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TLO Restaurant Review: Kendall’s Restaurant

Around eight years ago, I went to Kendall’s Restaurant, 100 South Main in Noble, to try their patented Chicken Fried Steak Challenge. Oh, boy…

I dutifully took the challenge and attempted to eat three original chicken fried steaks, two scoops of mashed potatoes, a side salad, two servings of green beans, a biscuit and two cinnamon rolls.

Of course, not only did I fail miserably, but I expelled in the parking lot.

It was such a painful experience that I swore I would never go to that restaurant again, but the life of a food reviewer is never that simple.

Fast-forward a decade and a neighbor told me that Kendall's cinnamon rolls are still out of this world and superior to whatever I had in the Plaza. Thinking about the restaurant, with my stomach-lining not being an issue anymore I decided to check them out for a regular meal with no time limit.

My mother and I went to Kendall’s for a late lunch last Saturday. The restaurant was moderately busy, but what surprised me is the whole restaurant is a low-level county music hall of fame, especially with local stand-out Wanda Jackson emblazed on the walls.

It's amazing what things you can learn when you aren’t shoving chicken fried steak and other accountments down your gullet!

Settled down at our table, we started the meal with the special appetizer listed on the board near the country outfits – the Fried Green Tomatoes ($7.99). The waiter let us know that the tomatoes were hand-picked in his garden and were supplied with home-made ranch dip.

To be sure, they are slivered to perfection like a crispy potato chip with a vegetable aftertaste. But each tomato-strip packs more punch than the bigger, frozen specimens that I have seen in other “down-home” restaurants. Another slice please!

My mother wanted a Crybaby Burger ($13.99) but, of course, she wanted an Impossible Burger patty ($3.00) with an upcharge. It came topped with grilled jalapenos, Swiss cheese, and house ranch dressing. Hold the bacon, please.

To be fair, it was a pretty alright boring burger. Taking a bite, I noticed the grilled jalapenos did most of the work. While the bacon was not missed, the Impossible Burger was fine but I am sure the original meat patty was even better.

Still having night terrors from my chicken fried steak experience in 2016, I opted for the Burrito Plate ($16.99). Purported to be one of Kendall’s specials, it had two beef and bean burritos, deep fried and covered with chili. Then it is topped with lettuce, tomatoes, onions, cheddar cheese, and jalapeno peppers.

Served with fresh chips and salsa, the Burrito Plate was exceptional, as long as you call “high-school cafeteria” exceptional. Its the standard fare of deep-fried burritos that reminds you that non-Mexican burritos are a whole different beast and, if you can accept that, you will be fine.

What else can I say? I liked it, for the most part.

Finished with dinner—and not filled with non-chicken fried food, thank you—I was given a complimentary cinnamon roll for dessert and, yes, it was Goddamn amazing. Like my neighbor said, it truly is worth the whole meal.

With no challenges to defeat me, I have to say my second trip to Kendall's was much better than the first. A redemption story with a side of ranch, I didn't make a fool of myself and the parking lot, and I learned that sometimes giving a restaurant a second chance can lead to unexpectedly gratifying results.

Cómpralo ya!


Follow Louis Fowler on Instagram at @louisfowler78.

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