Monday, January 20, 2020

The Social on Friendly

The Social on Friendly has been many things over the years - Ham's and Madhatter to name a few - but lucky for us, the restaurant has a brand new head chef who's doing some very exciting shake-ups to the menu. The Social sits conveniently between the Sunset Hills and Westerwood neighborhoods in Greensboro, and it offers incredibly delicious food that's very reasonably priced. The ample bar, numerous TVs, wine offerings and craft beer selection make The Social an ideal hangout for millenials, though people of any age will enjoy it. Their plan is to slowly introduce more tapas and small plates, and offer less entrees. Based on my experience here last week, I can definitely see myself becoming a regular.

My friends and I started with a lot of appetizers, since they all sounded pretty irresistible. The Bangin' Shrimp lives up to its name. About a dozen shrimp are lightly breaded and fried, and tossed in a slightly spicy, slightly sweet house bangin' sauce. The shrimp are large, super tender and cooked perfectly. The crispy crust even retained its crunchy texture after being drizzled with the sauce. Scallions offer a nice bite and color.
Bangin' Shrimp
Brussels Sprouts are truly having a moment. They're one of my favorite things to cook at home, and one of my favorite sides to get at restaurants. These Crispy Brussels were flash fried and incredibly tender - not a tough cabbage in the bunch! They're tossed with Bacon and Parmesan, which make everything better, and drizzled with a tangy balsamic vinegar reduction. These are difficult to share.
Crispy Brussels
Crispy Green Tomatoes are a pretty presentation, feautring buttermilk-breaded, thickly sliced green tomatoes. They're sprinkled with creamy, tangy goat cheese, crispy bacon, scallions and bangin' sauce. The acid from the tomato, creaminess from the goat cheese and spice from the sauce make this a nearly perfect bite. These are particularly tasty, not greasy, and like many of their apps, could almost suffice as a full meal.
Crispy Green Tomatoes
Chicken Tender fans will lose their mind for The Social's rendition. These tenders are thick, moist and enormous. There's a lovely crust on the outside that clings to your choice of dipping sauce (we tried all three) - ranch, BBQ and...that's right...bangin'! These are extremely satisfying for kids and adults alike.
Chicken Tenders
The Chef's Seasonal Catch sounded awesome to many people in my group. Jerk Salmon with a Strawberry Balsamic sauce was cooked to perfection. The fish was moist, tender and boasted authentic Jerk flavors. The sweetness of the strawberry and the tanginess of the balsamic made this a beautifully well-rounded dish. I got to choose two sides to accompany the salmon, so I opted for rich, cheesy grits and a side spinach salad, complete with radishes, carrots and tomato. Both sides were high-quality.
Chef's Seasonal Catch - Jerk Salmon
A meal for me isn't complete without a little something sweet at the end, so we opted for the featured dessert: homemade Chocolate Pudding. And you can tell that it was homemade. It was thick in texture but light and not too rich in flavor - just perfect so that you can enjoy the whole dish. Fresh whipped cream is always a great addition, and the chocolate chips on top added a nice crunch. I swore I tasted something similar to a toasted marshmallow, because I got a major s'mores vibe, but the chef insisted it was just high-quality ingredients. I'd like to dip graham crackers in this though, and do my own riff on a s'more.
Dessert special - Chocolate Pudding
I am so excited to see these changes at The Social, and even more excited for what I know will be a successful "new beginning" and re-branding for the restaurant. They offer brunch on the weekend, and I am eager to try their Huevos Rancheros and their plethora of brunch cocktails. If you've dined here in recent months or years, you definitely need to return - it's different, and it's better. You won't be disappointed.
Some of the best people you'll ever meet.

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