Being a senior at Fairfield means three things: I’m 21, I’m tired and I’m poor. If you put all three of these things together, you end up at Local Kitchen and Beer Bar down on 85 Mill Plain Road, Fairfield, Conn. The open area, brick-walled tavern is accommodating to students, families, avid sports watchers, date night goers and friends.
Dubbed “Local” by the Stags, the hot-spot has everything that a college student (of age) could possibly want. Local has a unique menu offering a variety of different foods from American to Mexican to Asian. For every dish, one can choose to get “little” or “lots,” which is Local’s way of differentiating between portion sizes.
For starters, the brussel sprouts, a crowd favorite, are served crispy in a sweet maple cider sauce with bacon. An order of a “little” brussel sprouts, almost a bread plate serving size, costs $7 while the “lots” order costs $15. Their mac and cheese is a cheese lover’s dream with an interesting, but welcome, flare of crisp, green peas and bread crumbs coating the top. The small goes for $7 and the large for $13.
Since you haven’t broken the college budget yet, there is still wiggle room left for an entree. One of the toughest decisions that you will make during your senior year comes when you are faced with what you could possibly eat for dinner. Local offers craft bowls, available in both small and large, or foods that you can eat with your hands, such as sandwiches and burgers. They have big plates like braised short ribs served over truffle mashed and my personal favorite, surprisingly, big salads.
If you know me at all, I do not like lettuce. I’m that person that buys a bag of lettuce at the grocery store, knowing full-well that I will never eat it. Circumstances are different at Local, though. The cobb salad is relatively traditional, but rather than serving chicken on top of the salad, they serve roasted turkey. It’s chock full of apple, craisins, bacon, eggs, onions, tomatoes, avocado and gorgonzola cheese. The lettuce is dressed with a chipotle ranch that, for a chipotle ranch, is not overbearing at all. The turkey cobb salad, for $14, is fresh, light and perfect for a date night or an evening with friends.
Although I might like the salad because it’s two-thirds fillings and one-third lettuce, it’s got to be healthier than ordering the Local Burger cooked to preference, layered with fried onions, crisp bacon and spicy, but smooth, black pepper mayo. If you haven’t caught on, the burger is my other go-to after a long Tuesday night in The Mirror office.
All food aside, my favorite part about Local has to be their beer offerings. Having over 30 beers on tap from breweries across the country from California to Colorado to right here in Connecticut, Local’s beer varieties can appeal to almost anyone. Luckily, for the broke college student, Local has an amazing deal all day on Mondays. Every draught beer is only $3 so yes, getting four beers on a Monday night is completely acceptable since it only costs $12. The atmosphere on a Monday night is perfect to get you amped for the long and tiring week ahead of you. As football fans scream and gasp while they watch the game on one of the flat screen TVs lining the bar, you’ll be sure to find a home at Local.