Local Dining

Clarksville’s locally-owned restaurants are far and few between. There are simply a metric assload of chain eateries, and for some reason more people don’t take advantage of this fact by opening an original stellar joint. Here are some of the brave souls that decided to live the American dream. Let’s see who has succeeded and who has a kitchen nightmare.

REVIEW LEGEND:

EDIBILITY? Will you be eating something at least as good as what you’d get in prison? Or will you feel like a Fear Factor reject? (Remember that show? Yeah, it totally sucked, right?)
GIVE A SHIT? You know the phrases “I don’t give a shit” or “I could give 2 shits”? Well, this is a five shit scale, so the more shits the better! (FIVE SHITS?! THAT’S A LOT OF SHITS!)
FINAL VERDICT? So you’ve decided to eat in Clarksville, huh? Much like the divorced former homecoming queen that settled for the 300 lb night shift manager at Long John silver’s, you gave up and gave in. We’ll see if it’s worth the tears and prescriptions.

    Blackhorse

EDIBILITY? 3 out of 5 – Guess what? The dollar-per-bite ratio at the flagship “gotta eat here” restaurant has declined to the point of epic bullshit. The same pizza you ordered for 15 dollars a few years back has jumped up to 20, with no improvements (some would say it’s gotten worse). Why 3 out of 5? Because the pizzas and several other dishes are good, but not worth the money. The most overpriced steaks and pasta dishes reside with in-house beer that really has taken a dive. I sound like Bruce Springsteen’s “Glory Days”, but it’s true. They really have passed them by.GIVE A SHIT? 3 out of 5 – The staff at the Blackhorse reminds me of Hollywood actors struggling to make ends meet by working part time at a classy cafe. They’re mostly young, attractive and dressed in black. Not sure why I’m pointing this out…I guess if you were a pervert or a horny army dude you could gawk at waitresses? Anyway, the service is usually swift and top notch. They tend to keep it fully staffed. They’re almost Nashville good some nights.

FINAL VERDICT? 3.5 out of 5 – When someone says “LET’S GO TO THE BLACKHORSE!” I tend to roll my eyes. But I know I’m jaded, remembering the “good ol’ days” of better prices and better beer. In Clarksville this place survives due to lack of downtown competition and a lack of smart entrepeneurs willing to open up a better place to eat. If you want a non-franchise American meal I guess this is as good as any.

UPDATE!!!!

I’m actually going to give some credit back to the Blackhorse. They’ve lowered prices on a couple of pasta dishes and have an excellent (and affordable) personal pizza and salad for 9 bucks. It’s a surprise, but it looks like they tried to improve the food instead of saying “CRAM MORE FLAT SCREEN TV’S IN HERE SO SUCKERS WON’T NOTICE THE AWFULNESS.” Bumping up the final score from 3 to 3.5. Keep it up you crazy dark ponies.

    Front Page Deli

EDIBILITY? 2.5 out of 5 – Wait they serve food here? Well the word “Deli” is in the title, but you might miss the menu if you just go hear to drink and pray for the end of the world. Sandwiches dominate the menu, with a couple of odd ball pasta dishes and salads tossed in for mediocre measure. I don’t mind the kielbasa sandwich, but there’s nothing here I crave (except to leave).

GIVE A SHIT? 2 out of 5 – It’s weird… they have a bar that most of the patrons migrate to at night. But then they have tons of tables. Sometimes you’ll get a server right away. Other times you’ll go to the bar to order. It’s really confusing at dinner, not knowing whether they are a bar or a restaurant (I don’t think they know either). At lunch, things are much clearer. Servers are quick and friendly.

FINAL VERDICT? 2.5 out of 5 – You don’t go here for dinner. You might eat here for lunch if you just happen to be downtown and don’t want to go the Blackhorse. You might go here for a drink if you want to settle. I’m really not sure what the hell the Front Page Deli is for. I’m assuming they have a locked in price on rent from 1976 or something that helps them stay open.

    Silke’s

EDIBILITY? 4 out of 5 – A German restaurant and bakery at heart, Silke’s (pronounce sill-kuh) has a fresh menu with classic German meats and sandwiches that are simple and sometimes vegetarian-friendly. I personally enjoy the reuben, and my friends like the salmon burger. They have a couple of pizzas, but I’m not really a fan; they’re a little too simple for me (more bread than toppings and sauce). The pastries really rock (cakes, pies, a whole case of random good sweets). They have a couple soups o’ the day that are usually wicked as well. Being a bakery, they have a wall of breads and rolls you can purchase too.

GIVE A SHIT? 4 out of 5 – Friendly Germans? Yeah I guess I’ve seen Schindler’s List too many times, because I was surprised at how helpful and kind everyone here is. They’ll talk you through your order and assist you with the purchase or order of breads and cakes. If you speak German you’ll be in good company, as it sometimes sounds like a meeting to discuss the next Oktoberfest in there. But they won’t kick you out, even if you’re not white (OK, enough World War jokes).

FINAL VERDICT? 4.5 out of 5 – Great place to get lunch, especially since they aren’t open for dinner. Soups will run out early if you hesitate. Get a little bit of everything (sandwich, soup, breadstick, dessert to go) so you experience all the good stuff here. The shop is quaint, and it will often get uncomfortably full of Clarksville’s elite jabronis. But the food is worth it. Plus OMG IT WAS ON TENNESSEE CROSSROADS.

Quickies
(got a better review? send it in!):

    Brunie’s

– 3 out of 5 – A tiny dive bar with bar food mixed in with German dishes. Good fried mushrooms, brats, and cheap beer. It’s got that hole in the wall attitude, but you never feel like you’re gonna get into a fight. Just check your glass first to make sure they cleaned it all the way. Not really a place to take your date. Unless your date is a giant whore.

    Freedom Deli

– 3.5 out of 5 – AMMMERRRRICCCCAAAAAAAAA. A new joint trying to find its voice. Big ass deli sandwiches with Boar’s Head meat along with sides like potato salad. Didn’t dig the meatball sub or “Philly”, but the actual sliced meat sammichs are damn good.

    Tandoor

– 3 out of 5 – Clarksville’s only Indian restaurant…so it’s got that going for it, which is nice. Dishes cooked in the tandoor style tend to be a bit dry, but the tikka marsala and other plates are actually pretty good. They have cool booths that allow you to sit on the floor with pillows if you aren’t a fat sack of crap. But, I have consistently gotten MISERABLE service here, usually due to incompetence rather than apathy. Also, you might get lucky if you play your cards right *wink wink*.

    Sam’s Greek Cafe

– 3 out of 5 – Soon will be moving to the fancy new food court at the G-Square Mall, Sam’s has gyros, fries, rice, and drinks… and that’s about it. If one of these things are what you want, then you’ll totally find it here. It will be fine. You will say, “Yep, that’s a lamb taco.” They got chicken and stuff too, but yeah, that’s about all there is to say.

Not reviewed yet:
Edelweiss Cafe
The Looking Glass

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