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Tuesday, November 09, 2010
This new Bennigan's has an upbeat decor that emphasizes the themes of fun, lively, and tasteful. They have a gas fireplace on the patio outside, a nice place to gather when the weather permits, while the inside is classy, bright, and comfortable.
The food is what I came for, and I was not disappointed. Everyone in our group was impressed with their meal. We started with a Southwest Sampler, an appetizer with a variety of southwest-themed foods such as a delicious cheese and chicken quesadilla, nachos, and other items, all surprisingly good. I ordered something that looked simple but was another surprise on the plus side: the O'Toole Pretzel Sandwich, a turkey and cheese sandwich on an awesome pretzel bread bun. Excellent flavor.
Another surprise was the chicken spinach salad. Sounds hohum, but it was beautiful, flavorful, and filling. I got to sample some of that and plan to order it when I go back, A lot of chicken, wonderful sauce, and many of my favorite sald fixings. More of a high protein meal than a salad.
The hand-battered fish and chips also delighted. Might be the best in the Valley. Very fresh, cooked just right, not greasy, with a batter that really added value. Nice.
For desert, the Smores Brownie Sundae also exceeded my expectations. Beautiful presentation including a toasted marchmallow on the side of the plate, with an arrangement of ice cream and browniea on the plate.
Service was excellent--surprisingly informative, friendly, efficient, and accurate. We had Chandra helping us plus a fun chat with the bar manager who helped us feel even more welcome.
The only weakness in the meal, in my opinion, was with the flavored lemonades we tried. Too sweet for my taste and too much ice in the glass. Still good.
In spite of beginning with a "B", in my book, Bennigan's began it's journey in Appleton with an "A" in every category: service, flavor, friendliness, fun, creativity, and value (and not just because we ate for free: the listed prices make this one of the best values in the Valley). Thank you, Bennigan's, and thanks for the chance to try out a welcome new addition to our town.