Teresa’s Next Door, Wayne

January 24th, 2011

teresas-next-door-burrata

“As an appetizer special tonight,” said our affable waiter, “we have a deep-fried burrata.” “Ohhh sh!t,” I exclaimed. “You’re familiar with burrata then?” he asked. When I confirmed, he added: “then I guess you’ll be getting that.” Yeah, we will be, I admitted begrudgingly. It wasn’t that I didn’t want to order the deep fried ball of fresh mozzarella mixed with fresh cream (how could I not?) — my exasperation was due to the fact that I had already planned to warm my belly on a cold winter’s night with the seasonal “Reindeer Stew” at Teresa’s Next Door, which I rightfully took to be a very hearty meal. Adding the most decadent mozzarella stick ever created, plus a couple of TND’s amazing but heavy beers, surely meant a bellyache later. But there was no way I was turning down that burrata.

We didn’t go to TND that night with the intention of re-reviewing the popular Wayne bar & restaurant; though our previous article was a few years old, it still seemed to accurately describe the TND experience. Surprisingly however, the food has evolved quite a bit, and though the old standbys (an amazing beer list, 6 varieties of mussels with those amazing fries, comfort-food sandwiches) remain, the chefs have taken the specials and seasonal dishes to new heights of distinction and creativity.

Firstly, there was that burrata special. For the uninitiated, burrata is a fresh Italian cheese made from mozzarella and cream. On the surface it appears to be the same thing as fresh mozzarella, but when cut open, the solid exterior yields to a soft, oozing, silky interior of cheese and cream. Though this is nothing new in Italy, 2010 was the first time this delicacy started to pop up more commonly in places like New York City, so it was great to see it on the menu in Wayne. Deep frying this already decadent creation is probably unnecessary, but it certainly was an interesting twist to try. (Once.)

Another nightly special was a grilled llama burger. My dining partner was thinking about getting a burger anyway, so I was able to talk her into it, because, really, how often does anyone eat llama? Certainly this was unexpected from a quick bite in downtown Wayne! Knowing llama is less fatty than beef (and thus a bit blander), we chose to get a runny fried egg on top to make up for the lost fat/flavor. The burger was perfectly cooked medium rare, tender and juicy. It was only mildly gamey and the egg was a great addition. Though this burger didn’t actually come with fries, we had to order TND’s amazing hand-cut, Belgian-style frites with aioli too, as they just may be the best in the area, and serve as a perfect foil to either a burger or any of TND’s great mussel dishes.

Lastly, the entree we came for: Reindeer Stew 2010 – braised antelope shanks in Troegs Mad Elf with baby carrots, fingerling potatoes, herbs and cran-huckleberry chutney ($27). The meat was perfectly fall-off-the-bone tender, with no knife needed. In contrast to the llama, it was quite gamey, so probably not for everyone, and probably not something I’d want every weekend, but the uniqueness of the dish made it interesting and enjoyable. I particularly liked the cherry notes from the Mad Elf that accented the sauce, and the tang of the cranberry chutney.

Aside from the food, TND continues to set the standard (along with TJs) for beer service and selection in the area. The draft selection is absurd, featuring a wide variety of domestic and import craft and/or specialty beers (with a focus on Belgians) that will rotate regularly, all with appropriate glassware. There are also hundreds of bottles (from countries from the US to Belgium to Malta) available and an extensive, reasonably priced wine selection.

TND is a long, thin room with an incredible bar alongside the left side (the display of glasses is a sight to be seen). The right side is lined mostly with 2-4 person booths but also with some smaller tables (similar to the cafe) along the side. There isn’t a ton of room in the center, so when things get busy, expect it to be a little cramped and quite noisy. Unfortunately most of the tables/booths are small, so any party over 4 will have a tough time finding space together.

Over the years there have been quite a few comments on this site (which can be viewed below) complaining about rude and snobby staff members, but we have neither experienced this in previous visits, nor did we experience it during our recent visit. Our waiter was friendly, knowledgeable and casually professional.

