Though it’s not yet a full-functioning deli (more on that later), The Blind Butcher doubles as an outpost for the beer-loving set and carinivorous types.
When we went: Saturday at 7 pm
The atmosphere: The owners took the idea of a blind butcher to the extreme—the dark wood and art deco lighting make it hard to read the menu (we were the obnoxious people who used their cell phones to order our drinks). The liquor-lined shelves gave the room a library-esque feel, perfect for those who came for a brew education.
The crowd: My crew of six stopped by after an afternoon of soaking up the sun at neighboring bar Truck Yard. We got lucky and were able to grab a table, perfect for people watching. There was a mix of Greenville hipsters and young professionals chowing down and boozing up.
Where to sit: On warm weather days, they’ve got both a front and back porch available for experiencing the great outdoors. Only negative: you have to come back inside if you want to be served. Grab a seat at the bar, where we learned after we ate that you can request custom concoctions from the bartenders.
What to drink: If you’re looking for local beers, you’re in luck. They’ve got “all the best locally brewed beers; everything I could want,” my beer-aficionado friend declared. Don't miss the nitro drafts. The Breckinridge Vanilla Porter has strong hints of the extract. They’ve also got two exclusively brewed Franconia beers available in liter and half-liter glasses, a light beer and an Oktoberfest. If you’re a drinker with simple tastes and a sense of humor, there is a menu “Horse Shit Beers” like Bud Light, Miller Light, Coors, and Shiner.
The cocktail list consisted of three drinks: The Winter Smash, The Notary, and The Dove Tail. The Winter Smash, a crowd favorite, is a vodka drink garnished with mint and blueberries. The Notary, similar to a Manhattan, featured a mint twist. The Dove Tail, our final cocktail of the evening, tasted overwhelmingly of tequila and was described by samplers as “soapy tasting.” When selecting a libation, stick to one of their local beers, a Winter Smash, or a Notary.
The fare: We ordered the chips and dip, which consisted of kettle chips, goat cheese, and duck pastrami. It was okay, but didn’t compare to the next course: bangers and mash. The potatoes were perfectly creamy, and I watched one of my friends actually lick her plate. The more adventurous of my friends tried the “sweetbread,” also know as lamb glands. It was described as tasting like a “spicy chicken nugget,” and paired perfectly with the pickled celery.
If you plan to dine, arrive early because there aren’t a ton of seating options. Make sure to stop by the “deli counter,” where you can check out the selection of house-made sausage, cured meats, and pickled delights. Although the delicatessen isn’t officially up and running, The Blind Butcher is currently offering an abbreviated menu. As you can probably guess, most of these items are meat-centric, but a few come with substitutes to make them vegetarian. The projected date for the full menu to be up and running is Feb. 3, and they plan to open a storefront in Deep Ellum for offsite prep and food pickup.
What to wear: Come as you are. We spotted everything from heels and leather pants to beards and beanies.
The service: Our server, Hunter, really knew her stuff. From local beers to pastrami flavors, she was there to answer the multitude of questions we had.
The verdict: Whether you’re looking for a spot to stuff your face or mull over a beer, The Blind Butcher can accomdate. Come on over, beer snobs, omnivores, and carnivores. Vegetarians--this probably isn’t your spot, but we’ll have to wait and see once the full menu is up and running.