Restaurant Review: Not Your Average Joe’s

This restaurant has been on my to-do-list for a while now. And although I haven’t been in years, I’ve wanted to return because I have very fond memories of gleefully indulging on the focaccia bread and this ridiculously good oil/parmesan/red pepper concoction they serve you. It’s so good that you just can’t. stop. eating it. But I digress… Anyhoo, my family and I were in Newburyport recently and decided to see if Not Your Average Joe’s could pass the test of some of the harshest food and fun critics out there—my children.  

We received a warm greeting at the front door (we’re off to a good start, friendly staff always scores big points with me) and were seated in the back of the restaurant which has floor to ceiling windows and offers a beautiful view of the Newburyport Harbor. Our waitress was equally as friendly and took our order without delay. My children were already starting to test the naughty-waters so I called in for reinforcements—crayons and coloring books. Our server returned a few minutes later with a cup of new-looking crayons and a picture of a snowman that someone had printed off of (are my kids the only ones who color?). Anyways, I was grateful because my kids were starting to venture under the table and I would have been happy with a stone tablet at this point.

The Kids’ Menu has quite a few choices and contains all the usual suspects (chicken fingers, pasta, pizza, etc.) but also offers a few not-so-average options (grilled salmon, angus steak and grilled chicken). The kids’ meal prices were a *bit* on the high side (between $5.99 and $9.99), but upon delivery, we really appreciated the quality and quantity of the meals and decided that spending an extra buck or two was a fair trade. We ordered the macaroni and cheese which was, by far, the best mac-n-cheese I’ve ever eaten, no joke. We also ordered a grilled cheese (no lactose intolerance in this family) that comes with your choice of veggies or fresh fruit. We chose the latter, half expecting to get a super-lame cup of canned fruit cocktail, but were very pleasantly surprised to receive three juicy orange slices and a bunch of fresh strawberries—um, YUM! Each meal comes with a drink and a mini-ice cream sundae cup (with whip cream, chocolate sauce and a cherry), which pleased my kids to no end.

I was trying to be healthy and ordered a large garden salad with grilled shrimp which wasn’t too exciting, but that may have been my own fault for being boring. In the end, for two kids and two adults, the bill ended up being a little less than $40 for lunch (although the lunch and dinner menu is the same) which, like I said, was a little high for my taste. But we had a nice view, the kids were entertained, the service was great and the food was good. All in all, success.

Here’s the bottom line (based on a five-star rating):
Distraction Offering: ???
Atmosphere: ????
Food: ???½
Affordability: ??½
Service: ????½

Not Your Average Joe’s
1 Market Square (Firehouse Center), Newburyport MA (978) 462-3808

back_dining     front_dining    

coloringpage     sundae

grilled_cheese     macncheese

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