An abandoned gas station adjacent to the Jefferson County courthouse has been given new life by Joe and Jaclyn Costanzo, owners of Rev Café. The restaurant is a welcoming space that draws you in, and makes you want to spend time with family and friends. Rev Café is focused on modern American fare with a down home touch, and we were excited to dine at Monticello’s newest restaurant.
Kir and I chose a spot on the covered patio. An over-sized Jenga game caught our attention, but after a long day of running errands and skipping lunch we focused on the menu. Appetizers, salads, sandwiches, entrees and hand cut steaks are all offered along with a nice selection of wines and craft beers, including one made by Tallahassee’s own Lake Tribe Brewing Co.
We selected the fried green tomatoes and the Georgia kale salad to share. For our main course she opted for the shepherd’s pie while I ordered the pan seared mahi. While waiting for the food to arrive we relaxed on the covered patio, enjoyed our drinks, and watched night fall over the historic Jefferson County courthouse.
Seven slices of lightly breaded and perfect fried green tomatoes arrived topped with feta cheese and paired with a chipotle aioli. The tomatoes were crispy on the outside, warm on the inside and had a bit of a bite thanks to the chipotle.
The Georgia kale salad was large enough for two to share. Baby kale was topped with smoked pecans, apples, grape tomatoes, gorgonzola cheese, and paired with a Georgia peach vinaigrette. The ingredients were fresh and the peach vinaigrette was a nice spin on a salad dressing staple.
The shepherd’s pie ($12) at Rev Café can be made with your choice of venison, bison, or angus beef. Kirsten went the traditional beef route, and was greeted with a edible piece of art. Seasonal vegetables (zucchini, yellow squash and carrots) were topped with well seasoned beef and crowned with garlic smashed potatoes. The entrée was served with a side of collards which were very good. I had a bit of food envy and because I’m a sweet husband, made sure to help Kirsten clean her plate.
Not to be outdone, my seared mahi entrée ($15) was on also point. Four perfectly prepared pieces of mahi were accompanied by a grape tomato and white wine sage sauce. The fish was delicious, the portion size generous, and the side of sautéed seasonal vegetables was a nice accompaniment.
Our experience at Rev Café was wonderful as the food was mouth watering, portions sizes generous, and our meal priced right. Service was also friendly, and the casual vibe of the restaurant made us want to return for another meal.
The Rev Café is located a stone’s throw away from the Jefferson County courthouse at 180 S. Jefferson Street. The restaurant is open Tuesday through Saturday from 11 am to 9 pm. For more information visit Rev Café online at revuprevdown.com or Facebook.
*This review is dedicated to my sweet mother-in-law, Marlene Larmore, who passed away on April 9th due to injuries she suffered after being struck by a car while riding her bicycle. Marlene joined us on many of our culinary adventures, and we miss her deeply. We love you mama!*
Sweet Tea & Bourbon’s Rating: