Bull’s Head Inn – March 2018 (dt)
7.03 – 8, 7.2, 7, 6.75, 6.75, 6.5
The tail end of March found us driving westward to Cobleskill, with definitely more snow than home.
Half of us had previously experienced BHI on our own, so it was a nice revisit for four of us and new territory for the rest. BHI advertises American cuisine and colonial history – a combo of hearty fare and a good story. And the mingling with the owners fostered the personal connection.
(Borrowing from online) Entrées included:
A corn prep seemed to be the vegetable
accompaniment, while a choice of starch was available.
All were considered good, with one “nothing special” to a couple “very good.”
The included soup/salad often supplants any other choice from the appetizer list.
three of us chose the house salad: a mix of greens, cucumbers, tomatoes, red onions and shredded carrots, with choice of dressing on the side
Kerry ordered the chicken spinach salad: spinach topped with grilled marinated chicken breast, candied walnuts, dried cranberries and tomato. Raspberry vinaigrette on the side
And Don and Chay ordered a side house salad since their order was not considered an entrée.
Mark, for a couple bucks more, enjoyed the French onion soup: Sliced onions in a sherry beef broth with crostini and a blend of Swiss cheese
The salads were generous, probably affecting a few appetites come entrée time. Quality was deemed satisfactory to good, an excellent thrown in.
Two linen-wrapped baskets of sliced loaf bread, accompanied by tear-off lid, individual packets of butter, arrived with the salad, a little late but welcome.
Drink orders consisted of a variety of draft beers, a wine, and a soda. A DP8 date without wine is uncommon but happens occasionally.
Dessert? The list of three was announced and one of each was set on the table.
At least two of the three were pronounced
very good to excellent.
And two Sambucas, white, arrived for Chay and Mark.
Kerry abstained, thus earning some kind of points.
And thus ended the food evening.
Service by Erica turned out to be satisfactory to good after an “interesting” start. And it should be pointed out that she was handling a full house at our arrival.
The egregious error came during the delivery of beer. Julie was served something other than the Irish Red she had ordered, and it was obvious in taste and color. When pressed, Erica admitted to substituting, without consultation, an IPA by the same company, a style Julie dislikes. The sound of “clunk” was our jaws hitting our table. So, that faux pas was addressed, with Julie insisting on another choice, even if it took three of us coaching her. ha
And the beginning service was a tad slow. Even if busy, a calming reminder would have been in order. And then the beers were passed down the length of the table.
I asked for more information about the special Pot Roast. “Well, it is pot roast, with potatoes.” Any urge to order the pot roast died.
Once we got past the first half-hour, Erica proved to be a bubbly personality and eager to please. Water was filled regularly, plates removed appropriately, and check-backs made at strategic times.
Ambiance is modern colonial (how is that for an oxymoron?). The current owners purchased the business five years ago and attractively modernized a long-time local establishment.
BHI is centrally located, with a sturdy door welcoming us into a central hall, with a large dining room on each side, each capable of holding about forty people.
A light spring-green wainscoting with the colonial squares filled the bottom four feet of wall. A cream pastel paint filled the remainder except for one wall of foot-square wallpaper block. End walls were lit by two sconces and the full side wall by four, with additional lighting from two chandeliers. Wide board floors, sturdy wooden tables, and padded-seat chairs felt Bull-ish. White plating and three piece settings of two forks and a knife accompanied the silver vase exuding candle-light through the pierced base. Colonial themed paintings and prints filled the spaces between the windows and bigger spans of wall, inviting the historians and artists to look more closely at evening’s end. Exposed dark ceiling beams added to the long-ago feel.
Near the end of our stay, we exchanged a pleasant five minutes with the good-humored owner about the challenges of this restaurant, the re-shaping of the tavern downstairs, and his appreciation for our business.
Although the food generally was a notch below excellent, we agreed that a return visit would be a pleasant experience.
Pacing actually was near average, once we lolled through the first half-hour. Even with dessert and a few minutes of chat, we left BHI fifteen minutes short of two hours
The bill for the evening came to $98 per couple, and most of us rounded off.
Off we departed to the east, with stretches of fog that made the drivers appreciate the yellow center line and an occasional hazy red tail-light in front of us.
Topics included: regrets Joyce was absent, Joyce doing a good deed in CA, the doings of our kids, exploits of the two real world workers (another advantage of having Julie present), Spring weather finally arriving, snow banks still left, the amount of snow that Schoharie County had, a few dozen deer along the roadside on the way out, the foggy and dark drive back, Kerry’s hair growing back (with several positive comments from the feminine side), a young teaching career, NCAA basketball playoffs, Loyola, boner barn, boner needing some spiffying (on the barn!), sleeping passenger in back seat, closing the place down (hours listed of 5-8), …
…. somewhere near dinner’s end, there was a protracted explanation of a motel stay near Syracuse, with guests Mark and Chay, with descriptions of thin walls, creaking beds, exclamations of Oh God, I’m Your Bitch, and more unrepeatables. We got laughing hard enough that Erica and the manager-owner checked on us, so pleased we were having so much fun. We apologized to Erica for ruining her morals, and then the twosome would re-tell the story again, even more effectively. Kriss, you would have been of no use this evening….
… back to our usual selves, Deb K’s long working hours before the End, cat health, the whereabouts of the other eight, Spanish food and wine, Texas, Facebook, and more stuff that I have forgotten from the stress of foggy drive home.