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Bellingham's Rock & Rye

LotusRapper Jun 16, 2014 12:51 AM

<From the Herald>

Rock and Rye Oyster House is planning to be open to the public starting at 3 p.m. Tuesday, June 17, at The Herald Building on 1155 N. State St., with a grand opening scheduled for Tuesday, July 1. The restaurant/bar will offer a full dinner menu of oysters, seafood and other items, a family-friendly area and a full bar. The oyster house will seat about 130 and has a mezzanine and outdoor patio.

Read more here: http://www.bellinghamherald.com/2014/...

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  1. L.Nightshade RE: LotusRapper Jun 19, 2014 05:15 PM

    We ate at Rock and Rye last night and were pleasantly impressed. Service was pretty much perfect, and it's a nice atmosphere. It's a very hard room, so noisy. But that encourages leaning in for intimate conversation, so it was OK for the two of us. Nice cocktail menu; I had a clipper ship (gin, elderflower, lime, and absinthe). OK. I had two.

    Mr. Nightshade was very happy with his duck confit cassoulet. I was happy with my pasta carbonara with house-cured pork belly, duck egg, oyster mushrooms, and reggiano. Now we are pasta makers and pasta snobs, so we felt they've got a little ways to go with the actual pasta, but the pork belly, and the entire dish was rich and wonderful. We also had an oyster starter (of course, the full name is Rock and Rye Oyster House), kumamotos, shigokus, and Skunk Island. What is mystifying to me, is that we regularly stop at Taylor's oyster farm to pick them up fresh, but these were fresher and tastier than any we've brought home (shigokus and kumamotos are from Taylor's). I don't know if Taylor's saves the best for restaurants, or if there is a flaw in our technique for a brief transport home, but wow, these oysters were wonderful.

    We'll be back, in fact, we're already calling this our place.

    10 Replies
    1. re: L.Nightshade
      L.Nightshade RE: L.Nightshade Jun 19, 2014 05:20 PM

      Here is a link the their menu:

      1. re: L.Nightshade
        Vetter RE: L.Nightshade Jun 21, 2014 09:50 AM

        That menu cracks me up. It is so hard to take a place seriously when they call a gastrique a gastric (mm, gastric juices?) and don't use spell check. It's like the Nimbus menu writer has come back to torment us all.

        Edited to add: Oh lord, I can't help it, PUDGET SOUND? I weep.

        1. re: Vetter
          L.Nightshade RE: Vetter Jun 21, 2014 11:06 AM

          Well, I do see typos on this kind of paper menu, a menu that changes and gets reprinted frequently, but I know what you mean. You don't have to take the place seriously! It's just someplace fun and new to try in Bellingham, lord knows we need that!

          Actually, I don't want to become the Rock and Rye apologist; I've only been once. But we were happy to have it here.

          1. re: L.Nightshade
            Vetter RE: L.Nightshade Jun 22, 2014 06:48 PM

            Don't get me wrong, I plan on going and I hope it's fabulous. But I get so tired of the local fine dining places aiming for classy and hitting silly and pretentious. (I didn't read gastric as a spelling error.) There is nothing wrong with plain and simple English OR in taking the pride to get the term of art correct. I guess I'm just hypersensitive after years of riding the elevator in the Towers and rolling my eyes at the Nimbus menu, former home of vegan charcuterie ;)

            I do wonder - isn't the place owned by the same people as Bayou? Will they keep investing the money in quality ingredients and a spotless interior? Bayou started out as a MUCH different creature than it is now. I hope this is a fresh start.

            1. re: Vetter
              LotusRapper RE: Vetter Jun 22, 2014 07:24 PM

              From BoB's FB page:

              "Bayou on Bay shared Rock and Rye Oyster House's album.
              June 19
              The new Rock and Rye Oyster House is now open!! If you miss the Oyster Bar at Bayou on Bay then miss it no longer... we're over here! It's located at 1145 N. State in the first floor of the Herald building in downtown Bellingham. Here's the menu, so go on down and check out the beautiful new restaurant and bar!"

              1. re: Vetter
                L.Nightshade RE: Vetter Jun 22, 2014 09:05 PM

                I have no idea about the provenance, and I haven't researched it (I hate Bayou, it smells like a septic tank and the food, well, stinks).

                And I don't think Rock and Rye has presented their establishment as "classy," but I know they are a long way from silly and pretentious. They are, in fact, wonderfully welcoming and down to earth.

                We were (more or less) profoundly happy with our evening here. There is probably not any place in Bham that is capable of outdoing the food we cook at home, and the food that comes to the table in our supper club. But, once in a while, very infrequently, we want to have a dinner outside of our home. If you can suggest a better place in Bellingham, believe me, we are all ears.

        2. re: L.Nightshade
          LotusRapper RE: L.Nightshade Jun 19, 2014 08:42 PM

          *Like* :-)

          1. re: L.Nightshade
            sedimental RE: L.Nightshade Jun 20, 2014 09:08 AM

            Thanks for the detailed review! Looks great.

            Do they have a decent wine list?
            Or is it all mixed drinks focused?

            1. re: sedimental
              L.Nightshade RE: sedimental Jun 20, 2014 12:16 PM

              Sorry to say I didn't even look at the wines. I was dead set on a cocktail, and Mr. NS set on an IPA. If we get back before you do, I'll take better notice and report in.

              1. re: sedimental
                L.Nightshade RE: sedimental Jun 21, 2014 11:11 AM

                From the brief list of wines by the glass shown on their menu above, well, not too thrilling. So cocktails might be their focus. Wonder if they'll have a bottle list too. Bham sometimes seems like such a beery town, maybe because I don't drink beer, so it's nice to have good cocktails available. Good wine would be great.

            2. EatFoodGetMoney RE: LotusRapper Jun 19, 2014 11:00 PM

              Wow that looks great for Bellingham, will definitely check it out next time I'm up there.

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