Crab Cakes ($9)
Flowers' crab cakes are served with a petite salad and remoulade sauce. "The secret is using good crab," he says. "You have to make crab cakes with a lump or jumbo lump. There's nothing worse than going to eat a crab cake and it's shredded up nastiness. I want to see lumps of crab so I can actually identify what I'm eating."
Baby Arugula Salad ($12)
Poached Bosc pear and thick slices of brie cheese take center stage, while candied walnuts and bleu cheese are sprinkled across the top of arugula after it has been tossed with a lemon emulsion dressing. "I want to present dishes that people can identify with and are comfortable eating," Flowers says.
Baked Chevre ($12)
This baked goat cheese with tomato fondu and crostini looks like something off a Spanish tapas menu. "It's just a very simple tomato sauce," Flowers says. "It's just garlic, onion and tomato. There's no herbs in it, but it's seasoned properly to bring out the flavors of the garlic and tomato, which matches with the sourness and creaminess of the goat cheese."
Spring Lamb Rack ($26)
Flowers' rack of lamb is the most expensive item on the menu, served alongside herb-glazed carrots and parsnips and topped with
arugula-shallot salad. "We were supposed to be open in late spring," he says. "Now that we're opening in late summer/early fall, I put the root vegetables on there and glazed them with honey and herbs to bring out their natural sugars."
Bread Pudding ($9)
This date and apricot bread pudding is one of three desserts on the menu at The Bentley Tavern. Flowers stuffs brioche with whole dried dates and apricots, then tops the pudding with rum caramel and a dollop of Baileys whipped cream. Owner Brian Dohmen was not a fan of bread pudding, but after trying Flowers' version, he said it was "really f**king good."
The woodwork behind the bar was restored from the original building and subway tiles were added for a modern Manhattan flair.
The Bentley Tavern plans to offer special reserve wines from an eclectic selection of domestic and international bottles. Flowers even hopes to feature some Midwestern wines on the menu, in line with his philosophy of sourcing ingredients locally whenever possible.
The Bentley Tavern
The Bentley Tavern seats 50 indoors and another 48 seats are available for al fresco dining.