Hot Spots: Make it a Double!

Hot Spots: Make it a Double!

A gleaming new office tower just outside the gates of Merriweather Post Pavilion is home to one of Columbia’s newest and special dining and drinking experiences.

The sprawling space houses two distinct yet linked culinary concepts: Cured Table & Tap– a casual craft beer and charcuterie bar; and 18th & 21st—an upscale supper club, bar and live music venue. The managing partners behind the operation are Steve Wecker and Vince Culotta, also partners at nearby Iron Bridge Wine Company.

The space is divided into two distinct areas, sharing a common kitchen. On the Cured side, an open tavern feel is created with polished concrete floors, metal bistro-style chairs, and wooden tables and accents.

Multiple taps supply brews like Goonda Beersmiths Timbo lager, Founders Breakfast stout, and local favorite Brewer’s Art Resurrection. The back bar is replete with a great selection of “browns” – bourbons, ryes, and Scotch whiskeys – as well as other liquors.

The menu concentrates on freshly prepared artisanal cheese and charcuterie selections…

…and menu items include choices such as deep-fried crispy chicken livers and diver scallops served with toasted farro, golden raisins, pistachios, capers, apples and brown butter.

The 18th & 21st side of the house is done up in rich patterned carpets, lush velvet draperies, upholstered dining banquettes, and a stunning illuminated ceiling overhead that features images of looming skyscrapers.

The retro, Art Deco feel is enhanced by tufted, upholstered wall panels and glowing torchieres. Live music combos are regularly featured in this space.

I sampled a Maryland crab salad on an Old Bay-spiced crostini, a delightful, summery heirloom tomato salad with fresh burrata, cucumber gazpacho and grape marmalade…

…some masa crusted oysters (pictured here with chicken livers), and juicy lamb chops with spring vegetable risotto, crispy brussels sprouts and a ragan josh curry.

My drinks? I started with a glass of refreshing Italian Prosecco…

…and followed up with a specialty house cocktail, an Islay Derby, consisting of Laphroaig 10-year Scotch, Copper & Kings brandy, mint and a cayenne simple syrup. The hint of heat brought by the cayenne was nicely balanced by the mint—a unique winner.
{Cured and 18th & 21st, 10980 Grantchester Way, Suite 101, Columbia}