Saturday, January 22, 2011

Restaurant Review: Mac and Tong's Place

Mac & Tong's Place
Mac & Tong's Place
4330 West Central Avenue
Toledo, OH 43615-1669
(419) 531-3103

11am-10pm Mon - Fri; 5pm-10pm Saturday; Closed Sunday (except for private parties)

About two weeks ago Main Lady and I decided to go out to dinner, and after an aborted attempt at Angelo's Northwood Villa (which I may write about later) Main Lady suggested we stop over at Mac & Tong's, which I immediately recognized as a great solution for a busted evening. I've eaten at Mac & Tong's since back in the old days when they were over on Reynolds Road near Hill Avenue, and I'm glad to say that the food and service haven't changed since then.

Mac & Tong's is a proprietorship. Mac runs the front and Tong runs the kitchen and does all the cooking. Tong is an excellent chef, and if you don't see it on the menu, feel free to ask if Tong will make it for you. The menu has a dozen or so entrées and an equal number of sandwiches along with appetizers and soups. All the soups are made from scratch by Tong, including the specialty of the house, fifteen bean soup, which is excellent. The steak at Mac & Tong's is some of the best in the city, easily as good as anything found at Fifi's or Mancy's. I had steak Diane for dinner, a luxury I don't often indulge in. I was glad I did. Main Lady had fish, which she declared was outstanding.

One thing I should mention before I go any further is that Mac runs the front, which includes the bar. Mac really knows how to pour a drink, so if you're thinking of ordering a double, take my word for it and hold off. One Manhattan was enough to get me through the evening, and I have a powerful thirst and a tolerance to go along with it.

The ambiance at Mac & Tong's is formal. While you can stop for lunch dressed in your Levi's, dinner requires you dress a little better. You won't see ball caps and cut offs in the dining room, which is a big relief to me. Likewise, there won't be a crowd of snot-noses screaming and tearing the place up while the parents try to get in one more drink order before happy hour is over. Instead, the dining room has quiet lighting and comfortable chairs, and there is live piano music on weekends.

The best part about Mac & Tong's is that it's a proprietorship and one or both owners are always on the premises and available to the patrons. If anything goes wrong, whatever it may be, it will get fixed immediately. I've always considered the availability of the proprietor and the willingness to solve a problem now, right now, to be a better measure of good service than anything else. It's easy to claim excellent service when everything is running along smoothly, but the ability to fix a problem is what really makes a difference. Both Mac and Tong work hard at this, and it really shows.

Mac (standing) with attorney John Coble
You'll generally find Mac in the bar area. If he sees you walking in, he's likely to come up and greet you. While Tong is generally in the kitchen, she'll come out once in a while to make sure things are running smoothly.

Tong (left) with attorney John Coble
Mac & Tong's is not an inexpensive place to eat, but you will get an outstanding value for your money. I, for instance, cannot afford to eat lunch at Mac & Tong's every day, but I'll certainly go back for lunch next week.

In summary:
  • Ambiance: 9
  • Service: 9
  • Food: 9
Overall rating: 9

1 comment:

Roland Hansen said...

Thank you very much for the review.