Over Thanksgiving weekend 2009, one of our favorite people, Liz, organized and offered dinner to my husband Antonio, our friend Ludovica, cousins Ralph and Connie, and me. Clever and thoughtful, Liz chose the perfect spot for dinner with foreigners — the ’76 House, a piece of Americana in Tappan, N.Y. Opening in 1686, it calls itself “New York’s oldest tavern.” (For photos of our dinner, visit the “Old ’76 House” photo album.)
The small bar is cozy and charming and has you imagining George Washington — or at least guys who looked like him — pulling up a stool. Traditional revolutionary garb serves as decoration in the restaurant. Even the Christmas trees, which were decked out in American flags and red, white, and blue ornaments, had you feeling patriotic.
You might imagine the menu to be filled with hamburgers and hot dogs and not much else. You’d be wrong. The food was fabulous. I had the delicious pot roast, which came with an impressive popover that melted in my mouth. The appetizers we ordered, including mussels and calamari, were divine, much better than I’ve had at other restaurants. The fish seemed fresher and everything was cooked to perfection.
There was a band, and Liz and the gang had gotten them to play the Italian tarantella in honor of our wedding anniversary. That’s right — this night out was over a month ago, and I’m still thinking about it. It was that great of a night.
Still, the best part of the evening was the company. We know we’re in for a good time — and some creative use of foul language — whenever we get together with Liz, Connie, and Ralph. Until the next time we feel like shouting c—- in c— in a public place!