Fried chicken, cheese grits, macaroni and cheese, hash brown casserole, banana pudding, homemade lemonade, chicken salad, pimiento cheese, pound cake, lemon bars and brownie pie. If that’s not enough to get you to Dawson’s Kitchen at the Milltown Market, I guess I’ll have to tell you more.
There are a few things that set Dawson’s Kitchen apart from the usual meat and two places. The Milltown Market part of the name comes from the locally grown produce they sell in small quantities. They also sell jams, jellies and, my favorite, homemade desserts.
We brought home a sour cream pound cake, a slice of coconut pie, an assortment of cookies, cheese straws, giant wedding cookies and a brownie pie that was so rich we could only eat one bite per sitting. We also bought genuine Bateman and Wade pimiento cheese, jalepeño pimiento cheese, low fat almond chicken salad and very good regular chicken salad.
In general, the meats were tastier than the sides. The rotisserie chicken was moist and juicy, with most of its seasoning in the skin. The hamburger steak was ground fine and not chewy like some can be, covered in a well-seasoned gravy. The fried chicken was as good as any other in town.
The sides needed a little more flavor to match the quality of the desserts and entrees. The macaroni and cheese seemed to be made from something closer to a roux than a cheese mixture, topped with cheddar cheese that got a little gloppy. The cheese grits as well as the butter beans needed more salt. The hash browns had a great texture but needed more onion, and the fried green tomatoes were firm on the inside but the batter was too mushy and bland.
But back to the good stuff: the lemonade is the tartest, tangiest lemonade in town. Not everybody likes it that sour, but if you like your lemonade fresh squeezed and puckery, this is the best place in town to get it.
Prices are reasonable at $5.30 for a meat and one side, $6.49 for a meat with two sides, a four veggie plate for $5.99, and a kids plate for $3.90. You can also get whole casseroles and desserts to take home.
Since they have daily dishes, you will need to visit their website at www.dawsonskitchen.com to find out what they’re serving each day. Make sure to leave room for those mouth-watering desserts and buy some vegetables to lessen your guilt. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go get another bite of that brownie pie.
Dawson’s Kitchen at the Milltown Market
Address: 3360 Brookdale Ave, Payne City
Phone: (478) 742-9852
Hours: 11 a.m.-7:30 p.m. Mondays-Fridays; 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturdays
Payment: Cash, credit
Kids Menu: Yes
Noise Level: Low
Wheelchair accessible: Yes
Health Rating: 100
Price range: $5-$10
Rating: 2.5 stars