A local spot built for those spontaneous afternoons when all you can think about is grabbing tall drink by the water.
With striped walls and checkered tablecloths, Merchants River House reflects its casual waterfront setting that begs for hearty American fare and cold brews. While the food is nothing special, with even the Merchants Signature Burger with applewood smoked bacon, white cheddar, caramelized onions, spicy barbecue sauce, and frizzled onions all stacked between a brioche bun lacking virtually any salt, it's the setting that will have locals crowding the outdoor patio in warmer months.
The offerings are standard and simple, falling comfortably within any expectations of the laid back space. Many tables enjoy the 4 Cheese Baked Macaroni and Cheese, loaded with white cheddar, white American, romano, and parmesan cheeses and topped with buttered bread crumbs, which although pleasurable in all the right ways, will not set any culinary records.
The best way to enjoy this bistro is with a neighbor on a warm spring or summer day with a bucket of 6 beers for $32. Again, Merchants River House is not catering to anyone looking for a rare microbrew, but it is providing a setting that reminds one of easier days spent with a Bud on the water.
Ultimately, Merchants River House has mastered the feel of a cheap establishment in a small beach town, with nothing particularly notable except for the unerring, friendly service that makes you feel right at home with the simple pleasures of a burger and beer.