Monday, January 20, 2014

Doug’s Place - Will # 5 Do the Trick?

We love trying new restaurants!  Because of this, we are probably beneficial to the restaurant business, but not too helpful to any one location.  We scatter ourselves around too much to become habitually fixated on one dining establishment.

A new restaurant recently opened in Loudon County Tennessee…and back in mid-December, we decided to give it a try…


This is Doug’s Place… This restaurant occupies a building that, with the opening of Doug’s, has housed 5 restaurants in the 4 ½ years that we’ve lived in East Tennessee!  First there was Catino’s (Italian/Pizza); then there was a short-lived Ayala’s (Mexican); followed by Tellico Grill (a bit of upscale casual American food); then American House of Pancakes (casual breakfast, lunch and dinner) and; now we have Doug’s Place.
  
Of the group, Catino’s was decent with relatively good pizza; we never ate at this location for Ayala’s; we liked Tellico Grill but it was a little pricy, and; American House of Pancakes was adequate at best… So, the big question is whether or not Doug’s Place will prosper and survive.  There are 2 other adequate to good restaurants in a 2 block radius…one Italian, (which we don’t care for) and one Mexican which is good if not great and it is very popular with the local populace.


The interior of Doug’s Place has been cleaned up and redecorated a bit.  It has a comfortable casual ambience.  This is the front room of the restaurant. 
According to what we’ve been told, one special drawing card is the chef, who was fairly popular as a past chef at the nearby Tellico Village Yacht Club.

Doug Patterson also operates 2 other nearby restaurants...Tanasi Cafe and Toqua Grille, both in Tellico Village/Loudon County Tennessee.  To check out his facebook site, go to https://www.facebook.com/pages/Tanasi-Cafe/390112447742369.  


This is a view of the back dining room at Doug’s Place.  There is also a large outdoor deck that is used for dining in warmer weather.  We arrived early for dinner...and when we left, the entire restaurant was packed...


Our waitress started us out with this bread basket.  Although we have been trying to reduce our intake of carbohydrates, for this meal we ‘sacrificed’ ourselves in the interest of being able to provide a complete appraisal of Doug’s offerings…  We liked the variety of rolls offered.  They were warm and fresh…providing a nice ‘chew’ as relates to texture.


We also decided to splurge and order an appetizer… This is the Doug’s Coconut Shrimp. ($8.00) These 5 jumbo shrimp are hand tossed in coconut infused flour then flash fried and served with key lime dip.  They were very nice!

Other appetizers at Doug’s Place include: Ahi Tuna California Rolls ($8.00); Bruschetta ($6.00); Spring Rolls ($7.00); a Tortilla Flatbread Quesadilla ($6.00) and; the ubiquitous Hand-breaded Chicken Tenders ($6.00).  For a bit of a twist the Chicken Tenders are served with a green chili dipping sauce…


Entrees at Doug’s Place include 2 sides.  For one side, Laurie and I both ordered a Side Garden Salad.  The size of the salad was just right and the ingredients were fresh and provided contrast with a splash of color.  These salads were another positive in our dining experience…

There are 2 dinner salads on the menu.  One is the Classic Tex Mex ($8.00) and the other is the Smoked Turkey Club. ($9.00) You can also turn the Traditional Caesar Salad ($4.00) into a dinner salad by adding grilled chicken or grilled shrimp. ($7.00 and $9.00 respectively)


I rarely order steak when we’re out in a restaurant.  On the other hand, the ability of a restaurant to serve a quality steak for a reasonable price is one true measure of the place…and of the chef’s abilities.  My entrée was the Peppercorn Sirloin Steak ($14.00).  This is a 10 oz. marinated hand cut sirloin steak finished in a creamy green peppercorn sauce.  For my second side, I chose a baked potato…

The steak was quite tender and good…plus it was medium rare as requested! The peppercorn sauce was an excellent complement to the meat.  The baked potato was done just right as well…and it was served with butter, sour cream and cheese on the side.

For those who aren’t quite as hungry, Doug’s offers sandwiches as well.  These include a Catfish Po-Boy, a Hot Double Stacked Ruben, a half-pound hamburger, a Grilled Veggie Wrap and a Chicken Breast Burger.  Sandwich prices range from $7.00 to $9.50, (depending on add-ons to the burger), and all of them come with French fries.


Laurie surprised me when she ordered the Boneless Pork Chops with Caramelized Apples. ($11.00) I can’t remember the last time that she ordered pork chops in a restaurant.  Most of the restaurant pork chops we’ve had, except in very high-end places, tend to be overcooked and a bit dry.
 
Her two pork loin chops were marinated, then grilled and served with sweetened granny smith apples in a light sauce.  Her second side was the oven roasted red potatoes.  The pork chops were moist and she gave her meal two thumbs up!

Other entrée’s at Doug’s Place include: Honey Lime Chicken ($11.00); Fried Shrimp ($13.00); Baby Back BBQ Ribs ($12.00 half rack/$16.00 full rack); Grilled Smoked Tuna Steak ($15.00); Red Wine Braised Brisket ($13.00) and; Fresh Atlantic Salmon ($17.00).  A selection of 11 sides is offered…
There are also 2 Asian plus a Pasta entrée on the menu: Mango Coconut Pork ($9.00); Sesame Ginger Beef Stir-fry ($10.00) and; Penne Pasta Basil Alfredo ($9.00).  You can add grilled chicken or grilled shrimp to the pasta offering. ($12.00 and $14.00 respectively)


We noticed that our friendly and efficient waitress was really promoting Doug’s Tennessee Bread Pudding for dessert.   We both love bread pudding and by the time she asked us about dessert, we were primed and ready to give Doug’s version a try.  It was served with a scoop of vanilla bean ice cream and it was topped with a caramel cream sauce.  Luscious and good to the last bite!

To summarize, Doug's Place is a friendly warm place, service is good and the food is definitely a cut above most dining options within a 15 mile radius.  We were very pleased and we will be back.  We definitely wish Doug’s Place the very best and we’re hopeful that this restaurant will survive and prosper for years to come!  It's located at 222 Lakeside Plaza in Loudon Tennessee.  Phone: 865-657-3503.

Just click on any of the photos to enlarge them…

Thanks for stopping by to check out a new restaurant with Laurie and I!


Take Care, Big Daddy Dave

4 comments:

  1. The food looks really good and I'm glad to hear that this building may finally have a restaurant with some staying power, so I won't be forced to put in a BBQ place.

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  2. OMY David I love this bread pudding!!! look perfect!! xxxx

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  3. Dear Dave, This place sounds good and reasonably priced.
    I am glad that you both enjoyed your food and splurged a bit with a nice dessert. I love bread pudding too. My mom used to make the best and I haven't had it in years.
    Blessings, Catherine

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  4. Dougs place will Impress, my fiance and I visited Dougs for the 1st time last night ( Fri.- 9/26/14 ) We opted to sit outside to enjoy the live band Time Machine. Excellent music, & the atmosphere was great.
    We ordered appetizers, Coconut Shrimp & Chicken Tenders, both were great, our waitress Sarah was excellent, very friendly and a great sense of humor.

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