Was checking out some Jazz at Ryles last night so decided to hit the Druid for pre-jazz beer and maybe a bite.
I had absolutely no pre-conceived notions, thinking Boston Irish bar pub grub and mentally setting the bar REALLY low.
That said I was presently surprised, if not shocked at the quality and care of the prep and the whole experience.
The kitchen was VERY slow, and I think if you go on any night other then say a Tuesday, expect that. There is one chef and one prep guy in a minuscule kitchen. Our food took 45 minutes plus, but this ain't a hurry up and chow place. The vibe is about the beer, the warm friendly atmosphere, and a bit of a crowd.
4 of us squeezed into a two top, but even that was not bad, the table was pretty big, there was room, and we did not feel crowded at all.
To the food:
Large portion of mussels, competently done in a winey buttery sauce was great. Not the best in the universe, but very good. $9.99
Sirloin strip, excellent, perfectly cooked medium rare, YUM. A beautiful piece of meat. $17
Rib Eye, absolutely gorgeous, huge, enough for two, we ordered medium rare, it was probably rare, but excellent. At $19 this may be the best steak value in Boston. It was delicious! The mussels and this steak was dinner for two of us and then some.
Sheppards Pie probably the best version I have seen in Boston. Don't remember the price.
Others around us were having fish and chips and a HUGE Irish seafood stew with mountains of shrimp, fish, mussels, etc.
Our server was a delightful guy hustling madly to serve the whole room solo, and doing a very good job of it. One of our party was 1/2 hour behind the rest of us, and to make up for his meal being considerably behind ours he comped him us Guinness.
Don't go expecting Grill 23. But in the Irish Pub, on a crowded night, with limited resources, if you are hanging for the night there is no one in Boston doing a better job as far as I am concerned.
The busy waiter refilled our bread basket, really excellent dark Irish bread, when one of us asked for water he brought the whole table glasses.
If Deep Ellum could execute 1/2 as well as this excellent team did I would eat there regularly.
I for one will be putting the Druid on the permanent rotation.
Did I mention that the burgers looked amazing?
My only hesitation is that this place does not need any more attention, the secret is already out, when you run a clean well lighted place, have a warm, no attitude friendly vibe, deliver value for your money, and treat your customers well, go figure, the place is hoppin'...