The Navy Yard Bistro is a charming local restaurant and bar to frequent during the off-season. During the summer and boating season, the restaurant is constantly busy and we prefer being able to hear our dining companions, so we tend to go earlier in the evening so we can snag one of the few outdoor tables. Located in Charlestown’s historical Navy Yard, it’s a few blocks away from the Constitution right behind Tedeschi’s.
We came here to celebrate a dear one’s birthday dinner and they more than pleased with the casual, friendly service, low-key decor, and warm, romantic, dim lighting, as well as the menu and wine list which seemed to have something for everyone. We really adore the friendly neighborhood atmosphere at the Bistro.
The complimentary bread basket was simple- a chewy housemade bread and great honey butter. This may sound picky, but I prefer my bread to be warmed or toasted as well as have a crusty exterior and soft interior. At the Bistro, the bread is served at room temperature and it is the dense chewy type. The crust is too chewy at first bite but the middle is just the right softness. The honey butter is the star of this duo however. It’s sweet, slightly salty and creamy. Slathering it on the fair bread made it much better. You could easily make it at home by whipping together good honey with room temperature butter if you want to recreate it.
Per our waitress, this was a popular item on the menu. She was absolutely correct. Tender mussels swimming in a white wine butter sauce with some toasted thinly-sliced garlic-rubbed bread. My dining companion saved his piece of bread to sop up the delectable sauce after we demolished the mussels.
This was a classic rendition of a well-made medium rare New York sirloin that didn’t necessarily need to have a sauce on top. However, adding the velvety creamy green peppercorn brandy sauce put the steak over the top in taste and gave it a little something special. The sautéed winter greens turned out to be sautéed kale. I happen to love kale, they’re tough but are great to eat as a side or even make into kale chips.
The birthday boy wanted seafood as his main and chose the special. The cod was perfectly flaky and the crab stuffing had visible chunks of crab. The sauce was quite rich and I could clearly taste the cream, butter and white wine. He enjoyed it thoroughly and finished everything on his plate, however stole bites of steak when he could. I think he would have been even more please if there was a surf ‘n’ turf special so he could have the best of both worlds.
This entrée was also quite delicious and well prepared by the kitchen. The halibut was a tad underdone, which is exactly how I prefer my fish cooked, allowing it to still be flaky, tender and juicy. The root vegetable puree was proclaimed “scrumptious” and our dining companion actually dipped their side of green beans into it while eating. The only thing I didn’t really notice were the bits of porcini in the halibut’s crust. Other than that, this was a great entrée.
The waitress told us about neighborhood specials on Sunday and Monday nights. We’ll definitely have to return to check it out and immerse ourselves in the cozy local atmosphere.