Three Birds Tavern is a Different Animal

Everyone remembers Limey’s on 4th Street. It was a place where the locals could congregate, have a drink and maybe play some pool or watch football. The food was not notable (mostly fried bar food) and the place looked a bit weathered.

Robin King came along and changed all of that. Robin was an event planner for the American Heart Association, and one can tell from spending any time with her; she runs a tight ship at Three Birds Tavern.

The first thing I noticed was the outdoor seating in the front. It was a former playground, but now has new concrete pavers and outside seating. The entire place has been updated with new paint, a new roof and appears to be spotlessly clean.

The menu is radically different also, in the best way. It was important to Robin to have people view Three Birds as a dining destination and not just a place to drink. The new menu (executed by a former Café Alma chef) ranges from a refreshing composed cheese plate (amply portioned) to Irish Beef in Guinness, made with sirloin tips and topped with pastry ($8 for a lunch portion and $12 for a dinner portion).

I tried the cheese plate and one of the new chardonnays on the wine list. (Yes, there is a wine list now.) It was such a pleasant surprise to be able to order a decent glass of wine there. I used to avoid going there because at Limey’s the selections were limited to beer, mixed drinks and some really bad wine that was not worth ordering. The cheeses were outstanding and not inexpensive choices.  The selections on the cheese plate change with availability, but on this day I had something that tasted like a Parmagiano Reggiano, a blue cheese that tasted like Maytag and a (not overly) sharp cheddar. It came with melon and apple slices. There was also a very good quality dried ham, similar to a prosciutto, but a little drier. All this was served with lightly toasted pita wedges and they are happy to bring a selection of crackers also. The price of this plate changes with the availability of the cheeses they bring in, so you have to ask.

They also offer mini crab cakes, with a lot of crab and almost no filler. The remoulade sauce with it paired nicely. The flavor was that sweet taste of crab that I was craving. My only minor complaint with them is they were just a touch on the oily side, but still very satisfying. The lunch or appetizer portion is $8 and the dinner portion is larger cakes with cole slaw and jalapeno corn bread toast points for $14.

The featured draught beers include Guinness (of course), Stella Artois, Strongbow Cider and Shock Top Belgian Style White. With Harp also available, they will make you the requisite Black and Tan or Half and Half upon request. There are many other selections available also.

They have a wine dinner coming up with a knockout menu and wines from Zonin on February 8th. At promptly 7pm, the Prosecco will be uncorked and served with antipasto consisting of Italian meats, cheeses, olives and bread. Fettuccine Alfredo will be served, followed by a lamb Osso Bucco and a roasted vegetable platter that includes zucchini flowers. Cream puffs filled with chocolate mousse and zabaglione round out this well constructed menu. It is $50 and I’m sure you probably have to make a reservation to attend.

It was a pleasant surprise visiting the new Three Birds Tavern and I would feel very comfortable going back for lunch with the girls or dinner with my husband. I’m glad to see a neighborhood place that is reaching for quality and true hospitality. Kudos to Robin King.

About elizabeth

Elizabeth Dougherty has been cooking and writing about food intensively for more than ten years. She is the fourth generation of chefs and gourmet grocers in her family with her mother, Francesca Esposito and grandmother, Carmella being major influences in her early cooking years. As a teenager, her family sent her to Europe where she became focused on French and Italian cuisine. She survived a year and half of culinary tutelage under a maniacal Swiss-German chef and is a graduate of NYIT, Magna Cum Laude with a Bachelor’s degree in Hospitality, Business and Labor Relations. Food Nation Radio has won two news awards for content. Broadcasting LIVE each week, nationwide, on and stations around the country.

Check Also

I Finally Found Some Good Pizza in St. Pete

What do you think makes a great pizza?