Monday, October 5, 2009

John's Cafe - Plano, TX

Tucked away in a strip mall in east Plano, John’s Café boasts a range of country cooking. They seem to specialize in breakfast and lunch items (and close early, so plan ahead).

Unfortunately, the inside matched the outside dinginess. There was an odor of fresh paint in the restaurant. The décor inside was minimal, with the television as the center of attention in the rather small dining room. The tables are covered with a heavy (clear) plastic sheet that detracted from the ambiance.

The CFS: The CFS was awful. The meat was thin and tough, like a McDonalds hamburger patty gone old. Needless to say, the meat was tough. I think it was sirloin, but I won’t speculate (I won’t share manner of meat we suspected). There was also an odd flavor of garlic powder or onion powder that was very unpleasant.

Breading: Breading was good not but without much flavor.

Gravy: The gravy saved the day. Just like chicken fried mom used to make! It was white, fresh and creamy.

Knife: Steak knife. The size (it being thin) wasn’t the problem – it was the density of the meat.

Sides: Choose two. The mashed potatoes were solid but unremarkable. It had good flavor and nice garlic and salty flavor. The okra was the best of the two: hot and tasty.

There were hot rolls provided to start which caused me mixed emotion. That they were free and hot was good. That they were dry and tasteless was bad.

Cost: $ 7.29. Not a bad price for a lunch, but for the quality, it was a little high.

Service: The service was OK. Very friendly but a little lax. Sides were forgotten. Drink refills were slow. Still, a smile and some good banter make up for a lot.

Music Selection: The din of something but I couldn’t make it out.

I can’t recommend a visit to John’s Café. It was a Sunday lunch, so a weekday meal might be better. I’m reminded of Anthony Bordain’s recommendation in Kitchen Confidential to not eat fish in a restaurant on Monday. Maybe we can add: “don’t eat CFS on a Sunday.”

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