With much anticipation (!!), today Food in the Fox headed to Kaukauna to try out the brick and mortar version of the Kangaroostaurant, the Kangaroost. The restaurant recently opened at the old Plum Hill Cafe location on 313 Dodge Street in Kaukauna.
A Little Background on the Kangaroostaurant
The Kangaroostaurant is a cookery on wheels, committed to serving delicious, freshly prepared local favorites to folks in and around Appleton, Wisconsin. The Kangaroostaurant is owned by Jay and Kelly Barnes. The entire Barnes Family is a part of this venture, including their children, Emma and Loudon. You will always find one of the Barnes Family on the truck. It is truly a business like no other in the area. I have seen them in just about every corner of Appleton over the past year that I have lived in the Fox Valley. It is always a nice surprise to see the colorful truck parked here and there, not only serving great food, but bringing that wonderful food, service and energy to the people in the area. (Note: According to Jay, the Kangaroostaurant will be back in action around mid-April.)
We drove up to the restaurant and noticed that the awning still said Plum Hill. I quickly looked it up to make sure we were at the right place and we were, but the signage has not been change over quite yet, so don’t get confused like we briefly did. We walked in at right around 11:30 and there were a few tables filled with hungry diners. The layout of the place was really interesting and unique. The open kitchen is right behind the front counter (filled with delicious looking bakery goods), which is something you don’t see at most restaurants. The friendly host guided us into a large, sun filled room and also informed us of the daily specials.
The menu was filled with some familiar items as well as some new items that were not part of the Kangaroostant menu (or at least I do not remember seeing them on the menu). Some of these items included Chipolte Hummus and Blue Corn Tortilla Chips and Fresh Carrot Chips, White Potato French Fries with White Cheddar Cheese, Maple Glazed Salmon Salad with Gorgonzola Cheese, and Orange Vinaigrette and a Meatloaf Sandwich. All of it sounded delicious.
Red Barn Edum and Cremini Mushroom Grilled Cheese
I am not afraid to try new things, but today I went with something a bit more traditional, a grilled cheese. Not just any grilled cheese though. The description reads as follows: Red Barn’s newest cheese, Edum melted between two slices of Mom and Pop’s Sourdough Bread and loaded with sautéed Cremini Mushrooms. I also got to choose a side from the following choices: A Mixed Green Salad, Housemade Sweet Potato Chips, Southwest Chickpea, Wheat Berry Salad, and Soup (which is $1 more than the other sides). I decided on the mixed green salad, which came out shortly after we ordered. The sweet citrus dressing was a refreshing break from the typical ranch or blue cheese that I usually order with a salad. The sandwich came out shortly after and it looked amazing. The cheese was nicely melted and the buttery, toasted sourdough bread melted in my mouth. The mushrooms were nicely sautéed and went well with the rest of the sandwich. The plate was also garnished with what looked like 3-leafed clovers (no 4-leaded clovers were found, after intense searching).
Overall, the experience was great. The building has a type of historic charm, the layout was pretty unique (with the open kitchen being the first thing you see when you walk in), the service was wonderful and the food was delicious. I also love the fact that they try their best to support local farms and businesses and because of that, their prices are a bit higher than other local restaurants. My sandwich and salad came to $10, which isn’t outrageous for lunch, considering the quality of the food and the contribution they are making back to the local community. Check it out!
The Kangaroost (Formerly Plum Hill Cafe)
313 Dodge Street
Kaukauna, WI 54130