Wednesday, February 05, 2014
Eureka Springs’ newest restaurant opened its doors on January 23 with a ribbon cutting ceremony at Pine Mountain Village. But that’s not where the restaurant is. Its location is one of the last places you would expect to find fine dining.
Café Roulant (pronounced roo-lon) is French for rolling café, and that’s just what it does. The first ever dining trolley in Arkansas is fashioned from a de-commissioned Eureka Springs city trolley that has been elegantly outfitted to offer an intimate dining experience where every table has a view of historic Eureka Springs – and just about all of Eureka Springs, since diners have a rolling view of the entire Historic District between salad and dessert.
One of the best things about Café Roulant is that the gourmet menu is different every day. Café Roulant has partnered with some of Eureka’s best restaurants to create exclusive menu items sure to seduce your taste buds. In addition to a gourmet entrée, dinner includes beverages, salad, bread and a choice of homemade dessert.
Your rolling feast begins with a fresh, beautiful salad on the way to the restaurant of the day where wait staff brings your choice of entrée on board. Once everyone is served, the trip continues through dessert and coffee as you enjoy the sights and sounds of Eureka Springs.
So the big question on your mind is probably this: How do they keep everything from sliding around in a moving trolley? Don’t worry. They’ve got that covered with specially weighted stemless glassware and non-skid table pads. Waitresses even go through special training so they can maneuver around the trolley safely.
Café Roulant is a joint venture between Olden Days Carriage owner, Tom Tharp, and Rock Cottage Gardens owners Kathy and Steve Picowitz. The idea originated from horse drawn gypsy wagons and double decker dinner buses used in parts of Europe and Asia. Neither of these options is suited to the terrain of Eureka Springs, but the trolley is a perfect fit.
Café Roulant seats 12 and offers dinner tours at 6 and 8 p.m. Friday through Sunday throughout the winter season. Beginning in April, dinner tours will run every day of the week except Tuesdays. Reservations for 10 a.m. brunch tours and 1 p.m. lunch tours will also be available. Café Roulant is also available for weddings and special events, with tours to Beaver Lake Dam starting in spring.
Dinner tours depart from Pine Mountain Village. Check the day’s menu at Café Roulant USA on Facebook and reserve by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or book at www.rollingcafe.com.
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