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Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Moxie - Madison, Connecticut

Moxie.  People have been ranting and raving over this spot in the small coastal town of Madison, Connecticut.  After a few visits, I quickly understood why Moxie is always busy and why everyone keeps talking about it.  For starters, Moxie is home to great food at an awesome price with an impressive local beer list.  The restaurant also has a fun down to earth yet trendy vibe.  This combination, cool spot + fair prices + great food + awesome beer means Moxie is always busy and quite popular with the hipster crowd.  Well, the few that are actually in this area.  Heads up early on, you will need a reservation for dinner, especially on the weekends.  

I decided to give it a try on two separate occasions and was impressed with the food, alcohol selections and atmosphere each time.  I have to be honest, I judge a restaurant harshly on how good their fries are and let's just say Moxie is officially Katie Wanders eaten at and approved.

Let's talk about Moxie. 

Moxie has been described as "Globally inspired American food and cocktails offered in hip, colorful digs with a back patio". When browsing their website and menu, you catch phrases such as "Modern Day", "Classics", "Comfort food", "Locally Grown" and "High End". I have to agree, Moxie is certainly a mix of all of these things. Their menu features New England classics as well as a variety of fun traditional entrees and sandwiches with a global twist. From garden salads to a kimchi burger, Moxie has a little something for everyone. They also have a great Happy Hour special (called Moxie Hour) with various hours throughout the week (excluding Monday when they are closed).  Tuesday Wednesday Thursday 5-7, Friday & Saturday 9-10.  Viva the late happy hour.  

For me, the space and atmosphere of Moxie was a breath of fresh air.  Funky, fun and different, the interior looks nice but in still a casual/nonpretentious way.  The large photographs on the wall and car references throughout the area add a lot of charm to the space.  Outside, you have a decent sized patio area with space heaters and a retractable roof/awning. This is the perfect place to enjoy dinner on a nice summer day, or enjoy a cocktail outside while you wait for a table. To me, a good restaurant has to have a decent outdoor space.  For our short (but oh so sweet) summers in New England, I want to be outside very second I can.

When you look at the cocktail and beer lists, this is when you start to see the "hipster vibe" of Moxie.  Craft beer and specialty cocktails attract all of those 20 to 30 something chasing the craft beer scene that is rapidly growing in New England.  Not only do they pride themselves in featuring a range of high quality (and a lot of local) craft beer on tap, but they even offer flights.  Flights aren't just for breweries anymore, you can come into your favorite restaurant and try a flight of beer from all of your favorite breweries.  

The food at Moxie ranges from comfort food with a spin to New England and globally inspired dishes.  My first trip to Moxie, I ordered the Brussels sprouts to start and their home made veggie burger.  It can be hard to find a good veggie burger, never mind one made fresh in house.  As far as veggie burgers go, this one topped the list.  My second trip to Moxie I started with the buffalo cauliflower.  Lightly breaded and fried cauliflower with buffalo sauce, blue cheese and celery was a fun vegetarian twist on a classic appetizer.  Next up, I split the kimchi burger and the tuna club.  The burger (are you sensing a trend here) was melt-in-your-mouth-give-me-more good.  And those fries?  Moxie knows how to do fries.  The tuna club wasn't as great as I would have preferred a tuna steak to the tuna salad type of tuna.  All in all.. food, drink, and atmosphere- everyone left happy. 

Deciding where to go out to dinner on the Connecticut Shoreline can be tough in the off season.  A lot of the seafood shacks shut down for the winter, and for us locals, we get a little bored eating the same meals at the same restaurants.  At times, the options of "where to eat" close to home can be quite underwhelming.  Moxie settles the "dinner rut" on the CT shoreline with a great and always changing menu.  A great atmosphere, consistently good food, awesome cocktails and an impressive craft beer list make Moxie a Go-To all year round. 

(203) 421-6963
Closed Monday
** Reservations are highly recommended. Especially on weekends.

FRIDAY & SATURDAY  9pm - 11pm
SUNDAY   4pm - 6pm.  4pm - close: Half-Priced Select Bottles of Wine

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