If you are looking for good value for your food dollar and enjoy little out-of-the way places, don’t miss Schunk’s West Hill Grill in East Eden. My husband, Bob, my brother Kevin and I stopped for lunch around 2 in the afternoon and had the place to ourselves. Anna, our server, welcomed us and presented us with a menu chock full of inexpensive choices.
Sandwiches and salads appear first on the lunch menu: prime rib ($7.95), a half-pound burger ($4.75) and a chicken breast sandwich ($6.75) are among the choices. If you prefer lighter fare, select a grilled chicken salad ($7.75) or a grilled steak salad ($8.75).
Those with a heartier appetite might order an 8 oz. strip steak or the half rack of ribs, both served with macaroni or potato salad, fries or slaw ($8.95).
After some back and forth, we placed our orders. Since everything is freshly prepared, we had some time to check out the place as we waited for our meals. The decor is simple in the dimly lit restaurant area, with pops of color provided by the lemon yellow, bright orange, hot pink and blue S.W.H.G. hoodies that hang on the walls, available for sale. A pool table stands on the wide-plank wooden floor, off to the side of the dozen or so bare tables set with white paper place mats. A faux “wood burning” stove, that throws plenty of heat for those cold winter nights, is tucked into one corner, cozying up the room. It isn’t surprising that Schunk’s is a primo choice for snowmobilers, especially since it is located along the C-4 county snowmobile trail.
When Anna returned with our meals, we couldn’t wait to dig in. Kevin, an out-of-towner from Pennsylvania, had ordered the beef on weck ($6.95). The beef was well done, yet still tender, juicy and full of flavor. And huge. He loved it. Because I never cook it or eat it at home, I opted for the fried bologna sandwich. The thick slice, served on a Costanzo hard roll, was dark and crispy around the edges, but not at all dry – well worth $4.95. Bob really hit the jackpot with the $6.95 chicken basket – a half chicken, seasoned with “Uncle Dan’s herbs and spices.” The leg, the breast and the thigh were delightfully crispy outside, moist and tender inside. We all had the huge order of fries as a side and we all agreed that these thin, hand-cut beauties complemented our meals perfectly.
Then there was dessert. We split a slice of Peanut Butter Pie ($3) served with whipped cream, drizzled with chocolate and topped with a cherry. The filling, creamy and laced with peanut butter chips, was melt-in-your-mouth delicious.
I have no doubt that Schunk’s now has a permanent place on our favorite restaurants list. I think we’ll go back on a Thursday between 5 and 9 p.m., when we can order a dinner special (pork chops, grilled chicken breast, fried chicken, salisbury steak, or a seafood basket) for five bucks!
Schunk’s West Hill Grill
Where: 4274 Keller Road, East Eden (992-4432)
Hours: Serving meals from noon to 10 p.m. daily.
Wheelchair access: Yes, no stairs.