Thursday, May 1, 2008

The Kitschy Cowgirl

I'm not sure what it is about Southern/BBQ restaurants that make the owners feel the need to decorate it in the most over-the-top manner. They try to cover every square inch of wall space with every country/western knick knack known to man. Of course there are exceptions to this rule (the more classy joints), but Cowgirl fits right in with the "chotchkies galore" mentality when it comes to its decor.

Old highway signs, gun racks, and cowboy hats decorate the space and the wooden booths make you feel like you're in a western saloon. If I hadn't been to Cowgirl before, I would have been convinced that this place was a complete tourist trap. My co-workers and I went there for dinner before another colleague's performance a few blocks away. I quickly reassured them that it was a fun, neighborhood restaurant and we'd have a great meal.

Just as soon as we were seated and our drink orders were taken, chips and black-eyed pea salsa was brought to our table. As weird as we all thought it looked at first glance, this salsa was absolutely delicious. I didn't want to fill up on the chips and salsa too much, but luckily the little bowl went quickly among the four of us.

There were so many dishes that really caught my eye on the menu...I knew it was going to be a tough choice! Cowgirl was too unique to order any of the typical items like fajitas or a bbq chicken sandwich, so it was easy to eliminate those. Then, something stood out to me and I knew I had to order it...a Frito pie. Most of you from above the Mason-Dixon line probably have no clue what a Frito pie is. Imagine Frito chips (you know, those salty, greasy, corn chips) covered in chili and all the fixin's.

Cowgirl took it to the next level, further convincing me they have some creative chefs in that kitchen! Not only was the veggie chili (there is also the choice of beef brisket) served on top of the Fritos, but the entire dish was served IN a Fritos bag!!



The Fritos got soggy pretty quickly under the heat of the chili, but the first few bites had a great crunch. The chili itself was delicious...a little sweet, a little spicy, and had a lot of beans and veggies in it. The whole thing was topped with shredded cheddar, sour cream, chopped onions, and jalapenos. It seemed like a small portion at first, but was definitely very hearty.

So far, so good. To add to the great experience, if you order the 32oz fountain drinks, there are free refills...and you know how I feel about that! Granted most people cannot consume 64 ounces of soda in one sitting, but then again, who ever claimed Miss Menu was "most people?!" My co-workers really enjoyed their meals too. Two got the Cowtown Quesadillas with pulled chicken and another got Papa Joel's Pulled Pork sandwich. They also liked the frozen margaritas, one was mango flavor and the other was made with Jameson instead of tequila.

If you're looking for a cute (if not slightly over-decorated!) place with a lively atmosphere, great bar scene and happy hour, and some good ol' down-home cooking, Cowgirl is the place for you. Happy eatin', y'all!

Cowgirl
519 Hudson Street
@ West 10th Street
website
Menu Pages listing

1 comment:

Todd said...

Frito pie is fantastic.