Sunday, April 21, 2013

Tillman's Roadhouse

Date night with the wife
April is a month that brings us April Fools Day, Tax Day, the start of the Major League Baseball Season, the Boston Marathon, and my wife’s birthday.  In my wife’s family they don’t just celebrate birthdays, they celebrate birth months.  At least that is the excuse my wife has given me for her getting her way for an entire month.  Since this was her birth month, I let her choose where we went to eat this past weekend.  My mother was in town this weekend, so we had free babysitting when we went out to dinner with my brother and sister-in-law. 
Decor inside Tillman's
For this culinary excursion, my wife chose to eat at Tillman’s Roadhouse in the Bishop Arts District of Oak Cliff (they have also opened a second location in Fort Worth).  My only previous visit to the Bishop Arts District had been to eat at Lockhart Smokehouse.  While there previously, we noticed several other restaurants in this cultural hotbed.  After our first trip here, we knew we wanted to go back at some point and try some other places.
My wife's Prickly Pear Margarita
We arrived right on time for our reservations and were seated immediately.  We had to  make reservations for 6:00 pm because the next available reservation was at 9:30, which was past my wife’s bedtime.  While looking over the menu, we decided to order the trio of fries for an appetizer.  The trio included Parmesan Kennebec fries, chili dusted purple Peruvian fries, and smoked salt sweet fries.  They were served with house made ketchup and horseradish pickle mayo.  They were all delicious, but the chili dusted purple Peruvians were my favorite.
Trio of Fries
I had a hard time choosing an entrée because there were several delicious-sounding choices.  After going back and forth, I finally chose the chicken fried steak, served with garlic mashed potatoes, poblano gravy, and green beans.  They asked me how I wanted it cooked, which is something I have never been asked before when ordering anything fried.  I would later find out that the reason they asked me is because they were tenderloin medallions rather than the typical cube steak or round steak that most chicken fried steak is made with.  I ordered mine medium and also added a side of the mac n’ cheese.
Chicken Fried Steak, Garlic Mashed Potatoes, and Green Beans
Mac n' Cheese with bacon and scallions
My wife ordered the shrimp and grits, my brother ordered the post oak smoked baby back ribs, and my sister-in-law ordered the lobster tamales.  The chicken fried steak was spectacular, but very different from any other I have had.  The breading was perfectly seasoned and the thick medallions were cooked to perfection.  The green beans and mashed potatoes were very good, but the mac n’ cheese was somewhat of a disappointment.  Although it had bacon and scallions, it was rather bland. 
Shrimp and Grits
My wife enjoyed her shrimp and grits, but ever the traditionalist, did not like the Southwestern flair they added to the taste of the dish.  My sister-in law said her lobster tamales were great too.  The one dish that caused me to have entrée envy, was my brother’s baby back ribs.  After he caught me staring longingly at his plate, he finally gave me one to try.  It was very tender and perfectly seasoned.
Post Oak Smoked Baby Back Ribs
Our best decision of the night, was to order the tableside s’mores for dessert.  They were not only fun for us to prepare, but they were delicious.  The maple and chicory marshmallows blended together perfectly with the cinnamon graham crackers and the chocolate.  The orange marshmallows seemed out of place, but the other flavors more than made up for it.
The group enjoying tableside s'mores
Tillman’s Roadhouse will be added to our restaurant rotations.  I give this restaurant a solid 8 on my 10-point scale.  It was a small restaurant that was jam packed when we left.  Next time we go, we will make reservations at least a week in advance so we don’t have to eat with the blue hairs or the vampires. 

Tillman’s Roadhouse
Livin The Good Life Rating=4

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