Who leads a food review mentioning dessert? I do. But the blame really should go to Maddie’s Place and their perfect execution of a bread pudding. Generally speaking, I am not even a big fan of the dessert, but there is something about those thick cubes of bread soaked in a spiced rum sauce that makes Maddie’s version absolutely irresistible. This is my long-winded way of telling you to leave a little stomach space for it.
And yes, I know this is asking a lot at Maddie’s Place because the appetizers and entrées are every bit as good. My recent outdoor patio lunch proved this notion to be true yet again. As with most Maddie’s meals, we started things off with an order of the fried green tomatoes. They hit the table fried right and topped with a garnish of jumbo lump crab. The subtle sweetness of the crustacean pairs well with the tartness of the tomato. We all have our go-to Maddie apps, and this one is mine. During the dinner shift, an order of chargrilled oysters is another one.
Counting calories really is not a thing at the restaurant, but if you are looking to save a few, the Bourbon Glazed Salmon is a nice option. Actually, it’s better than nice. It is downright fantastic. Truth be told, the grill-marked fish looked overcooked. Wrong.
And as I keep writing, it is starting to dawn on me that the calories mount up on this dish, thanks to a small pile of cheesy grits, along with the charred Brussels sprouts laden with bits of bacon.
The fried catfish po’boy on Leidenheimer bread with lettuce, tomatoes and remoulade is exactly what you’d expect from a restaurant with such Cajun chops. I should also note that Maddie’s makes some of the best French fries in town, which is not a surprise to those of us who have partaken a time or 10 in the hand-cut, thin potato sticks. The restaurant is not stingy with them either.
There you have it, four dishes — fried green tomatoes, salmon, fried catfish po’boy, and bread pudding — and not one single criticism, a rare feat in this town. And while I’ve had an off meal or two in years past, when Maddie’s is going right, there is no denying it is one of our very best restaurants. And that includes service, which is always fast and attentive, especially during lunch. While we were not watching the clock, just know that if you are, the staff is respectful of a fast-paced lunch. I think it is safe to assume a 30-45-minute lunch, if that’s what you are looking for. If not, relax on the patio and enjoy this amazing weather and the sights of folks walking up and down Rebsamen Park Road in search of great food. They have plenty of options on this stretch of road, and Maddie’s Place is certainly one of them.
Just make sure to come hungry.