Tonight I tried the new restaurant in Montesano -- The Fishin Hole, a Family Restaurant. The first thing I noticed was that I had to return twice to find a parking spot. I arrived shortly after 5:00 pm and the parking lot was full. The same condition existed at 6:00 pm. So, when I pulled in at 7:00 pm and found a parking place, I was relieved. I thought, “This must be a terrific diner.”
When I walked in a young hostess greeted me and led me to a booth right away. The restaurant is clean, spacious and nicely decorated (for a family restaurant). The menu features breakfast, lunch and dinner items.
Despite the time of day, my waitress greeted me asking whether I would like breakfast and I said it was both too late and too early for breakfast. When I asked what she’d recommended for dinner she told me the seafood fettuccine was their best dish. Regardless, I asked her to recommend between salmon or one of the steaks. She recommended the rib eye steak.
The steak came with soup or salad, mashed potatoes with gravy or rice pilaf, and steamed mixed vegetables. I chose the salad and mashed potatoes. I also asked about the merlot -- the only red wine on the very short (three selections) wine list. She said she didn’t drink wine, so she couldn’t offer me any guidance. I told her that I’d try the wine and let her know what I thought about it so she would have at least one review to share with other customers.
When my meal arrived the steak looked grey as though it had been boiled. It was not medium rare as ordered. It was overdone. The vegetables were overly steamed and limp to the point of breaking down into mush. My waitress offered me steak sauce, but I asked for English hot mustard and was not surprised when she said they didn’t have any. I told her I’d eat the steak plain, but I added salt and pepper to spice up the flavor.
Throughout the meal, my waitress was attentive as were two other waitresses that went by frequently. However, they were not intrusive. The whole place is very folksy and comfortable.
Unfortunately, there was a troubling aspect to the meal. There is a big screen TV on the major wall that is there for all to see. They had it tuned to a hunting and fishing network, and while I was there, the programs showing were hunting shows. In these shows, they graphically shot and killed coyotes, elk, mountain goats, large squirrels and other game. Of course, all the blood, gore and gratuitous trophy killing did not settle well with me.
My total bill with tip was $30. Considering the bland meal and the continuous display of gratuitous killing, I will need to be starving before I consider returning to The Fishin Hole. Even then, it will only be to try the breakfast.
By the way, the 14 Hands merlot wine was good.
I was starving at dinnertime the next day, so I went back to The Fishin Hole and ordered a breakfast entree -- eggs Benedict and orange juice. It came with hash brown potatoes. The meal was very good. I guess I should have followed my first waitresses advice and ordered breakfast. By the way, they had changed the channel on the big screen TV and were playing a Major League Baseball game -- the Cubs vs. the Pirates.