Favorite

Good grub at Gadwall’s West 

And save some room for Blue Cake Co.

click to enlarge GAD BURGER: Big.
  • GAD BURGER: Big.

While the north side of the Arkansas River has a lot of things to see — an Old Mill, a submarine, a soon-to-be-finished ballpark — one of the stops we’ve really relished in the last couple of years has been Gadwall’s Grill, waaaay out on North Hills Boulevard. A nice mix of shirtsleeve ambiance and greasy-spoon-style grub, it’s gotten so popular with locals that it’s been hard to find a table on most weeknights.

You can imagine the reviewer’s joy, then, when we heard that we were getting our own Gadwall’s Grill in West Little Rock. A trip out there proves the new Gadwall’s West to be just as down home and tasty as the original. The space is larger too, so it should make for less time standing in line on a Friday night.

Obviously the owners were not looking to reinvent the wheel. The menu at Gadwall’s West is — to our eye — exactly the same as Gadwall’s Sherwood: a big slate of appetizers, salads, sandwiches, burgers and specialty items like the Bonzai Chili Cheese salad ($5.95), and the interestingly named Woman-Made Chili with beans ($2.95 cup, $3.95 bowl). The decor is pretty much the same as well, a quirky mix of signage and diner chic.

Looking to keep it simple, I tried the old-fashioned double cheeseburger with jalapeno cheese ($3.99). Companion, meanwhile went Tex-Mex and tried the chicken nachos ($5.95).

The cheeseburger was everything you’d expect from a roadhouse grill-style place: stretch-your-mouth big, juicy, well-spiced and nicely flavored. Loaded with fresh lettuce and served with a side of perfect fries, the jalapeno cheese gave it just the right amount of zing. Companion’s nachos, meanwhile, were also just what she was looking for: diced chicken and tortilla chips, smothered in onions, tomatoes, black olives, cheese dip and sour cream.

While both our dishes weren’t the fanciest or most expensive thing on the menu, experience has told us that burgers and appetizers like the chicken nachos are the canary in the coal mine of a joint like Gadwall’s. Both are surprisingly easy to screw up, and if they can’t get those two right, chances are everything else on the menu ain’t going to be worth much either. Gadwall’s West passed with flying colors, with our plates soon demolished.

With the check paid and lunch resting comfortably on top of our belts, Companion and I headed for what we’d been anticipating throughout the entire meal: dessert at Blue Cake Co. While Gadwall’s has a few dessert options, nothing on the menu compares to what they’ve got just a short, hopefully calorie-burning stroll down the strip mall at Blue Cake. Purveyors of high-end, artisan-quality cakes, we’ve encountered Blue’s scrumptious goodies at a few birthday parties before, and we can honestly say they have cornered the market on our sweet tooth.

From a case filled with petit fours, cookies and other yummies, we decided to split a piece of their chocolate mousse/raspberry layer cake. At $3.25 for a generous slice, it’s pricey, but heaven don’t come cheap. Rich and light, with a creamy mousse filling and a tart zing of raspberry puree in the middle, it absolutely sang on the palate. Suffice it to say that between the two of us, we ate everything but the plate, the napkins and the plastic forks.

In short, if you’re in the mood for some casual, roadhouse style grub, you can’t do much better than Gadwall’s West. It’s big and unpretentious menu of artery-clogging fare offers a little bit of something for everyone. But please, save room for a little slice of heaven at Blue Cake Co. Your tummy will thank you.



Gadwall’s Grill West



14710 Cantrell Road

863-4746



Quick bite

Salad lovers will enjoy Gadwall’s big selection of rabbit food, including the Guacamole Salad ($5.45), the grilled chicken salad ($5.45) and the tuna steak chef salad ($6.45).



Hours

11 a.m.-9 p.m. Sun.-Thu.; 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Fri.-Sat.



Other information

Inexpensive to moderate prices. All credit cards accepted. Beer and wine available.

Favorite

Comments (2)

Showing 1-2 of 2

Add a comment

 
Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-2 of 2

Add a comment

More by Arkansas Times Staff

Readers also liked…

Most Shared

  • Department of Arkansas Heritage archeologist resigns

    Bob Scoggin, 50, the Department of Arkansas Heritage archeologist whose job it was to review the work of agencies, including DAH and the Arkansas Highway and Transportation Department, for possible impacts on historic properties, resigned from the agency on Monday. Multiple sources say Scoggin, whom they describe as an "exemplary" employee who the week before had completed an archeological project on DAH property, was told he would be fired if he did not resign.
  • Labor department director inappropriately expensed out-of-state trips, audit finds

    Jones was "Minority Outreach Coordinator" for Hutchinson's 2014 gubernatorial campaign. The governor first named him as policy director before placing him over the labor department instead in Jan. 2015, soon after taking office.
  • Lawsuit filed against ADC officials, prison chaplain convicted of sexual assault at McPherson

    A former inmate who claims she was sexually assaulted over 70 times by former McPherson Womens' Unit chaplain Kenneth Dewitt has filed a federal lawsuit against Dewitt, several staff members at the prison, and officials with the Arkansas Department of Corrections, including former director Ray Hobbs.
  • Rapert compares Bill Clinton to Orval Faubus

    Sen. Jason Rapert (R-Conway)  was on "Capitol View" on KARK, Channel 4, this morning, and among other things that will likely inspire you to yell at your computer screen, he said he expects someone in the legislature to file a bill to do ... something about changing the name of the Bill and Hillary Clinton National Airport.

Latest in Dining Review

  • Culinary art

    Canvas, the new restaurant in the Arkansas Arts Center, impresses.
    • Dec 1, 2016
  • SO on Sunday

    Fine dining stand-by still a hit.
    • Nov 24, 2016
  • Right on, Roma

    Good food at a good price in Jacksonville.
    • Nov 17, 2016
  • More »

Visit Arkansas

Arkansas remembers Pearl Harbor

Arkansas remembers Pearl Harbor

Central Arkansas venues have a full week of commemorative events planned

Event Calendar

« »

December

S M T W T F S
  1 2 3
4 5 6 7 8 9 10
11 12 13 14 15 16 17
18 19 20 21 22 23 24
25 26 27 28 29 30 31
 

© 2016 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation