(Pasadena, CA) The restaurant of tomorrow is here today: Introducing Twohey’s Tavern, from Greg Mallis and Tanya and Jim Christos, the three family members that keep the original Twohey’s name alive at the iconic 75-year-old Twohey’s Restaurant in Alhambra, which is a piece of Los Angeles history from the era of the Historic Route 66. With a tantalizing menu that playfully calls back to the classic All-American diner, Twohey’s Tavern officially opened its doors in Pasadena on Tuesday, November 7th, 2017!
A lively new restaurant that pays tribute to the classic American diner, Twohey’s Tavern is no greasy spoon, but a cutting-edge hub of equally progressive and enduring flavors profiles. “The foodscape has changed dramatically,” explains Director of Operations Tom Anderson. “Chef Travis Limoge executes an elevated interpretation of nostalgic meals while honoring timeless and contemporary cooking techniques with a commitment to seasonality, bringing each guest a new experience in a modern tavern setting.
Born and raised in Vermont, Chef Travis Limoge grew up in the kitchen of his Grandfathers beloved restaurants, most notably Valley’s Steakhouse, where port wine cheese and broasted chicken were all the rage and weekend brunches were a showcase for his Grandmothers baking prowess, laying the inspiring groundwork for a future Chef. After working summers in the kitchen while pursuing a career in professional snowboarding, which allowed Limoge to experience new cultures and flavors, Limoge decided to finally pursue cooking full-time. This decision led him to Los Angeles where he became Chef de Cuisine at Fork in the Road in Santa Monica and Mardi at Palihouse in West Hollywood. Chef LImoge then subsequently took a pilgrimage to Mexico after his grandmother’s passing, exploring the flavors of the different regions and the restaurants of Alejandro Ruiz, father to modern Mexican cooking. A serendipitous meeting with Chef Ruiz at the airport led to a further five months in Oaxaca learning all about countryside cooking, in both taste and technique. Upon his return to the states, Limoge came full circle with familiar roots at a family-owned restaurant in Twohey’s Tavern, where he seized the opportunity to marry his passion for modern composition and the warmth of his grandmother’s table. “The nostalgia is in the taste, but the cuisine is now,“ Limoge says of his culinary philosophy at Twohey’s Tavern.
The new Twohey’s Tavern Dinner Menu reads just as the original 1943 Twohey’s Restaurant menu, its layout and terminology perhaps foreign to the modern-day foodie, but no less quaint, beginning with the original Twohey’s signature staple, the Burgers. Each burger features a robust patty made of a special custom Premium Angus Beef Blend, and no burger epitomizes the Twohey’s name at Twohey’s Tavern better than the Stinko 2.0, a grand incarnation on the legendary cornerstone Twohey’s burger, made with caramelized onions, house pickles, and garlic aioli. No need to pack your luggage to go Dutch Style, featuring Napa cabbage coleslaw, and dill aioli, or stick to the true red, white, and blue of the Americana, with American cheese, butter lettuce, onion, and ketchup. The Chili Dip, what we would now refer to as a chili burger, is comprised of house chili, Grafton cheddar, onion sprouts, and crème fraiche, and all burgers would be incomplete without their requisite accompaniment of House Fries.
The real meat and potatoes rests with the Dinners at Twohey’s Tavern where Chef Limoge’s talent is front and center, turning everything his guests think they know about American diner food on its head, like with the Prime Eight Ounce Spencer Steak, prepared with roasted turnips, crème fraiche, fresh horseradish, and orange. The pig de résistance is undoubtedly the Ham Steak, which begins with a bone-in ham leg that brines for fifteen days, and is subsequently smoked for ten hours before getting plated and dressed up with summer peach preserves, sprouting broccoli, buckwheat honey, and charred orange. This next dish may be an oldie but goodie, but this isn’t your Meemaw’s Beef Stew, which features short-rib, fennel, onion, burnt carrot, rye toast, and whole grain mustard. The Fried Chicken utilizes a half chicken without the bones and is accompanied by braised greens, cranberry beans, and Bill’s Bees wildflower honey. Limoge also partners with Dock to Dish for his Seasonal Channel Island Rock Fish, all line-caught from Santa Barbara, with carrot mash, mole verde, and charred fennel. While the story behind the name Irish American Tortellini might be forever lost in time, there is no mystery about the flavor of this dish, comprised of crème fraiche stuffed tortellini, with house chili, cured egg yolk, and onion sprouts. Limoge also pays homage to his love of vegetables with the Roasted Roots, a vegan dish comprised of seasonal roasted root vegetables, green farro and celeriac purée.
They may be called Sides, but these shareable bites can also double as starters, like the Port Wine Cheese, Chef Limoge’s tribute to his grandfather’s signature appetizer, or for something golden and crispy, there is no topping the beloved Twohey’s classic, the French Fried Onion Rings. Nothing is as deliciously retro as a Liver & Onions, and the reimagined Shrimp Cocktail, with pickled shrimp, house made coctel sauce, orange zest, and onion sprouts. For munchy carbs, nothing quite satisfies cravings like the House Fries, except for the House Pickles when one needs some crunchy tang. Lastly, the ultimate companion to the classic dining experience includes Creton, a pork based spread popularized in Quebec and New England, where Limoge keeps this paté-like starter fairly-traditional, but adds a unique spice blend.
