By Denise DePaolo

As a former east-sider, I was a regular at The Attic Bar and Grill when it first opened. Since moving to west Sioux Falls, I have definitely missed the spinach dip, burgers, and homemade barbecue sauce. So when I heard they opened a new restaurant adjacent to the original once, I took it as an excuse to revisit the old neighborhood for an early dinner.

Ass’ociates is an addition to The Attic, which can be accessed through the old restaurant, or through its own entrance. I was delighted to find that the interior door is made to look like a bookcase, a la secret passage. Inside, I found a decidedly more grown up concept than the laid-back, family-friendly Attic.

The vibe is dark, a bit upscale, and a little bit sexy. The ceiling is heavily beamed and dripping with a variety of pendant chandeliers. The color scheme is muted and the seating is comfortable, sumptuous, and plentiful. In addition to a row of open-sided booths, circular booths, and tables, one finds seating areas with large, cozy chairs, and a couple of very isolated, fort-like booths in the far back corner. The bar itself was backlit in crimson overlaid with an ornate black pattern. The far side of the bar was anchored by a gigantic cylindrical fish tank.

As a separate concept, I expected to find a separate menu, but it is the same as The Attic’s. However, it had been a while since I had eaten there and there were plenty of new (and old) menu items I hadn’t yet tried. My two friends and I ordered a round of beers. When asked what they had for local brews on tap, our server Brody said they had Fernson Lion’s Paw, so we got that.

From the menu of pastas, sandwiches, and house specialties, we chose the Buffalo Chicken Pizzette, The Country Boy Burger, and The Stoner. As we waited for our food, Brody dropped off a selection of oils and balsamic vinegar to accompany our pizzette. The meal itself followed just a few minutes later.

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Read the full review in the November issue or click here

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