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Rohrer's Tavern, Revisited

Revive the Dive

Last September this North Bend dive got a complete overhaul, courtesy of Restaurant: Impossible. If you haven’t seen the show, it’s a typical food-makeover reality show: A snotty foreign chef from a country known for lousy food comes in and yells that you have lousy food. In this case, Robert Irvine (British chef) blamed frozen food and rewrote the Rohrer’s Tavern menu with fresh ingredients to bump it up a couple of notches. Take the fix for the lowly mozzarella stick: Rohrer’s Crispy Cheese is a work of art. Giant, three-quarter-inch-thick wedges of mozzarella are breaded, fried, and served on a plate drenched in warm marinara. It tastes like there’s an Italian grandmother in the back slapping fingers away from the pot with a wooden spoon. When your fork breaks the delicate crust, this warm, wonderful, melty cheese oozes out. I recommend you try them with the house dressing. The whole menu’s like that. You’ll find traditional faves like tempura shrimp and crispy chicken wings, but you’ll also find the unexpected, like cod sliders, the pot roast hoagy, and perhaps the most amazing cut of beef: the hanger steak, with crisp onion straws, sautéed zucchini, mashed potatoes, and a pan sauce. For dessert, the Seven Layer Chocolate Cake should be eaten by two to avoid an endorphin OD. Rohrer’s was also gutted and remodeled for the show. I’m not so sure about this. The interior is a warm mustardy color and the bar looks like a classic ’50s carport made out of corrugated fiberglass. I guess that’s so if you’ve had one too many you won’t drive, since you already think you’re at home parked beside the house.

Rohrer’s Tavern, 418 Three Rivers Parkway (U.S. 50), North Bend, (513) 941-4266