In the often fickle world of fine dining, few restaurants can boast the longevity of the Pewter Mug, which has been a local landmark since 1970. A stone hearth and deep wood-paneled walls give a relaxed, homey atmosphere, setting the stage for a fine steak and seafood feast.
Although there have been some ownership changes throughout the years, the butcher and bar manager both have been with the Pewter Mug for more than 40 years. Regulars know Bar Manager Pat Murphy as “Murph the Surf,” as he enjoys catching some wave action when he’s not behind the counter. He liberally shares tales from his world safari adventures while mixing up his “Almost World Famous Murph-a-Ritas.”
Butcher and Sous Chef Mike Pilarski works behind the scenes, aging and hand cutting each steak. Pewter Mug serves only Certified Angus Beef and will even cut to order.
Chef/Owner Bernard “BJ” Zarvis has been at the helm of the Pewter Mug since 2010, having previously served some of the world’s top golfers at the Naples National Golf Club. Zarvis is a Stoneybrook resident and invites his Estero neighbors to make the short drive down U.S. 41 to experience top-notch steaks and seafood in the dignified, yet unpretentious, atmosphere of the Pewter Mug.
01. OYSTERS ROCKEFELLER
There’s no sliminess to these oysters, baked on the half shell and sealed in cheesy goodness. This attractive and tasty appetizer is flavored with a succulent sauté of garlic bacon and spinach and finished with crispy, browned provolone cheese.
02. BRAISED ESCARGOT
Snails never tasted so good! Escargot is baked with garlic and shallot Madre D’ Butter, then topped with asiago cheese and Panko bread crumbs. After we scooped the escargot out of each crock, we enjoyed sopping up the garlic butter with toasted bread.
03. SUPER SALAD BAR
Every entree at Pewter Mug comes with a trip to the salad bar, an experience not to miss. The salad bar is housed in its own room and features a variety of salad fixings, breads, cheeses, prepared salads, fruits and vegetables. Often you will find homemade soups, and there is always an ample assortment of oil and vinegar to create a custom salad dressing. I topped my greens with blue cheese crumbles, mushrooms and dried cranberries, drizzled with grape-seed oil and pear chardonnay vinegar.
04. HAND-CUT, CERTIFIED ANGUS STEAKS
Whether you choose prime rib, filet or strip steak, it will be fresh cut with the guaranteed quality of Certified Angus Beef. Try the signature prime ribs blackened or grilled, and order anything from the 8-ounce Prime Minister to the monstrous, 20-ounce Flintstone Cut. All steaks are served with choice of potato and a trip to the soup and salad bar.
05. PAN-SEARED SEA SCALLOPS
Sea scallops are among the seasonal seafood selections offered at the Pewter Mug. This lovely dish stars pan-seared scallops in a rich, lemon butter sauce, encircling a tasty couscous and veggie blend, all accented with halved grape tomatoes. The scallops were tender and succulent and well complimented by the creamy sauce. We also enjoyed some other seafood delights, like shrimp scampi over a bed of angel hair pasta.
06. KEYLIME PIE
Pewter Mug offers a nice assortment of desserts to satisfy the sweet tooth. We were tempted by the Chocolate Madness cake and the Reece’s Peanut Butter Pie, but settled on the lighter Keylime Pie, as it is the only dessert made in house. This Florida classic did not disappoint with its smooth, melt-in-your mouth texture. The tartness was not overpowering, building its flavor from Nellie & Joe’s Famous Keylime Juice.
PEWTER MUG 12300 Tamiami Trail, Naples (239)596-6844 Reservations online: www.pewtermug41.com