Being the savvy diner’s that we are, tonight we cashed in on our recently obtained Groupon deal for $40 worth of mouthwatering culinary excellence at 300 East in Dilworth. We have been trying to get around to trying 300 East for a while and with our Groupon in hand we finally made it there tonight.
Set in a gorgeous historic Dilworth home, 300 East has all the ambiance you could ask for but with a modest price tag. We had 7 o’clock reservations and we’re seated right when we arrived. After a quick look at the menu we instantly knew what we were going to get. All of the apps looked good but its a habit of mine to test the skill of a restaurant when they decide to put something on their menu that is not their specialty… so tonight we started dinner with the guacamole appetizer. Not exactly what you expect to find at an otherwise American style restaurant but ended up being pretty good.
The chips we’re deplorable and for a little extra effort I would really liked to have seen some fresh made tortillas chips instead of the store bought chips that took up half the plate (Mission brand tortilla chips I think). Not that the chips are bad at all, they just aren’t anywhere close to what I was hoping for. The appetizer came with a tiny container of fresh made salsa (tasted just like Jacks Special Salsa) that was the perfect partner to the fresh made guacamole. For not being an authentic Mexican restaurant I give them a passing grade on the guacamole… it was fresh, full of flavor and came in a large serving.
It was around this time, a few minutes after finishing our appitizer and before getting our entrees that we noticed the odd selection of music playing in the background… yes thats right… it was Britney Spears.
Britney Spears playing loud and clear throughout the old walls of this historic Dilworth house turned upscale fine American restaurant just seemed a little out of the ordinary to us. Throughout the night we paid a lot more attention to the music choice and it was clearly hip hop / pop music throughout the night. Not that there’s anything wrong with hip hop… its just not the music choice I would expect to hear at 300 East.
After an extended wait.. our entrees arrived.
Ella had ordered the Niman ranch pork tenderloin with peach skillet jam, creamy cheese grits & kale ($19). When we placed our order Ella was asked how she would like her pork cooked and she said “IDK., I’m not use to there being an option. so lets go with the chefs choice”. That ended up being a juicy tender piece of medium cooked pork tenderloin topped with a delicious peach jam that ran out way too soon. The cheesy grits were super creamy and went really well with the kale which was absolutly delicious.
Sticking with my theme of testing out their skill in cooking Mexican food, I opted for the black bean and green chile chicken tortilla with brown rice, monterey jack and cheddar cheese, avocado, lime crema & fresh made salsa ($11). The plate came out beautifully plated and served open face which seemed to flaunt its fresh ingredients.
The chicken was juicy, tender, seasoned and cooked very well. I’m not a fan of getting chicken dishes at restaurants but this one was great! The salsa was the same that came with the guacamole appetizer earlier and the fresh lime and avocado slice served as perfect highlights to the amazing dish. I wished there had been more lime crema as the flavor was lost in the mix as was the unnoticed addition of green chili anything. The stars of the plate were easily the black beans and the chicken, both of which could have been on a plate by themselves and been a success.
Just loking for an excuse to spend more money we decided to go for a 300 East dessert to top of the night. After a 30 second look at the dessert menu we landed on the rosemary infused apple pie cobbler with vanilla ice cream.
The ice cream was smooth and creamy vanilla single scoop atop of locally sourced apples mixed with a fresh baked whole wheat scone topping. The rosemary was either forgotten or so faint our discerning tastebuds couldn’t find it. All together the apple cobbler was good though not amazing.
That sorta summarizes everything we found at 300 East.. good though not amazing. Nothing was mindblowingly memorable or forgettably average… instead it all fell in this area below our expectations but higher than some of its competition.
For the most part we liked 300 East and with some minor tweaks we think it could be an amazing place. Check it out sometime soon and see for yourself.