The only downside to TND is the fact that it isn’t dirt cheap night out like the cafe next door. The food is aptly priced, and a person could easily fill up on food for less than $20, but the beer and wine will bring the overall cost up quite a bit (especially if you, like us, can’t resist trying several different varieties). Still, a visit to TND won’t break the bank (unless you start downing $48 bottles of Scaldis Prestige).

teresas-next-door-llama-burger

teresas-next-door-fries

Teresa’s Next Door
126 N. Wayne Ave.
Wayne, PA 19087
610-293-0119
http://www.teresas-cafe.com/

54 Responses to “Teresa’s Next Door, Wayne”

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  1. Nora says:

    My husband and I have been to Teresa’s Next Door probably half a dozen times and we love it. My husband is serious about beer and I am serious about food. The wait can be long and the bar crowded, but we usually cross the street and wander around Out There Outfitters until our table is ready (they’ll call your cell). Yes, the bar service can be snooty and the servers opinionated, but for us that adds to the ambience. We’ll be back… next time we can get a sitter!

  2. Not a native Main Liner says:

    Review of the bar only, not the food or table service. This is after having been in several times. Summary: Impressed with the beer selection, but highly unimpressed with the know-it-all attitude of one of the bartenders.

    How else can you state it, the beer selection is very impressive. I’d call it as being on the same level as Eulogy, Monks, the Foodery and Shangy’s (but they make reference to the Beer Yard — A few blocks down Rt 30 — in their menus so I’ll assume this is their wholesale supplier, not Shangy’s).

    One of the bartenders is … let’s call it opinionated about beer. I’m not faulting him for being so. In some beer bars like this, opinionated is a good thing when applied in the right way. However, I’ve overheard enough conversations to conclude it’s not applied in the right way here. I’ve seen it intimidate some bar customers, and be out right rude to others, to the point where I was either was embarrassed sitting near or felt sorry for the person trying to order the beer.

    I wonder if this is part of the act, creating an allure for the place. Like how the bar tenders are constantly wiping the glassware with dry towels and holding the wiped-down glass to the light to see if there are any spots (Tip to the mgmt: You can eliminate glassware spots by using high-quality glass/dish washers, and controlling the correct water temp and detergent). I guess if a customer is paying $8, 9 and $10 for one glass of beer, creating some theater around having spot-free glassware is part of the marketing.

  3. Christine says:

    Oops I meant to wrote this review on teresas cafe. Apologies!

  4. Christine says:

    Teresas new menu? What is going on?? Not a fan. Our waiter tonight even mentioned that all of their patrons recently have complained about the menu change and that they will son be renovating the restaurant. NOT a good change. Won’t be returning until their menu improves. So very disappointing

  5. Jim says:

    Have always wanted to check this place out, and three times have been turned away. The first time I didn’t know their hours, and chalked it up to just not checking their website. The second time was a night out with my wife. The bar was packed 3-4 people deep, with a 2 hour wait for a table, and then today I stopped in about 10 minutes before 4. The doors were open and there was someone sitting at the bar. I came in, and the bartender told me they weren’t open. I asked what time they opened, and they said 4… that was in less than 10 minutes. I asked if I just hang out until 4, and she said no. So obviously this place does not want my business. I will never go here again. I’ve tried three times, and have been turned away all three times. There are more beer bar options around that are easier to get to, with better entertainment options. I don’t understand why they don’t open until 4, and to deal with the crowds this place gets on the weekends, it’s just not worth it to me anymore. If you want to deal with the hassle of crowds on the weekend or limited hours during the week, then this is the place for you. I’ll pass from now on.

    • James says:

      Wow – I was there a few nights ago and our bartender was absolutely miserable and rude. I watched him wait on other customers too and he was just as abrupt and rude. I never found the bartenders here very friendly but love the food and wine/beer selection so put up with the lack of friendliness. The other night was too much for us and we decided to stay away from Teresa’s Next Door for awhile (or at least until management holds some customer service training for its staff).

  6. Rodger S. says:

    Have been to Teresa’s a few times in the past and have tried hard to like it. The atmospehere is great for Wayne but after last night and looking at a few of the below reviews – I realize the issue. Since it is always my wife and I, we sit at the bar. Food = good, Bartender = worst. He is always there and has never failed to have the attitude of a rude pompous jerk. My wife and having both been in the biz (here and around the country) and are always stunned at the attitude. Not only did he do it to us but the people next to us…interesting if the owners knew what he is costing them in goodwill and $$$ maybe they would have him work the service bar for his and their clients benefit. We decided to leave and spend our $100 for dinner somewhere else – it was a pleasure not feeling obligated to tip him for more than 2 drinks.

