Sunday, February 4, 2018

Restaurant Review = Texas Roadhouse Durham, NC

Living in Southern Durham, we have a lot of restaurant and eateries available in the area and rarely venture out to North Durham. One place we regular visit in the Northern Durham location is the Texas Roadhouse. There is only one location in Durham and judging by the people waiting for dinner every evening, they could fill two locations up easily in Durham. The reason, I believe, they are so busy is not just the quality of the food, which is good for a chain steakhouse, but also the price they charge for the food. The value based on portion size, taste and quality is excellent. Two people can have dinner for $40 and that includes either two sides with your entree or a salad and a side.
For one of our visits, we elected to have an appetizer. They do have a bloomin oinion, which is good, for us though a little bit greasy and since we usually have some left over, we opted for the fried pickles. The pickles were crispy on the outside and the inside was juicy. They held up well when reheated the next day. We also opted for the horseradish sauce rather than the more high calorie Ranch dressing. Overall, I definitely recommend the pickles rather than the fried onion, especially if you are only two people for dinner.
The appetizer = Fried Pickles with a Cajun horseradish sauce - good portion (this was left for the leftovers box)
House Salad - nice variety of item with your choice of dressing (in this case oil and vinegar)
 Their house salad (or Caesar salad alternative) are considered a side. I usually opt for the house salad rather than a side because the salad has a nice variety of items added. It has tomatoes, cheese, egg, croutons, and some greens. My dressing of choice is oil and vinegar and they give you plenty. It is a good portion and I have never had a bad salad in the place. I cannot speak to their Ceasar salad, but based on the calorie count indicated on the card, I do expect a lot of dressing to come with that as well. You have been warned!
It is a steakhouse and so my dinner entree is usually a steak. I used to order fries with the steak, but prefer now the baked potatoes, either as Russet or sweet potato, and usually just ask for butter and sour cream. They do offer a loaded baked potato option, which costs extra, but it also is pretty much lunch at other restaurants. Again, in case you have not realized it by now, bring a good appetite and the portion size is huge. For steak, I usually have the NY Strip in 8oz, although they offer larger portions of it and on Friday through Sunday they also have prime rib. Steak is prepared to order and so far, I have not been disappointed. This is especially true considering the prices charged.
It is a steakhouse after all - so here is the main dish with their version of fries. I prefer their baked potatoes (regular or sweet)

Salmon - very juicy and a good portion for the price. The two sides were mashed potatoes and green beans.
 They also have fish and chicken dinners and my guest usually prefers a fish selection. The salmon is very good. Again, good portion size and nice and juicy. As sides, you can select from rice or potato dishes and a variety of vegetables. You can see again the portion size of the sides, the salmon dinner is filling and goes for about $12. Quite affordable for a dinner that fills you up.

sweet tea in the t-go cup (just ask for one) and the famous peanuts in buckets

Now something about the actual atmosphere of the place. It is noisy; this is not the place for a business dinner or even romantic date night where you want to have quality conversation. They have music playing, the place is crowded and the staff ever so often will put in a line dance routine to up the volume of the place some more.  It is good for family night out and when you want to relax and have fun. They provide free peanuts to the guests (also in the waiting area to help you kill the time when the wait is up to one hour for a table). So have some peanuts in between your courses and when you want to stay a little bit longer and finish up your beverage.
  • do call ahead seating. It will cut down on your wait time on busy days, which is seemingly every day for dinner around 7PM.
  • Ask for a to go cup for your tea or soda, they usually bring you a fresh drink.
  • save the rolls and excellent cinnamon butter for the next day, you can probably also get another order of rolls to go. I personally just save the initial basket they give you because the prices are so good, I hate to exploit their positive customer service to get more free stuff.

Disclaimer: All opinions expressed are my own and I have not received any compensation for this post.

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