The ever-expanding restaurant row at the Walden Galleria welcomed a new restaurant and brew pub that features great attention to detail on the menu. Gordon Biersch has 30 locations around the country, but the stand alone eatery near Dick’s Sporting Goods is the first in New York State.
The attention to detail is evident immediately. When you walk in the spacious bar/lounge area, you can’t help but notice the gleaming on-site brewery where Brewmasters create award-winning house beers as well as limited-time brews that complement different seasons. Each seasonal beer is celebrated with a tapping party that’s open to the public.
What’s more, the Brewmaster is among a select few who makes beer following the German Purity Law of 1516, creating a beer as authentic as one can get. I’ll drink to that! Admittedly, I am more of a wine drinker, but the beer I tasted on the two nights we visited late last month was fresh and delicious. I enjoyed a lovely glass of La Crema wine too, and was pleased to see a good list highlighting the Grape.
At the October opening, I had the pleasure of talking with Bill Heckler, the corporate chef for Gordon Biersch, and a guy who racks up substantial frequent flyer miles. Bill attends all the grand openings for the Tennessee-based restaurant and brewery. He is responsible for the food development on the large GB scratch-made menu, ranging from starters like Kobe and BBQ Pork Sliders on Parker Rolls to Glazed Wings, creative salads and main dishes, Lobster & Shrimp Mac ‘N Cheese, Teriyaki Chicken and Shrimp Combo, Pasta Jambalaya, and their addicting signature Garlic Fries, among many others. A lighter fare menu with dishes under 800 calories is also available. I tried the Mediterranean Chicken and would have never known it was low-cal. It was bursting with flavor and quite filling.
Bill is a stickler for getting things done correctly. He experimented with 13 different cheeses before settling on a Havarti for the Lobster & Shrimp Mac ‘N Cheese with farfalle pasta! While this is a high-volume restaurant, it doesn’t feel like a run-of-the-mill chain. The quality of the food is evident from the first bite. Bill said meats and poultry are butchered there, all sauces are house-made. Bill and his staff taste all 136 items on the menu, ensuring that every dish is pleasing to the palate. The exceptional service and hospitality is summed up in GB’s motto "Every Guest, Every Time."
We sampled a variety of menu items when we visited and were particularly impressed with the Mac ‘N Cheese, the flatiron steak and grilled asparagus, the glazed wings and the pizza. Had to do my duty and try the bread pudding, which I have been dreaming about since we left the restaurant.
When you think Gordon Biersch, think this: Absolutely outstanding food, creative menu selections, friendly servers and bartenders, and the best bread pudding this side of Chattanooga.