The hidden treasures of the 1015 grill (4 out of 5 Stars)

By Briley Garrett – 

Right off the Stephenville town square, on the corner of College and Belknap, lies a hidden treasure: the recently opened 1015 Grill, specializing in seafood.

A few steps into the restaurant and your mind is immediately placed at ease by the tranquil colors painted along the walls that create a mellow atmosphere. In accordance with the atmosphere, they host “surf and turf nights,” bringing in acoustic performers to serenade from the window, which converts to a small stage. The entire restaurant consists of 10 tables, making for a relaxing and intimate dining experience.

Our dining experience commenced around 6 p.m. on a Monday evening. Throughout our dinner, not a single customer came to dine-in; nonetheless, the staff was very attentive and polite despite the lack of activity. As for timing, there was a short wait, simply for the fact that all of their food is cooked to order.

Our first dish, an order of butternuts ($6), consisted of: a butternut squash puree with ricotta cheese and a complementary blend of spices. All were stuffed inside a crispy, deep fried wonton, served with a powerful chili reduction on top, and an avocado aioli sauce on the side. Although there were a smorgasbord of various tastes and textures, they all worked really well in encompassing a pleasing appetizer.

Along with the butternuts came the 1015 Petals ($6), which were quarter-sized chunks of onions lightly dusted in batter and deep fried to perfection. The batter sifted along the petals was very similar to the State Fair’s funnel cake batter – without the powdered sugar of course – very light and airy, yet crisp. The onion itself was the prime texture, not too soggy, and not to firm. The petals were served with a dipping sauce very similar to ranch, although it had a much thicker consistency.

After the savory appetizers, the meal proceeded with the daily special ($18), which was a generous amount of butterflied blackened shrimp, hand cut French fries and coleslaw. The shrimp were luscious and tasted very fresh; they had a magnificent blackened seasoning that gave the shrimp a Cajun kick. The hand-cut fries were cooked to perfection: very thick and tender. The coleslaw was more of a palate cleanser than a side dish, it was very heavy on the vinegar; however, it paired well with the blackened shrimp.

In addition to the succulent food, Tucker Morris, executive chef and owner, has really created a soothing environment that allows you to wind down after a long day. From the color choices, to the pale music in the background it all plays a role in the overall feeling of the restaurant. For the quality of food received, the 1015 Grill is reasonably priced.

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