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Sunday, September 27, 2015

Don't Just Speed On By Marshall Restaurant.

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For nearly eight years now, I've passed the old restaurant alongside US Highway 65 in Marshall. Restaurant, the sign reads. That's all, an old white and yellow sign by the road that says Restaurant. When it's raining or late at night, I have my eyes on the road. But when I pass in daylight, I almost always make a mental check to try it out.

I finally did.

We were on our way north with little money in our pockets and a lot to do, but hungry. I wanted some comfort food, so we pulled in right past that yellow and white sign and headed on down.

Inside, the restaurant is painted red.  On the bright, clean, freshly laminated menu, the name is posted, a name just slightly less generic than Restaurant.  Marshall Restaurant, it says, and most of the menu seemed packed with breakfast items... but it was just after one in the afternoon, so we looked at lunch. The menu for such consisted of the lunch buffet (11 a.m. - 1 p.m., so we were too late), several variations on a cheeseburger, a BLT, ham and cheese, chicken sandwiches, a club and a Po'Boy Fish. There was also an open faced hot roast beef, and the idea of comfort food seemed strong, so that's what I ordered.

We looked around while we waited on food.  The whiteboard on the wall, framed by two red and gold Asian fish, promoted a "Rueben" sandwich, jalapeno poppers and wing nuggets, a lot of breakfast items and a catfish buffet for $8.95.  There were a couple of gentlemen finishing up their lunch on the other side of the restaurant, who kept glancing our way. There were pies in the case up front.

Our food arrived.  The hot roast beef, which I somehow expected to be a burger patty, was actually finely sliced roast beef (for once!  Yay!) served over white bread with brown gravy.  That same brown gravy was also poured over the ample pile of mashed potatoes.  This was indeed a meal to warm you in the winter
months.  Sadly, this was summer, but I didn't mind.

We shared an order of crinkle cut fries, which went with Grav's double cheeseburger.  Here were two smashed three ounce patties, glued to a top bun by two slices of American cheese, this hot top on top
of a cool stack of tomato, white onion, hamburger dill pickles and green leaf lettuce with a little mayo on that toasted seedless bun.  It was a pretty good burger, and the price ($4.95) was excellent.

I mentioned I saw pies.  Well, I asked our waitress about it, and she rattled off a few pies.  Raisin pie caught my attention.  All these years crisscrossing Arkansas, and I'd come across very few pies that had raisin in them at all (there is the raisin cream pie at Chef's In in Jonesboro, but it's a completely different animal).  So I had to try it.

What I got was richer than mincemeat, a hearty full-flavored overly-raisined pie that stood less than an inch high in the center.  It was powerful, almost like eating nothing but raisins.  I thought it was decent but really wished it had some sort of cream component. Raisins are powerful little smacks on the tongue anyway, being concentrated grapes.  I bet it'd be amazing with black walnut ice cream.

Our entire bill with tip was less than $20.  Can't say that about a lot of places these days!  I need to get back and try breakfast some time.

Marshall Restaurant
251 Hwy 65 North 
Marshall, AR 72650
(870) 448-3357


Marshall Restaurant Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato



  1. Love the appearance of the site, here, and could just about predict the experience in Marshall.
    Those good ol' places just keep pouring money into the yum and have no idea about marketing, since it's not needed if the yum factor is big enough. Of course, you know that!
    I love raisin pie the way they served it, although mine turns out not so ... um ... sturdy, but rather escapes to the plate a bit, thickened with maybe less cornstarch? But I don't run a restaurant. :)
    And your idea of walnut ice cream sounds intriguing. I always serve something white for the top of my raisin pies. Usually cream or ice cream. Mmm... Hubs's favorite.

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