I had been by the sign many times, I had stopped twice but it was in off hours, but I finally got to try the "Off The Fire" Restaurant on Lake Drive in Texarkana, and want to share my experience there.

Located at 3109 South Lake Drive in Texarkana, way back in the day the building was once a Bonanza Steakhouse, "Off The Fire" in my opinion is serving some of the best home cooking in town. According to Clarence Ray they serve up the best comfort and soul food in Texarkana, so I expected something to really set their food apart from other "home cooking" places. I am not a professional "critic"... but I do try to eat every day if that gives any credibility.

They run a cafeteria style place where you line up to place your order then seat yourself in the large dining area... come in and place your order, pay at the other end of the counter. They have different hours... Open on Sunday noon to five, closed on Mondays, Tuesday thru Friday open from 11 A.M. to 5 P.M. and closed on Saturdays. They also do catering and private events, you can call them at (903) 792-7787.

Standing in line looking at the menu of daily specials it was a toss for me up over the Angus Beef Meatloaf or the Smothered Pork Chops. I went with a large order of the chops with Mashed Potatoes and Fresh Purple Hull Peas. It was then that Ms. Ida Cook walked up in line behind me and said to the friendly ladies behind the counter, "I hope you got some Peach Cobbler." The assured her that they did, and Ms. Cook told me it was the best she had ever had, and they always sell out of it. So, hearing that, I had to order some cobbler.

Starting with the sides, they are real mashed potatoes and just right. Keep in mind I like my potatoes with a chunk or two in them. The fresh Purple Hull Peas were amazing. Different than how I have always cooked them with a hint of smokiness and a little bite. Really, really good. The pork chops were, well, huge. Three large pork chops cooked perfectly and smothered with a gravy, that in it's simpleness was just delicious. All for right around TEN BUCKS!

Photos by Jeff

I would like to offer my gratitude to Ms. Ida Cook, I am so glad I met her and she told be about the Fresh Peach Cobbler. She was absolutely correct and it was some of the best cobbler I have ever had, bar none. It was all so good, but I will be making many return trips for that cobbler alone, and now that I am writing this out, I am thinking to myself that I can just call in and order a pan of it. A really, REALLY big pan of Peach Cobbler... Yep!

Photo by Jeff

I am so glad that I finally got a chance to eat at Off The Fire, I will eat there often and I recommend it highly!