Tuesday, August 12, 2014

The Broadway Social - Bethlehem, PA

This sleek bar-bistro serves gastropub fare, craft beers, and specialty cocktails in a low-lit industrial space on Bethlehem's South Side.

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Tuna Napoleon - The Broadway Social - Bethlehem, PA

When I first moved to the Lehigh Valley as a college freshman, I wasn't really all that focused on getting to know the ins and outs of the city that would be my home for the next four years. I was more worried about keeping up with my studies, making new friends, and carving out a place for myself at my new school. The idea of exploring all of the attractions that Bethlehem had to offer didn't really occur to me until I was an upperclassman, until after I had found my stride.

Of course, I didn't truly understand how special Bethlehem was until I had returned to the area after living in other parts of the country for the better part of a decade. The city has reinvented itself, and the South Side has a completely different vibe than it did when I was a student. I often find myself wondering how my college experience would have looked had I had access to all of the fabulous restaurants and cultural opportunities that are currently available in the area.

Take The Broadway Social, for example. This bar-bistro is just down the street from the house I lived in during my junior and senior years of school, and had it been open when I was still a student, I bet my roommates and I would have stopped by on a regular basis.

Although The Broadway Social opened in late September of 2013, my first visit to the establishment didn't happen until February of this year. It started as a Girls' Night Out for cocktails with my friend Florence, but Stephen wound up joining us at the tail-end of the evening, right around the time I ordered my second Sunday Morning ($9). The cocktail features parsley-infused American Harvest vodka, roasted grapefruit juice, a sugar rim, and grapefruit flambeed with Grand Marnier. It actually made me think of the Bolete Greyhound served at Bolete Restaurant and Inn, also in Bethlehem.

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Duck Fat French Fries - The Broadway Social - Bethlehem, PA

To make sure that we had more than cocktails for dinner, Florence and I split an order of the Duck Fat French Fries ($9) served with a dipping sauce made from Blue Moon, applewood bacon, and melted cheese. The fries were certainly satisfying and the sauce made a lovely (but rich) accompaniment for them, I think I prefer the duck fat fries at Two Rivers Brewing Company in Easton for their thicker cut and crispier texture.

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Tuna Napoleon - The Broadway Social - Bethlehem, PA

To counteract the fries, I also ordered a plate of the Tuna Napoleon ($14). Generous chunks of Ahi tuna, slices of fresh avocado, and snow pea shoots are served with a dollop of wasabi on a crisp wonton and drizzled with a sesame sauce. I found these bites to be very refreshing and was pleased to see something light on their menu alongside the heavier pub fare.

We all met up relatively early in the evening when the vibe was still very chill. From what I'm told, the space at the back of the bar is converted into a nightclub in the later hours and features a DJ booth, fog machines, and strobe lights for those who'd like to dance the night away.

The Broadway Social
217 Broadway
Bethlehem, PA 18015
(610) 868-2555 | Online Reservations | Map

The Broadway Social on Urbanspoon

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