Some might say it’s from a heads-up penny. Some say it’s from a wishing well. You might even say it is from the Luck of the Irish. But we came across a spot tucked away into downtown that is not only a place to catch a drink after work, but also a scratch kitchen that serves hearty and delicious food that beats any home cooking you might have considered. Lucky for us, Stout is a new addition to Providence’s food and beverage scene.
Recently renovated, Stout is adorned with granite accents, deep stained wood and a welcoming fireplace. Spacious, with room for a stage where they welcome live music. Ideal for cozying up on a chilly winter night with a Guiness and some thick mashed taters. Warm yourself from the inside out (using beer and food, of course).
We all have our favorite restaurant (for when we’re hungry) and our favorite bar (for when we’re thirsty), but get yourself a spot that can do both! Stout pours beers and cocktails for any occasion (celebrating Friday, or celebrating a birthday). And also houses a scratch kitchen; meaning everything that makes it’s way out of the swinging double doors of the kitchen is made from scratch, in house. No frozen french fries, no pre-made canned gravy. I think we can all agree that homemade is better than microwaved, right?
To get ourselves warmed up (both temperature wise, and get our tummys prepped for the main courses), we had the nachos with BBQ pulled pork. Fresh fried tortilla triangles, loaded with melty beer cheese (on a whole nother' level, cheddar cheese cooked with beer), jalapenos for spice, and pico de galo (which comes on the side so you can add it to your liking). Crowned with a monstrous heaping pile of house braised pulled pork and drizzled with saucy BBQ. Getting a bite with all of that piled high onto one chip may be a feat, but well worth the effort of such a heavy scoop.
Being in an Irish pub, we decided to do as the locals do, and have ourselves some bangers and mash. Now, if you have never had such a dish, it may sound like someone just described a car accident. But in the food world, Bangers are sausage and mash are well, mash! House whipped mashed potatoes, fluffy and buttery, are the bed for the Gastro’s maple sausage and is tucked in with a warm blanket of black velvet gravy. Sounds cozy, right? Gastro’s handcrafts a variety of meats, sausage and charcuterie, one could call them professional meat curators (meaning, they know what they’re doing). The black velvet gravy is simmered with cider giving a a smoked apple flavor to enhance the sweetness in the maple sausage.
Finally we had the paleo shepards pie. A layered casserole of savory ground turkey cooked in a jus, seasonal veggies like zucchini and squash, and capped with a creamy whipped sweet potato. If you’re wondering what classifies as paleo, it generally refers to foods that are not processed, free of dairy and pesticides. So basically, just the basics! Whole foods stricken of preservatives and unnecessary additives. In this case, the ground turkey and jus kept all the layers moist, the sweet potato was rich and delicious (I literally could not believe there was no butter!) and the seasonal veggies added pops of freshness.
We finished eating and felt like we had a balanced meal of comfort and healthy foods! That’s that the food pyramid is supposed to represent, ya know! Our cheesy nachos and bangers and mash warmed our souls on a chilly December night, and the paleo shepards pie tricked our brains into thinking that it was eating something naughty but really it was healthy! Ain't nothing better than that!
As if Stout couldn't possibly have any more redeeming qualities, we find out the the paleo shepards pie is not alone in the healthy yet delicious department. Active Eats, a food prep service, operates out of the Stout kitchen and delivers gluten free, paleo, and sometimes vegan meals! Eating healthy can be a chore, and it can be a drag when you want to indulge but feel heavy with guilt! Finding foods that are tasty, healthy and filling are far and few between. Active Eats delivers them right to your door, so no excuses here! Not that you would need any with how yummy that shepards pie was!
For those of you who are enticed by Downtown Providence's foodie scene, but absolutely overwhelmed and intimidated by circling the block for a parking spot, fear not. There is a parking lot right outside of Stout, that validated 2 hour parking. So you don't even have to walk in the cold!
We would like to thank Stout for having us in for such a satisfying meal. Winter is going to be more bearable this year with you guys to keep us warm!