A stack of tea-brined pork ribs shone with a distinctive honey-sweetened barbecue sauce. Vinegary cabbage slaw alongside not only cut the grease but also was quite tasty. The same can be said for a plate of plump Florida shrimp and Adluh stone-ground grits, bolstered with Edwards Virginia ham and Highland Gaelic Ale. That description might sound more like a list of commercial sponsors than dinner, but chefs who spend extra money on quality sourcing have every right to let their customers know.
The origin of some 60 American wines stretches from Napa County, California, all the way to Sonoma County, California. Just kidding. There are actually bottles from boutique vintners all over that state, as well as from Washington, Oregon, and even Virginia and New Mexico. It is an exceedingly user-friendly list too, with bottles subdivided into pairing categories — as in whites that match "with pickled or tart," "fried or crunchy," and so forth, and reds "with grilled or smoky," "saucy or tangy," etc. There are separate lists for "what to drink when you're eatin' chicken," and a "yard sale (a little love for the locals)," which might feature a discounted 2007 Huwiler Sauvignon Blanc or Fallbrook Merlot for $10 each.
Lunch Monday through Friday noon to 3 p.m. Bar menu weekdays 3 to 5:30 p.m., weekends to 2 a.m. Dinner daily 5:30 p.m. to midnight. Brunch Saturday and Sunday 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Farmers salad $12
Brunswick stew $12
Sweet tea-brined ribs $22
Llewellyn's fried chicken $24
Cookies and bourbon milk $8
A Southern restaurant would hardly be a Southern restaurant without fresh homemade lemonade and iced tea. Yardbird has it covered. The service staff also exudes Southern hospitality and works surprisingly efficiently considering just how busy and new the place is.
Pastry chef Peter Merrill's desserts keep up the Americana nirvana. Chocolate chip cookies, oatmeal-raisin cookies, and a whoopee pie get paired with bourbon-infused milk — which sounds suspect but is prepared in the spirit of an egg nog, with the two incongruent liquids fused by sweetness.
Beer, bourbon, blues, and Southern American fare, at an affordable price point, in a fetching farmhouse environment — a distinct and integrated vision completely realized.