ROTC Gives Great Comfort

Eat It: April 21

Venerable joint pleases with simply good cooking

By Rachel Birdsell

TFW Contributing Writer

Preamble Ramble

ROTC Grill, 3582 N. Arkansas 112, Fayetteville, 521-2674

ROTC has been on my “must review” list for a while now. I think that it gets overlooked a lot as a place to eat because of its location. It’s a shame because not only is it one of the oldest restaurants in Fayetteville, it also has some damn good eats.

Food For Thought

After spending entirely too much time looking over the menu, I decided on the French dip with a side of onion rings. I love that the French Dip comes with bouillon dip rather than au jus. It’s exactly the same thing, but ROTC doesn’t have to be all pretentious about their dip naming.

The sandwich was beefalicious. It had plenty of roast beef on it, but not so much that I had to dislocate my jaw to take a bite of it. Of course, I do have a rather large mouth. The French bread had been toasted until it was crispy on the outside and soft on the inside. The bouillon dip tasted better than any au jus I’ve ever had. It was bold, rich, smooth and not even slightly pretentious.

Onion rings have always been something I eat about once a year. It seems that most restaurants think onion rings should be dipped in a bland batter and then slowly fried until they’ve absorbed a couple of fry vats of grease. The onion rings at ROTC may make my onion ring eating a little more frequent. They were dipped in beer batter and then fried to perfection. I went after them like Paula Deen on a pound of butter. They were outstanding.

I also stole a few French fries off of my dining partner’s plate. I had to. He made the statement that the fries tasted just like my homemade ones. He wasn’t lying. They tasted exactly like my homemade French fries, which happen to be most excellent.

The Sporkcast

(1-5 sporks)

Atmosphere: 3.75 sporks who want to party like it’s somewhere between 1978 and 1999. I suppose the décor could be called retro. The wood paneling shouted 1978, while the mismatched curtains were more the country look from 1989. The rest of the furnishings fit somewhere between the 70s and 90s. It’s very casual, very relaxing, very down home.
Food: 4.45 dancing sporks with handles hand-carved from bull horns. My meal was great. While most certainly not gourmet, it was solid home-style cooking. Along with a respectable selection of sandwiches, ROTC offers salads, pizzas and entrees.
Staff: 4.90 My waitress was full of the awesome. She made me feel welcome and then proceeded to take care of me throughout my meal.
Dollars spent: About $10 and worth every shiny dime. I didn’t see anything on the menu more than $15.
Chance of returning: I’ll most certainly be back to ROTC, especially when I’m in need of some comfort food.

If you know of a great eating place, drop me a line at I’ll check it out and let you know what I think.

Categories: Food
Tags: featured