Iron Horse Tavern is very popular. I've tried to eat dinner there about six weeks after it opened, and was told the wait at about 6:30 p.m. on a Saturday evening was 45 mins. (We opted to eat elsewhere.)
But is it good? The Sac Bee's Carla Meyer gives her verdict.
There’s just that one hitch to the obvious success of Iron Horse, which serves American comfort food with Asian and Mexican inflections and marks another expansion move by brothers Mason, Alan and Curtis Wong (Cafeteria 15L, Ma Jong’s, Mix Downtown) and their corporate chef, Christian Palmos. Although there were bright spots during our visits, and the space impressed, the dining experience disappointed overall.
Several dishes at Iron Horse were under-seasoned, most notably the beef short rib “strogi.” Though the rib meat was cooked well, giving in easily to a fork, the pappardelle noodles below it lacked flavor beyond that of unsalted boiled water...
It’s hard to think of another new restaurant in recent history whose popularity stood in such contrast to its food quality. It’s not as if the place still just draws first-timers. A friend told me she’s visited Iron Horse several times, and although the food does not impress her, she returns because pals want to meet for drinks and appetizers.
When considering its whole package, it’s not that hard to see why Iron Horse would attract repeat customers. Prices for specialty cocktails (all $10), appetizers ($13 or less) and entrees (most below $20) are reasonable even without happy-hour discounts (half off appetizers, $3 off specialty cocktails), and the food portions are substantial.
Read the entire review in the Sac Bee.
To punctuate the fact that people seem to love Iron Horse, Good Day Sac's Cambi Brown recently tweeted about her love of the restaurant.
New favorite brunch spot: @IronTavern Great service, AMAZING food, fun ambiance.— Cambi Brown (@CambiBrown) October 18, 2015
While we're on the subject of Iron Horse Tavern, their new location at the Sacramento airport is now open. I can never get the names of the terminals straight, but it's in the non-Southwest terminal.
Iron Horse Tavern is located at 1800 15th St. (R & 15th streets), and can be found online at http://ironhorsetavern.net/.
Paragary’s new chef promoted from within - Paragary’s restaurant has promoted executive sous chef Paul DiPierro to chef de cuisine, the position recently vacated by Scott Ostrander, who has taken a job at the Inn at Park Winters...A Rio Americano High School graduate, DiPierro received his formal training at the Culinary Institute of America at Greystone, in St. Helena. Before Esquire Grill, he worked at St. Helena’s acclaimed Restaurant at Meadowood and at Sacramento’s The Kitchen. Carla Meyer in the Sac Bee.
Scott Ostrander is a Chef on the Move - Yet, Ostrander yearned to stretch even further with his vision of using unique ingredients. He recently accepted the job as executive chef for Inn at Park Winters, a special events facility with its own farm. Ostrander has nostalgia for those early days in his career, when he picked fresh basil for his menu, but plans to take the concept to all-new levels. He’s excited to work with ingredients that might include cover crops, edible weeds or flowers from herbs that have gone to seed — items often discarded in traditional restaurant kitchens. Amber Stott in Comstocks Mag.
Carolina’s Mexican Food - Hungry downtowners will have another place to go south of the border when Carolina’s Mexican Food opens its sixth location at 9th and J streets across from Cesar Chavez park at the end of October. In Sactown Mag. (Third Item.)
Block Butcher Bar - The midtown charcuterie hot spot Block Butcher Bar is expanding with lunch service, which is slated to start Nov. 1. In Sactown Mag. (Fourth Item.)
Sacramento Bee reporter’s work appears in ‘Best Food Writing 2015’ - This past April, Sacramento Bee food and wine writer (and now “critic at large”) Chris Macias spent a day with Tim Hanni in the wine educator’s Napa Valley home and discovered a few fascinating things. For one thing, Hanni is an iconoclast whose views are at odds with California’s surprisingly conservative wine culture. For another, the certified Master of Wine is a recovering alcoholic who hasn’t had a swallow in 23 years, yet has found a way to flourish in a profession that’s all about swirling and tasting. Macias’ profile of Hanni is included in the just-published “Best Food Writing 2015,” edited by Holly Hughes, the 16th edition of the anthology (Da Capo, $16, 320 pages). Allen Pierleoni in the Sac Bee.