Are whiskey sampling and breakfast for dinner a match made in heaven? Flight Night at the Burgundian Tavern in Greenlake would like to convince you that they are. They offer a variety of flights including, on a recent night, two options each for whiskey, tequila, and beer. A flight is basically a sample platter for beverages, a curated tasting, with three similar options for you to try, side by side. For example, 'The Derby Winner' offered up three Kentucky whiskeys for comparison. There's no better way to try new things and educate yourself on what you like than to try slightly different versions of the same drink. That's especially true when you wash it down with a variety of menu choices, from the south (chicken-fried steak) to the north (poutine).
The Burgundian toes the line of being a gastro-pub, staying just to the pub side of the line with reasonably priced meals, and to the gastro side by making them darn good. It lives up to the pub side by honoring beverages as they should be, with an extensive tap list (it is the sibling of Fremont's venerated beer bar, Brouwer's, after all), a few good cocktails, a great spirits selection, and of course, flight night.
The food embodies the opposite of flights. No small plates trends catching on here, no sampling bits and bites. These are the kinds of meals that drinking folk want to eat. The entire breakfast menu is served all day, meaning biscuits and gravy make a tempting choice to soak up the suds. The poutine stands ready for a similar task. Though not, as any Canadian would point out, actually poutine, it is actually delicious. The cheese curds in this version are crisped, like the top of a lasagna, blistering as it turns a rich brown shade. The extra texture from the browning might be the first successful twist on poutine I've seen south of the border.
Regardless of your opinion on gravy-and-cheese covered French-fried dishes imported from Canada, the Burgundian is a great drinkers' bar. Nestled in Tangletown, it's made for the people who can walk there, so they can stumble home. While it's always a lovely place for a pint, it sets itself apart on flight night, with its opportunity to learn your liquors while you sip them.