Add a touch of green to dinner with an array of Salads such as the Wedge, comprised of Tonnato vin, lardon, red onion, blue cheese, hard egg, tarragon, and tomato vinaigrette, to the elevated Dinner Salad, with a foundation of Market greens, tossed with red onion, croutons, Grafton cheddar, and ranch. The Boston Bibb Salad is sure to win over guests, with fresh orange, almonds, scallions, sweet onion, soft herbs, and an orange vinaigrette. Crunchy, sweet, and tangy, the Coleslaw is on another level, featuring fennel, persimmon, Napa cabbage, red onion, goat cheese, candied almonds, and cider vin, while the Potato Salad is beyond picnic perfection, comprised of roast fingerlings, horseradish, orange, crème fraiche, whole grain mustard, sage, and cured egg yolk.
Twohey’s Tavern raises the candy bar with their sweet spin on their Desserts selections, with treats like the Citrus Pound Cake, made with peach preserves and homemade lavender ice cream, and the time-honored confectionery Jelly Roll, with seasonal preserves and Chantilly cream. The Caramel Chocolate Tart offers the ultimate indulgence, with a housemde almond crust, chocolate ganache, and caramel sauce, while guests will go bananas for the upscale Banana Split, featuring homemade banana ice cream, banana brûlée, Twohey’s bittersweet fudge, candied almonds, and whipped cream. Guests desiring an adventure in flavor will also enjoy the Seasonal Sundae, with house-made ice cream and seasonal toppings, while the Classic Sundae is for guests seeking the familiar, featuring the Original Twohey’s Bittersweet Fudge topping with whipped cream, roasted almonds and a cherry. Looking for a slice of nirvana to savor? Fear not, as Seasonal Pies will rotate on the menu all throughout the year.
Chef Limoge also reimagines the quintessential Fountain Drinks with familiar yet innovative flavor profiles, beginning with the peachy keen Peach Shake, comprised of peach preserves, brown butter, sage ice cream, and whipped cream, and the sweet and savory Malted Maple Bacon Shake, featuring bacon ice cream, malt powder, Vermont maple syrup, and whipped cream. Is that one straw or two for your Strawberry Shake, made with basil ice cream, fresh strawberries, balsamic, and whipped cream. Traditionalists will not miss out with choices like the Root Beer Float, featuring Twohey’s root beer and choice of ice cream, and the chocoholic fantasy of Chocolate Soda, is made with chocolate syrup generously drizzled over vanilla ice cream, soda water, and chocolate whipped cream, and the Chocolate Shake, comprised of chocolate ice cream, Twohey’s Bittersweet Fudge, and whipped cream.
Cocktail Consultant Patrick Tang is keeping things shaking and stirring for the Cocktail Menu. As the opening Bar Director at Otium in Downtown Los Angeles, Tang received first-rate tutelage from Julian Cox and Joshua Goldman. Today, Tang is mixing and pouring behind the bar at The Rose Cafe in Venice and he has also stepped behind the stick at Twohey’s Tavern to create a playful and delicious new cocktail list. “For Twohey’s Tavern, I have created fun and approachable cocktails while tipping my hat at Pasadena itself.” The Crown City cocktails begin with the Old Town, comprised of rye, Averna amaro, Lustau Vermut, and bitters, and continues with Tang’s personal favorite, the Rose Bowl, featuring pisco, gin, rosé syrup, strawberry, egg whites, citrus, and peach bitters. “The Rose Bowl is a nice play on a pisco sour that has complimentary notes between the rose and strawberry.” The Twohey’s Old Fashioned, pays tribute to the OG Twohey’s with bourbon, Twohey’s Root Beer, and chocolate mole bitters. Time to howl at the moon over a smoky campfire with Into the Wild, featuring mezcal, blueberry-thyme shrub, and lime, or enjoy the spicy piquancy of El Pomelo, made with tequila, Aperol, ancho chile, grapefruit oleo saccharum, lime, and soda water. Just in time for the fall harvest is Bobbing For Apples, comprised of bourbon, Honeycrisp apple, cinnamon syrup, apple gomme, lemon, and sparkling wine, while beer lovers can enjoy the best of both worlds with the Vixen, featuring vodka, IPA reduction, cucumber, Hawaiian black sea salt, and lime. “This cocktail retains that earthy hoppy flavor,” says Tang. Rounding off the cocktail menu is a cocktail that will have you feeling like A Million Bucks, beginning with guest’s choice of spirit, ginger, lime, and soda water.
Combining the nostalgic flavors of the past with the elevated flavors of today is what makes Twohey’s Tavern the most exciting new addition to Pasadena!
Twohey’s Tavern is open for Dinner every Sunday through Thursday from 5:00 pm to 10:00 pm and the Bar is open from 5:00 pm to 11:00 pm. Twohey’s Tavern is open for Dinner every Friday and Saturday from 5:00 pm to 11:00 pm and the Bar is open from 5:00 pm to 12:00 Midnight. For more information or reservations, please visit www.TwoheysTavern.com or call Twohey’s Tavern directly at 626.449.2337.
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2835 East Foothill Boulevard
Pasadena, CA 91107