Tess On the Town: WW Peppers aging nicely
WW Peppers, a longtime favorite in Grand Junction, was opened by Hal and Debbie Wederath in 1984.
In those years, it has carved out a niche for its aged hand-cut steaks and Southwestern fare.
A stone’s throw from the interstate and hotels on Horizon Drive, the clientele of Peppers includes a lot of travelers and people in town on business with expense accounts. This you can guess when you see a table of eight guys in khakis and button-down shirts sparing no expense.
It’s also popular with locals and has a parking lot full of cars on any given night.
Unless you arrive early for dinner, you’re likely to have a short wait for a table. Luckily, Peppers has a decent selection of Palisade and California wines and imported and microbrews to sip on while you wait. Of note were the Warnsteiner Dunkel and the Old Speckled Hen Ale.
On a recent visit, we arrived just before the crowd started trickling in, so we were seated immediately in the lodgy, comfortable dining room. Peppers’ décor is brick, dark wood and knotty pine with stained-glass windows and Western-theme wall hangings.
Chips (cooked to order), and salsa are not complimentary. That’ll cost you $4.50. Chips and guacamole are market price.
We ordered a cup of red chili, which comes with chips, and the soup du jour, potato and sirloin. Both were very good, the chili was traditional and the soup was loaded with sirloin, tomatoes and onions.
Peppers serves half portions of many things on the menu, which is a good thing, because the servings are huge.
My friend was very pleased with his N.Y. strip steak, perfectly grilled, pink in the middle and sizzling on a cast-iron skillet plate. The sides, rice and vegetables, were just that. No surprises.
I ordered, from among 15-or-so dinners on the Southwest menu, a chicken Portobello burrito. It was an interesting variation on the burrito: stuffed with creamy chicken-flavored rice, cheese and peppers, split open and topped with mushrooms, a grilled chicken breast and pico de gallo. The flavors were wonderful, but it could have been better balanced, with more Portobellos and much less cheese.
We were both delighted with the dessert we ordered at the suggestion of our server. The half portion was a very large plate of freshly cooked nacho chips with honey-flavored strawberries and whipped cream. Sounds odd, but it was definitely yummy.
From anecdotes and checking online reviews of WW Peppers from yelp and tripadvisor, two other things emerged. First, several people were peeved that the chef would not alter his dishes at all. Simple requests such as no onions, minus the chicken or no ranch dressing were politely denied.
Second, Peppers got many raves for its lump meat crab enchiladas. I’ll put those on my to-do list.
DAGWOOD SPECIAL: Several readers have written to tell me their favorite sandwiches in Grand Junction. If you have a fave, let me know and I’ll include it in an upcoming roundup.
QUOTE: “If you ate pasta and antipasto, would you still be hungry?” — Author unknown