|2360 Gruene Lake Dr.
New Braunfuls, TX 78130
Dining along the Guadalupe near Gruene and New Braunfels has always been somewhat akin to browsing through a dusty antique shop. But the classy and upscale casual Gruene Door has changed all that. This is a lovely dining destination that anchors a mixed retail and housing development and could hold its own against a number of comparable Austin restaurants.
The starters at the Gruene Door are tasty harbingers of the more extensive feasts yet to come. And they rock! I love the Crab Cakes. They are chock-full of lump crab meat and the fillers are minimal. This is about the crab and all about taste. The Grilled Beef Salad is another treat. Think about tender slices of sirloin atop a small mountain of mixed greens, onions, bleu cheese, cucumbers, and red peppers tossed with a cabernet vinaigrette. This is a salad that demands recognition. Equally tasty and innovative is the Peanut Noodle Salad. This draws from both Thai and American influences as it blends Capellini noodles with sesame crusted shrimp, crispy Napa cabbage, along with sweet peppers, scallions and carrots in an interesting ancho-peanut sauce. If you like a little zip to your salad, this one’s for you. I really enjoy it. And the Parmesan Crusted Shrimp rounds out the appetizers. This is a light and nicely textured pleasure with just the slightest bit of crunch. It has a very pleasing flavor with the subtle accent of the parmesan cheese.
With regard to the entrees at the Gruene Door, I have developed a number of favorites in my visits there. The Chicken Fried Chicken Breast is a good place to begin. It’s tender, nicely cooked and comes with a seriously good pepper gravy (critical with this dish). The lyonnaise potatoes are also a nice touch with this heavier entrée. The Garlic Shrimp are still excellent. Served with capellini now instead of orzo, they continue to resonate that piquant flavor that is characteristic of this dish when correctly prepared. The garlic doesn’t overwhelm; rather it subtly complements the flavor profile. And I do enjoy the Stuffed Flounder as well. This comes from the North Carolina shore and is stuffed with rock shrimp and blue crab. It has a delicate texture and a very nuanced and balanced taste appeal. Each bite is something to be savored. The Angus Beef Ribeye is a 14oz cut of marbled beauty. The steak not only arrives looking ready to be devoured by this hungry carnivore, but it usually leaves with virtually nothing left on my plate. That’s always a good sign. And tender is the requisite word here. The final jewel in the crown of the Gruene Door is the Grilled Salmon. This is done in a smoky paprika and brown sugar glaze, medium-rare of course, and served on a bed of grilled parmesan cheese polenta. Nice touches across the board on this dish. Everything blends beautifully.
So take a visit to Gruene and discover all the pleasures of the Greune Door. It’s a short hop down I-35 and well worth the trip.