From the outside, Bernard’s Grove looks like a biker bar. From the inside it looks like… an extremely tidy biker bar.
But the customers favor polo shirts over leather jackets. And while we spotted a Mercedes in the parking lot, we didn’t see any Harleys.
What this out-of-the-way place, on the edge of Long Pond in extremely north Greece tastes like, is a Park Avenue hit. Veal chop with a cherry demi-glaze, anyone? Chicken and shrimp Gorgonzola over angel hair? And creme brulee? In a place that looks more like the Dew Drop Inn than Le Cirque?
The incongruity is actually quite refreshing. And the prices tend to be a whole lot cheaper than what you’ll find downtown.
The servers are very good without the uppity downtown attitude. The seafood bisque was thick, creamy and peppery, with plenty of chunks of various shellfish. The Onion Jack Soup was a clever variation on an old theme. A giant square of melted Monterey Jack covered the bowl and most of its broad rim, providing lots of gooey, crispy cheese.
House salads were full of good greens and came with interesting dressings, such as a creamy and mild lemon-basil and a nicely balanced balsamic vinaigrette with blue cheese crumbled on top.
That chicken-and-shrimp dish was wonderful and plentiful, more than enough for two full meals. The sauce combined fresh, chopped plum tomatoes, slivered basil leaves and tangy Gorgonzola cheese, and played well off the milder flavor of two pounded chicken breasts and two jumbo shrimp.
Filet mignon stuffed with Gorgonzola cheese came with the most delicious brown sauce made with Cabernet and decorated with little curlicues of that wonderful cheese. I had to restrain myself from mopping the plate with a slice of bread.
Desserts were all quite good, too. Chocolate Mousse Gran Marnier was fluffy and intensely chocolate while subtly orange.
Go eat at this restaurant, whether you ride a cycle or not.