Like that place where everyone knows your name, Bailiwick creates a welcoming atmosphere. Unlike that hallowed hall, however, this gastropub at The Orleans adds some elements that Sam’s place never had: comfortable, contemporary decor, craft beer, a playful menu and music.

Bailiwick is split into two main areas—a lively bar area with a huge graphic dominating a stage, a comfortable Cheers-like bar (but quite a bit bigger) and plenty of TV screens to catch games, plus an area off to the side for pool. The main dining area remains connected to the lounge area, with a brick wall that slightly screens the room. Music flows easily between the spaces, though, making for a nice dynamic.

The beer menu here has plenty of options, with draft brews in a wide range of categories, plus lots of bottles to choose from. Periodically, Bailiwick plans to partner with breweries offering evenings featuring that brewery and adding specials to the drink menus that are sure to tempt. Mix and match four pours from the beer menu for a flight that offers a very satisfactory start to a snack attack or a full meal.

For something completely different, try barrel-aged cocktails like the District with Zacapa 23 rum, a house-made ginger-cinnamon syrup, orange bitters and an orange twist. These flavorful beverages are also available in a flight, and that’s a definite advantage when you want to try them all. A little unusual, but completely worth delving into, are cold-pressed coffee drinks, such as the Cinnamon Punch with RumChata and Modern Times cold-pressed coffee.


Primavera View Gallery

You can eat your way through the menu here tapas-style, trying such goodies as miniature grilled cheese with an oven-roasted tomato soup perfect for dunking the brioche-and-Swiss cuties. So much better than your mom’s. Or maybe corn dogs are more your style, here transformed into tiny carnival bites with smoked sausage, and a flavorful mustard sauce to dip into.

Keep on in that fun vein, if you like, munching on Moody Bleu fries doused in blue cheese sauce and liberally accented with chunks of cheese. Not that into blue cheese? Try some brisket fries or a poutine covering lovely Kennebec potatoes.

For a more hearty meal, Bailiwick offers a couple of Black Angus burgers (and even covers the vegetarians with a black bean burger), plus goodies like a house-smoked beef brisket with horseradish cream, chicken and French toast and a seafood roll with shrimp and crab. The fish and chips plate here is big, with beer-battered halibut and an English pea salad on the side. Primavera, chockful of seasonal veggies, cherry tomatoes and cavatappi pasta, is covered in a lovely, creamy sauce. You can even try a flatbread like the Peking, with roast duck and hoisin sauce.

You might want to round out your meal with some kind of sweets, and the warm toffee cake is sure to satisfy. The swirling sauce is visually pleasing, while ice cream and cake go together perfectly.

Now, doesn’t Bailiwick give you way more than just another tush occupying the seat beside you?

The Orleans, 4 p.m.-1 a.m. Thurs.-Mon., brunch noon 4 p.m. Sat.-Sun. 702.365.7111