The restaurant reviewed last week was Catrinas, 1027 Century Drive in Edwardsville. The name is from the female skeleton of Mexican folklore, and the food is fresh and a little different than most Mexican fare. It has only been open since January, but already has a wide online following.
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My favorite dining partner and I went for a ride in the country, and while enjoying the fields and fresh air, happened upon a restaurant with bright red-and-white umbrellas over patio tables and hanging baskets of flowers over the porch. We went in and were charmed with the décor, which included a full-sized Phillips 66 gas pump and two benches made from the tailgates of trucks. This was in a dining room near the kitchen. In the other dining room stood an authentic Model A, with a manikin dressed as a farmer with a long beard in the driver’s seat and a large, fuzzy stuffed animal (dog or bear?) in the passenger seat. We seated ourselves in the first dining room, which had several square dinette tables. Menus were on the table, along with catsup, mustard, hot sauce, salt, pepper, barbecue sauce, a napkin dispenser and sweeteners. The special that day was pork steak with two sides, and we both thought that it sounded good. My companion decided on cucumber salad and potato salad for sides, and I selected applesauce and tater tots. I chose a bottled soda from a cold case near the pass-through, and my companion chose water. I paid at the window when I placed our orders.
The two restrooms were spacious and clean. The one for women was decorated with framed pictures of Victorian-era women and had a changing table. The one for men had pictures and advertisements of antique automobiles.
I was called up to the window to pick up our orders. The food was on a tray, along with a plastic fork and spoon in a napkin for each of us. The pork steaks were dripping with sauce and rested on two slices of sandwich bread. This was on a decorated paper plate. The meat was very tender and the sauce was not too sweet and not too spicy. I ate the bread with the meat and it was very good. My companion said the potato salad and the cucumber slices in a vinegar dressing were good, as well. The tater tots had been baked, and were hot. I love them with catsup. The one jarring note was the applesauce. Ever go to the dollar store and pick up little cups of applesauce in a four-pack for a dollar? That is exactly what this was. It wasn’t even taken out of the foil-topped container. I heard the counter worker tell another customer that the macaroni-and-cheese was a microwave cup serving. I wondered if that was served in the manufacturer’s cup as well.
The restaurant also served a large array of ice cream; soft-serve, hand-scooped, dipped, shakes, sundaes and concretes. My friend requested a soft-serve cone dipped in chocolate, while I had a small butter pecan concrete. The dipped cone was much larger than we had expected.
The pork steak combo specials were $8.49 each, the bottled soda was $1.39, the dip cone was $1.99 and my concrete was $3.65. And yes, I could turn it upside down.
Overall – 4 stars
Service – 4 stars
Cleanliness – 5 stars
Food – 3 1/2 stars
Can you figure out the name and location of this rural restaurant? Check out the next issue of AdVantage News to see if you are correct!
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