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“Pleasant Surprise”

Shades Cafe & Steakhouse
Ranked #1 of 38 Restaurants in Middlesboro
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $7 - $30
Cuisines: Steakhouse, Cafe
Description: We are a Cafe' that has soups, salads, sandwiches (paninis) and desserts in the "front" of the house. On Thursdays, Friday's , and Saturdays we also have a steakhouse menu that offers full sit down dinners and table service in the "back" of the house.....where we have three smaller, more private dinning rooms... We offer certified angus beef sirloin and ribeye steaks, salmon, shrimp, center cut pork chops, and grilled chicken. We also offer frapes, lattes, and most all hot and cold espresso based drinks.
Restaurant details
Description: We are a Cafe' that has soups, salads, sandwiches (paninis) and desserts in the "front" of the house. On Thursdays, Friday's , and Saturdays we also have a steakhouse menu that offers full sit down dinners and table service in the "back" of the house.....where we have three smaller, more private dinning rooms... We offer certified angus beef sirloin and ribeye steaks, salmon, shrimp, center cut pork chops, and grilled chicken. We also offer frapes, lattes, and most all hot and cold espresso based drinks.
Reviewed July 23, 2014

There were 8 of us in Middlesboro, KY for a family reunion. The hotel staff recommended Shades for steak, or another Italian restaurant over in TN. We voted for the closer choice and were very glad we did! When we arrived, we were all concerned as it appeared to be a cafe/coffee house only. However, a gentleman came up to us and asked if we were there for dinner. He took us past the cafe area into the back. There are several small rooms with tables - all of them full, and one long room where we ended up. Because our party was so large, we had to wait about 20 minutes, but it was well worth it. The food was awesome. Two of my sons have eaten several times at Ruth Chris Steak house in various places and said these steaks were better. We all had the ribeye special for the evening. It was cooked to order and absolutely yummy! The salads and sides were excellent and the portions large without being overwhelming. The "gourmet bread" is delicious, and they kept it coming, along with refills on the drinks.

Our waitress was perfect - always available, efficient, and friendly, without being intrusive.

Now, if you're looking for atmosphere or alcohol, this is not the place. But if you're looking for excellent steaks (lots of other choices too, i.e., salmon, pork chops, etc) this is where to go in Middlesboro. We will definitely go back if we're in the area.

The bill was most reasonable - about $20 per person, including tip.

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4  Thank Penny A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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89 - 93 of 104 reviews

Reviewed June 14, 2014

My wife and I just ate here while visiting the Cumberland Gap area and were blown away by the nice people who served us and the quality of the soups, salads and sandwiches. My wife had a strawberry pecan salad that tasted like the ingredients had just come from the garden. My half reuben and potato soup were as good as any big city deli. Can't wait to come back in the Fall and enjoy steak night. Shades is easy to find on Main Street so don't miss it while in Middlesboro

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3  Thank Jerry S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 28, 2014

It has been a long time since I have felt so welcome in a restaurant. None of this "I'm Jason and I'll be your server tonight" slickness. Just a genuine welcome and pleasure that we were there. Something I don't often see in an area with lots of tourists. Middlesboro is a small town and Shades has a small town feel.... I'd expect that friendly welcome if I were a local, but they had no reason to believe that we would every be back again. The decor is nothing fancy just good food, well prepared. If you are in town on a Friday or Saturday it's hard to imagine how you could do better than their steak dinner evening. Our lunch was a pleasure and we made a point of going back for dinner and were not sorry.

4  Thank Vandal72
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 12, 2014

We tried this little cafe after reading the reviews on tripadvisor, There was so much to choose from it was hard for me to make a decision. I chose the Reuben and my husband built a Turkey panini just the way he wanted. The food was well presented and very good.

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4  Thank RHPE
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 15, 2014 via mobile

Found this through recommendations of locals and Trip Advisor. Basically a soup/salad/sandwich cafe except on special steak nights. We found the soups/salads/sandwiches very good and reasonably priced. There were a steady stream of "to-go" customers which again speaks to the popularity of this little cafe. We also yielded to the carrot cake for dessert which did not disappoint. We are not in Middlesboro often but if/when we return we'll return to the Shades Cafe!

4  Thank tome673
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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