By SHAI VOGLER
Joe Daddy’s restaurant at 2108 Paramount St. is the newest Joe member of the Panhandle Restaurant Group, which also owns Joe Taco and Macaroni Joe’s.
My curiosity about Joe Daddy’s started from the radio commercials and really struck when I was driving down Paramount and saw the full parking lot. After a moment of shock at how many cars were parked in the former tow-lot, I knew this was a place I had to try.
It opened Sept. 11 and is a self-proclaimed Texas-style restaurant that serves everything from sandwiches, wraps, pasta and salads to burgers, tacos, catfish, chicken, barbecue and steak for anywhere from $10 to $30 a plate.
The designated happy hours are 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. daily and all day Saturday and Sunday. Joe Daddy’s has live music every Friday night.
After looking over the menu for a few minutes, my fiancé and I decided to order the brisket queso ($6) as an appetizer. I then ordered the fried catfish single ($10) with green chili corn and jalapeno cheese grits, and my fiancé ordered a maple ham and ribs barbecue platter ($12) with a side salad and macaroni and cheese.
We both enjoyed the queso, which had a little heat from the jalapenos but was nicely balanced by the sweet taste of the barbecue brisket on top.
The catfish was fantastic. It was a generous portion, especially for a single, and though it was fried, it was not greasy at all, just crispy, which I loved.
The green chili corn was a little too creamy, but the jalapeno cheese grits really hit the spot. They had a good kick to them and were not overly cheesy.
My fiancé’s maple ham and ribs were good – nothing overly special or fall-off-the-bone, though. I really was impressed with his sides, however. The side salad was bright green, which I’m a big stickler on, and it came with tomatoes, cucumbers, croutons and a freshly shredded cheese on top, making the ensemble very tasty. His macaroni and cheese was even more impressive, with the Joe Daddy’s queso serving as the cheese sauce – definitely a must-try side.
The service was really good. Our waiter was friendly and made sure we were satisfied with our orders. Our drinks were never under half full, and we never were left wondering where our waiter had gone or wishing he would leave us alone.
I was disappointed to not find any apricot sauces or peach cobbler desserts available as I’ve grown accustomed to at other Texas-style restaurants and barbecue places around town. The four mini-desserts available are skillet apple cobbler, banana pudding, bread pudding and an ice cream-topped brownie: $3 for one, $5 for two or $7 for three.
I appreciated the setup of the restaurant, which allows for a more private experience. I loved that the entire restaurant is not visible from one point. It also kept the previous Ruby Tequila’s outside dining area while adding a partial upstairs dining area.
The bar is more closed off from the rest of the restaurant, presenting a family and kid-friendly atmosphere while maintaining a relaxed sports bar feel.
I would feel comfortable going out for a drink with my friends or going out to eat with my family at Joe Daddy’s.
Overall, I’d give Joe Daddy’s a four-out-of-five-star rating. It’s a unique place with great food and good service, topped off with a Texas comfortable and classy atmosphere.