“Don’t be intimidated by our menu,” the manager advises as we’re seated at Red, White & Brew. “It’s huge.” And it certainly is.
And it certainly is. The three-month-old Chandler restaurant, an offshoot of the original in east Mesa, offers the same four-page lineup of upscale American comfort foods.
Not to mention at least a half-dozen daily specials, which on this night include pan-fried walleye with honey-mint butter, pork tenderloin with a maple-chili glaze and lobster ravioli in a wild mushroom pesto sauce.
So it’s easy to see why stylish Red, White & Brew — painted with a warm palette of oranges and golds, contrasted by black ductwork — is nearly full even on a Monday night.
Most of the comfortable booths are occupied in the dining area, which borders an open kitchen, as are most of the high-top tables in the bar area. There’s even a crowd on the patio.
We enjoy miniature loaves of piping hot, butter-brushed rosemary bread as we navigate the menu with the help of our attentive server, Mackenzie, who even keeps us up to date on the baseball playoffs televised in the bar.
At her suggestion, we start with a plate of five huge coconut-crusted shrimp ($9), which are accompanied by a dipping dish of zesty pineapple-jalapeño sauce.
Even better are the chicken and cheese empanadas ($8). By themselves, the small, folded pastries taste just OK. But when you add a creamy Thai sweet chili salsa, they’re absolutely delicious — warm and cool, sweet and spicy, all at once.
When our entrees arrive, we discover that the menu isn’t the only thing that’s huge at
Red, White & Brew.
The signature Chicken RWB ($14.50) features two enormous chicken breasts bathed in a garlic butter wine sauce and topped with mozzarella and mushrooms. A large side salad, garlic mashed potatoes and soft-but-not-mushy zucchini easily make it enough food for two.
The same goes for our “individual” brick-oven pizza, listed as 10 inches but actually 12.
The “Chicago” variety ($13) boasts a delicious homemade dough and sauce topped with Italian sausage, pepperoni, bacon, red onions, roasted peppers and mushrooms.
Tender scallops are the highlight of the broiled seafood platter ($18), which also contains shrimp and a “fillet of the day” we’re told is mahi-mahi but looks and tastes more like tilapia. Still, it’s also very good.
The only disappointments of the evening — minor ones — are the desserts, a caramel-flavored crème brûlée ($5.50) and a cinnamon-apple dumpling glazed with caramel syrup ($5.50). Both are fine, just not up to the level of the rest or our meal.
Then again, with such a huge menu, there are plenty of other desserts to try next time.
REVIEW | Red, White & Brew
Where: 4850 S. Gilbert Road, Chandler (northwest corner of Chandler Heights and Gilbert roads). Additional location in Mesa.
Open: 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily.
Prices: Appetizers $3-$10.50, salads $6.50-$14, sandwiches $8.50-$9.50, chicken/seafood/steak entrees $13-$19.50, pizzas $13-$19, pastas $11-$17, desserts $4.50-$5.50.
Information: (480) 305-6993 or www.rwbaz.com