand locally and regionally grown foods are used whenever practicable.
Our server, Nina, was courteous and attentive and did a first rate job. We were shocked to learn it was her first day!
The gracious proprietors James and Chris Glodt have created a wonderful eatery which I believe Salem diners will welcome enthusiastically.
Rumor has it that a lunch menu may be in the offing.
3635 River RD S
Salem, OR 97302