Triangle Restaurant

Cafeteria | Meat-and-Three | Small Town Café | Steak
One of the best

The Triangle is a single building – a dazzling one, triangular in shape, 1960s in spirit – and it is two different restaurants, each with its own entryway. At the back against the hypotenuse is a lunch-only cafeteria where, for under $10, customers pile their trays with fried chicken, vegetables, and slices of made-here layer cake. Up front at the vertex in a room with picture-window walls and do-wop décor, dinner is served starting at 5:30pm.

Steaks star at dinner: filets, sirloins, and a broad beauty named John’s ribeye (named for owner and chef John McDowell). They are grilled on the flattop and so develop a savory skin with a bit of crunch at the edges. The sirloin can’t be beat. It is thick and easy to slice and runs savory juice as soon as it is breached with a knife. The plate-wide ribeye, although thinner, is lushly marbled and even juicier. The filet mignon, at eight ounces, is all meat, not quite so flavorful but ridiculously tender. On the side come either French fries, sweet potato fries (along with a shaker of cinnamon sugar), a foil-wrapped baked potato, or a trip to the salad bar.

The dinner menu also lists fried shrimp (more about the fried than the shrimp), pork chops fried or broiled, and an array of sandwiches including thick-sliced fried bologna with lettuce, tomato, and mayonnaise on toast. Next time I get this deliciously unctuous B(ologna)LT, I’ll ask for it on a bun. Toasted white bread isn’t sturdy enough to hold the substantial slab of meat and all its garnishes.

For dessert, there’s cake: Key lime cake (bright green), red velvet cake (bright red), hummingbird cake, coconut cake, and strawberry shortcake. Although the strawberry shortcake is topped with pseudo-whip and the syrupy topping shows little evidence of ever having been a berry, I found myself returning for more and more forkfuls, like it was some kind of addictive Little Debbie snack cake. On the other hand, red velvet cake is a no-excuses triumph, the cake itself cocoa-rich and not too sweet, so well abetted by an abundance of cream cheese frosting. Hummingbird cake with its double-tap salvo of pineapple and banana, plus nuts, will sate the most demanding sweet tooth. The cakes are moist and good on their own, but my waitress reminded me that they also can be had a la mode.

It is fun to eat in the dinner part of the Triangle, where one is serenaded by the sizzling grill and the bell that rings to let waitresses know that orders are ready to serve. Décor is 45rpm records, Coke ads, and other mid 20th century pop-culture iconography; and the view out the big, slanted windows is of the parking lot – an appropriate vista for a restaurant that dates back to the heyday of car culture.

Eating lunch in back, where there is no do-wop decoration and there are no picture windows, has charms all its own – of the edible variety. Service is cafeteria-style, not a buffet, meaning staff dishes out the food, which customers receive and put on a tray. (In other words, no other diners will be playing pattyfingers with your corn bread muffin.) It’s a meat-and-three affair, or meat-and-two or meat-and-one for meager appetites, where the day’s two or three entrees might be fried chicken, salmon patties, and meatloaf and side dishes are the likes of broccoli-rice-cheese casserole, braised cabbage, mashed potatoes, peas, and beans. The same impressive layer cakes are available here, as are bread pudding and Watergate salad. Although you do tote your own tray to a table, a staff of eager waitresses is always ready to help and to refill glasses of tea or lemonade.

Notes: Lunch is served Monday through Friday, 11am – 2:30pm. Dinner is served Monday through Saturday starting at 5:30pm. While a steak dinner can cost $20 or more, lunch is under $10.

What to Eat
Triangle Restaurant, Ribeye Steak
Ribeye Steak
John's ribeye: succulence in every forkful
Triangle Restaurant, Sirloin Steak
Sirloin Steak
Sirloin is thick and juicy.
Triangle Restaurant, Chili Slaw Dog
Chili Slaw Dog
At under $2, the chili slaw dog is the sleeper prize on the menu.
Triangle Restaurant, Filet Mignon
Filet Mignon
8-ounce filet is butterknife tender.
Triangle Restaurant, Fried Shrimp
Fried Shrimp
Fried shrimp are more about crunchy, seasoned crust than seafood.
Triangle Restaurant, Bologna Sandwich
Bologna Sandwich
Triple-thick bologna has a crisp-fried edge.
Triangle Restaurant, Cake
Hummingbird cake includes pineapple, mashed bananas & nuts.
Triangle Restaurant, Watergate Salad
Watergate Salad
Watergate salad is a legacy of 20th century American convenience cooking.
Triangle Restaurant, Cole Slaw
Cole Slaw
Cole slaw is zesty with agreeable crunch.
Triangle Restaurant, Sweet Potato Fries
Sweet Potato Fries
Sweet potato fries come with a shaker of cinnamon sugar.
Triangle Restaurant, Grilled Roll
Grilled Roll
Roll, brushed with buttery spread and grilled to a crisp
Triangle Restaurant, Strawberry Cake
Strawberry Cake
Strawberry layer cake is veined with cooked-soft berries.
Triangle Restaurant, Pork Chops
Pork Chops
Pork chops, fried and grilled
Triangle Restaurant, Hamburger
Broad burger packs good flavor.
Directions and Hours
closed now
Monday5:30pm - 9pm
Tuesday5:30pm - 9pm
Wednesday5:30pm - 9pm
Thursday5:30pm - 9pm
Friday5:30pm - 9pm
Saturday11am - 9pm
Open Year Round
Meals Served
Lunch, Dinner
Credit Cards Accepted
Alcohol Served
Outdoor Seating

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