Iron Abbey, Horsham, PA – A Review

by artfuldiner on May 28, 2015

in Artful Diner Review, Opinion, Pennsylvania, Wining and Dining

Iron Abbey

680 North Easton Road (Route 611)

Horsham, Pennsylvania

(215) 956-9600

Iron Abbey - BarJoined at the hip to the Na’Brasa Brazilian Steakhouse, Iron Abbey not only shares the same proprietors, but the same kitchen as well. The Abbey, however, goes its own way. Billing itself as a gastropub – a pub or bar that focuses as much on the quality of the food as it does the quantity of the liquid libations – it not only tempts diners with 40 beers on draft, 300 diverse bottled brews and a pretty decent wine list, it also serves up some damn good cuisine as well.

The menu ranges from well-prepared “pub grub” to first-rate array of sandwiches to several excellent entrées to a number of dynamite desserts. There is even a “create your own” meat and cheese board.

Iron Abbey - NachosIron Abbey is one of those local happy-tappy-cum-sports-bars (live soccer matches) that always seems like a great destination – for lunch, for dinner… or for a quiet afternoon snack and brewskie. If this latter prospect appeals, trust me, you can’t go wrong with the nachos. House-made tortilla chips are smothered in an addictively gooey combo of three cheeses, topped with pico de gallo, black beans, sliced jalapeños, and accompanied by ramekins of sour cream and guacamole. Delicious… But beware those jalapeños; they are plenteous… AND plenty hot!

Iron Abbey - ScallopsAt the opposite end of the culinary spectrum, you have the day boat diver scallops, a dinner mainstay. The four pan-seared bivalves – prepared to a picture-perfect golden brown – are crispy on the outside, lusciously rich and buttery at the core, and presented luxuriating on a sensuous seabed of wild mushroom-asparagus risotto. A top-notch presentation.

Iron Abbey - Beef Short Rib… And the Angus beef short rib is equally up to the mark. This is a boneless beef rib presented au jus on a pillow of mashed potatoes festooned with local wild mushrooms and seasonal vegetables. Both tender & succulent and bursting with flavor, the beef short rib is yet another example of the kitchen’s versatile prowess.

On the other hand, if you are incurably carnivorous, you can’t afford to pass up the Na’Brasa Brazilian Steakhouse Rotisserie Sampler (served 5:00 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. only).  This little number had the entire room salivating whenever it made an appearance and sorely tempted all the members of our party. It is comprised of top sirloin, flank steak, sausage, and chicken wrapped in bacon all served with a mound of mashed potatoes and peppers confit. Definitely high on everyone’s bucket list.

Among other menu items – appetizers, sandwiches, pub grub – there are a number of interesting options… To start things off, for example, you might consider the garlic hot shrimp. The crustaceans are sautéed in hot sauce, white wine, and sherry rife with sliced garlic accompanied by an even more pungent garlic bread. Very tasty, and the shrimp are at the peak of good health… However, as you may have guessed – and I do not exaggerate – there’s enough garlic here to keep the vampires permanently at bay. Not for the faint of heart… or appetite.

Iron Abbey - Brussels Sprouts AppMore to my liking is the prelude of Brussels sprouts. The sprouts are roasted with bits of chorizo sausage and the presentation embellished with thin slices of Granny Smith apple and slathers of pimento cheese. I realize that Brussels sprouts are something of an acquired taste (my wife, for instance, who thoroughly enjoys almost all members of the cabbage family, will only ingest a Brussels sprout under extreme torture). However, in this case, the sprouts are perfectly roasted (not boiled to death), and spruced up with spicy chorizo, while apple slices and pungent pimento add a host of complementary/contrasting colors, tastes and textures.

Iron Abbey - Shepherd's PieThe shepherd’s pie is another personal fave. The dish is offered up as either a single (appetizer) or double (entrée). The Abbey’s rendition features ground beef rather than lamb, which I prefer, and peas & carrots topped with Pecorino Romano mashed potatoes. It was a bit on the dry side, and a tad salty, but still quite satisfying.

Iron Abbey - Pork TacosWhen it comes to pub grub, the fish & chips – beer battered cod – is quite excellent. The batter is crisp & light and not at all soggy; and the fish is cooked through and moist and flaky of countenance. Even better, though, in my opinion, is the presentation of pork tacos sided with guacamole, sour cream & lime (pictured).

Iron Abbey - Cabo Chicken BurgerThe Abbey offers up a number of first-rate burgers… but for something a bit different, be sure to try the Cabo chicken burger. Ground chicken breast is combined with diced peppers and onions, grilled, and topped with Monterey jack cheese. Great flavors here; the seasonings are positively addictive… ditto the fries.

But don’t skip dessert… Possibilities include strawberry cheesecake and chocolate mousse parfaits, molten chocolate cake, and the ubiquitous flan. All worthy contenders – except the flan, that is. This particular specimen tasted like it had spent entirely too much time exiled to the back of the fridge.

Iron Abbey - Cheesecake ZangoOn a more positive note, several members of our group were wild about the Cheesecake Xango (pictured) – creamy cheesecake wrapped in a flaky pastry crust embellished with a generous dollop of vanilla ice cream. A definite winner in the sweet endings department.

Iron Abbey - Peanut Butter BombI, however, find it difficult to resist any possible combination of peanut butter and chocolate. And the Abbey’s “Peanut Butter Bomb” – creamy peanut butter tucked into a milk chocolate shell and topped with nuts – proved to be as delicious as it was photogenic. A fabulously satisfying conclusion to any meal.

Before departing Iron Abbey, however, be sure to pay a call at their loft, a handy shop where one may purchase a variety of beers, cheeses, coffees, and other provisions.

Bon Appétit!


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