    • thedogatemyhomework says:

      I’ve always liked the menu there but adding to Rodger’s story: some of the bartenders can be obnoxiously picky about who qualifies for a special glass to go with their beer. I understand that the Belgian glasses are expensive. Trust me: we are adults and know how to be careful with them.
      Have they done anything about the noise in the place? The hard tile on the floor has always made everything ten times louder than it has to be.

    • Ed says:

      Just got back from a trip to Brussels and had the same experience with most of the bartenders there. Maybe it’s part of the atmosphere. :)

      • Not a native Main Liner says:

        I have to disagree. My experience with bartenders in Belgium, in the countryside outside Brussels, is the direct opposite.

        They were friendly and helpful, not at all pompous jerks (two great descriptive words, wish I would have used them in my review above), and not at all like the bartender in TND on weekend nights.

  7. Jane Marie says:

    Stopped in for a few beers, got talked into staying for dinner by the bartender and so glad we did. We went in as a large group, but many had to leave until there were just 5 of us. We wound up getting a ridiculous amount of food and beer and passing it all around. I love good beer, but I’m not as well versed as some beer snobs and I get tired of the aloof attitude of some of the places in the city when you ask about the beers, but the staff here was knowledgable without being uppity know-it-all’s. It was nice to be able to ask questions and learn instead of being afraid to look stupid.

  8. livipantz says:

    bar tender has no personality which was very off-putting to we 3 ladies last time. have been there in the past with a couple other friends and this seems to be a repeating phenomenon at TND. food was fresh/intriguing/fun/different/very good. price fair. I enjoyed trying beer from my favorite brewery, Weyerbacher, and loved the food it was paired with. my friends loved their dishes as well. atmosphere was cramped, unfriendly (patrons and staff) and lively, service adequate. I only go in about 2xs a yr and haven’t had to wait long for a spot to sit. I would visit a lot more if I felt welcomed

  9. Kelly says:

    This place is A-M-A-Z-I-N-G.

    and that is all I have to say.

  10. Carl says:

    Great beer, but horrible service. The arrogance that emanates from behind the bar is staggering and unjustified. I have lived all over the country and have never been confronted by such hubris at a bar. This place only survives because it has no competition in the area. If this was in Philly it would close its doors for lack of patronage. It is pathetic that these sad little Main Line servants assume they are of a select minority that is privy to a knowledge of beer that can easily be attained through a few pleasant trips to Monk’s and a free membership at beeradvocate.com.

  11. Jackie says:

    My boyfriend and I decided to try this place on a whim, because we had heard good things from friends living in Wayne. Overall, very nice atmosphere, although seating is a little squished. I got the butternut squash soup with shimp and leek salad, while my boyfriend got the cuban sandwich and asparagus salad. Although the portions are tiny, the food is absolutely amazing. They have such original dishes that you cannot find any where else!

  12. Corey says:

    Terrible Service.

  13. D says:

    The staff is far too aloof at TND. The food at any other place on the street is not nearly the same caliber, but the staff at both the boathouse and christophers is more attentative.

  14. Frank says:

    Ate there again over the holidays. I’m starting to find myself there at least once a week. It’s nice to have a bar in town that doesn’t deal with the kiddie drama (see above) I love watching the youngsters get mad when they realize that it is not a frat house.
    I love their menu, but I have to admit I go for the specials (and the beer…mainly the beer)
    the specials are usually crazy and dare you to try new things.

  15. Frank says:

    Had dinner “Next Door” over the weekend, and while the meal was amazing, (the menu is really different than everyhting else in the area) the beer selection was ridiculous! They have stuff I haven’t seen since I was overseas. All the correct glassware was the topper. I love it when people appreciate not just the food or drink, but the pairing of the two as well. Great place and great meal.

  16. Lexie says:

    Went here for breakfast. Waitress was attentive and pretty good. They gave us each a sticky bun before our meal which seemed like it was fresh out of the oven and very delicious. I had the french toast and it was very good. I think overall it deserves 4 out of 5 stars. The only thing is the menu could use some work.

