J. T. Johnson’s, Indianapolis (Southport)

Holly and I had been on the road playing music, and we were hot, tired, ready for a break from the road and a good meal.

As we approached the south side of Indy, we remember J. T. Johnson’s American Grill, and recalled that we’d been meaning to try that place.  So, in we went for a relaxing dinner, rest from the road, and a good meal.

We were seated promptly by a courteous hostess, given our menus, and started to peruse them, while we waited for someone to come take our drink orders.

And we waited.  And we waited.  And, then, we waited some more.

Finally, a waitress came over and said  “Has anyone taken your order?”, and I said “no”, fully expecting her to take our order.  Instead, she yelled across the room to another waitress, and said  “Hey!  This is your table”.  The other waitress yelled back  “No, it’s YOUR table”.  They weren’t arguing…it was more like friendly bantering…however…we’d been waiting a long time and STILL had no service.

To make a long story short, they finally decided who’s table it was, and the waitress was very apologetic and helpful.  We had had ample time to peruse the menu, and I saw that they described their tenderloin as “an old family recipe, handed down for centuries”, so, of course, that’s what I ordered.

When it came I was stunned at just how large it was.  This thing is HUGE.  Often, when I see one that big, it’s pounded out paper thin, but that wasn’t the case with this one.  It had a nice heft to it.  I took a bite, and the breading was very, very good.  Really good texture, and outstanding flavor.  The breading itself certainly rates a 5 out of 5.

I wish I could say the same about the meat.  It was just..well…awful.  Tough and stringy…it might have been the worst piece of tenderloin I’ve ever tasted.  Add to that, the fact that about 1/2 through the sandwich, I encountered a HUGE piece of gristle the required me to discard 1/2 of the meat….it was a complete failure.  I very seldom do this, but I’m giving this sandwich a 0 out of 5, as it was technically inedible.

Holly had a Southsider sandwich that consisted of Beef Brisket, Cheddar cheese, grilled onions and horseradish sauce….and…it wasn’t much better.  The meat was absolutely full of fat….much more than any standard piece of brisket…and was bland and tasteless.

I seldom make comments about restrooms, but in this case, it merits a comment.  The men’s restroom was absolutely horrid.  Trashcan filled and overflowing onto the floor, a stopped up sink with rancid water standing in it….just terrible.

It was really a substandard experience.  J.T. Johnson’s has a great location and facility.  It’s a shame that their food and service don’t back that up.


4 thoughts on “J. T. Johnson’s, Indianapolis (Southport)

  1. Don’t order the fish and chips if you go there, unless you like grease. Also, the manager did not want to honor a coupon for a measly 5 dollars I brought in. He wanted to argue and try to make me look silly about my not reading it properly. When the bill came he had taken it off. I would have preferred if he left it on after the hassle.First and last trip there

  2. Come to Iowa and try a Northcote tenderloin. My family has been making these for over 45 years. They sell them to restaurants all over Iowa. They make several sizes their largest The Bigfoot”. wwwnorthcotemeats.com

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