BOSTON (CBS) - Phantom has never seen a sports bar quite like Warehouse Bar & Grille in Boston's Financial District. It's a new restaurant that's getting a lot of buzz for dishes like fried clam chowder and alligator bites.
Owners Cliff and Toni Dever have designed an industrial space with high ceilings, comfortable circular booths and a fun bar mixing up craft cocktails.
"We're a restaurant and a bar," Cliff describes, "kind of a hybrid between a sports bar and a traditional American restaurant."
"We have a lot of TVs. We have a lot of sports going on, but we want people to come here because our food is fantastic," declared Chef Nathaniel Durost.
And the food definitely delivers.
The menu features unique offerings like Gator Bites. Yup, alligator that's fried to order and served with a Cajun Style Remoulade.
"People have come in and said they came in just because they wanted to try the gator bites; they had to have the gator bites," said Durost.
So the question is... what exactly does alligator taste like?
According to the chef, "gator is gator, but it's very much similar to a texture of a scallop."
"I describe it as a mixture between a scallop and a piece of chicken, kind of," said Cliff.
"Maybe like a chicken-scallop texture," agreed Chef Nathaniel. "It sounds a little unusual, but it melts in your mouth and it's delicious."
Warehouse offers local favorites like crispy Fried Clams served with fries and slaw, and their New England clam chowder - which is anything but traditional, piled high with fried, big-bellied clams on a bed of mashed potatoes and cream.
The mountainous pile of Nachos isn't ordinary either.
"You can get regular nachos pretty much at any sports pub in town, so we decided to do a potato chip nacho," said Chef Nathaniel. "It's really beautiful Cabot cheddar cheese shredded on top with cherry smoked bacon, fresh jalapenos, a little scallion to garnish."
And for dipping, one of Cliff's favorites. "We have the best ranch dressing in the entire world. Our ranch is to die for. I could just eat it for days. It's so good."
Since Cliff is a certified burger fanatic, the one at Warehouse had to be perfect. So Nathaniel came up with the Warehouse Burger - piled high with arugula, vine ripened tomatoes, cheddar and a cherry smoked bacon Cliff just can't get enough of.
"I go back into the kitchen and probably eat four or five pieces of bacon a day," he admits.
"You could smell it throughout the restaurant and he'll come back and he'll look around and he'll grab a couple pieces and walk away," Chef Nathaniel confirms.
In fact, Cliff is so crazy for burgers, the Warehouse menu offers other burger-inspired dishes, like a Burger Wedge salad served with a ketchup/mustard vinaigrette and even Cheeseburger Raviolis stuffed with meat, cheese, bacon and onion.
And you've probably never tasted a Reuben like theirs, because it's served on a pretzel roll.
"We wanted our Reuben to be different from pretty much anyone else's around, and I don't think anyone does Reuben on a pretzel roll," said the chef. "The top is kind of a little bit chewy and crisp at the same time, where the inside is really, really nice and soft."
And just like the burgers, there are multiple versions of the Reuben as well, like a rendition wrapped up and fried in eggroll form.
"You get that nice corned beef flavor. The Swiss cheese starts to melt in your mouth and then you get the nice little tart bite from the sauerkraut. You dip that egg roll in the Russian aioli; it's like having a beautiful Reuben sandwich," described Nathaniel.
Just about the only recipe he decided not to mess with, is the one for his grandmother's doughnuts.
"The recipe came from Maine back in the early 1900s and hasn't really been changed since. They're the best donuts."
"It's three little donuts on a plate with chocolate sauce, peanut butter dipping sauce and a scoop of coffee ice cream," Cliff elaborated. "So, it's just great flavors altogether. I am gaining weight because of these donuts."
And with prices averaging only in the teens, your wallet will also feel a little bit heavier when you eat at The Warehouse.
You can find Warehouse at 40 Broad Street in the Financial District, or online at thewarehouseboston.com.
Watch Phantom Gourmet on Saturdays and Sundays at 10:30 and 11 a.m. on myTV38.
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