~Review by Chuck Bradley
Today I share with you one of my secret lunch spots. (Defined as those high quality, dirt cheap places almost no one else thinks about or frequents.)
The Eagles Nest is surreptitiously hidden in the industrial park on Pence Loop SE, just south of McGilchrist off 19th in the Eagles Club building. A very unlikely spot for a restaurant. It’s open from 11 AM until 2 PM Monday through Friday. Membership is not required.
The dining room is spacious and well appointed with white linen table cloths yet has a casual atmosphere.
The first time I came here, I had a very good Reuben Sandwich and Fries cooked to order for an amazingly low $5.50! The most expensive item on the lunch menu is a Chef’s Salad for $6.50. If you too are value conscious, this place deserves your attention.
Today SWMBO and I stopped by around 11:30 AM. There were two other couples in the place. Our friendly server, JoAnne, brought water and menus immediately. Their special today was Chicken Strips and Fries ($5.50) and the Soup du Jour was Chicken Noodle. Both were sounding pretty good to me, when I spied, on a plate across the room, what appeared to be Fish and Chips which was nowhere to be found on the lunch menu! (Although I wouldn’t dream of eavesdropping on a fellow diner’s conversation, I have no problem craning my neck, making unnecessary trips to the men’s room or peeking between palm fronds to get a look at what someone else has on their plate.) I asked JoAnne and she explained to me that, with certain exceptions, you can order off the dinner menu during the lunch hour.
Carol ordered a Roast Beef Sandwich and a bowl of the Chicken Noodle Soup. It was real and rare Roast Beet with Red Onion, Lettuce, and Tomato on White Bread. She said it tasted like something that might have come from her mother’s kitchen. (High praise.) Her Soup was definitely home-made and had Julienned Carrots, Celery, Onion and Herbs. They use Elbow Noodles which, I have found, hold up much better than other forms of noodles in this type of Soup. She gave her $5.50 lunch an A+. (Diamond Chuck spares no expense for his lunch date!)
The Fish and Chips were every bit as good as they looked through my binoculars. (Just kidding! They were actually opera glasses. That’s right, I’m classy.) I got three big flaky Cod Fillets lightly battered and deep fried to golden brown resting on a bed of fresh Lettuce. My French Fries were crispy, exactly as I ordered them. A large Lemon wedge and Malt Vinegar were provided. The Tartar Sauce was fantastic and, I later learned, is house-made.
There are few places in Salem/Keizer that offer this kind of quality and value.
Give ‘em a try. And tell ‘em Chuck sent ya!
Open Monday through Friday 11:00 AM to 2:00 PM
2771 Pence LP SE
Salem, OR 97302