Best Little Roadhouse

When N and I spotted  Best Little Roadhouse's nomination for "the best undiscovered restaurant" in the SJ's yearly 'best of poll', we nearly fell on the floor laughing. Seriously?? It's a joke, right? Anyone who has driven in the vicinity of the BLR during the dinner hour on any day of the week, knows that the parking lot is always full and overflowing onto neighboring streets and lots. Which can be a deterrent when you're feeling extra hungry. However, we decided to brave the wait on date night. It was time to give them another go round.

We were fortunate enough to pull into the parking lot when another patron was leaving. Wow! A front row parking spot! Imagine our surprise when we told the hostess there would be two of us and she said, "right this way". Perhaps it's a case of 50% of the diners arriving in separate vehicles to meet up with friends?

Our friendly waiter was prompt with both the taking and delivering of our drinks while we studied the menu. I've never been to either Reno or Las Vegas, but the noise level in BLR is what I imagine a person might find in a busy casino--with the exclusion of the wailing babies. I was glad the two of us had decided to sit on the same side of the booth. Otherwise, with my poor hearing, we wouldn't have been able to have a conversation.

We both ordered medium rare red meat for dinner. N went with a sirloin steak, roasted garlic mashers and a house dinner salad with the bacon but minus the cheese. I couldn't resist an 8 oz. portion of their prime rib, sautéed seasoned vegetables and a house dinner salad minus both the cheese and bacon. I was so glad that our waiter asked us if we wanted the cheese and bacon on our salads. The first time we dined at BLR those automatic additions were a big turn-off for me. Whether it was a sign of progress or good service, it made me a happy customer who was willing to overlook the dressing being served on the salad instead of on the side.

I don't know about you, but it seems to get more and more difficult to find tender, succulent, flavorful, slow roasted prime rib--unless, of course, you make it yourself. I'm pleased to say that Best Little Roadhouse's prime rib is now the closest to the best I've ever had. Yes, there was a pool of melted butter in the small dish my sautéed vegetables were served in, but they were seasoned and cooked just right. N said that his steak was also tender and full of flavor. I'm guessing those garlic mashers were pretty good, since I wasn't offered a taste. :)

If you have a craving for a tasty steak dinner, don't be frightened off by the full parking lot. Take a chance and then come back to tell us what you think.

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1145 Commercial Street S.E.
Salem, OR 97302
Tel. 503.365.7225


Anonymous said...

I love this place. I've never had bad service or food. In the spring/summer depending on the weather you can play mini golf on a great course located just outside. There is also a great covered outdoor seating area for good or bad weather. In cooler weather they have it heated. Request outdoor seating as it will not be offered automatically. Also, if you want fast seating you might want to take a booth in the bar and receive full menu service. I believe the owner used to be a manager at the Original Roadhouse on Lancaster.The menu and dinner roils are similar sans the peanuts.

Anonymous said...

Your server asked about cheese/bacon on the salads because they are an additional charge now (add cheese for .25 or bacon for .50)

Anonymous said...

What exactly is wrong with a pool of melted butter?

Anonymous said...

For me, it would depend on the depth of the pool.

Chuck Bradley said...

These people really need to make certain the open hours advertised on their web-site reflect reality. We drove there today only to find them closed on Sunday. Their correct (I would hope) hours are painted on both doors, so I doubt if this change is very recent. An oversight like this reflects sloppy management. I've e-mailed them. It will be interesting to see if I get a response and how soon and if they make the web-site correction.

KandN said...

Chuck, Do the hours painted on their doors say they're now closed on Sunday? Or did I misunderstand?

Chuck Bradley said...

Recieved an e-mail from the manager of BLR this morning. He says it should have opened yesterday at 11 AM. We were there at 11:30 AM (Give or take 10 min.) It was not open then. I have it from an ex business associate that they were open later in the day as she ate there. Looks like whoever was supposed to open bagged a few extra Z's. Hope this un-conundrums.

Chuck Bradley said...

KandN. You did not misunderstand what I said. I either read what I expected to read or had a bifocal episode. I went there today (good Bacon-Bleu Cheeseburger BTW) and the hours on the door are correct.