When I'm wrong, I admit it.
And I take great pleasure in admitting when I'm wrong.
And after several recent visits to Reverend's in downtown Bowling Green, I happily admit that--unlike my previous posts about the bar/restaurant--I like it. A lot.
In the past two years, Reverend's has changed their name, style, and menu. A VERY smart move on behalf of the owners.
What once was a Mexican/Latin themed joint has become a hip American-fusion joint.
I'm delighted with the fact that Reverend's kept their open layout and exposed brick walls, but they added a more tavern vibe with the tap-handle-trim and microbrew neon signs. The new decor really reflects one of Reverend's strengths--their keen intelligence for fantastic microbrew beers and creatively tasty mix drinks. Also, I'm thrilled to see that Reverend's is just as clean, if not cleaner than, that day it opened, which speaks volumes about how well maintained it is. If the bathrooms are sparkling clean, I can only assume the kitchen is even cleaner.
Most impressive, to me, is the new menu. Previously the menu focused on Latin flavors that many patrons confused with Mexican food expectations. The owners thoughtfully worked out these kinks and changed the menu to reflect the bar; it showcases American pub classics with a flair for Latin spices.
My husband swears by their wings. But for me, it's all about their burgers.
Constantly, I am searching for the perfect burger, and Reverend's has it. Make that several exceptional burgers. Each burger is hand-pattied and ranges from 1/4lb to 1 lb of local meat.
I was hooked instantaneously by the Royale with Cheese, not only for its reference to Pulp Fiction but also for its perfect juiciness and balance of meat with cheese and condiment flavors. On my next visit, our friendly and knowledgeable server recommended the Fajita Burger, which was outstanding. It was a pure meld of my two favorite comfort foods: a burger and fajitas. The Chipolte Mayo is heavenly.
The Black 'N Blue Burger was terrific as well. And I've heard good things about the Double Wide, if you have that big of a stomach. These are some hearty burgers, which are clearly made in house.
I can only assume if the burgers are this good that the rest of the menu has just as much passion, freshness, and local ingredients, which is reassuring to someone who cares about their food and where it comes from.
As I frequent Reverend's I'm looking forward to trying the Southwestern Menu as well as the Mac and Cheese entree, another one of my all-time favorite comfort foods.
What's key here is that Reverend's menu has kept the Latin spices and heat from its conception, but the owners have modified the menu--smartly--to appeal to more Midwestern palates and the Midwest's desire to eat familiar food with a twist. (Imagine cumin and pepper dusted bacon.)
Additionally, the wittiness of dish names--The Everything But the Kitchen Sink Burrito and Texas Ranger Burger--add a hip, pop-culture vibe that creates an upbeat and fun dining experience. Reverend's is definitely a place that appeals to college students AND community members.
My only request is that I would like to see a short wine list--3 reds and 3 whites, as it is now--that has independent wineries and uniqueness. In other words, I'd like to see a wine list as thoughtful as the beer list. I think a better selection of higher quality wines that rotate like the beers would add another hip-yet-sophisticated dimension to bar menu.
I must say, though, a restaurant I had sworn off is now my favorite go-to place in BG. That makes me quite ecstatic.
(Photograph from Reverend's website.)