If you’ve been to many catered events in the last year, you’ve probably already heard of Perfect Pear catering. After much coercion from their catering clientele, they opened a little place on Perry’s charming Carroll Street.
To continue their successful catering business, the storefront is only open Monday through Wednesday for both lunch and dinner. (It’s a good idea to check their Facebook if you’re driving very far, just in case they have an event that day.)
The simplicity of the restaurant decor belies the excellent service and gorgeous food that await you. Each item is carefully designed with appearance as much an element as the taste. Our favorite appetizers were the adult mac and cheese, with five cheeses, and the lovely platter of very homemade, finely shredded pimento cheese.
We had a few issues with the other appetizers that kept this rating from being four stars.
The French onion soup, served in a traditional crock, was a bit salty, as was the shrimp and grits. Served in a wine glass, the shrimp and grits had an unappetizing layer of orange oil at the top -- perhaps it could be stirred better just before being served. The “Megnificent” crab dip with toast rounds could have used more crab, but it was still delicious.
The Perfect salad is a balanced combination of Georgia pecans, dried cranberries, gala apple and chèvre on organic mixed greens with house-made balsamic vinaigrette. The restaurant attempts to make as many items farm-to-table as possible and the freshness is evident in this salad.
They also offer a caesar salad with or without chicken or filet mignon, and a Cobb with house-made bleu cheese dressing.
Our main courses were the Mediterranean chicken and the beef Violine. The succulent, tender chicken countered the tartness of the pan-roasted tomatoes, kalamata olives and feta atop it, with a touch of sweetness from the balsamic reduction added at the end. For $15, this dish could easily be from any of our local fine dining establishments. The beef Violine special, for $22, are filet medallions in a Cabernet sauce served with bruised purple potato salad and the daily vegetable, asparagus.
Sandwiches are available during lunch, including the signature pimiento cheese and bacon, and the Downtown Dip. The latter consists of roasted in-house shaved eye of round topped with grilled onion, sautéed mushrooms and cheese on ciabatta for $12.
Perhaps our favorite part of our dinner at the Perfect Pear, however, was dessert. The creme brulée was thick and creamy, the key lime pie was tart and tangy; but the scene stealer was the Krispy Kreme bread pudding. If you drive to Perry-dice just for that, you will consider it a trip well made.
Address: 922 Carroll St., Perry
Hours: 11 a.m.-2 p.m. and 5:30-8 p.m. Monday-Wednesday
Payment: Cash, credit
Kids Menu: No
Noise Level: Low
Health Rating: 100
Price range: $12-$21
Rating: 3.5 stars