When you walk into the Vintage Grill & Car Museum, you may think you have the place pegged. Nestled in the heart of downtown Weatherford, a block from City Hall, the restaurant is attached to a car museum showcasing about a dozen classic cars, including Lyndon Johnson’s personal Lincoln convertible. With the classic rock music playing in the background, you’ll probably figure that this place serves burgers, fried chicken, and other hallowed American diner staples. You’ll be right. You can certainly get those things here. However, if you notice the $120 bottle of Veuve Clicquot on the wine list, you might have your first clue that this joint is a bit more sophisticated than it lets on.
The lunch items include various salads, burgers, and chicken fingers, as well as soft tacos, and a Cuban sandwich, but I ordered the ’75 Olds, two house-made blue cheese biscuits stuffed with beef tenderloin, bearnaise sauce, and more blue cheese. The portions look small, but they are insanely rich, and when you get bread, meat, cheese, and sauce all in one bite, it makes for an extraordinary burst of flavor. The only problem was that the little sandwiches were hard to eat — I kept having to use my silverware to pick up stray cubes of steak that had fallen out.
The sandwiches come with sides of steak-cut or crinkle-cut fries. I picked the latter, which were fried to a terrific crisp. Those crinkle-cut fries are available by themselves as an appetizer served in a bag, and they’re some of the best fried potatoes I’ve had.
Lunch service is like a fast-casual restaurant where you pay at the register, but dinner is more of a sit-down service in which the waitstaff brings you the bill. I ordered the Vintage fried chicken and received two pieces of white meat in a crunchy coating. The bird was delicate and not overly greasy, and it was accompanied by a fine if undistinguished serving of rosemary mashed potatoes. Those, however, were upstaged by the chipotle maple syrup that came with the entrée, served in a honey pot. The sauce is highly addictive, and I wound up smearing it on everything I ate. If the taste makes you crave a waffle, the restaurant also serves a chicken-and-waffles dish (called The Farm Fresh) with the same syrup.
A more heavyweight entrée was the ’48 Lincoln, an 8-ounce medallion of filet mignon in a bourbon butter demiglace served with a side of mashed potatoes and seasonal greens. The latter meant sautéed kale, a pleasingly crunchy and bitter (if oversalted in spots) complement to the meat. It was a solid, unspectacular entrée, though given how much more expensive it is ($28) than the other dishes on the menu, I think I’d stick to the chicken items the next time I’m here.
For dessert, the Sky High apple pie did not come in the form of a slice but rather as an individual-sized pie baked and served in its own ceramic custard dish. The apples inside may have been a bit too heavily spiced, but the scoop of vanilla ice cream that came with it helped mitigate the overdose of cinnamon, and the top crust was wondrously airy.
The small parking lot next to the restaurant doesn’t have nearly enough spaces given the seating capacity inside, so you may have to park on one of the side streets. Nevertheless, if you do find yourself in downtown Weatherford at mealtime, the Vintage Grill & Car Museum is a high-quality establishment with a refreshing lack of pretense.
Vintage Grill & Car Museum
202 Fort Worth Hwy, Weatherford. 817-594-3750. 10am-10pm Sun, 11am-11pm Mon-Fri, 10am-11pm Sat. MC, V, DS.
Vintage Grill & Car Museum
Fries in a bag $4
’75 Olds $12
Vintage fried chicken $14
’48 Lincoln $28
Sky High apple pie $6