Rudy's at Salem Golf Club

In 1928, when it was built, it cost $.40 to play 18 holes at the Salem Golf Club. Today, $50.  At that price, it may be a better deal to enjoy a nice dinner for 2 at their country club restaurant, Rudy's. Dinner entrees on the menu range from about $15 to $30. The sirloin pictured here is a "white tee" or medium sized cut of mid-western corn-fed prime beef. Cooked medium rare, it was flavorful and lean. Upon first sight, I didn't think it would be enough to fill me up, but by the end of the meal, I found myself in a mild struggle to finish. The sides served along with the steak were somewhat disappointing. The crispness was completely cooked out of the vegetables and the mashed potatoes were equally unremarkable. A dressing soaked Caesar salad came with the meal topped with a twist of freshly ground black pepper. Many people have suggested that I try their homemade soups which I will get to on my next visit. We got great service and the atmosphere was cozy on a cold night.

Reviewed by Salem Man 2/5/08
If you owned a golf course in the Willamette Valley, you'd better sell something else to attract customers during the rainy months of winter. On a wet afternoon, you might find more than golfers sitting in front of a fire eating, lunch at Rudy's, the restaurant at the Salem Golf Club. The Salem Golf Club is on Golf Course Rd. off of River Rd. South behind The Courthouse Athletic Club. The golf course and the restaurant are open to the public but Rudy's has the feel of being in an exclusive country club. The dining room is configured with padded chairs, comfortable for golfers to sit and sip a cocktail after playing 18 holes. You might overhear some gentlemen discussing their golf swings or making a business deal over lunch. The menu includes soups, salads, sandwiches and pasta. I ordered the Blew By You Burger with french fries. The burger topped with Gorgonzola cheese was alright but the fries were just right. They were served hot and crispy, probably straight out of the fryer. I don't mean to bash the burger, it just seemed less flavorful than what I was expecting. I probably should have gone with the tuna "sandwedge" or the smoked salmon pasta. It's family friendly with a children's menu, but in the couple of times that I've eaten here the only kids that I've seen were my own. They also serve breakfast and dinner and have a full bar in the back. Overall, this is a great little secret in South Salem. When you go, look for the bookshelf that opens to a hidden wine cellar.

2025 Golf Course Rd S
Salem, OR 97302


jeff said...

I was at a company Christmas party there some years back, I remember it as being quite good.

They took over the restaurant at the McNary golf course sometime in the early 2000s, but it became Mina's at McNary (and yes the owner's name is Mina) a couple years ago. I assume it still is.

Anonymous said...

This place is great, never had a bad meal, and just a nice change from the usual.

They smoke their own salmon for the salmon pasta, it is to die for!

They also have the BEST crab cakes we have ever eaten. Get the crab cakes!

They are always so nice, and friendly, I think your review didn't do them justice...

Anonymous said...

I love this place! I'm so glad that you finally reviewed's my favorite place for fries and a club sandwich. YUM. Makes me hungry just thinking about it.

Double E said...

I had the worst restaurant experience of my life at this establishment. We made a dinner reservation for 7pm, we arrived at 5 til, and waited for 25 minutes and were finally, upon our 3rd inquiry, advised that the dining room was full but that they would seat us when they could. Meanwhile, parties coming in well after us were seated immediately and called by name by the manager, who wouldn't even look us in the eye each time he came up to seat another party. Upon being asked why others were seated before us, we were advised that they had reservations before us, showed us the book, and sure enough, those parties were reserved for 6:30pm and 6:45pm and even 7pm. They had come in late we were told, and thus would be seated before us because they were on the list before us. When I spoke to the owner he said "We've been doing this for a long time, I think we know how to do business" and then walked off. I think the management and owners need a reminder about customer service. Bottom line, if you're not a member then you won't enjoy your experience here.

Unknown said...

My daughters and I went to enjoy a luncheon date for my birthday this week(June 3, 2008. I was excited for them to eat there for the first time.After ordering, jack-hammers began drilling above our heads. When I asked if something could be done about it, a woman in the office said that she would ask them to stop for a while.She came back to our table to tell us that they said, "NO.".
So, I asked if they would move us. However, the noise was so loud that it really didn't matter where we were sitting. Other than our waitress apologizing, no one else offered an apology or made an effort to make amends for a very unpleasant dining experience. It will be a cold day in July before I consider returning to what should be a classy restaurant. I will be sure to pass the word along.

Anonymous said...

My family also had the worst experience at this restaurant! I arrived with my wife, parents, and in-laws five minutes before our reservation. First the hostess told us they didn't have us in the book; then the manager told us that actually we were in the book but at an earlier time; then I think the owner (he didn't bother to introduce himself) told us that we were on time, but the reservation was made in error- they were too full. We actually had to leave! I have no idea what the actual problem was, but I was very angry and embarrassed in front of my family. Terrible!

