We recently had a chance to go out on a beautiful sunny day and enjoy the patio at Players on Madison, a local favorite in Lakewood for years. That patio always seems to show up on lists of “Great Places to Eat Outside” and it did not disappoint, fitting the bill for a lazy late-afternoon summer dinner. The menu here is “New American” with Mediterranean roots, full of creative takes on classic fares in addition to a number of pizzas and “pizzettes.”
Our meal was quintessential summer. We started with two small plates because everything sounded delicious. First, an heirloom tomato salad, which was just that. Thick slices of juicy tomato with some crumbled feta, chopped herbs, and a drizzle of balsamic. I was expecting the stereotypical salad with some extra tomato on top, but to forego the lettuce and just skip straight to the good part was a pleasant surprise. Second was a smoked mozzarella, gooey and warm and surrounded by prosciutto, fried zucchini, and tomato bacon jam.