Atlantic County Magazine – GACCA Article
Print Date 10.8.2021
By Judy Brenna
A place… where nobody dared to go… the love that we came to know… they call it… Water Dog? Ok, ok, fine, that’s Xanadu, and also, and most importantly, people should absolutely dare to go to Water Dog. Water Dog, in its true form, is “Craft Casual” meets “New York Deli”, also the hottest new venue in AC, and it is, as Bill and Ted would say, most excellent. Located in Bally’s Atlantic City, Water Dog is open 7 days a week, serving breakfast, lunch, dinner and so much more. Let’s break it down, shall we?
The Greater Atlantic City Concierge Association had a fantastic opportunity to visit Water Dog last week to learn about the new venue and what they offer and get a taste of their “experience”. And let me tell you, we had such a great time! From friendly staff ((ginormous shout out to John Connor… (the manager, NOT the character from Terminator), for inviting us!!)) to delicious food and cocktails, Water Dog 100% delivered.
The best thing we took away from the experience is their deep level of diversity. They appeal to any kind of patron, casual and fancy, and everything in between. Their menu items are genuinely and thoroughly thoughtful. First of all, one word: BRUNCH. You should all know me by now, and if you don’t… ((enter Septa Unella of Game of Thrones stage right, bell in toe, “Shame… Shame… Shame”)). Et hem… If you know me, then you know the words brunch and buffet for me are synonymous with heaven and ecstasy. Water Dog serves a bangin’ breakfast / brunchy buffet, serving an array of classic and seasonal offerings, seven days a week, from 8 am to 2 pm. If buffets don’t strike your fancy, fear not, they have a great selection of a la carte items available that will satiate any palate, like fluffy buttermilk pancakes, smoked fish and bagels, avocado toast, and omelettes and breakfast burritos oh my. And what better to wash down your hearty kick start to your day than a fantastic breakfasty cocktail from their signature cocktail menu. And lest we forget, their Pièce De Résistance, bottomless mimosas!
If you’re not a morning person, and you’d rather sleep off your hours the night before on the casino floor playing Mississippi Stud whilst engaging in an extended and colorful conversation with a woman named Dolores, from Bayonne, pop in for a great selection of lunch items. From classic (and deliciously executed) starters, like wings and loaded truffle fries, to Wagyu burgers and Classic Pastrami Sandwiches, to their refreshing Arugula and Peach entrée salad, you really can’t lose. And the variety doesn’t stop there. They have their normal, eclectic appetizers and sandwiches on their dinner menu, but they also offer great, elevated entrees, like their Butter-Poached Lobster Roll, Port-Rosemary Braised Short Ribs, and Truffle Grilled Filet Mignon.
I haven’t even gotten to the most important part: the booze. They have this genius composition of cocktail recipes, cross-promoting local liquor proprietors. And who wouldn’t love booze in a bag? It’s so kitschy and convenient at the same time. Teaming up with local favorite distillery, Little Water, they have a truly creative and unique selection of carefully crafted cocktails, like the Little Water Dog, made with Little Water’s Liberty Rum, and their super refreshing Sea Dog, made with Little Waters’ Gin, fresh lemon juice, Sipsmith Sloe Gin, Sparkling Wine, and a Lemon Twist. Their wine selection is totally approachable for the wine newbie, but also impressive for the aficionado. Plus, they have a cool little section for smoked beverages, with drinks like their Hilltopper, made with Makers Mark, Bourbon Maple Syrup, Smoked Vanilla Bean Stalk, with a dash of Sweet Vermouth. The best part? For every Hilltopper sold, Water Dog will donate $1 to the Community Food Bank of New Jersey. So, they’re not just a new great venue, but they’re a new great venue that gives back.
And lastly, but most definitely not leastly ((as Sister Giovanna from 4th grade involuntarily cringes, which then causes my inner child to involuntarily shudder because #catholiccschoolPTSD)), they have live music playing every Friday and Saturday night from 10 pm to 1 am, with great local line ups. I, for one, am super excited about Dead Reckoning, playing on Saturday, October 30th. Check out their calendar!
Oh, I’m so sorry, did I forget to mention they offer Happy Hour, from 4 pm to 6 pm, seven days a week? Well they do. They offer a great selection of half-priced appetizers, $4 Bud Light Drafts, $5 selection of wines by the glass, and crazy good discounts off their signature cocktail menu. Shame on me for not mentioning sooner.
My overall assessment to this new addition to Bally’s? Water Dog is a carefully constructed gem in our city. It’s your go-to restaurant for a casual date night, brunch with friends, a gathering spot for sporting events, live music or to host a large party celebrating a special occasion or event. Water Dog has it all. So, my recommendation? Go, check it out, and see for yourself. And for the sake of humanity and feeding the hungry, order a Hilltopper, or five, or ten, ((and of course call an Uber)), and support the Community Food Bank of New Jersey. And then when you’re done, pull on your lederhosen, and have the Uber driver bring you down to ((#shamelessplug)) the Deauville Inn, in Strathmere, the week of October 18th for our very own OkDEAUberfest, with authentic German beer and food specials, and a Biergarten on The Beach Bash, October 21st from 2 pm to 7 pm. Tickets available at www.deauvilleinn.com ((devilish grin)).
Until next week, folks… #stayjerseystrong!