Tarry Lodge Brings Flavor To Saugatuck

After opening restaurants all over America, celebrity Chef Mario Batali turned his sight to Westport, CT. In July, Batali held the grand opening of Tarry Lodge Enoteca Pizzeria at 30 Charles Street in the Saugatuck area.

Packed to the brim for the first couple of weeks, I found that Tarry Lodge is definitely the place for a nice-casual dinner. It’s the kind of place where every customer is hungrily eyeing the next-door table for ideas on what to order. The downside is that it’s usually quite noisy and the wait for food can be rather long.
With an intriguing selection of appetizers and salads, the menu changes often to support seasonal ingredients. This results in the freshest and most distinct flavors in each dish. On my last visit, mushrooms seemed to be the ingredient du jour. Nonetheless, each dish I ordered had a completely different essence.
To begin, I tried the “Hen of the Woods,” a mushroom dish with arugula, lemon, and thyme. Hen of the Woods is a specific mushroom named for its size. However, to call it a mushroom is a misconception. It has a bit of a nutty aspect with soft notes, and when cooked correctly (as it was) it has crispy tips that melt soothingly into the garlic toast they serve it on.
The service was very helpful, when they were there (mind you, when the waiter was gone, it took a half an hour to get him back again if you had a question). Our waiter suggested the goat cheese with pistachios and truffle honey pizza. I was quite hesitant to have my pizza with incorporated with pistachios, but I found that the theory that “you can never eat just one pistachio” still proves true when it’s on pizza. The truffle honey added silvery undertones that harmonized with the crunchy distinct flavor of pistachios. The goat cheese charmed each unique note of flavor and altogether the pizza was superb.
Also by suggestion of our waiter we tried the garganelli with funghi trifolati to keep in line with the mushroom theme. Garganelli is similar to penne in its tubular shape but it has a smoother consistency. At Tarry Lodge the garganelli was hand made and cooked al dente. The pasta was served with sautéed mushrooms and a garlic butter sauce. It was surprisingly rich and the butter was a little heavy. However, touches of parsley accented the mushrooms and balanced out the deep nuance nicely.
As well as pastas and pizzas Tarry Lodge does offer a selection of Entrées. Although I have never tasted them, from what I’ve seen they look very delicious and filling. Next time I go, I will be sure to try the tuna with panelle escarde and olive pesto. I encourage you to be adventurous when ordering here, especially with pizza. The fresh, clean qualities of the food make it very reliable. Tarry Lodge is a very nice addition to Westport’s small repertoire of restaurants.