Anonymous said...

My family and I are serious "foodies" and love dining out and GREAT restaurants. I have to say since we first started going to Rudy's about 8 years ago, it has become our absolute favorite restaurant around and we have NEVER had a disappointing experience there. The food is always perfectly prepared, the service is about as good as service can be, and we love the location - even though the restaurant is almost an hour from our house. The men in my family (dad, husband, brothers-in-law, etc.) are big steak guys, and they LOVE the steaks at Rudy's. And I often get one of the delicious seafood or pasta options - such as the halibut or the smoked salmon pasta, and I always wish I could eat the whole meal over again because it is SO good. Their appetizers are delicious as well - especially the teriyaki steak divots - YUM! And there is no better clam chowder than Rudy's, which is served on Fridays.
The owner, John, is always extremely friendly and accommodating.
This is the place we take out of town guests, friends, etc. when we want a guaranteed GREAT meal.
Sorry ... I know this is a long comment, but I truly can't say enough great things about Rudy's! And seeing the negative comments listed here completely baffles me!?! I can't believe they are talking about the same establishment??? In MY opinion - you will not be disappointed by Rudy's!!!

KandN said...

Veggies aren't SUPPOSED to be mushy? ;>)

Anonymous said...

We have went there for the last 2 years at passover time, and it has been Great both times. We are going there again tonite April 8th,2009.
I expect it will br great again, if not I will try them again later, anyone can have things go wrong once in a while.
I give this place 5 stars*****

Anonymous said...

We love going to Rudy's. The food and service is excellent and we like the atmosphere there. We enjoy taking our out of town guests to Rudy's.
The best steaks and prime rib in town. We always enjoy finishing our meal with the Blueberry Bread Pudding. I rate this restaurant with 5 stars*****

Anonymous said...

I believe the negative reviews above by Double E and Bethany are unwarranted. In fact, I think they are referring to a different restaraunt. First, you don't need to be a "member" as Salem Golf Course is a public course, not a private course. Second, there is nowhere for "jackhammers upstairs." From experience I can tell you that no one would ever be made to wait from 5pm to 7:30pm. And, the Owner, John, would never make a rude comment to anyone. If anything he is too accomodating. With respect to the food, OMG it is wonderful. The review recommending the crab cakes is on point. They are the best I've ever had anywhere. That is quite a compliment for a steakhouse to have the best presentation of a seafood item. The steaks are phenomenal. From what I understand, John cuts his own steaks (and he doesn't skimp). One of my favorite dishes is the Chicken Marsala. For lunch or dinner it is a solid choice. If you're lucky enough to be there on a night when they are featuring Razor Clams I recommend those as well. Although I'm not a wine drinker I understand they have quite a selection, and the owner is quite conversant in selecting the right wine. The wait staff are all professionals. I notice that many have been there since they opened, which tells me a lot about the place. I Ask for Amber, she's never let me down. I also enjoy the ambiance. It is very comfortable, and not as bright and noisy as all the corporate chains in town. It makes sense to call ahead for reservations during the traditionally busy times.

Chuck Bradley said...

When I saw the parking lot I had misgivings about not having made reservations. They were for naught as we were promptly seated.

Rudy’s has an “Old Club” ambiance in which Sherlock Holmes would have been right at home. The window seats overlook the lovely golf course. The patrons all wore the faces of convivial contentment. A very relaxing and serene feeling all round.

Carol (She who must be obeyed) had Prime Rib. Alice (Carol’s sister) had a Sirloin Steak with garlic mashers. Larry (Our brother-in-law) had a Halibut Filet. And I had Pan Fried Oysters with Lobster Sauce Linguini. Everyone was pleased with their meal.

I asked our server (Heather) for a little cayenne to add a bit of spiciness to my Oysters. She not only had the chef comply with my request but, later, remembered to ask me if his efforts were to my liking. When asked, she explained that all their seafood is fresh, and from the Pacific. Though serving several tables, she didn’t seem rushed. Heather was an A+ server.

The place was busy. But unlike many places, was not noisy. The muted conversations added to sense of civility of those around us.

Good food, good service, a very pleasant atmosphere and good company is a mix that always pleases.

We collectively give Rudy’s eight thumbs up!

Anonymous said...

Seventeen Ladies just had their Christmas luncheon at Rudy's. It was wonderful, the food was excellent, the service outstanding, the room cosy as our table was by the fire. We had a gift exchange and there was never a hint that we were taking too much time. Our group has eaten at Rudy's in the past and it is one of our favorite places. The lovely lady serving us was helpful, attentive and pleasant. We will come again. Never has there been a complaint. Thank you Rudy's!!!