The Jaded Toad BBQ and Grill opened just six months ago in downtown Windsor, a block from the Windsor Green. The attractive restaurant on a corner location is welcoming, with ample outdoor space and some indoor dining. A few tables are located in the front yard and there is a large beer garden in the back with flame heaters and a fire pit that will chase away the evening chill. It’s a casual place—they serve free peanuts and people just chuck the shells on the ground.
On a recent visit the baby-back ribs were tender and falling off the bone, with a good basic BBQ sauce. The salmon was expertly prepared, moist and flavorful, topped with a house-made bacon after being baked and finished on the grill. The meat in the pork sliders was good but the sauce could use some spice. The BBQ came with two sides and between four of us we got to sample several. The cole slaw was excellent, with a tangy dressing and the sweet potato fries were crispy. The salad of baby greens was generously portioned with a light vinaigrette dressing. The regular fries were okay, but not remarkable. Leo Tocchini, the owner, and the wait staff were very attentive, maybe even overly solicitous, coming over several times to check on us and our meal.
We couldn’t try everything in one sitting but the Fish and Chips looked enticing. We heard good reviews about the Big and Sexy Bacon and Garlic Fries, which is a fun name, but less appropriate when applied to the kid’s menu even toned down as Small and Sexy Fries. Frog Legs are the most unusual item on the menu, in a nod to the name of the restaurant.
Prices were reasonable with entrees between $8 and $25, with extra sides priced at $2.50 each. Meals are served in deep aluminum pans and beverages, including fountain drinks and Italian sodas, are served in Mason jars, which gives the meal a rustic, down-home touch.
The Jaded Toad is a comfortable place to hang out on a warm evening, the staff is friendly and the food is good. The restaurant is a welcome addition to downtown Windsor.
Jaded Toad BBQ and Grill
275 Windsor River Rd
Windsor, CA 95492
Open from 11am to 10:00pm Sun – Wed.
Thursday – Saturday till midnight!
To reach the Jaded Toad from San Francisco by car (approximately 1.5 hours, depending on traffic):
- Take U.S. 101 North
- Take the Central Windsor exit
- Turn Left onto Old Redwood Highway and continue on Windsor River Road
- Arrive at 275 Windsor River Road, on the right