Governor’s Pub and Grill, as it had been known for 43 years, may have closed its doors earlier this month, but parts of the beloved Bettendorf restaurant will live on under a new name, look and location.
Ahead of the eatery’s move from Middle Road to a new building on Tanglewood Road, the owners of Governor’s announced in November they would be rebranding Governor’s to embrace “the scale and setting” of the new location at the intersection of Devils Glen Road and Tanglewood Road in Bettendorf.
The result — The Tangled Wood — opened on Monday and features 7,400-square-feet of indoor space and 8,000-square-feet of outdoor space, which will soon accommodate an outdoor bar, fire pits, green space, games and an amphitheater. A large outdoor bike rack is on site for cyclists using the nearby Devils Glen Road Sidepath.
The restaurant is what marketing manager Joe Janz calls the “evolution” of Governor’s. Janz works for a restaurant group, headed by Craig Wagner, that took over Governor’s several years ago and also owns Steventon’s, Blue Iguana and City Limit.
Initially, Janz said he heard “grumblings” from regulars of Governor’s about the name change.
“Obviously, change can be difficult,” he said. “And it was a difficult decision. We felt that with such as change of size and scale, a new name was fitting.”
The Tangled Wood’s menu features a few shout-outs to its predecessor, including Governor’s Classic Nachos, a dish described as a “tribute” to its namesake.
“We had to have some of those old favorites,” said Drew Lawrence, the restaurant's vice president of hospitality. “We’d be foolish not to.”
The menu also features openers, or appetizers, such as cheese curds, pretzel knots, poutine and Tangled Wood Nachos, which come with a base of house-made chips similar to Doritos. There are also salads, sandwiches such as the “Grilled Cheesisest,” burgers, ribs and brisket, fish ‘n’ chips, pizzas and sweet treats such as cinnamon sugar doughnut holes and a chocolate chip cookies baked in a cast iron pan and served with vanilla ice cream. The full bar features 40 beers on tap.
The eatery's decor, such as a bar built out of Templeton Rye whiskey barrels and vintage Quad-City photos, the strives to send a message of community, Janz said.
“We want people to remember we’re Quad-City based,” he said. “We tried to make every part of this local.”
Phase two of The Tangled Wood’s outdoor area is expected to be completed in the spring and plans include an outdoor bar, fire pits, green space, games and an amphitheater.
“We saw this as an opportunity to make a communal gathering place for everyone to get together,” Janz said. “We want it to be a place where you can stay for a while. We have the space.”