What began as “going out to eat” with a few friends turned into an exceptional dining experience. My sister, Kate, recommended Gibbet Hill Grill in Groton, MA. This place is great. It’s nestled among hundreds of acres of rolling hills and grass. The restaurant is actually a barn built in 1906 that was restored and renovated in 2003.
We arrived a bit early for our reservation so we started our night out at the bar. Six seats conveniently opened up so we sat down for a few drinks. They have a great beer menu and an extensive wine list. For bar snacks, they serve homemade warm, crunchy, and wonderful kettle chips. A great start to the night! After a short wait, we were seated in the Silo Room. An intimate room, in the silo, set off from the rest of the restaurant. I’m not sure if this placement was good planning on the staff’s part, or good luck on our part. We were with a loud and rowdy bunch anyway, but being set off from the rest of the crowd upped the anti. Our waitress, Ryan, was very attentive and knowledgeable about both the food and the history of the restaurant. Our food came promptly and no one ever had an empty glass in front of them.
OK, now for the good part. The Food. The menu has a great selection, but isn’t overwhelming. The food is elevated comfort food. Just about everything is homemade from fresh and local ingredients. We started out with appetizers.
The Farmhouse Grilled Cheeses were my favorite dish of the night. The bread was golden and perfectly crunchy and buttery with smooth melted cheese. It’s served with what they call a “tomato soup for dipping”. But, it was so much more than a soup- thick and fresh with fresh herbs. Actually, it was drinkable. Cindy’s Crab Dip. Big chunks of crabmeat in a creamy cheese mixture served with an assortment of crackers, was excellent. Smoked Kettle Beef Sliders. Yes, smoked! Of course, since we could smell no smoke inside or out, Mike had to inquire if they actually smoked the meat. We were happy to learn that they smoke the brisket offsite. After tasting these little delights it was obvious. Mike said it was the best brisket he’s had, outside of the circuit of course. Classic Mac and Cheese. I was most excited about this dish, but unfortunately, it was the only disappointment. It was presented nicely in a cast iron kettle, very obviously made fresh, but a little bland.
Since we were still ready for more we moved onto the entrees. My sister Kate and I split the Filet Mignon. It was cooked to perfection and melted in my mouth. However, after tasting the Bone in Rib Eye which was amazing, I was reminded that although filet is good, it is no substitution for a flavorful rib eye. The Chicken Pot Pie had a golden flaky crust and was chock full of fresh roasted chicken, big chunks of red potatoes, and peas and carrots. The Gibbet Hill Meatloaf was a strange choice for my friend Lisa, the birthday girl. She raved that it was delicious and it looked very homey. Mike had the Australian Rack of Lamb with a Dijon demi. He liked it, but thought it lacked proper seasoning.
And for dessert. The Coffee Bean Crème Brule was sweet, creamy, and delicious. The Milk and Cookies were divine!! Two warm cookies, chocolate chip and butter pecan, served on a wooden board lined with butcher paper, served with milk in an old fashioned bottle and a chilled glass with a sugared rim. At that point, the silo room was quiet except for a few yummy moans.
Since Saturday I have been recommending Gibbet Hill Grill to anyone who will listen. It’s a welcoming, charming place with a courteous and attentive wait staff. It has an upscale, but unpretentious menu that can definitely hold it’s own. I can’t wait to go back.