  17. John Constantine says:

    As a San Franciscan, I visited Teresa’s “Next Door” with a local and was WOW’d by the excellent service we got from Andy, the wonderful selection of beers and wines and the emnu (mussels were great!). This is a jewel that the people of Wayne should covet and keep in business!
    Congratualtions, Teresa!!!

  18. Bru says:

    A pub without TVs. What a concept.

  19. Zaphod says:

    TND needs a freakin’ website. Come on guys, get on it already! I’d like to know what’s currently on tap before I drive all the way out there…

    It’s 2008, get with it.

  20. Teresa says:

    I have really tried to like this place. But every time I go I vow I will not go back. I have had the food numerous times and it is mediocre at best. The beer prices and serving sizes are insulting. I ordered a 16oz pint of one of the hand pump beers and it was about 3/4 full. Since most of the volume of a pint glass is at the top the advertised 16oz beer turned out to be about 10oz. That is simply wrong. It’s unfortunate, the place had potential but it really lacks character and substance.

  21. Tracey says:

    I was there recently for a happy hour with some co-workers but may only return in a much smaller group. After we took up too many stools at the bar, we asked if we could move to a table. 3 different employees needed to be consulted before we were given the OK to move two tables together to accomodate our group. After more of our friends joined us, they would not allow us to get another table. We had to squeeze more chairs around the tables we had. Some people had to stand because there was not enough room for us, although there were empty tables near by. I work at a restaurant so I understand that it’s not the greatest when a large group of people are only drinking, but we ordered appetizers. We probably would have stayed for dinner if we weren’t basically asked to leave. I found the service at Freehouse down the street much more friendly.

  22. Heather says:

    I have been to Theresa’s several times since it has been open. I am super laid back and don’t mind too much attitude, but I am finally over the service at Theresa’s. They are rude and don’t seem to care. It will be interesting to see if they will be able to keep it up…I will be at Monk’s eating better food.

  23. Critic007 says:

    To be quite honest, I didn’t think this place was anything to write home about. They have a great drink selection and somewhat enteraining menu (who doesn’t serve short ribs these days), but for what Teresa’s is – a somewhat played up watering hole with some brick on the wall (its main line, not nyc) and a mediocre layout (railroad style?)the media and neighborhood have all gotten a little too excited. I felt that the bartenders were rude and not in the least bit welcoming. One would think that if they wanted their bar/pub to succeed, they would employ some decent staff. As far as the beer selection goes… fantastic.. five stars – BUT… who really wants to be served by rude people. Lets face it, this place isn’t fooling anyone, its an independently owned establishment that has the feel and welcome of a chain. Management needs to handle the bar staff or it could go on what the famed eatery blog Eater.com calls deathwatchhhh (a term used to catagorize establishments that they think will close in the near future for one reason or another).

    I can’t see this place being open for more than another year – not without a new bar staff.

  24. Liz says:

    Went there the Friday before Valentine’s Day and it was great! Terrific beer selection and a great menu. My husband had a steak special and I had the steak frites, which was delicious. Not too pricey, although it can be if you order a couple expensive beers.

    We had a 45 minute wait and walked around Wayne while we waited. The hostess called my cell phone right on time and we headed over to the restaurant and were seated promptly.

    My only complaint is the noise level… the restaurant could definitely use more soft surfaces to absorb all the chatter.

  25. Joe says:

    TND is one of my favorite restaurants in the area. My only regret is that I’ve never tried anything but the mussels. They are so delicious, I haven’t ventured beyond the 4 types of mussels on the menu. No need to. As for beer…well lets just say TND is what I picture my local bar in heaven to be like.

  26. Tim says:

    I love a great beer selection, so I was able to talk my wife and another couple into checking this place out. My first selection of beer was turned down and so was my second. I had to settle for a Duvel which is fine. I then tried to go to the bathroom and I felt like Barry Sanders trying to cut and weave through people to get there. The bathrooms are quite unique though. The food was average, the noise level is way too high. Just a bunch of people yelling it seemed like. If you want to go to a bar and have a good meal with a great beer(in stock) then try TJ’s in Paoli. I’ve never had a bad experience in anyway, but I can say that I probably won’t go back to Theresa’s Next Door

  27. Sean says:

    My wife and I tried to take her parents there for dinner last Saturday after seeing a movie. My wife and I have had many wonderful meals there. It was early afternoon, around 4:30PM. My in-laws wanted to sit at a booth, have a drink and check out the menu before we committed to eating there. The hostess and waistress were very rude and unaccomodating. Apparently the tables are for people who are ordering food, regardless if the place is busy or not. We ended up eating dinner there but they weren’t willing to give my in-laws 5 minutes to decide. Very rude staff and I probably won’t eat there again.

