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Sick of the same old thing at chain restaurants, Amy Knox and her husband Mark pay a visit to Cork Wine & Tapas in search of something different.

A First Time Visit to Cork


amy knox author photo
by Amy Knox

We are all creatures of habit in some way or another.  Personally, I have the habit of going to the chain restaurants, like the Olive Garden, Chili’s, TGIF, etc.  I go there for what my husband (Mark) and I call “safety meals.”  We call it this because we know we will get the same meal from a chain restaurant every time, no matter what.  It doesn’t matter what town or state you’re in, it will be the same meal every time.

Recently, we decided to leave our comfort zone with a visit to Cork Wine and Tapas.  Located at 90 Front St. in the New Bedford downtown historic area, it’s easy to find, and they offer valet parking (space is limited in that area).

cork crab cakes new bedford guide
The Crab Cakes at Cork.

As I enter the building I notice the period-aged wooden floor, big beams, and stone siding, along with the contemporary decor lighting. We were seated right away in a corner, which was nice and cozy. We wanted to sample a few plates, and the tapas menu is perfect for that; I ordered the pan seared scallops, and crab cakes, and Mark ordered the open faced lobster roll. While we waited I did want a snack.  They don’t hand out crackers or popcorn while waiting like the big chain restaurants do, but I gladly paid $5 for the bread and a dipping sauce that was offered, which was delicious.

The meals were neatly presented and came to the table piping hot.  The pan seared scallops were served over a bed of jasmine rice with macadamia and sweet soy sauce; the crab cakes consisted of crab meat served over cool cucumber and avocado salad with roasted red pepper and corn remoulade.  Mark enjoyed his open-faced lobster roll, which was made from lobster meat tossed in lemon vinaigrette served over a toasted baguette with lettuce and zesty red pepper. All three dishes were fresh, the flavors mixed well and the portions were just right…which left enough room to try one of Cork’s deserts.

chocolate lava cake cork new bedford guide
The Chocolate Lava Cake.

I ordered the chocolate lava cake, and it was exactly as how I thought it would be. Warm chocolate sauce flowed from the center of the moist cake, surrounded on the sides was fresh whipped cream, vanilla ice cream (per my request) and raspberries. Mark opted for his favorite desert; another beer.

Prices from the tapas menu ranged from $6 to $12 and the entrees started at $12.The menu is not overwhelming with choices, but it has enough that you will find something you like. We went on a Friday night at around 6:00 p.m. and sat right down, but when we were leaving around 7:30 p.m. it was really starting to fill up. Overall the place was clean, our waitress was helpful and knowledgeable, and the food was excellent.  Cork provides an unique dining experience that you could never find at a chain restaurant, which is why it is being added to our list of regular places to go.

About amyk75

I am a mother of two that has decided what to be finally, so I have taken courses on freelance writing. I love to read and write, but I love walking with my two German Shorthaired Pointers, finding new restaurants and traveling.

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  1. You left no mention of the wine selections which are amazing !!!

  2. My wife and I also checked out Cork on our first ever visit to New Bedford this past winter and loved every bit of food we tasted. Also ordered a full bottle for us to split and it was excellent as well…Prices were also great and much better than the $20 dinner plate prices offered in comparable places in Boston, etc.

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