Rosy and toasty at Cheeky Monk
Belgian beer and bites galore
Published: Wednesday, December 5, 2012
Updated: Wednesday, December 5, 2012 02:12
On the corner of Colfax and Pearl you’ll find a little piece of Europe with plenty of beer and frites to make your mouth water. The Cheeky Monk, a great hangout with even better food, is as authentic as Belgium itself.
Wood accents litter the room, covering everything in sight. The bar shines with tap after tap of traditional Belgium beers and spirits, making your mouth water.
The friendly wait staff is familiar with the menu, and able to offer suggestions if you are not sure of what you might want.
To begin your experience, try one, or all, of the three beer samplers the Cheeky Monk has to offer. Considered some of the finest beers in the world, the choices of Belgian beer at the Cheeky Monk offer many opportunities you won’t find anywhere else—except maybe Belgium.
If you want to be more adventurous, go for the Oude Jacobins, a sour beer that is sure to get your blood flowing. “It’s like a roller coaster,” said one server. So be careful when drinking it, and be sure to follow her instructions: “Let it sit in the front before you take it back. It’s got some kick to it.” And she’s not joking; this is a roller coaster with a loop-de-loop, and then some.
In addition to its choice of Belgian beer, the Cheeky Monk also has an array of cocktails and wine to pair with your meal.
Next, move on to the appetizers. The Cheeky Monk has hearty, salty, and, above all, tasty Belgian cuisine that pairs beautifully with the drink assortment.
Frites Aioli, fries tossed in house seasoning and served with dipping sauce ($6) and Garlic Pretzel Bites sprinkled with salt, mustard seed, and garlic ($7) are only a couple of the choices you will find. But the Fried Pickles, hand battered and served with a side of mayonnaise ($8), will make your taste buds especially happy.
These fried slices of heaven are just the thing to pair up with any beer you’ll find at the Cheeky Monk. These breaded treasures have just the right amount of crunch, paired with a hint of sour that hits the tongue and explodes with flavor.
Next, it’s time for the main course.
With a vast selection of burgers, sandwiches, and traditional Belgian entrées, the Cheeky Monk has you covered.
A staple is the Belgian Bangers and Mash—smoked chicken-apple sausage, braised sauerkraut and roasted garlic potato stoemp with champagne mustard sauce ($14). If that’s not your style, try the Monk and Cheese—penne pasta with three cheese cream sauce ($9). Both satisfy your hunger, with a touch of class and excellence.
If a warm sandwich is what you need to settle that craving, try the Monte Cristo. This fried masterpiece is filled with ham, turkey, Swiss cheese, mustard, and cranberry preserves all on sourdough bread ($11). Served with a berry balsamic dipping sauce, it’s like having all your favorite aspects of breakfast, lunch, and dinner on one plate.
The Cheeky Monk might seem a bit pricey, but the great food and excellent beer choices more than make up for the cost. Although Belgium is thousands of miles away, this makes for a more than adequate alternative for your palette.