Friday, May 21, 2010

Winslow’s Tavern Starts the Season Off Strong

At the end of May, before the crowds descend on Cape Cod, Sven and I treat ourselves to dinner at a local restaurant. This year we chose Winslow’s Tavern on Main Street, in the center of town. In the past, Winslow’s has been advertised as a “Barry Family” restaurant, because owner Tracey Hunt is the younger sister of Moby Dick’s Todd Barry. For the past few years, diners may have chosen Winslow's because of its connection to the popular Route 6 eatery but, in my opinion, that is going to change. What they will remember now is the great cuisine, created by Tracey's husband Phillip Hunt, a chef from South Africa, who has really come into his own.....

Winslow's serves lunch, as well as dinner from mid-May to the day before Oysterfest, mid-October. By summer, people-watching will become the name of the game, and the view from the terrace can't be beat. I often recommend Winslow's to our guests and mention the crab cakes with sangria, to-die-for.

Before our meal yesterday, Sven and I had a glass of house wine, a Cabernet Sauvignon, which we had enjoyed last year. Our entrĂ©es were spectacular. I loved the swordfish, draped with diced tomatoes and served on a bed of braised lettuce. Olives brought subtle flavor to the sauce. Meanwhile, Sven was imagining a bistro in Toulouse thanks to his pork loin cassoulet. Phillip and Tracey joined us briefly for a glass of an unusual “Pax” Serrat. Tracey told us Winslow’s is one of just three restaurants in the USA to feature this incredible California vintage. It reminded me of rare wines I was fortunate enough to taste in France, stored in my ex-husband’s godfather’s wine cellar and served only on very special occasions.

I asked Tracey her impressions of the season thus far. Apparently Winslow’s filled up so fast over the past weekend that she had begun to wonder how to cope with only a skeleton staff. It so happened that Jacob, a former waiter, stopped in to refill his water bottle while out biking, so Tracey corralled him into service. “Go straight upstairs and put on a T-shirt,” she pleaded. Jacob must have been quite a sight, dressed in his biking shorts, but he managed to charm all the diners in the northern wing of the restaurant. Tracey said she expects lots day-trippers in this supposed end-of-recession year, which echoed my feeling after numerous requests for one night.

I asked Sven to sum up his impressions of our evening out: “I really liked the way they restored that beautiful place, putting pale yellow paint on the walls. Elegant tables, tall wine glasses. Great food, pleasant company, with my wife by my side. What more could a man want?”