STAMFORD, Conn. – A musician at his core, a restaurateur by design, and a wine enthusiast at heart, Eric Monte, the creator and co-founder of The Fez located in downtown Stamford, is in the production stages of Tavern 489.
This new venture takes its cues from the warmth of a grand stone fireplace in a tavernesque mountain lodge, and is spearheaded by Monte and his lon-time culinary partner, French Chef Regis Saget.
“We are doing something that’s never been done before,” says Monte of his partnership with renowned Indian Chef Kausik Roy of Tawa Indian Cuisine. “We’ve taken the bar portion of Tawa’s expansive restaurant space and played off the focal point of the room’s massive stone fireplace and created a mountain lodge atmosphere featuring upscale tavern fare, wild game and libations.”
Tavern 489 takes up real estate in Tawa’s free standing colonial style building in the charming residential Stamford neighborhood of Glenbrook. The space, separated from Tawa’s main dining room by wooden trestle dividers and velvet curtains, has been transformed into a deep country mountain lodge, channeling prolific adventurers Ernest Hemingway and Robert Frost, replete with Adirondack furnishings, river canoes, and rural reading den antiques, all framed in forest green walls and high-ceiling wooden trusses.
At the center of it all is a large 18-seat mahogany bar with an antiqued backdrop mirror and that imposing stone hearth which adds a warm glow to the 45-seat restaurant and bar.
The menu takes its cues from Monte’s love for French cuisine and from Chef Regis Saget’s upbringing in the southwest of France. Entrées, while unabashedly carnivorous, offer adventurous diners a break from the norm with bold flavors. Menu highlights include a half roasted marinated chicken with roasted masala; braised shorts rib with maple Salvador Paulaner beer; homemade sausages with lentil stew; house made duck confit ravioli; and the Tavern’s “dirty steak” for two, a mesquite ash rubbed tomahawk ribeye.
Tavern 489 plans to open early March; go to www.tavern489.com for more information. The restaurant is located at 489 Glenbrook Road.
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