  28. Sally says:

    Took my husband there for our anniversary. He’s a huge fan of a great beer selection so he was thrilled. The food was good but we especially loved the mussels and the variety of cheese platters. Our waiter was extremely knowledgeable about beer – what we might like, how the different beers are made – obviously loved what he was doing so it was fun to ask him for recommendations. My only complaint (like many others) was with the hostesses – they were rude, especially for a quiet Tuesday night where there wasn’t a big crowd.

  29. Dave says:

    Was surprised a little on Saturday. Was going to just order something off the menu. However, I went with the BBQ Short rib with frites and jalapeno slaw with texas toast. It was fantastic! Washed it down with Victory Hop Wallop. Service was very good too.

  30. Dan says:

    I must admit, I am a regular. However, they surprised me the other night, as usually their food is good, but most likely wood not be described as haute-cuisine (I go for the beer mostly). I ordered one of the specials consisting of seared ahi, caviar in a balsamic reduction, and pan-fried goose liver. Now, the portions weren’t huge but at any other restaurant that could be a 30-40 dollar entree. It was $15!! And it was terrific.

  31. JP says:

    If you love beer, this is the place to go. I used to be able to walk to The Flying Pig and hated to have to move. I hate to say it, but this place is better. I can walk to TND. No smoke and the food is excellent. The Drunkin Mussels are the best, hamburger is good (the Pig’s is better), cheese trio is great. Have not tried it yet but there is an amazing cheese selection on the back of the menu. The beer focus and selection is amazing. Do not miss the Mahrs Brau. It is as good as in Bamburg. The beer is supplied by my favorite beer store, the beer yard. The noise is bad, but if you love beer you will overlook it!

  32. Mary says:

    NICE place and GREAT beer (and wine). Wayne definitely needs a place like this. Interior is very Soho, very chic. Beautiful bar, perfect lighting and wonderful atmosphere. DO NOT MISS THIS PLACE.

  33. Local Couple says:

    Dodged the crowds spilling onto the sidewalk waiting for tables for the past several months and decided to take the plunge this past Saturday. The hostess offered a 45 minute wait so we made our way to the bar and found 2 seats together, nice start! Asked the bartender to describe a specific beer on tap and got hit with the attitude, “What do you want me to say!” Uh oh, so much for friendly neighborhood spot. The we tried ordering food and my wife wanted to substitute a veggie for the potatoes, “That isn’t allowed.” It took a discussion with the manager to finally get ‘approval’ for the substitution. Huh? Nice evening, they could try to loosen up and be friendly…nice that the staff at the Pub and Christopher’s know us by name and is always friendly….keeps us coming back. TND could go from hot to cold pretty quickly, like their neighbor the Wooden Iron unless they fix the attitude.

  34. Leslie says:

    Has anyone griping about the wait on a Friday or Saturday (a common phenomenon to encounter on a weekend night when going out) considered trying TND Sunday thru Thursday? I have been several times and have never had to wait for a table.

  35. Steve Jeltz says:

    What a great addition to downtown Wayne…the mussels have always been fresh, tender & meaty in the 4x I’ve ordered them — “drunken” is probably my favorite version here. The frites are how they should be — nice and crispy & always served promptly so they arrive nice & hot. The beer list is outrageous & the bartenders are knowledgable without coming off like cocky beer snobs.

    Design/decor is attractive but as mentioned before, the place can be super loud (even at less than full capacity)

  36. Mike says:

    Don’t go here!!! I want it all for myself. Seriously, if you are looking for good beer, 24 taps, and great food you can’t pass up TND. The service was excellent, the Rodenbach Grand Cru on tap was outstanding and the food was delicious. Go to TND!!!

