Bowling Green
Campbell Lane
Downtown
Greenwood
Northgate
31W Bypass
31W South
Scottsville Road
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Westgate

Since 2000
Thai
BBQ
Chinese
Family
Fast Food
Fish
Indian
Italian
Greek
Japanese
Lunch
Mexican Occasion
Pizza
Steak
Westgate is the label developers are using for the area along Russellville Road on the other side of the CSX Railroad Bridge, the area beyond the Western Kentucky University campus. The stretch of Russellville Road with restaurants and other commercial sites extends from the Warren Central High School (right) to Ross Middle School (above left). Along this stretch are 10 restaurants. It includes three locally owned single site outlets plus seven franchises of national chains. Although Russellville Road is a well travelled connector route to counties West of town, the restaurants on this road are all relatively new. The franchises tend to be very small and more suited to carryout orders. But the three locally owned outlets are much larger inside than they look and are already developing a loyal clientele for breakfast, lunch and dinner among people who live or work in that part of the county, and for WKU students who live in dorms or apartments on that side of campus. Shown here is Warren Central HS. Above are the Middle School and a Louisville & Nashville 1950s streamliner at the railroad station.
Brenolyn's
Con Con's
Cabrera's
Rally's
Papa John's
McDonald's
Wendy's
Arby's
Hardee's
Jimmy John's
Brenolyn's has rapidly gained a loyal following. They bill their food as Southern Comfort for under $10 a meal. If they can maintain their current level of food, service and pricing they'll become one of Bowling Green's most beloved restaurants. Their food is homemade, including the mashed potatoes and gravy, biscuits, and seasonings (which almost no one makes in house anymore). The interior is much larger than you expect from outside appearances. Breakfast fans rave about the hashbrowns, biscuits, grits, pancakes and omelettes. We think their Hashbrown Casserole is unique, and they whip up a great Omelette (choice of Western, Fajita, Cheese or Veggie). Their Country Ham is also worth the stop. The stars of the lunch menu are Pickled Fried Green Tomatoes With Sabi Sauce and Fried Green Beans. We've eaten Fried Green Tomatoes all over the South and Green Beans all over the nation but never had them fixed quite like this. As for dinner, they do the best job in town with their vegetables. If you've never had Turnip Greens or Collards, this is where to try them. Among entrees, the stars are the huge Country Fried Steak ("hubcap sized"), Catfish and Meat Loaf. For dessert, the Peanut Butter Pie and Buttermilk Pie are delicious.
Con Con's opened in 2009 and is a favorite with smokers because in its small confines there's no room for separate sections so every table has an ashtray. It's a neighborhood diner open three meals a day. Its Eggs & Bolognie Breakfast Special is unique and worth ordering just so you can say you once tried it. There are the usual Country Ham, Steak, Pancakes, and Omelettes, with the Southern Sharecropper touches of Tomatoes, Grits, Honeybuns, and Home Fries. Lunch is 14 sandwiches, two stuffed tomatoes, three salads and a fruit bowl. But it's with their dinners we think Con Con's does their best job. The Pork Chops, Country Fried Steak, and Chicken are $6 and Hamburger Steak, Country Ham, 6 oz. Ribeye, and Tenderloin are $7. Of these entrees we like the Country Ham and Country Fried Steak.
Cabrera's is Bowling Green's newest Mexican restaurant. To compete with their established rivals, they offer a more extensive menu. There are ten kinds of Fajitas, six Steaks, and several unique items. The most interesting are Antenas (seasoned skewered beef), Tacos Supreme (two tacos stuffed with grilled steak), Sincronizades (corn tortillas filled with ham, chicken, steak or pork plus Mexican cheeses), and Fajitas Alex (grilled scallops, tomatoes, peppers and onions with rice, beans, sour cream, pico de gallo, guacamole and lettuce). Chiles Rellenos are here, in the lunch menu, but so are the larger Chiles Pablanos, featured at dinner. Seafood includes 12 items, but seven are shrimp. However, the Fajitas del Mar features grilled scallops, tilapia, shrimp, peppers, onions, tomatoes, lettuce, guacamole, sour cream, pico de gallo, rice and beans. If you like heat, try the Hot Shrimp (shrimp with green hot sauce). There are 14 Burritos, seven Chicken entrees, and a page of Specials. Soups are conspicuously absent. The full service bar offers wines, beers, and mixed drinks. All the traditional Mexican desserts are here, of which we prefer the Flan (Mexican custard). A child's menu caters to those 12 and under

Arby's carved out its reputation with roast beef sandwiches and they still fix the best in town. They slice it thin, oven roast it and put it between toasted sesame seed buns. There are three sizes. They offer it in cheddar cheese and pepper bacon versions. The basic sandwich is one of the most heart healthy fast foods out there. But there's a corned beef /swiss cheese/ sauerkraut on rye, two roast turkey sandwiches, and three chicken sandwiches. Arby's has added four kinds of subs and three salads. The only concessions to the cholesterol culture are the curly fries, mozzarella sticks and potato bites.

Waffle House is famous for their waffles but ironically their menu features everything else. They promote their Steak & Eggs, Pork Chops & Eggs, Grilled Chicken & Eggs, Omelettes (Cheesesteak, Chili Cheese, Jalapeno and Ham & Cheese), Egg Sandwiches, Hash Browns and classic EggsnBacon or Ham & Egg plates. They're also pretty proud of their biscuits, sausage and bacon sides. Then, over there in the corner, they get around to their Waffles. Their basic is the classic Butter Milk Waffle. There are Double Waffles and Waffles With Sausage or Ham or Eggs. You can pick from Pecan, Chocolate Chip, Blueberry and Strawberry. Actually, we regret the evolution of Waffle House. Way back there, they served ONLY waffles, two pages of every variation imaginable. We could try waffles here we could never find anywhere else and couldn't fix ourselves. Now they've diversified, but the waffle choices are narrowed. Luckily, they still do a good job, with waffles and everything else.

