Friday, December 7, 2012

Roadfood Along the Way…

It’s a pretty long drive from where we live in East Tennessee to the eastern suburbs of Cleveland Ohio where our son and his family live.  Long ago, we decided that although it was 15 minutes quicker and services are better on the I-75/I-71 Route via Lexington Kentucky, and Cincinnati/Columbus OH, the scenery was too boring!  Despite $6.00 in tolls each way, staying awake and alive plus being able to appreciate the beauty along the way trumps convenience… We take the I-40/I-81/I-77 route through eastern Tennessee, southwestern Virginia, and then up through the heart of West Virginia and through the hill county of Ohio.

Services off of the I-77 Toll road in West Virginia are relatively limited. Invariably, we end up stopping for lunch…our big break in the 10.5 hour day…in Beckley WV.  We’ve eaten at most of the restaurants right off the Interstate.  Previous stops for human fuel at Beckley have included Ruby Tuesday’s, Bob Evans, Applebee’s and Hooters.   We decided to try a different restaurant on our Thanksgiving trek north.
This is the Texas Steakhouse and Saloon.  This is one of 19 Texas Steakhouse restaurants in this regional chain…and none of their locations are in Texas.  All of these restaurants are located in North Carolina, Virginia and West Virginia.
The interior of the restaurant seemed a little drab and worn…although it was nice and clean.  The bar was unoccupied in the early afternoon…but keep in mind that it was the day before Thanksgiving.
Here’s a look at part of the dining area.  It’s pretty basic.  However, the service was friendly and the waitress steered Laurie away from a menu choice which had not been well received by recent customers…
We hadn’t had any breakfast so we both opted for a dinner entrée for our late lunch.  The waitress started us out with these 4 nice warm rolls and soft butter. (One of the worst sins that a restaurant can commit is to serve warm bread or rolls with rock hard butter!)

Have you noticed the latest trends?  Fewer and fewer restaurants are automatically serving bread with their meals.  Also, you almost always have to ask for water with your meal.  I’m sure that it’s all about holding costs down and improving margins in this tough economy...which I’m afraid will get even tougher!
Not the best photo…somehow we picked up a shadow.  This was Laurie’s entree.  She had the Texas Chopped Steak. ($9.49) It consisted of 10 oz. of fresh ground mesquite-grilled steak with sautéed mushrooms, onions and melted cheese with mashed potatoes and gravy.  Other than the fact that at least for our taste the chopped steak was overcooked, though Laurie enjoyed her chopped steak with the different flavors and textures provided by the toppings.

The menu included 2 soups and chili, a number of dinner salads, crab cakes, Tilapia, shrimp, burgers and other sandwiches, Texas classics, (which is the part of the menu our dinners were listed under), and of course steaks.  Burgers and sandwiches ranged in price from $7.49 to $9.49 without fries or any side items.  The most expensive item on the menu was the 15 oz. hand-cut ribeye steak at $20.99 with 2 sides.  The sides seemed more southern than Texan to me…given choices like Mac n’ Cheese and Sweet Potato with Cinnamon Sugar and Butter with toasted marshmallows.
I ordered the Chicken Fried Chicken. ($9.49) I guess that those pieces of chicken can be described as chicken fingers…although where the heck chicken fingers come from is a mystery to me!  What happened to bone-in fried chicken or even a boneless chicken breast?  In any case, my dinner was tasty enough with lots of gravy and mashed potatoes. (Of course, I sprinkled a bit of Tabasco on my chicken!)

The food was decent and the prices were OK too.  While we wouldn’t list the Texas Steakhouse and Saloon as one of our favorites, it does provide a decent helping of comfort food to fuel its customers.  The Berkley WV Texas Steakhouse is located at 140 Harper Park Drive.  Phone: 304-253-1436.  The Company website can be found at:
Just click on any photo to enlarge it…
Thanks for stopping by for a visit!
Take Care, Big Daddy Dave


  1. I wish we had a Steakhouse here in Sicily too. In Rome there are several but here in Trapani, not one! Your food pictures always make me nostalgic for American food. Remember the Automat Dave? In the 60s we used to go downtown to Manhattan and eat at the Automat...macaroni and cheese for 25Cents!!! :)

  2. I hear you when you say that Ohio is far away. When our daughter and son-in-law were doing their internships at Ohio State University Medical Center we drove there several times a year. The last two times I had to do the driving and I avoided Cincinnati and that big bridge (after having taking the wrong exit twice.) Now they live in Brentwood, TN, so it’s a lot better. But my sister-in-law still lives in Columbus. Next time I’ll try an alternate route. Finding decent food on the great highways is not easy.

  3. David I love these bread with butter, awesome, this is perfect for breakfast!:)