329 Broad St
Lake Charles LA
Wednesday to Sunday 11:00 AM to 10 PM $2.50 to $21
Housed in the old Rikenjacks Bar and Brewery, the vibe here certainly reflects the hippie era as explained by colleague Brad Goins. Seating is picnic benches or booth with simple wood benches. The feel good mood is infectious
My first foray saw me eating their Pesto Cheesy bread. It is basically a quarter pie with pesto covered in mozzarella with a sprinkle of red pepper flakes. It comes out on the medium thick crust. I found it delicious, tasty and well balanced. You get a side of marinara if you desire to dip which I did not. Not that the marinara was bad I just like the bread as is. I also ordered a Roasted Stuffed Poblano. Being a fan of Chile Rellenos I liked the concept of this dish and the fact it was not fried. They take a large pepper and split it open removing the seeds. A layer of protein (in my case smoked brisket) is laid in and topped with mozzarella then put in the screaming hot oven to roast. I enjoyed the result. The roast flavor of the pepper combined well with the cheesy unctuousness and smoky brisket flavor. They do Hot Dogs here also and they struck my mood that day. I got two types. The Blue Dog (blue cheese, bacon, and red onions) and the Chili Dog (chili, cheese, and onions) were my choices. Nothing fancy about the dogs or buns just good old fashion dogs. They brought back fond memories. Odd choice for a pizza place you might say. Traditional American pizza is not a favorite of mine so I was building myself up for it.
They have a nice selection of sandwiches including a Roasted Vegan/Veggie. While I am not a vegetarian, but an omnivore, I like a nice vegetable dish once in awhile to break it up. However I found the title a bit of a misnomer as there were only one roasted vegetable in the sandwich. The best way I could describe it is “a salad on a baguette”. Realizing that and coming to terms with it, it turned out to just fine
Last time in was for the pizza. Although what I chose most people would not consider a pizza. The thing is I have a love/hate relationship with tomatoes. If I am in the right mood it can be wonderful. However on things Italian I tend to avoid them. I ordered the White pizza with garlic olive oil, mozzarella, and red onions to which I added bacon and roasted garlic. I went with the half pizza. When it came out it also had either basil or spinach leaves. It also possessed a super thin crust. Again I generally do not care for thin crust as it usually ends up soggy. Not here though for two reasons. First is the high temperature they can get in their oven which gives a very crisp product. Second is that here toppings are not piled mile high but judiciously laid on. The crust remained crispy. I think they could give Neapolitan pizza a run for its money
One last note is that the bar here serves great beer both in bottles and on tap. They have the usual suspects but also carry products from some regional breweries. They include St Arnolds from Houston, La31 from Ville Platte, and Lazy Magnolia out of Mississippi. I tasted a few and they were excellent. Great beer and good pizza, what more could you ask for.