Burntwood Tavern – Rocky River, OH

Location: The Burntwood Tavern (here’s their website) sits in the heart of Rocky River in what looks like an old theater at 19304 Detroit Road and are open Mon-Thurs 11:00 AM to 10:00 PM and Fri-Sat 11:00 AM to 11:00 pm (with brunch on Sunday). Honestly, we nearly passed it up for mistaking it as a theater; but, we were desperate to find a nice restaurant of which to celebrate my fiance’s birthday. We took a chance and stopped by to look at the menu and were instantly sold.


Menu: The Tavern offers a versatile menu that is sure to excite your taste-buds. They offer appetizers, entrees for both lunch and dinner, brunch on Sundays, and a Bloody Mary bar. Food options range from homey and familiar items such as tater tots and wings to luscious twists on favorite items such as pumpkin ravioli and salmon BLT’s! Burntwood Tavern hosts a rather nice happy hour 3:00-6:00 PM which includes reduce priced appetizers, $5 specialty drinks, and reduce priced beers. They also offer a variety of gluten free menu items. Though their options for vegetarians are much more limited to basically a black bean burger and salads. The prices of items range anywhere from $5 to $26 – so a fair middle pricing on their items. With the two of us splitting an appetizer, two entree’s, 4 drinks (two a piece), and dessert our bill was only $65 (without tip)… So it wasn’t terrible.

What we recommend: We treated ourselves to a 3 course dinner that evening and began with the Artichoke, Roasted Garlic, and Tasso Fondue for our appetizer (since we arrived during happy hour, the price was reduced). It smelled absolutely heavenly and was plated beautifully with a dash of color for garnish. It is a mixed fondue served with pita bread and tortilla chips. I was a bit disappointed in the dipping texture of the “fondue”. It appeared more like a hummus than a fondue but, oh, when you take your first bite, flavor just explodes everywhere. Needless to say, this great sharing dish didn’t last long at all at our table. Gone in 60 seconds!

The dish I ate for my entree was the Tavern Dip. Now that I’m finally review this great place, I realized I didn’t give it a fair shot by ordering this. The Tavern Dip is your classic French Dip…but with BETTER ingredients. Better quality roast beef that oozes delicious flavor and that practically melts in your mouth so chewing becomes rather null. But it was a dish and a flavor pallet that I’ve had before and I wish I would have gotten one of their more unique items such as the Asiago Crusted Chicken or the Chicken Tasso Pasta. Overall, the Tavern Dip was astoundingly delicious.

One thing I would absolutely recommend would be their house made desserts. They have what I call “Ice Cream Shooters”…little glasses filled with sweet, icy goodness. Since it was my fiance’s birthday, we ordered two different shooters: a warm apple crostada with salted caramel ice cream and a chocolate cake one that comes with raspberry ice cream. These desserts, like everything here, are made from scratch and are perfect at the end of your dinner.

Service: We came in between service rushes so things were pretty quiet. The hostess was friendly and we were sat right away at a quaint high top table against a wall in front of a large stone fireplace. It took a few minutes for our server to greet us and get our drink order, but we were thankful for that due to the extensive drink list.

Our server, once we were greeted, was attentive. Our glasses were never empty and no dirty plates sat idle on the table long. He was also very knowledgeable about the entire menu, including the beers on tap and drinks on special and was able to tell us what items were most popular  and which ones were not.

It’s always good for a server to aid their guests like so… that’s a higher level of customer service not seen at a lot of places. It shows that he cares about his job and the guests he encounters – which in turn makes him some good money! Our waiter even asked if we were celebrating an occasion and, of course, we said my fiance’s birthday.

Atmosphere: This was probably my favorite part. It was such a different and pleasant atmosphere than any other place I’ve been to. The wooden fixtures and the fireplace are warm and inviting and the staff is relaxed and friendly – which completely puts you at ease. Each Burntwood Tavern has a unique history behind it. Most of them are made from previous restaurants that have been completely made over into this uptown bar/steakhouse type place (with less emphasis on steak). They also have unique items of furniture in them that come from the communities across the nation. For example, the BWT in Rocky River has chandeliers from an old church in Rhode Island. And they are massive chandeliers ,too… big wooden, eye-catching pieces that instantly spark your attention when you walk through the front doors. The best way to describe the atmosphere here is rustic chic.

The church chandeliers from their website.



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