My favorite way to unwind on a Friday evening after a long week of work is to meet up with my boyfriend and head to one of the local restaurants in downtown Westerly to get some drinks and appetizers. Two drinks and a few bar snacks later and I’m usually ready to head home, have some ice cream or popcorn and watch a movie before sinking into a wine and ice-cream induced slumber.
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Last week we decided to hit up the Twisted Vine on Friday after work. Neither of us had been there in nearly two years and I’d heard that their “tappy hour” specials were pretty good. The space it’s in has been so many different stores over the last 20 years. I remember it being an indoor flea market for a hot minute before something else moved in so it’s nice to see it as a thriving restaurant.
We walked in at about 5:30 and there were only a few people so we grabbed a seat at the long bar. I usually love being in a crowded, noisy bar but after a stressful five days, being in a quiet, intimate setting was perfect. We hadn’t had much of a chance to spend time together all week before of our opposite work schedules so it was nice to talk and enjoy each other’s company.
Aside from the main bar, where the bartenders were working, there was also a long high-top table in the center of the restaurant where some of the guests coming in were sitting.
Along the outer edges of the restaurant and on the far side of the center high-top there are four-top tables that are spaced out nicely so patrons don’t feel like they’re on top of each other. I’ve never been a fan of those restaurants where they pack tables in like sardines so you can hear every conversation around you except the one you’re trying to have with the people at your table.
I was impressed at how well spaced out the tables were and I loved the high ceilings and open feeling of the space. Some bars are too dark but the Twisted Vine was perfect. It had nice, mellow mood lighting that felt cozy and welcoming.
The walls behind the bar was tastefully decorated with wine bottles. Along the wall closer to the door and front windows, a grouping of beautiful fish prints hung on the wall.
It was cozy and eclectic, just how I liked it.
Because we made it in just before the happy hour specials ended, we got two Grey Sail Flying Jenny’s for $3 a piece and white bean dip with crostinis and breaded eggplant all for $18. The drinks and snacks hit the spot.
By the time we got our food, the place was getting a little busier.
We ended up seeing a few friends and hanging out at the bar for a few hours longer than we had planned. Around 8:30, we ordered a round of champagne and celebrated a friend’s recent engagement before sitting down to have a spontaneous dinner altogether. I ordered the pad thai and seasonal salad, which were delicious and fairly inexpensive for the amount of food.
I think the Twisted Vine might be my new go-to place to have dinner with a group of friends — everyone could hear each other and see each other. All felt included. Sometimes when you get dinner with a few friends, it seems like the table breaks up into little parties.
Not at the Twisted Vine.
It was a perfect, spontaneous night with friends.