  37. Elisa says:

    Beer selection was great. Food was good…but the hostess situation is horrible. When I checked in with the hostesses to see how much longer I was told they they had just given away our table. The girls told me there is a 3 call rule, once they call your cell phone 3 times then they give away your table. NO ONE EVER ASKED ME FOR A PHONE NUMBER!!! Who were they calling 3 times? They did not have an answer. We were sitting at the bar in plain sight the entire time. They were not apologetic at all.

  38. deborah sikora says:

    Have tried to go here 4 times. Always a minimum of 45 minute wait for two people, even when there are multiple empty tables in clear view. Hostess staff of three girls(!!!) need to get it together. Shades of John Harvard: too many hostesses who don’t have a clue how to seat people for maximum revenue.

  39. Dave says:

    Had dinner last night. The bratwurst sandwich was outstanding. I don’t think it a regualr menu item. Beer was great as always. Had the Sierra Nevada Anniversary and Weyerbacher Slam Dunk. Great service from Gina too!

  40. David McDuff says:

    I’ve enjoyed both brunch and dinner at TND. Please visit McDuff’s Food & Wine Trail for full details of each:

    Sunday Brunch at Teresa’s Next Door
    Teresa’s Next Door Revisited.

  41. andy mark says:

    The taquitos were excellent. The kitchen staff appears to be mostly Mexicon so I’m not surprised…finally a restaurant (albeit a bit unlikely since it’s billed as a
    Belgian beer hall) that serves great Mexican food! Recommended highly and the 26 beers on tap are off the hook.

  42. Matt says:

    Outstanding beer selection adding to the murderer’s row of western Main Line (TJ’s, Flying Pig and Drafting Room) beer establishments. There simply is no excuse to order your Bud’s and “Lager’s” anymore. Some of the best beer in the world is here (and a lot of it is actually brewed in PA). TND has a very nice interior with no TV’s and a long bar. Style is reminiscent of Frank Lloyd Wright to me in materials (think PA Bluestone). My only two complaints are that is can be very loud on the weekends, I assume due to the room configuration and the fact that every surface in the place is a ‘hard’ surface; secondly the service and food is somewhat uneven. When it’s good, it’s great, but I have had some less than stellar servers and an occasional miss on the menu. That being said they seem to be growing into the place well and I imagine TND will be here for years to come.

    ..and now they even have brunch

  43. SourRedGuy says:

    Lets talk BEER. Teresa’s N.D. is part of my beer triad on the Main Line(TJ’s Everyday and Flying Pig included). If great beer is your thing this place is not to be missed. The selection is top notch. They lean heavy on the belgian side but come through with a good variety of micros and hard to find, out of area beers. On my last visit they were pouring Pliny the Younger (tough find in PA) and Rust Belt from Sprague Farm Brew Works. The bottle selection is extensive enough to keep any beer geek wanting to order another. The bartenders were fairly knowledgable about their taps and service was 1st rate eventhough it was a busy night. As for the food, I have only had the mussels. They were full of flavor, not fishy and very fresh. Lastly, I was happy to see it is non smoking. You can smell and taste your food and beer, no burning eyes and you don’t smell like an ashtray when you leave. If your love to explore beer this place is a must stop.

  44. Christopher says:

    On a design scale, a “10”. On a food scale, a “10”. On a service scale, a “10”. The muscles rock! The salads rock! And for those of us that can not stand the oafish behavior of football fans…..the new Sunday afternoon/evening meal joint(and BEER joint).

  45. lisa says:

    i went to Teresa’s next door with my friends for lunch the other day. all three of us ordered saladbecause we are not big meat eaters and none of us liked them. the service was good and all but i wouldnt go back.

  46. Jack says:

    Went there last weekend. Very, very good. Had the mussels and frites. No need to drive into the city to go to Monk’s anymore.

  47. Jessie says:

    A great new addition and long awaited as it was under construction so long but you can see the efforts have paid off – it’s very attractive. But, the slate floors and surfaces make it a deafening dining experience – even at half capacity it’s hard to hear others at the table. Hard to argue for carpet over the beautiful floor but sound absorbers are sorely needed (and wouldn’t hurt in the original Teresa’s Cafe, either). That said, great food and service, Andy and team continue to do a great job.

  48. Carol says:

    Simply the best addition to Wayne night life! Great atmosphere, unsurpassed beer selection, delicious and unique fare, fabulous service.

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