Menu gazers’ alert: the view has changed at the former View, anchoring the Calhoun Beach Club. It’s shifted from kinda Italian to sorta Midwest Modern under its rebirth as Urban Eatery. Gone are the pastas — well, baked mostaccioli remains, but it’s served with — ahem — Texas toast. Still a couple of pizzas, too, but red sauce 86ed in favor of cross-pollinations like Fischer Farm sausage paired with roasted crimini mushrooms, arugula and Parmesan. The White Pizza climbs the trend chart with its combo of duck confit, poached pear, blue cheese and fig molasses, and it’s got my name on it.
The rest of the menu reminds me of eating at the Warehouse District’s Haute Dish, with its sly winks at “lowbrow” staples — and, as Martha would purr if she’d been here, that’s a good thing. Case in point: starters like Pork ’n’ Beans (maple-cured bacon and edamames in a soy-chili glaze) and Brined Chicken Wings (Tabasco beurre blanc, whole-grain mustard, pickled turnips).
We started with the instantly legendary Asian Pork Sliders (all apps under $10), nicely spiced patties inserted into steamed buns, plump and pillowy. I’d add a seasoned mayo as a moisturizer, but hey … The smoked duck nachos proved swell, too: a plate big enough for four to pick apart, loaded with lots of confit laced with pepper jack cheese, a fresh and peppy salsa and strokes of smooth, rich guacamole. Those wishing just a simple snack with their cocktails can head for the sweet potato fries, served with spicy catsup and saffron mayo, or chicken wings to dip in chive crème fraiche.
Entrees present the same collage of classics served with saucy updates, such as fish and chips paired with “mooshy peas” and malt vinegar aioli; shrimp scampi on Parmesan grits with creamed spinach; and flank steak with root vegetable hash and Guinness gravy.
We settled on the bison pot roast — moist and tender, served with a sweet-potato mash (really, really sweet) and curried chickpeas (note to chef: Maybe rethink the pairing of these starches). Even better: a diner-style chicken pot pie under a top hat of puff pastry. Beneath it brims a casserole of the usual suspects — chicken, onions, celery and carrots — in a light and creamy mushroom sauce.
We didn’t make it to desserts (it was well past midnight by now; blessedly, the kitchen stays open late-late on weekends), simply finished the final sip of our Spanish tempranillo, from a list that favors familiar labels, many under $30, backed by a respectable representation of tap beers.
The menu also features an enticing list of sandwiches that venture well beyond your normal BLT — lamb burger with goat cheese, pico de gallo and sriracha mayo; shrimp tacos with radish sprouts and more; a chicken banh mi, a pork belly Reuben, and a Minnesota Monte with smoked Kadejan turkey, Gouda and lingonberry jam — indicating that View has morphed into fine new views on how to eat.
2730 W. Lake St.