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Petaluma is without doubt one of the gateway cities resulting in California’s wine nation, and it’s a surprisingly bustling little burg with a vibrant, river-set downtown. Full of bars and eating places, there’s no scarcity of choices in the case of going out.
The most recent fixture in Petaluma is Simple Rider, a southern-inspired restaurant that, on a current Friday evening, was packed filled with friends searching for fried hen, shrimp and grits, and bacon-cheddar hushpuppies. Naturally, any go to to Simple Rider begins on the small however effectively curated bar, which presents almost two dozen beers (principally from California) and 22 wine choices — all of which can be found by the glass or the bottle.
Naturally, the Drinkhacker crew endeavored to discover the cocktail menu, which options 9 drinks, most of that are delicate variations on a theme. (We ended up making an attempt 4 of the choices.) The simple favourite was fairly a shock: Simple Rider’s Sidecar, which isn’t almost as candy as you’ll sometimes discover (with no sugar rim, thank god), constructed from each Cognac and rum and loads of citrus — each lemon and lime. It’s exquisitely balanced and laborious to place down. My different big favourite was The Derby, an up mix of bourbon, vermouth, lemon, mint, and bitters — coming throughout as a pleasant hybrid of a Manhattan and a Mint Julep, albeit a contact on the candy facet. Followers of extra brooding, bitter drinks might wish to strive the American Graffiti (the 1973 film was shot partly in Petaluma), which mixes up bourbon, Aperol, vermouth, bitters, and — notably — Fernet Branca. All cocktails are an inexpensive $13 every.
As for the meals, these are southern classics with a California spin, served in hearty parts that I couldn’t think about ending. The pork stomach biscuits, two per order, style like thick bacon doused in a candy glaze and are the proper method to begin your meal. Whereas the fried hen, with all of the fixins (and a drizzle of Calabrian chili honey) didn’t disappoint, the shock standout was a smoked trout salad, with large chunks of smoked fish blended with child greens, apple, fennel, avocado, and pecans. Once more, the portion was big and completely sufficient for 2 individuals — and superbly balanced because of its mild, lemon French dressing dressing. Beignets appear to be the go-to dessert right here, however our server turned us on to a sticky toffee pudding which, naturally, I couldn’t think about ending. Perhaps save that American Graffiti cocktail as a digestif to assist ease the injury from overdoing it a bit, which appears inevitable right here.
33 Washington St., Petaluma, CA. Open every day 5pm – 9pm.