The original Quatman Cafe opened their doors in Norwood in 1966 and is still in business today. Earlier this week I had the opportunity to try some of their food in the more recent Mason location. For some reason Mason seems to be the place for restaurants to open their second location, at least that is the case for Blue Ash Chili (which I reviewed earlier) and for Quatman Cafe. I’m totally cool with it though, as it gives me local, non-chain options when searching for lunch outside my office.
Nothing special jumped out at me about the outside of the building. It was a rainy afternoon so I quickly parked my car in the rear lot and hustled inside. I used the side door closest to the parking lot, which put me toward the rear of the restaurant. I wasn’t sure if I should seat myself and I couldn’t find a sign anywhere indicating their protocol. Fortunately some other guests arrived through the front door and found their own table, so I went ahead and did the same thing.
The inside of the cafe is fairly large and filled with tables and booths for all size parties. There is also a smaller bar area running the left side of the building, which didn’t really seem to fit in the rest of the space. They do server alcohol though, so I guess it makes sense to have a bar. However the main room feels more like a traditional deli and sliced meats are sold by the pound in the back.
A served was over to my table right after I had sat down. I asked for an iced tea while looking over the menu quickly. She reported that they had a few complaints about their tea earlier in the day. Since that was the case I gladly accepted the offered bottled tea instead. For lunch I decided to start with a bowl of their homemade bean and ham soup ($2.80) along with a chicken salad sandwich ($5.50).
The bean and ham soup came out right away and was served very hot. I don’t think I’ve ever had bean and ham soup before, but this will certainly not be the last time. Decent sized chunks of ham were mixed in with plenty of smaller shredded pieces. I really enjoyed the thick and hearty soup.
While enjoying the soup my chicken salad sandwich was delivered. When my order was taken I was given my choice of white, wheat, or rye bread along with lettuce, tomato, onion, and pickles. Sandwiches are served with a side of Husman’s potato chips. My first thought when the sandwich arrived was that it was a pretty good sized basket of food for less than $6. The chicken salad itself was very traditional but in a good way. The mix was mostly shredded chicken, but there were hints of pickle or celery thrown in. It tasted great and was very filling.
On a future visit I think I would skip ordering both the soup and the sandwich for lunch, as it was a little more filling than I typically like my lunch to be. With that said both items were very good and are worth ordering for yourself. Quatman Cafe offers great food for an affordable price.