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Kierre's Kountry Kitchen

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KIERRE'S KOUNTRY KITCHEN We love a good plate lunch, so we're always on the lookout for new and/or interesting meat-n-three joints; the places the local, work-a-day blue collar folks cool their heels and scarf down a little grub before heading back to their labors. While we were over in Maumelle the other day, we came across a great one: Kierre's Kountry Kitchen. Tucked way back off the main drag, across the street from what appears to be a cement factory (headed into Maumelle on Maumelle Boulevard, hang a right by the McDonald's and look for the signs) Kierre's doesn't look like much: a windowless metal warehouse that's also home to a real-estate office. One look at the full-to-capacity parking lot (with most of the rides being ladder and equipment-laden work trucks) on a recent weekday lunchtime, however, spoke volumes about what to expect inside. This reviewer wasn't disappointed. In addition to a big menu of diner-rific choices — including a fine slate of breakfast items, well-appointed foot-long chilidogs, 13 different kinds of sandwiches, pork barbeque and the like — Kierre's is known for its daily plate lunch specials. We tried the very nice Big Lee Burger ($6.39) and our companion went for the Friday-special fried catfish platter ($8.50). We instantly saw the error of our ways when her plate arrived: three meaty fillets, breaded in a light cornmeal coating and served with hush puppies, seasoned fries, brown beans, sweet cole slaw and a whole slice of Vidalia onion. Our burger was great — juicy and thick, with a grilled bun and more of that sweet onion — but the fish was better: fresh, fleshy and tasty. For dessert, we tried the lemon ice box pie and found it similarly good; a homemade slice of heaven which turned out to be something like a cross between lemon pie and cheesecake — firm, flavorful, and topped with sweet whipped cream. In short, if you're a fan of homestyle chow and happen to be in Maumelle, you could do a heck of a lot worse than Kierre's. Given the friendly service, changing weekday specials and something-for-everyone menu, we'll be back for lunch there soon. 6 Collins Industrial Place, Maumelle. All CC, no checks. 501-758-0903. www.kierreskountrykitchen.com. BLD Mon.-Fri.; L Sat.

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