I promise not to make any puns about the new Rohnert Park restaurant, Smokin’ Bowls. I’d never be so blunt. Or say what high expectations I had.
Kidding aside, the bowls at this student and family-friendly restaurant have nothing to do with THC, though you may get a serious craving for their ice cream and french fry bowl after an afternoon smoke sesh.
Here, “bowl” is shorthand for piling a whole bunch of tasty comfort food into a portable container wherein you can easily stuff it all into your mouth with nothing more than a spork. The bowls aren’t really bowls either, but compostable rectangular boxes. So I guess it’s more like Smokin’ Rectangular Containers.
With a 17-item menu that includes entrees, salads, dessert and sides, this spanking new strip mall riffs on the common theme of starch, protein, and sauce. Like the Dragon Bowl, with fried rice, chicken and hot sweet sauce or the Rohnert Pork with fries, bbq pulled pork, cheese sauce and bacon. You get the idea.
We should call out something unique: The fries. Hand-cut and fried in beef fat, tossed with their own seasoning. There’s a reason this used to be the standard. So. Beefy. Good. Not for vegetarians or vegans, however.
No bowl is over $8.25, with a selection of items under $5, plus everything on the menu is gluten-free, and there are no peanuts or soy proteins on the menu. Smokin’.
– Bowl Named Sue, $7.25: A down-home combination of homemade mashed potatoes, corn, bacon, chicken (it would have been better fried) and gravy. The portions are ridiculously huge, but this little bit of southern comfort didn’t last 10 minutes before disappearing.
– Disco Fries, $3.75: Basically poutine, with fries, mozzarella and beef gravy.
– Rohnert Pork, $6.75: Fries, bbq pulled pork, cheese sauce, bacon. We’d say this was the most ridiculously indulgent bowl, but that would be far from the truth.
– S’mores Fries, $5.50: So crazy, even we were gobsmacked. French fries smothered in cinnamon, topped with ice cream, chocolate sauce, marshmallows and chocolate chips.
– Harvest Bowl, $8.25: For the virtuous eaters among us, brown rice with corn, carrots, peas, coconut curry and cashews. (Vegetarian)
– Buffalo Chicken Salad, $7.25: Romaine lettuce with chicken, spicy buffalo sauce, blue cheese dressing and croutons.
– Greek Garlic Fries, $4.25: Fries with lemon garlic dressing, olives, feta, sundried tomatoes.
Smokin’ Bowls is at 295 Southwest Blvd., Rohnert Park, 707-665-5265, smokinbowls.net.