If you are looking for a wonderful, refined yet simple family restaurant that will feed the whole family without breaking your wallet, look no further than Texas Roadhouse. This western themed restaurant offers substantial portions of delicious food that, while far from lean, is most certainly filling. The service is friendly and accommodating, and the décor is charming and fits in with the theme intended. In this review, I will detail the various aspects of Texas Roadhouse and what makes it a quality restaurant that makes going out much cheaper than anticipated.
Texas Roadhouse serves primarily western food, in keeping with its roadhouse theme. Steaks, ribs, seafood and the like are the main staples of the Texas Roadhouse menu, with a vibrant barbecue menu. The primary appeal of the steaks is that they are hand cut right in the restaurant, never being frozen. This lends them a fresh, straight-from-the-butcher taste that allows the full flavor of the steak to flourish. One of their biggest appeals is the persistent bucket of peanuts that is available at every table for free; this allows the hungriest families to eat something while they wait for their food. The peanuts are in-shell, salted, and delicious; a perfect appetizer. On top of that, complimentary rolls are served at each table, complete with honey cinnamon butter that can be spread on the roll. While it is no five-star restaurant, the quality of the food is very good for its price range (for a dinner for two, one would typically spend about $25-40, depending on menu items).
As with most roadhouses and restaurants, they offer a limited selection of beer and cocktails – wine is a rarity, but some basic reds and whites are still provided on the menu. The typical drink for a normal Texas Roadhouse patron is a 22 oz. draft beer, or for women, a wide variety of originally-blended frozen margaritas and fruit-flavored cocktails are provided. All of these are delicious, but not too strong, enabling a family to have a nice drink with dinner without having to worry about driving home afterward.
The service of the Texas Roadhouse is also to be lauded. Directly when you enter, the host will greet you with a smile and seat you at a table; alternatively, if the place is full, they will put you on a waiting list and give you a sensor that will go off when your table is called. This move prevents impatient groups from constantly pestering the host to find out when their table will be ready, and it allows the host to do their job without interruption. The wait staff are also very friendly and boisterous, always willing to help describe menu items, and will make sure that you know the specials in a quick, unobtrusive way. While they are attentive, they do not constantly leer over your shoulder to refill your drink; the wait staff knows their place is to supplement a somewhat private dinner with family, and treat the dining experience as such.
The atmosphere of Texas Roadhouse is exactly as its name implies; it is set up like a typical roadhouse, complete with tchotchkies and vintage memorabilia on the walls. HDTVs throughout the restaurant display ESPN, CNN and other channels, so that families may catch up on the news or sports as they eat. That being said, the décor is also nothing to sneeze at, maintaining the kind of atmosphere expected of a down-home, chain restaurant. The benches, floors and walls are typically all a beautiful glazed wood, with the typical imperfections adding to the simple charm of the place. Country music or popular rock radio stations will often play, creating an audible atmosphere to remind the patrons of the Lone Star State.
I would most definitely go back to Texas Roadhouse in a heartbeat – the food is good though not gourmet, the service is friendly enough, and the prices simply cannot be beat. They have a friendly, cheerful atmosphere, and more often than not they will have something for the whole family to enjoy. If I were to make recommendations for the complete Texas Roadhouse experience, they would be thus: come in, snack on some peanuts until the menu comes, then order a 22oz. “Duke” draft beer of your choice. Select their signature Baby Blossom battered onion for an appetizer, then follow that up with a hand cut USDA Choice sirloin steak, medium rare, with a side of baked potato and fresh vegetables. This, in my estimation, would be the quintessential Texas Roadhouse meal, though tastes may vary of course. Come for the peanuts; stay for the food – all in all, you will not be disappointed when going to Texas Roadhouse.