Capital Bar & Bistro
December 29, 2016
43 Capitol St. | Eagle | 970.328.7990
Inside the cozy log cabin on Capitol Street is a menu that delivers without fuss.
Far from stuffy but definitely more upscale than a quick-dining joint, The Capitol Bar and Bistro fills the made-with-love, less-fussy fare niche perfectly. The family-owned restaurant welcomes families but is also a lovely respite for couples who want to feel a little bit spoiled for the evening. The cozy interior, affordable prices and wine list beckon diners to sit and stay just a little bit longer.
The Capitol Bar and Bistro is celebrating 10 years in the little brown building that once was a house in Eagle. Nate and Tom McMullen, son and father owners, have revamped the menu recently when they changed from Paradigm's to The Capitol Bar and Bistro — a restaurant promises delicious fare at fair prices.
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The food is prepared with care and with fun little twists. The mixed greens salad is heartier than most starter salads with seasonal fruit, avocado and feta cheese: crunchy, sweet, tangy.
Follow up the salad course with lump crab cakes with Dynamite Sauce that melt in your mouth. Tom McMullen gleefully explains the secret ingredient: real crab. This epitomizes Chef Nate's philosophy: excellent food made with quality ingredients at a good price in a setting that feels like an extension of your home…. An extension that comes with a roaring fireplace, lively bar, semi-secluded backroom and a dining area that overlooks the expansive patio.
The menu offers plenty of selection without being overwhelming: pan-seared salmon, prime rib with bleu cheese, mushrooms and onions, lamb T-bones, pasta or The Hamburger. A burger this good only needs to be called The Hamburger — and it comes with a side of decadent truffle fries.
Not everyone wants to be ushered into the dining room for a full meal, nor does everyone want to spend an arm and leg on dinner — the McMullens get that. For a little town, the bar with ambient lighting, nestled near the fireplace, is often crowded with neighborhood faces and friends. Happy hour from 5 to 6 lures neighbors in, the $5 bar menu keeps them seated for a while.
The bar menu is heavy on seafood (crab cakes, shrimp cocktail, panko fish taco) but with plenty of offerings for everyone — sliders, jalapeño cake and cheese sticks.
The kids' menu is just as robust for the younger set, with homemade chicken nuggets and thin-crust pizza but also steak, homemade mashed potatoes and fresh vegetables. Kids will devour dinner because they're singularly focused on the fireplace — the one where they can roast marshmallows and make s'mores after dinner.
That's right, indoor s'mores! The McMullens have brought the magic of roasting marshmallows inside. There's something about a kid roasting a marshmallow that draws people in: a perfect ending to a memorable meal.
The Capitol Bar and Bistro is open for lunch Tuesday through Saturday from 11:30 to 2; it's open for dinner Monday through Saturday from 5 till close. It can host group events for up to 93 people. •
Bar menu: $5
Cozy, friendly neighborhood restaurant
Smoked salmon with toast points and classic accoutrement