Monday, April 13, 2009

Neal’s Restaurant – Spring, TX

Hunger for a starchy meal on a Saturday, we made a run north to Spring to try Neal’s Restaurant. Neal’s is a neat place that boasts of several country classics.

The inside is stocked with various animal heads (moose, elk, deer, none of which was on the menu), pictures from local students (a good sign) and a giant Texas flag (an even better sign). The place is very casual and exactly what you’d want from a country kitchen.

The CFS: Cube steak that was a bit tough. It wasn’t dramatically overcooked but enough that you’d notice. Still, the meat was flavorful and somewhat juicy.

Breading: Southern style. Good flavor. Flaky. Parts were a little charred which make for a nice crunch and a good smoky flavor.

Gravy: White, cream gravy. It tasted very fresh, like a strong cream. This can be a plus, but it made the gravy a bit sweet. This, combined with a lack of seasoning, over powered the whole CFS with the sweet taste of cream. So, I applied salt and pepper and it was much better.

Knife: Steak knife provided and was appropriate.

Sides: Choose 2. I chose the okra and the mashed potato. The okra was good: it was a bit over fried (too dark and a bit crispy) but it was still good. The mashed potato were also very good with good flavors of garlic and potato.

As a side note, we chose to partake in some of the delicious looking pies in the pie window as we first walked in. There was no room in our stomachs for it, but we pressed ahead. The cherry pie was perfect – just like grandma makes. The Meyer lemon pie was also excellent. But, really, have you ever had bad pie?

Cost: $ 10.99 for the “large CFS.” Given the amount of food and the quality, this was a good bargain. The small order was $8.99 which would have been plenty if I hadn’t dramatically overestimated my appetite.

Service: Top notch. The service was super fast, efficient and my soda was never empty. She even flirted with the tot and provided him with some green Marti Gras beads.

Music Selection: None.

Neal’s Restaurant is in the middle of nowhere but boasts the “best chicken fried steak around.” “Around” being vague enough to imply they’re ready to take on all challengers. After eating there, they’d probably give most a run for their money.

(don’t forget to pick up a pie or a dozen free range eggs on you way out – you won’t be sorry).

Spring, Texas 77388.
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anonymouseater said...

What a great blog. I love food obsessives. Good luck on your quest. Just don't kill yourself by eating too much CFS and gravy.

A few suggestions:

Avenue Grill - good, East Texas style CFS near traffic court downtown. Their specials are daily, and they may not have it every day. Check in advance.

Triple A Restaurant - a 60-year old restaurant near the Heights that hasn't changed since I first went 20 years ago. All the customers are old. The CFS is tender inside and crunchy outside. It is the best I've had recently in Houston.

Barbecue Inn - Another ancient restaurant, this one near Garden Oaks. Arguably some of the best fried chicken in town. The CFS is fried in the same manner as the chicken, and it has big, crispy flakes. Great gravy.

Chicken Fried Texan said...

Great recommendations! Keep 'em coming! Oddly, I would have visited Triple A this weekend (since others share your endorsement) had it not been for the Ark-building rains in Houston. I'm hoping to go next week.

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