Sir Benedict’s Tavern on the Lake is quickly finding a place in my heart (and stomach). Nestled comfortably on the corner of 8th Avenue East and Superior Street, this charming tavern offers endless character that clearly trickles down into each carefully-selected menu item. Browsing their options, I found it difficult to narrow my selection. Eventually I allowed Sir Ben’s to persuade me using the specialty highlighting on the menu. The Avocado and Bacon Sandy, here I come.
[The Bread 10/10]
Sir Ben’s allows the option of selecting your bread of choice for many of its sandwiches. It became an easy decision once I learned they’re baking their own focaccia bread from scratch. The Italian bread was golden brown on the outside with a fluffy and soft inside. Loaded with herbs, the homemade focaccia was a perfectly savory vessel for this sandy. (Sir Ben’s has been serving Johnson’s Bakery Bread for 30 years, if you opt for a bread other than the focaccia.)
[The Meat 8/10]
This sandwich was no standard BLT. The bacon was chopped into small bits, which allowed for A) MORE bacon! This sandwich was absolutely loaded with salty, bacon goodness. The chopped bits were also B) easier to eat by immediately eliminating the annoying pull-out-the-full-strip-of-bacon-with-each-bite struggle.
My avocado and bacon sandwich was, in fact, packed full of housemade avocado spread (and bacon). The cool, creamy avocado oozing from under the focaccia was an intriguing complement to the chewy, salty bacon. In addition, I had the opportunity to select cheese and three additional vegetables. I intentionally veered away from typical BLT fixin’s, choosing pepper jack cheese, sprouts, cucumber and onion. It was a really great combination with earthy vegetable flavors and a slight kick from the cheese. Win.
[Accoutrements 8/10 ]
All of Sir Ben’s sandwiches are served with kettle chips and a pickle. I recommend kicking it up a notch by ordering a side of soup. The butternut squash soup is simply wonderful. It’s smooth, peppery, sweet and savory, with a hint of smokey flavor. My meal was topped off with a bubbly classic of Dorothy’s Root Beer, originating from Duluth’s northland neighbor, Ely.
[Conclusion] Throughout our lunch we talked with Sir Ben’s owner, Josh, about a few of his menu items. He told us about the recipes that were tested before perfecting their offerings. The squash soup, the lamb stew. This theme of attention to detail rings true throughout Sir Ben’s. Quality ingredients, carefully perfected recipes, and unique charm is setting this local restaurant apart. Stop by for the live music, wide selection of brews, and give the Avocado and Bacon Sandy a try.