Rascals: Apple Valley
This past Friday night my family and I headed out to one of our favorite places to enjoy a nice quite, home cooked meal. Rascals Bar and Grill in Apple Valley, tucked behind the Wal-Mart in a little strip mall, has been a favorite for several years now. They offer something for everyone, kids included, from homemade meatloaf (my fav.) to BBQ Ribs, Hot Open Faced sandwiches and great burgers and bar food. The specials are some of the best South of the river with $3.99 burgers and fries on Mondays to Kids eat free on Sundays. All summer long, they offered happy hour drink prices open to close and an all you can eat Walleye (yes it is real) on Fridays for $9.99.
I had a craving for a good old fashioned homemade meal a few weeks back and didn't feel like making anything. We headed out to Rascals and I had just that, some of the best meatloaf other than that I used to enjoy growing up as a kid. While we were waiting for our food to arrive, we started searching through the little drink menu/table top decoration that every bar/restaurant has these days. Inside I found a page with bar specials and it just slapped me in the face. They now have a Juicy Lucy. After seeing this, I was going to order one and hope I had enough room after I enjoyed my meatloaf, but that didn't happen. Now I had an excuse to make my way back to Rascals in the very near future.
We decided that tonight we were going to sit in the bar area with the three kids and just have a some appetizers and a Juicy Lucy while the kids enjoyed some kiddie cocktails and playing with the games. My wife and I also decided that tonight was going to be one of our two times a year playing "cardboard crack" aka, pull tabs. While we waited for our first round of apps to come out, I put my $20 into a box and let the kids pull some of them. The wife and I were all done with ours, and not even a $1 winner until the 5 year old pulled one and she says "Mom, it has a big red line on it, what does that mean"? I grabbed it and she had hit a $200 winner. SWEET.. Dinner was paid for and then some. After tipping out the Pull Tab Lady and replacing my $20, we were up $160.
So the first round of Appetizers arrived along with the kids meals for the two girls. We ordered skins and cheese curds. They were OK, nothing over the top, but hit the spot for a Friday night. All through the time were were eating our first round of apps, the owner of Rascals came over to give us a visit. One of the nicest ladies I had ever meet and was very accommodating and entertaining to my kids. I tried to pawn them off on her, but she wasn't interested. She wanted to make sure we were getting everything we needed and made sure we not only were enjoying our food, but that we were enjoying our visit (I wish more restaurant owners cared this much).
Now onto the Juicy Lucy. What you are about to hear is something that pains me to write as Rascals is my #1 restaurant to take my kids to and I have never had a bad meal here, but the Lucy was nothing more than a 1/4 lb cheeseburger. Maybe this has something to do with my all time favorite meal and my two all-time favorite restaurants. Both the Buffalo Tap and Rascals are a toss-up as our main staples as far as visiting at least once a week and both offer Juicy Lucy's. And both places are some of the worst Lucy's around. Oh well, it still doesn't change my opinion on Rascals as a great locally owned restaurant that serves up some damn good food at a fair price.
Overall, I cannot even call this a Lucy. From the picture above, it appears as if they took one piece of cheese, tore it in half, placed 1/2 inside and the other 1/2 on-top. The burger was good for only $5 for the 1/4lb burger and a full basket of fries, but PLEASE take this off your menu as this is an embarrassment to all other Juicy Lucy's in this great state.