Shale Tavern & Grille is located next to Days Inn in Lisbon. Offering Ribs, Chicken, Burgers, Wings, Dinner Menu and Sandwiches, Soups and Salads. Ask about their Daily Specials. Kids Menu available as well as a full bar.
Heading south on Route 11, get off the Rogers/Lisbon exit and you're one bite away from some of the best food in the area. Shale Tavern & Grille manager, and my chef today, Joe Bowers along with Assistant Manager Valerie Musolino will welcome you with smiles and open arms as they prepare to serve you some of the tastiest food south of Canfield.
Shale Tavern Grille opened in December, 2011 and already has caused quite a stir with what they have to offer. As you walk in you have your choice of two seating areas, both with beautiful stone fireplaces. The dining room to the left is bright and airy with a table for every sized party. It's tastefully decorated, warm and inviting. To the right is the tavern side. A long-standing bar top that evokes a lot of conversation of days past, several high top tables, and a pair of club chairs facing a checkerboard at the hearth of the ceiling to floor fireplace.
Shale's menu is not overwhelming but has a enough variety to please everyone, even Little Drillers ten and under will be happy with their selections. Valerie started me off with the Tavern Salad and tells me it's Shale's version of an antipasto. Chunks of ham, salami, provolone and American cheeses, crunchy croutons, purple onion rings, grape tomatoes and pepperoncini on a bed of crisp, fresh salad greens. The Greek vinaigrette is one of the best salad dressings I've had. Crumbled bites of feta cheese and spices are blended with this light vinaigrette that is packed with flavor. It's a big salad and could easily be a meal in itself or a perfect salad to share.
The Haystack Onion Blossom is an appetizer I will be back for. A large portion of sweet onion strips are dipped in buttermilk and fried to a light, golden crisp. Served piping hot with a side of horsey, bistro sauce, you won't be able to stop eating these. They're also the perfect sidecar to a slab of ribs. The minute you bite into these ribs, you'll know these are the kind that are slow cooked for a long time. The tender, and I mean tender, meat has a smokiness to it that I love. The menu says these are St. Louis style ribs, Joe is from Atlanta. I'm not sure where the recipe comes from but that could be the secret as to why it also states that the Ribs and Chicken are "soon to be world famous". Yes, they're that good.
Whenever you go out and there's a dish on the menu that's named after the restaurant, you can pretty much be sure that it's a good choice. A good choice at Shale Tavern & Grille is the Tavern Beef with Smashed Redskin Potatoes. The minute Valerie placed this dish in front of me my eyes lit up as I looked up at her. "Like it's been cooking all day", she said. That's exactly what it was. If your grandma ever made beef stew that you loved, well, grandma, there's a new stew in town. The beef is so tender you can't keep it on your fork, baby carrots, onion and celery all cooked in a delicious, yet simple, au jus. There is so much flavor packed into this dish, it's absolutely melt-in-your-mouth amazing. It's served up with a generous portion of smashed redskin potatoes and a side salad. You won't go home hungry after eating this dish, if you can actually finish it.
If you like burgers like I do then you'll love the burgers on Shale's menu. I love blue cheese so I went with the Blue Devil Burger. It starts with a fresh Brioche bun that is buttered and toasted then a perfectly seasoned, perfectly cooked burger resting on fresh lettuce and tomato is smothered in dried blue cheese crumbles and a pile of haystack onions. I told you I couldn't stop eating these things. Served with a large order of fresh cut fries, you can't go wrong here. You pretty much have to grab that burger with both hands, give it a squeeze and just go for it. The combination of the juicy burger, the soft bun, the crunchy onions and that bold blue cheese, it's got the best of everything. It doesn't get much better than this. If you've got a sweet tooth, you might upgrade those fries to an order of Sweet Potato Fries with a side of marshmallow fluff. I've had sweet potato fries before and never really liked them. These I like I lot. They're almost like dessert which I would have been perfectly content sitting there eating them as my last course until before me is placed a delicious looking piece of cake. Red Velvet Cake to be exact. Something I have never tried before but was ready to try. I love a dessert that looks beautiful and this did. A perfect square of layers resting on a plate that was drizzled with chocolate. Red velvet cake, cream cheese filling with chunks of chocolate, more cake, cream cheese frosting and a whipped cream, REAL whipped cream I might add, dollop on the side. The cake was moist and delicious. The filling was creamy with just the right hint of chocolate, the frosting, the whipped cream, I want more! All my life I was never a dessert eater, now I realize I just never had desserts worth eating.
Shale Tavern & Grille turned out to be so much more than I had expected. The food is cooked, not rushed, so all the elements meld together. The dishes are complex but nothing is overpowering. You get to taste every ingredient, it's food as it should be cooked. It's not being covered up with lots of garlic, spices or sauces. It's pure food, it's home cooking, it's food the way it should be cooked. Everything I had was wonderful. Lots of flavors, every dish unique, large portions, fresh, hot, it's a definite must visit to add to your list. You won't be disappointed.