Apr 042007
Authors: Sarah Milke

Restaurants are known to be one of the hardest businesses to make successful.

With Suzette’s being in operation for only nine weeks, the possibility of failure is still eminent.

Located on North College Avenue in Old Town Fort Collins, the restaurant consists of no more than 10 tables. Don’t be intimidated by the quaint atmosphere or limited dinner menu, because once you taste the food you will be certain that Suzette’s is a force to be reckoned with.

Named after the owner Chris Dill’s mother, the restaurant d/cor does not emit a tremendous Southern feel with the white linen tablecloths and walls covered with shelves of incredibly cheap wine (every bottle has a price written on it). The menu is where the culture of Alabama really shines.

Suzette’s offers a dinner menu with a set price of $17.95 or $22.95 depending on the entr/e selection. The price includes a choice of beverage, appetizer, entr/e and dessert, and is served in a family-style fashion. Everything but the entr/e is served in a bowl or platter with portions to feed everyone at the table.

The beverage selection is pretty standard with sodas and alcoholic beverages, but it’s not really the South without an ice-cold glass of sweet tea. We are not talking iced tea that is made with Splenda – the tea has real sugar a flavor so sweet it might make your teeth hurt.

A platter separated into three compartments serves as the appetizer and the beginning of the Southern experience. The sections are filled with cottage cheese, fried green tomatoes with chutney (a sweet salsa) and pickled pears. Homemade biscuits and sweetened butter also accompany these dishes with unlimited refills.

Next in line is the entr/e and a chance for the customer to have a small say in their meal. Suzette’s offers catfish, fried chicken, a wild rice-stuffed pepper and a ribeye steak, but you can only choose one. Served alongside the entr/es are bowls of mashed potatoes, gravy, creamed corn and collard greens with bacon.

If that wasn’t enough food to fill you up, dessert is on the way. Dishes as simple as vanilla bean ice cream or walnut bread pudding with a scoop of ice cream create the perfect ending to one satisfying meal.

Suzette’s also serves lunch with an a la carte style menu, giving a choice of soups, salads and sandwiches. No matter what time of day you choose to visit, your experience will be a pleasant one.

During my two visits to Suzette’s, I was impressed in different ways with regards to the food and service. The dishes are like nothing I have ever tasted before and no request is too small for this very friendly staff.

Though I hadn’t experienced a great amount of Southern cooking, I realized that there are stereotypes out there and that it can be eaten in elegance. The restaurant business can provide a great deal of competition especially for a new establishment, but something tells me that Suzette’s won’t have any problems consistently keeping their 10 tables full.

Staff writer Sarah Milke can be reached at verve@collegian.com.

 Posted by at 5:00 pm

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