Thursday, June 14, 2012

Goodbye Joey's, Hello Southern Kitchen...

A funny thing happened on the way to J.R.'s in Natalia the other night.  Our nephew, Diego, was staying with us this week and Eva had been getting him all psyched to go enjoy a good burger at J.R.'s, and perhaps, in defiance of the no profanity policy, utter a few choice words under his breath.  No such luck though, since J.R.'s isn't open for dinner on Wednesdays.

 Our next option was to take a short drive down to Devine where surely we could grab one of the really sloppy burgers on Texas toast since we had never shown him that fine hole in the wall.
As you can see from this photo, we were definitely walking into Joey's Surf & Turf where we have enjoyed a burger or two in the past.  But when we walked in, it was clear that Joey's had remodeled.
And all the people were different.  The place has taken on a whole new look.  Gone are the album covers and rock posters, the big screen TV that was constantly blaring, and sadly, the little ice cream station in the front of the store.  In addition to a new layout and a new salad bar (yay!) they also have a new menu which cut out all those signature burgers like the Big Kahuna and the Chihuahua burger.  My cardiologist thanks you.

The new place is called Southern Kitchen and they serve up steaks, chicken fried chicken, fish and some other southern favorites.  Sorry, I didn't get a picture of it, but the salad bar was fully stocked and suddenly, we think we may have found a substitute for the one that went away with the demise of Eatza Pizza.

But we were on a mission for burgers, so burgers it would be.  Southern Kitchen offers a hand made 1/4 pound burger standard with lettuce tomato and pickles.  From there, you can add on all the other fixin's you want, though there is additional cost and it adds up if you are a pig like me.
I had a cheeseburger with bacon and grilled jalapenos.  The bun was perfectly done (even if it was a bit smashed), the burger was not over cooked and best of all, the steak fries were cooked and seasoned. 
While Diego went with a plain hamburger, Eva loaded her cheeseburger with bacon and avocado.  We were all very pleased with the food and the service.  Our waitress was friendly and attentive, and my iced tea was always filled on time.
 The only area that I thought odd was the condiment situation.  It seemed like such a well prepared burger with fresh ingredients only to have some mustard and mayo packets presented on a plate.  I want my grill-man (in this case a lady) to have the confidence to slather on the mayo and mustard with gusto.
 Not to worry. We absolutely will go back if only to check out the salad bar.  I'd like to try the catfish (of course) and I would not be opposed to some good chicken fried steak. I can't vouch for any of those things yet, but the standard Southern Kitchen burger is worthy of a Tasty Treat and I'll be happy to have one any time.  

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