We’ve been meaning to make it to Deagan’s in Lakewood for dinner for eons. We were already on the West side from a late afternoon trip to Dave and Buster’s, so we decided to take advantage of our location. We were glad we did.
We arrived at 6:00pm on a Friday night and got the last open table. We were given menus–including a kids menu for Jonathan–and our drink order was taken quickly.
Deagan’s has an excellent selection of draft beers, making for a difficult decision. I ordered the Green Flash Red IPA ($5). It was perfectly balanced between the hops and bittersweet caramel from dark roasted malt.
The décor is warm, with high wooden ceilings and plenty of thick, dark wood in the chairs and tables as well. The lighting was perfect, just dark enough to feel relaxed and intimate but bright enough to clearly see your food and surroundings.
Deagan’s has a large variety of small bar snacks and appetizers. Jonathan ordered a deviled egg ($3) and I had a Day oyster ($2.75). Jonathan loved his egg and was kind enough to share some with me. It was overflowing with filling, a tangy mix of lake erie creamery goat cheese, yolk, and sharp mustard. The oyster was unbelievably mild, and the mango sorbet and fresh sofrito (chopped up tomatoes, other veggies and spices) made for perfect counterpoints. For anyone who’s never tried an oyster, the subtle flavors on this version would make for an excellent first one.
We love charcuterie plates and appreciated that Deagan’s allows for customization. We had the moody blue, a brie and prosciutto ($12). We really enjoyed the subtle smokiness of the blue cheese, and the brie was the creamiest, mildest version we’ve ever had. The accompaniments and prosciutto were excellent as well. Deagan’s might be one of our favorite places in town for charcuterie, especially since Bar Cento had largely loaves and pates last time we visited.
Sarah had the spicy shrimp tacos for her entrée ($9). Despite these being under “small plates,” they felt like a full entrée without a side. The tacos were stuffed with sharply spiced (but not overly hot), perfectly cooked shrimp and avocado. They had a distinct Indian spicing to me, perhaps partially because of the micro cilantro.
I took a risk on the veggie burger sliders ($10). I don’t usually like packaged veggie burgers, which are often a strange combination of TVP (a byproduct of soybean oil production often used in animal feed) and fake grill flavor. The waitress assured me, though, that these were homemade. They were excellent, nicely seared on the outside with a satisfying garbanzo bean mixture as the base. The thinly sliced onions and spiced mayo provided a good, sharp counterpoint, and even the buns were well-made and rich tasting. The truffled romano fries were also great, crispy and tasty with plenty of large shavings of cheese and subtle truffle flavor.
Jonathan also enjoyed his medium cooked burger ($5). Most places would give the kids a frozen or pre-cooked patty even if the adults got fresh, but their asking for a doneness on the kids’ burger clearly shows that they keep their high standards up for everyone.
Our service was excellent. The only complaint we might have is noise. The music in the background was all but inaudible due to the sounds of conversation, which seems more amplified than absorbed by the open floor plan. That said, we were still able to hear each other talk, and most of the time I was far more focused on the tastiness of the food and beer than on any background conversations.
We had no room for dessert, but might try it the next time we visit.