EXETER - Riverside dining is always pleasant but perhaps never so scrumptious as it is at the Sea Dog Brewing Company on the banks of the Exeter River in downtown Exeter.
In fact from the waitress who spent several minutes explaining menu pricing and options to the modest wait time until our food arrived to the exquisite taste of every morsel, well, doggone it, we were happy pooches with noses stuck in our dishes till the last bit was lapped up.
I had a double three-oz. pattie, which is two small burgers on a single gluten free bun with caramelized onions, aged Maine cheddar, lettuce and tomato for $12, $13 with the gluten free bun.
But here's the takeaway for gluten-free folk. The bun, an Udi's and toasted perfectly, never broke up, disintegrated or fell apart.
In fact, I had half of it today for lunch and she was still holding her own.
But we're just getting started. We shared a side of coleslaw, and it was among the best I've tasted, not too sweet, not too vinegary, just light and airy as the coleslaw gods intended.
But this plate went three for three with the best sweet potato fries I've had bar none. For a $2 upsell, they are well worth a couple of Washingtons.
Keep in mind that if you are gluten intolerant - meaning you can't tolerate any - stay away from any fries as they are cooked in the same oil as everything else.
While we stuck to burgers, the menu is full of a variety of unique sides like tamari glazed Brussel sprouts ($5), grilled broccoli ($5) or baked Mac N Cheese ($5). They also have a blackened haddock taco with shaved cabbage, avocado, Pico de Gallo and serrano-lime aioli for $13, or a peanut chicken taco, with crispy fried chicken tossed in a peanut ginger sauce, red cabbage, carrot, green onion, crushed peanuts and cilantro, $12 hmmmmm.
If you want heavier fare, they got that too. How bout a bacon wrapped meatloaf stack with homemade meatloaf topped with bacon, mushroom bordelaise and onion crisps served with mashed potatoes and grilled broccoli ($18).
Whatever you do, don't rush through the menu. It's eclectic and diverse and deserves a second look, so you don't miss anything.
I know I did, and I can't wait to go back to the Sea Dog.
Other Sea Dog locations include South Portland, Maine and North Conway. There are also several in Florida.
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