PROCTORSVILLE — Vermont restaurants are known for sourcing local ingredients, so the resulting dishes mirror the landscape in which the food was grown or raised.
Additionally, as a foodie state, new concepts in Vermont are welcomed as quickly as the seasons change.
Owner and General Manager Joe Evans and Executive Chef Kathryn Evans introduced their eclectic TexAsian eatery, Table 19 Restaurant & Bar, on Sept. 1, and they report the concept has been a great success.
Native to Texas, the Evanses have created a revolutionizing cuisine concept that is catching on fast, not only on a local level, but on a national level within metropolitan areas.
Kathryn Evans recalls fond memories of spending family vacations here in the Green Mountains when she was a child. When it came time to consider where she and Joe would raise their family, they chose Vermont for its rural setting with its natural beauty and all it has to offer in the culinary world.
Table 19 Restaurant & Bar is located at 2588 Route 103 in Proctorsville. While waiting for the restaurant’s current location to become available, Joe and Kathryn gained community recognition in Springfield.
“We leased a space at a golf course in Springfield for about a year before we were able to get into the new location,” Kathryn Evans said. “It was under construction. It had been badly damaged from hurricane Irene. When we got in, we rebuilt the entire space inside and out.”
Sprawling lawns lead the way to the entrance of the newly refurbished 3,500-square-foot building. The interior space can accommodate up to 130 people nightly or for an event. The outdoor space can accommodate a much larger event with open-air tents or heated tents.
“We did more than renovate the space, we innovated the space. That’s what makes our restaurant so special,” Joe Evans said. “When customers walk in — they can feel the rustic side of the building, but also the industrial side, with large glass windows that line the high-tech, cutting-edge kitchen, the open layout with the bar strategically placed in the center of the space, and the overall sexy and comfortable atmosphere.”
Kathryn Evans’ TexAsian cuisine is a concept, not a fusion, she said.
“Joe and I have a passion for Texas cuisine; which part of our concept pays homage to,” she explained. “We have stayed absolutely true to Texas cuisine and to Southeast Asian cuisine — Vietnamese and Thai. I have done extensive traveling and training in Southeast Asia over the course of 15 years. I fell in love with the culture and the food, and how the dishes are constructed — how each dish provides health benefits. There is a lot of cross-pollination on both sides of the menu.”
When asked to describe her favorite dishes on each spectrum of her menu, Evans struggled to narrow it down to two dishes.
“My favorite dish on the Texas side of the menu is our ribs,” she said. “The recipe came from my great-great-great-great-grandfather, “RIP” Ford, who was a Texas Ranger and barbecuer. I was able to recreate his barbecue sauce recipe that accompanies our ribs. On the Asian side, Bánh Xèo — it is a Vietnamese thin, crispy, crunchy and salty crêpe made from rice flour and turmeric. It’s filled with beautiful bacon, which we smoke in-house, big shrimp, and it’s served with a spicy dipping sauce made from jalapeños and fish sauce — it hits every note in one elegant dish.”
In addition to the daily dinner menu, she incorporates several specials.
“We have to keep our menu interesting, especially for those who have been returning a few nights a week,” Evans said.
Not only do Evans and her sous chef, Jennifer Cayer, keep the kitchen interesting, “our bartender Cody is always creating something new and special. He is a master at craft cocktails and quite an accomplished chef in his own right. All of our ingredients are fresh — from jalapeño cocktails to lychee nut cocktails.”
The dinner menu and kids’ menu offer something for everyone. There are several symbols on the dinner menu to guide guests through their dining experience — offering gluten-free, vegetarian and vegan options for those with dietary restrictions or who desire a lower caloric option.
“We hope that the community will give us a try, and that we will really wow them with our beautiful space, bar and food,” Kathryn Evans said.
Table 19 Restaurant & Bar is located at 2588 Route 103 in Proctorsville. The restaurant is open for dinner Thursday through Monday from 5 to 9 p.m. For reservations, the restaurant can be reached at 228-8219. For more information visit www.table19vt.com.