Review: Croquettes and Cobblers
It’s been a while since I’ve reviewed a restaurant that doesn’t take reservations, but tonight I did and it was well worth it. Beyond its reservation policy, Leon’s Full Service in Decatur operates as a relaxed “everyday” kind of place where patrons can often find creative American-influenced dishes without paying more than $20 on an entree.
Maybe its the name, decor or a combination of the two, but the inside of Leon’s Full Service feels like the inside of a hip 1980s gas station. While many of my friends pin me as someone who only eats foie gras on gold-rimmed plates, I too find merit in good meals that don’t break the bank in an atmosphere that’s very conversational, if you can even say that.
chicken liver croquettes with shallot pickles
and an herb, bacon mayo. $6
While the chicken liver could have been a tinge stronger, the croquettes were fried quite nicely and had a good balance of chicken liver and breadcrumb filling. The shallot pickles were useful palette cleansers.
bacon with peanut butter $5.50
I’m not a bacon fanatic at all. In fact, I usually steer away from dishes that make too much use of it, but the thought of bacon and peanut butter was one worth trying. It’s easy to assume that the kitchen was just playing with sweet and salty, but I didn’t expect the creamy and nutty nature of the peanut butter to smooth out the salt and fat from the bacon. I’d order it again.
grilled duck breast, lentils, golden beets,
dried cranberries, orange duck jus $18
although just a tinge more medium than I like, the duck was tender and seasoned to the point where the natural flavors of the duck could still shine through. The dried cranberries and orange duck jus wasn’t too sweet either and didn’t overpower the duck. Very satisfying.
apple cobbler $4
The least interesting dish of the night. When you say cobbler I’m thinking fruit under a buttery crust, but here the kitchen tried to use oats for a topping. There was nothing more to this dessert than apples cooked with brown sugar. But considering the dish only cost $4, I wasn’t throwing a hissy at the table.
Leon’s Full Service is the kind of the place you could visit a few times week (lunch or dinner) if you’re looking for good food without having to get dressed up. The menu is diverse and creative enough to keep your attention too.