REEDSPORT — First off, let me say the food at the Miss Ashley's Course House restaurant at Forest Hills Country Club was really good.
The views out over the country club are wonderful.
And the new course pro is a delightful man.
Unfortunately for us, that is probably where the good news ends.
We had heard from two people that the food was good, but the service was on the slow side.
Taking that into consideration, we had a plan.
John hadn't talked to the new head golf professional at Forest Hills, so we were going to get to the course shortly after they opened, order, and then John would go down and do his interview, come back and have lunch and then we planned on playing 18 holes.
That plan blew up almost immediately.
We arrived at 11:15 a.m. to find the doors to the restaurant still closed. The sign on the doors say the restaurant opens at 11.
Undeterred, we went to plan B, go chat with the new golf pro. While in the pro shop we noticed several of John's articles and other clips arranged on a posterboard honoring local golfers Monica Vaughn and Montana Frame.
Both just graduated from college and had celebrated golf careers. I remember John and I playing a round with both of them at Forest Hills after they had just finished their freshman year at Reedsport High School.
Even then, you could tell how good they were going to be. We had photos taken with them on the 18th green after we had finished. I told John at the time that we were going to want to hold onto those photos because some day we would be watching them on TV, and no one was going to believe that we played golf with them.
Now, I can honestly say, I've played golf with an NCAA champion.
John's chat went well and we headed back up to the restaurant.
It was a little before noon and the restaurant was open this time.
The Course House has a larger restaurant side, and a smaller bar side. Chef John took us to the bar side and we seemed to be the first customers of the day.
Despite this, the tables weren't ready and they were still printing the menus for lunch.
So I ordered an iced tea. "I'll have to brew some up."
It took more than 10 minutes to get drinks and the menus.
We both made our choices quickly, knowing that it might take a while.
John ordered the bacon cheeseburger. Knowing that they specialized in Cajun food, I ordered the Andouille B.L.T. Both the burger and the sandwich come with hand cut and house made fries and potato chips.
It was another half an hour for our orders to arrive.
Like I said at the start, the food was really good. I'm just not sure that everyone has the time to wait that long to get their food.
John's double-patty bacon cheeseburger came with a steak knife stuck through it to hold it up (that's always a good sign).
John said his burger compared favorably with the best ones he's had since we started our series earlier this year.
My sandwich was also very good. The Cajun aioli and the Andouille sausage made for a nice flavor combination.
On the dinner menu is jambalaya; Chef John's shrimp and grits; and Cajun/Creole pasta, southern style with either chicken or shrimp. There are also steak and seafood selections.
The food was good, just don't have anywhere you have to be right away. Here's to hoping that when I go back to try the jambalaya that the service times are better. I'm a fan of Cajun food and I think the area could use the menu diversity.
It was later than we had hoped, but John and I made it around the course a couple of times. The greens were in really good shape, as was the course. We both played very average, even for us.
No one wanted to take their pictures with us.