Talk about living up to a name.
Suburban Restaurant & Beer Garden, in Exton, is surrounded by the kind of quiet, bucolic, maze-like, affluent sprawl people dream about.
Situated in a softly lit square surrounded by condos, nature walks and rowhouses, Suburban has the kind of farm-to-table concept that is popular with restaurants that are so close to their sources. But also mixed in is a relaxed, informal German ‘bierhaus’ charm.
Chef Eric Yost waves the farm-to-table flag proudly, decorating the walls with pictures of the farms that source the restaurant and going through a pig a week for house-made schnitzels and brats, among other meat dishes. He also claims to have invented fried deviled eggs ($8), a favorite on the small-plates menu. And, given the edge this dish has in taste and texture over similar versions around town, we’re inclined to believe him. The breading and the crunch on his eggs are spectacular, and the porcini mouse filling is delicately smooth and tasty.
The cheese curds ($9) are another addictive dish. Fried to the consistency of French fries, they remain creamy and mild but semi-solid inside, and the salty flavor plays nicely with the garlic dip served on the side. The pierogies ($9) by themselves are excellent morsels, caramelized to perfection and stuffed full of cheddar, but the addition of savory house-made kielbasa sends this dish over the top.
House-made pasta is another Suburban strong suit. If you find yourself indulging in the house-made schnitzels ($22) or bratwursts ($14), definitely pair them up with the Dutch cabbage and noodles ($10): The tender pasta and the mild brininess of the cabbage offer an excellent counterbalance to the smokiness of the meats.
But if you’re looking for some excitement outside of the German wheelhouse, the dandan noodle ($18) is an excellent dish. More like spaghetti and meat sauce, this Asian-inspired selection is spicy with chili oil but tempered with the sweetness of ground peanuts. The hearty house-made noodles really soak up the flavors for a satisfying dish.
Sure, it’s a trek from the city — but if you want to see the ’burbs at their best while feasting on local produce and proteins, make the trip to Suburban.
If you go:
Suburban Restaurant and Beer Garden
570 Wellington Square, Exton
11:30 a.m.-2 a.m.