Branson Cafe | Town Cafe | Authentic Ozark Comfort Food

Review by: Michael Stern

A Popular Town Cafe

Yes, too many people want to occupy too few seats. Locals, who have made this town cafe a favorite gathering place for about a century, sometimes can’t get in because tourist families crowd it most of the day. Sorry, but waitresses don’t fake-smile when they serve a meal. Still, no one can deny the goodness of authentic Ozark comfort food served at the Branson Cafe.

Genuine Cooks in the Kitchen

Here in the heart of an extremely well-visited town, a restaurant need not try too hard. Plenty of them serve portion-control fare delivered to the back door ready to heat and serve. But actual cooks work in the kitchen of the Branson Cafe. Pork tenderloins stand out among their accomplishments. They cut them, bread them, and fry them to a golden crisp. Bite into one and you hit a thick ribbon of sweet, succulent meat. In a sandwich with lettuce, tomato, and onion or on a plate topped with cream gravy, this tenderloin exemplifies authentic Ozark comfort food.

Oh, The Wonderful Onion Rings!

The menu offers such hearty staples as pot roast, meat loaf, fried chicken, hot roast beef on Texas toast, even Frito pie. No matter what else you order, do consider onion rings. They cost more than ordinary side dishes, but you will be happy you spent the extra few dollars. Battered lightly enough that crust is a mere veil around tender hoops of onion, they verge on disintegration when you pick one up. The combination of fragile, savory crust and vegetable-sweet onion plays a delicious tune.

At 6am…

What makes breakfast good? You guessed it: Biscuits, freshly baked and topped with made-from-scratch sausage gravy. Or have eggs any which way. Sided by biscuits, please.

Call Me Sweetie

The good ol’ gals who operate this place can be brusque. But hey, they’re only showing unaffected diner attitude utterly appropriate in a busy town cafe. Anyway, by the time I was finished with my meal, I had earned the moniker “Sweetie” from the one who took care of me.

What To Eat

Tenderloin Sandwich

DISH
Onion Rings

DISH
Peanut Butter Chocolate Pie

DISH
Sweet Peach Tea

DISH

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