Sunday, May 11, 2008

A Pleasent Surprise

A restaurant, “The Cotton Patch CafĂ©, the grill next door”, recently opened its doors in Georgetown, Texas. One of several restaurants that have opened for business over the last few months our Cotton Patch is, as far as I know, one of 30 or so identical eateries (or at least as identical as the franchisee can make them) spread out across Texas.

The wife thought it was the country restaurant that threw rolls at you while you were trying to eat – what’s funny about that I don’t know, and that we should go.

We walked through the door about 5:00 PM on a weekday afternoon and having our choice of tables, because the place was nearly empty, we selected one with a lovely view of the dark green trees on each side of the San Gabriel River. A server showed up in seconds, that was good because an empty new restaurant often means bad new restaurant, and we now expected the worse.

The menu offered a wide choice of “traditional favorites” from meat loaf and pork chops to pot roast along with fish, burgers and salads. The wife ordered the meat loaf and I chose the “Shiner Bock Fish and Chips” basket.

The meat loaf, covered with a flavorful tomato based sauce, was served with sides of broccoli with rice and a squash casserole. A large portion, it was the nearest to tasting of homemade meat loaf that we have enjoyed in a long time. The sides, selected from a large list were nicely seasoned and comfortably complemented the delicious meat loaf.

The fish in my “Shiner Bock” fish and chips basket consisted of five large pieces of a flaky tender white fish deep fried to perfection in a batter, which in spite of its special ingredient had no hint of malt or hops. Nonetheless, together with the crispy French fries, the dinner of fish and chips did not disappoint, in fact it was delicious, and I look forward to enjoying it again.

For dessert we shared a rather small slice of coconut cream pie, which while not made locally, was very enjoyable. (By the way - it reminded of that very tasty pie from the Pie in the Sky Pie Company not long ago, I wonder?)

We have since been back on two additional occasions and on each the food served quickly, was of good quality and did not fail our now rather high expectations. The pot roast, chicken fried steak, and harvest salad all are worth having again.