The quote from the AJC review states that "everything from the kitchen has a Southern accent." This would lead one to believe that this is a Southern restaurant, but my husband was taken aback to find no macaroni and cheese on the menu. Other web sites dubbed it "Southern grub" as well. Okay, I said -- maybe they're trying to put their own spin on things by doing the cheese grits instead, although I was surprised to see that they had no green beans or lima beans, either. However, I was downright stunned to find that they had no sweet iced tea! I mean, I don't drink the stuff, but it's not exactly hard to make sweet iced tea. It's not called the house wine of the South for nothing, after all. How can you have a Southern-style restaurant, heck, even a Southern-influenced restaurant, without sweet iced tea?
D. and I speculated that the restaurant's menu was an approximation of Southern food cooked by a Yankee. Sure enough, a little research revealed that chef-owner Bill Greenwood is from Baltimore, Maryland.
Although the portions were huge, we found the food a bit lackluster. The cornbread was pleasantly light, but not that flavorful. The fried chicken had a good crust, but it bore little resemblance to any Southern fried chicken I've ever eaten. It had this sort of sweet honey/tangy pepper thing going on. That was nice and crisp, however, the chicken inside was terribly bland. I don't know if these folks are familiar with the term marinade, but using one would've helped. The collards were decently vinegary, and the cheese grits were okay. I might've been happier had they not run out of my original selection, the shrimp and grits special.
D. was underwhelmed with his meatloaf. He made a little face: "It's not yours," he said, a bit frumpled. While this is always the absolutely right thing to say to me, ;) I really don't think that he much cared for it, 'cause I know he loves the meatloaf at the Back Porch in Prosperity, SC and at the Blue Willow Inn in Social Circle, GA. He did seem to like his creamed corn.
We both ordered pie: D. had apple pie à la mode, and I had coconut cream. These were each better than the preceding courses, and the slices were huge. Mine had too much whipped cream and not enough filling, but what there was was very tasty.
Overall, it was okay, but I wouldn't go back. Maybe we're just not Bill Greenwood's kind of people: we found Swallow in the Hollow, his barbecue joint across the street from Greenwood's, to be just so-so as well.
Don't get me wrong: it wasn't inedible, by any means. We'll eat our leftovers. We just found it to be a bit overrated, and that rating would stick even if they had had sweet tea. Don't tell me that they're trying to be healthy: they push the pies and ice cream, and they surely aren't sugar-free.
I'd like to try Matthew's out in Tucker, but that isn't going to happen with the hours they keep (no weekends, and getting there before they closed on a weeknight would be nigh impossible for us). I guess we'll have to muster up for the drive out to Social Circle to get our Southern fix at the Blue Willow Inn.