Bites and Bitters: Silver Lake's Silver Inn get a gold medal for comfort food

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By: Tom Westerhof

Tom Westerhof/Flavor 574

As winter sets in and temperatures drop, the yearning for comfort food only increases.

To quench that desire, consider heading to Silver Inn, located at 105 E. Main St. in Silver Lake, where a brand new menu featuring calamari, pizza burgers and garlic Parmesan fries will warm your frigid bones. Featuring a throwback facade more at home in an old west silver mining village than the one block downtown of this tiny hamlet, the nondescript exterior hides a surprisingly pleasant dining experience. It’s the quintessential hole-in-the-wall bar where comfort food is served heaping and hot at a cost that won’t offend your senses. The dishes are delectable, leaving not only your wallet happily content, but your stomach as well.

The surprises begin when you enter the Silver Inn. Even though smoking is allowed, it’s not an issue early in the evening because there probably won’t be a lot of people and the owner keeps the fans running around the clock, so fresh air is constantly escorting the smokiness off the premises.

The bar has a rustic lodge/classic pub feel to it; the exposed ceiling, wooden beams and brick walls echo the sense of nostalgia the old-time exterior induces. The main bar extends almost the whole length of the Silver Inn, offering seating for at least 12 and coming to a halt only to allow access to the pool table and jukebox.

The menu delights with more than reasonably priced food items, which are served on plates overflowing with “get in my belly!” goodness. From their appetizers (your inner Napoleon Dynamite will be dancing for Pedro over an order of the loaded tots) to their sandwiches (try the Silver Inn Burger, if you dare; it’s served with a knife for a reason), the Silver Inn has numerous dishes under $10 that will more than do the job of soaking up any liquid refreshments that might be consumed later in the night.

Dinner options include the typical steak, chicken and fish fare. Only the 16 oz. T-bone, the 12 oz. ribeye and the deluxe special pizza come in around the $20 mark. Other pizza options are available, but if there’s one thing that needs to be sampled, it’s the chicken wings.

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Ask the patrons of the Silver Inn what the most popular dish on the menu is and you’ll realize that chicken wings are what people keep coming back for. They aren’t ordered as often as other dishes, but once customers start chowing down on them they rarely pass up future visits without inhaling a serving or two. They’re that addicting.

Silver Inn is open from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday to Thursday; 9 a.m. to 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday; and 1 to 8 p.m. Sunday. On Sundays they offer an appetizer and sandwich menu, with all items under $4.

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