Built in 1902, the historic Leonard House sits on the corner of 5th and Wilcox Street downtown. Nestled by impressive trees and an outdoor garden patio, a quaint sign now claims the site for the ‘Augustine Grill.’
Upon entering, our family of four was greeted by a friendly host and walked through the dining room to our table. A more formal experience, we were met by a pretty table marked with linens, glasses and an extra salad fork. Our host promptly came back to place a basket of sourdough bread and butter for sampling as we browsed through the menu.
Through we wouldn’t recommend bringing a lot of small children to dine in, because of the breakable décor and the close proximity to neighboring tables, we were pleased that they had a highchair for our toddler on hand. They also have a pretty tasty variety of items on their kids menu, other than just Macaroni & Cheese. If you do bring a child under 5, be prepared to bring a sippy cup, if needed, to reduce spills at the table.
After getting the kids situated with juice, meal choices and buttered bread, the adults made their selections. Having already heard about their signature salmon dish from friends around Castle Rock, it was added to our order- along with the tomato bisque and the beet salad. (I am a firm believer that you always have to try the soup of the day because 1.) It tells a lot about the flavors of restaurant 2.) If it tastes like it comes out of a can, that tells you how most menu will taste).
The lite dinner came out promptly and the portions were fair in size- not too much, not too little. As expected, the salmon, accompanied by creamy risotto and corn, was cooked to perfection with a seared, tasty and crispy outer layer. We were pleasantly surprised by the flavor of the tomato soup which had a dollop of corn and fresh spices to warm our tummies. Similarly, the beet salad was very fresh- large slices of beets, atop dark greens, tossed in a sweet, tangy vinaigrette. The kids were also very happy with their meals and even made a point to tell Sarah, our waitress, how much how much they loved, loved, loved it.
The service, the classy ambiance and the happiness the food brought to our mouths was quite memorable. It gladly makes our CRCO ‘must try’ restaurant list for Castle Rock. However, because the prices for dinner are slightly higher than some of their restaurant counterparts, if you are watching your wallet, we suggest trying it for lunch, a date night or other special occasion. Also, be sure check their website for days and times of operation before making the trip down.