Lights — not so dim you strain to read the menu, but not so bright that it feels like a cafeteria. Music — not so low that it’s a subliminal buzzing but not so high you have to shout. Decor — no steel counters or exposed heating ducts, but no gingham bows or Elvis on velvet.
The artwork here is a continuous row of beautifully framed, sepia-toned historical photos of North Canton. Many are shots of the former Hoover plant, which is across the street from the eatery. The result of all this atmospheric balance?
Before you taste one bite, you are already relaxed and content, a condition only heightened by well-trained servers who seem eager to please.
The menu seems inviting, but executive chef Adam Crawn encourages diners to try one of his daily specials.
He said his team of chefs are so talented that they are constantly dreaming up new and exciting dishes.
“We have one or two seafood specials a night, a steak, a chicken. We’re focusing more on an authentic Italian style, or a rustic style,” Crawn said. “We do a three-course wine- tasting dinner on Monday nights that’s phenomenal. Smaller plates — $20. I give the chefs free range to talk it out — we call it riffing — to come up with the menu.”
The appetizer list includes prosciutto-wrapped asparagus, which I expected would be served cold but was hot, in a pool of warmed béarnaise sauce.
The heat intensified the saltiness of the prosciutto but that was tempered by the bundles of pencil-thin asparagus and the buttery, tangy sauce. One appetizer ($7) easily feeds two people.
Crawn said the kitchen has no problem meeting special requests, and I found that to be true when I asked that the chef go light on the scallops and heavy on the shrimp in my Seafood Bistro Plate ($22). I regretted giving that instruction, though, as the tiny scallops were meltingly tender and delectable. The hanger (flank) steak was my favorite dish of the evening ($20). Fork tender, this flavorful steak was enhanced by earthy portobello slices and a drizzle of balsamic and wine reduction.
Crawn and his staff are planning a month of Creole specials for February, with an entire Creole dinner on Fat Tuesday. Look for more theme nights in the future. In the meantime, on Wednesday evenings, enjoy live piano music in the restaurant’s basement dining room, which also is available for private parties.
MAIN STREET GRILLE
125 S. Main St., North Canton