 

Rally's is a Drive Through Fast Food restaurant with a very basic but very tasty menu. They offer a basic burger, quarter pound chicken sandwich, fish filet sandwich, hot dog, classic wings, fries and your choice of soft drinks. The fries are particularly good, with a strong flavor. You'll either love 'em or hate 'em. Most people love 'em and drop by several times a week just for the fries. The chicken quarterpounder comes on a sourdough bun plus lettuce and tomato slices. It's probably the most heart healthy chicken sandwich among the fast food rivals.
Papa John's has been around since 1984, and according to how you define it, they're either the number one home delivery pizza service or at least in the top three. This Russell Cave facility is pretty small, so eating in is not that common. But they deliver out to the WKU campus and all of Southwestern Warren County, and students and residents drop by to pick up fresh, hot pizza to take home. You can pick your toppings from banana peppers, jalapenos, tomatoes, green peppers, mushrooms, onions, black olives and pineapples in the veggie category. Or you can pick from pepperoni, ham, sausage, bacon, cheese and beef in the meat category. In addition to the old favorite pizza styles, there are Spinach Alfredo, BBQ Chicken Bacon, Hawaiin BBQ Chicken, Spicy Italian and Garden (vegetarian). Papa John's takes great pride in never freezing its crusts, so they taste light and fluffy. They also make a big deal out of the fact that their Tomato Sauce is made from fresh tomatoes and other fresh ingredients, never from concentrate or anything frozen or extracted. Papa John's never uses any of the "textured vegetable protein" or "vegetable meat protein" common in many national pizza chains, and their Mozzarella Cheese is made in Wisconsin and used whole, never reduced to a powdered mix for shipping and storage.
McDonalds is the all time fast food giant, and you can still feast on a Double Quarterpounder With Cheese, Large Fries and Triple Shake so thick you eat it with a spoon. However, even McDonalds has moved on. Their Wraps are very good in Ranch Grilled, or Chipotle Grilled Barbeque. The Grilled Chicken Sandwich is listed by the American Heart Association as the heart healthiest item on the McDonalds menu. The Grilled Premium Chicken Breast Strips are also great, as are six kinds of salads, especially the Premium Southwest Grilled Chicken Salad or the Asian Salad. McDonalds offers Paul Newman's Own Dressings in six flavors. These are nationally noted for their low fat, low cholesterol content. McD's still offers the sugary desserts, but the Fruit Yogurt Parfaits and Baked Apple Pie Slices avoid that problem. There's also Low Fat Milk, Apple Juice, Dasani Water, Orange Juice, and Iced Tea. For a caffeine fix, there are five flavors of iced coffee.
Sonic is a retro drive in restaurant where for half an hour or so you can pretend you're back in the 1950s. They even have girls on roller skates coming out to take your order and carrying your food out on trays which hook onto your car window. The menu is the classic burger, fries, shake and ice cream, although they've updated it a little with Nachos, Onion Rings and Chicken Nuggets. They play Golden Oldie music over the speakers. On Fridays and Saturdays it's a frequent stop for guys cruising Bowling Green in their restored 50s and 60s cars, or dropping by in their Corvettes after a day at the Corvette Museum, so you might want to bring your camera. If you ride in on your Harley or Indian Head, there are a few picnic tables set up under the canopy so you can sit outside and enjoy the ambience. This Westgate location is right next to the CSX rail track, so your meal may be interrupted by a late freight rumbling through.
Hardee's is one of the more conservative of the fast food chains. They still serve the old 20th Century classics : the 1/3 pound Bacon Cheese Thickburger, regular Cheeseburger, Mushroom & Swiss Thickburger, and regular Hamburger. However, the Five Piece Chicken Tenders are a popular alternative. There are the Big Hot Ham n Cheese, Jumbo Chili Dog, Charbroiled BBQ Chicken Sandwich, and Fish Supreme. The sides are Beer Battered Onion Rings and French Fries. And there are four dipping sauces. Desserts are several kinds of milkshakes plus an apple turnover. Like all the other fast food outlets, Hardee's now serves breakfast. They've got the traditional menu of biscuits, burritos, croissants, sausage, bacon, ham, and country steak. Hardee's entry in the Fast Food Coffee Sweepstakes is an imported Columbian variety. It's pretty rich. Whether you like it better than Starbuck's or Mcdonald's depends on your taste but it beats all the other fast food rival coffees.
Wendy's was the first national chain to openly challenge McDonald's in the burgers and fries wars, and the Ohio based company still makes fine burgers, in that unique square shape Dave Thomas created. You can get hamburgers or cheeseburgers in single, double or triple stacks with bacon and other additions. There are grilled chicken and fish sandwiches and wraps, and a line of stuffed and baked potatoes with sour cream, chives, broccoli and cheese and bacon. Wendy's has really focused on its salads. They offer Mandarin Grilled Chicken, BLT, Grilled Chicken Caesar, and Southwest Taco Salads. As sides you can have dishes of Mandarin Oranges, bowls of Chile and a Strawberry Yogurt Squeeze. Wendy's has always taken great pride in its milkshakes and still offers Vanilla, Chocolate, Fudge, Strawberry, and Nestles Toll House Cookie Dough.
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