Taste 09.26.19

Knuckles Sports Bar

That we don’t expect much from pretzels is probably a symptom of mass production. Most are clumsy, crunchy twists delivering a wallop of salt and not much more.

So the pretzel sticks at Knuckles Sports Bar in the Hyatt Regency are a welcome reminder of why salted pieces of bread became a staple in the first place. They glisten with butter. Flecks of salt pop and wash across the palate. There’s a frail brown gloss that gives way to pillowy dough – nutty on the inside with that enigmatic but instantly recognizable pretzel flavor wafting throughout.

The pretzel sticks are easy to pick up, hard to put down. But there’s more. Chef Dan Elinas and his team at the Hyatt provide ramekins of beer-soaked mustard and a “fondue” spiked with Parmesan cheese. The mustard acts as a sweet and tangy blanket that slowly uncovers the pretzel, while the cheese sauce gives depth to the richness of butter and the pungent alkaline crust.

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Yes, Knuckles earned accolades for their wings – it’s a sports bar, after all. But with Oktoberfest and football in full swing, these pretzel sticks are a worthy option. Or maybe an addition to the Monday Night Football routine.

KNUCKLES SPORTS BAR 1 Old Golf Course Road, Monterey (Hyatt Regency). 372-1234, hyatt.com.

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