Major’s Sports Cafe is part of a small chain, with 7 stores in all. The one in Carmel is housed in an attractive brick building, with very nice landscaping and a well appointed sports decor. We’ve been there several times, and the food is always good, and the service is just as good.
Today, I decided to try their breaded tenderloin sandwich, of course, and see how it stacked up to the competition.
I have some pretty strong opinions about tenderloin sandwiches. I believe, that no matter where you eat one, each bite should be reminiscent of a county fair, or a small town mom and pop diner. In other words, I think that the words “gourmet” and “breaded tenderloin” are mutually exclusive.
Major’s attempts to serve a gourmet breaded tenderloin, and they lost me right there. At the first bite, I knew that something was amiss. The breading was extremely “crunchy”, and certainly overpowered the taste of the meat. In talking to one of the managers, I found out that their breading is Japanese Bread Crumbs. Come on, folks. A breaded tenderloin is good, down home, midwest food…if you stray from that, you have done the mighty tenderloin a serious injustice.
In addition to the Japanese Bread Crumbs, the bun is slathered with “Dragon Thai Sauce”.
Japanese Bread Crumbs and Dragon Thai Sauce on a breaded tenderloin. Sacrilege. Add to that a gourmet honey sesame bun instead of traditional white buns…it’s pretty much a train wreck.
However, when their menu names it a “Hoosier Breaded Tenderloin”, that’s what we expect to get. We don’t want no big city sauces and breadings and we don’t want no fancy garnishes, we want good home cooking..which this sandwich isn’t
In short…to someone who isn’t familiar with a good, traditional Indiana breaded tenderloin, this might have been a mighty fine sandwich. But for those of us who grew up on traditional tenderloins…you’re going to leave sorely disappointed.
On my scale of 1-5 bites, with I’m giving Major’s Sports Cafe breaded tenderloin a 2.
In all fairness to Major’s…this restaurant is a cut above much of the competition. Their steaks are fine, their burgers are awesome, and their pizza is fantastic.
But if you’re looking for a good, hearty, all American breaded tenderloin…you’re going to leave mighty disappointed.
Major’s Spots Cafe is located at 2293 E 116th Street, just west of Keystone, in Carmel, Indiana