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I Went Eating...Close to Midnight

Midnight Tavern 2800 Davis Blvd Naples, FL

Reposted from December 17, 2021

It's 10:30pm last Saturday night. After moving all day (36,000 steps on my pedometer!) and my only meal being a delicious burger at the mighty Lake Park Diner, it was time to get a late night bite to eat. I pulled up to Bayfront, figuring I'd myself while I charged my car, but nary a business that served food was open. There was quite the rowdy bunch at the Cabana bar, but I was feeling more like slumping over a bar with something to eat and observing rather than being part of the hoopla of the hoi polloi. After some internetting I settled on the Midnight Tavern.

It's up on Davis nearly the occasionally useful Old World Market. Whilst its in a strip mall, if you head over to the bar side of the place, it actually is a clean, well-lighted place (Hemingway, anyone?), with modern, white-ish decor. It doesn't suffer from the death by brown furniture so common in places like this, or in places with the word Tavern in them, or in libraries of stuffy rich old men (though to be fair I am partial to the walnut of mid-century modern fame).

I noticed a lot of the patrons were local servers themselves, which in the bar/restaurant world, is usually a good sign. Lots of camaraderie, jokes and drinks made before they are asked for. Big fan. Ignoring the 45 year old man in the corner (likely a dentist. He had a dentist look about him) trying to fondle a woman who made me for sure think he had Oedipal issues, I ordered the Fried Pickles (YOU ALWAYS ORDER FRIED PICKLES WHEN AVAILABLE!) and at the bartenders suggestion, the Buffalo Chicken sandwich, spicy garlic style. Technically that makes it a garlic chicken sandwich and not Buffalo, but I was too tired to argue. I ordered the tater tots on the side as well (Fried potatoes in order of greatness:

  1. Tater Tots

  2. Steak Fries

  3. Traditional McDonald style

  4. Potato Raw Cut Fries (skin on)

  5. Crinkle Cut

  6. Shoestring

  7. Waffle

  8. Sweet Potato

  9. through 1001. Anything else

1002. Seasoned and or curly)

So the order of fried pickles, while tasty, good not great, was enormous. Like 3 jars of vlassic dill chips enormous. Again, tasty, not amazing. Also, for the fried pickle novice, they can get extremely hot, so take note. I don't want you coming to me complaining "I burnt my mouth on this because of you, damn libtard."

Finally the main event, the chicken. It was...enormous. This was the Godzilla, Empire State Building, John Holmes of chicken sandwiches. Excellently fried. The spicy garlic had a hint of sweetness to it that reminded me a bit less hot Nashville Hot Chicken. Well done. Also, tater tots. Perfectly crispy (also..try them in an air fryer at home *chefs kiss").

They also had a nice batch of local beers (big fan of the Ankrolab Simplexity) that fit my exhausted mood that needed to stay far away from the dreaded IPA.

If you need some late night eats, Midnight Tavern. You should go walkin' there, but before Midnight, because they close at Midnight.

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