December 31, 2023

Eustis Restaurant Combines Culinary Excellence and Sports Fever

5.1 min read| Published On: December 31st, 2023|

By Cindy Peterson

Eustis Restaurant Combines Culinary Excellence and Sports Fever

5.1 min read| Published On: December 31st, 2023|

Eustis restaurant combines culinary excellence and sports fever.

Don’t blink, or you might miss the entrance to That Place, a popular new sports bar tucked on the backside of Aloy Dee Thai off Bay Street in Eustis that’s giving a whole new meaning to the expression “hidden gem.” 

That Place has rapidly become a local favorite since familiar faces Aaron Belair, owner of El Marie Pizzeria & Sub Shoppe, Randy Connor, owner of Kālua Beach Bar, and Kālua’s general manager Denise McGlauflin, joined forces to bring a fresh and exciting concept to the community. 

The three friends melded together their collective experience in the restaurant industry to craft a menu that defies typical sports bar fare in a venue where everyone is welcome.

And while each of them already had their hands full with successful ventures, they say they couldn’t resist the opportunity to create something truly unique. Their collective vision and desire to offer Eustis something exceptional propelled them forward.

Denise coined the term, “Let’s go to ‘That Place,’” knowing the saying would catch on.  

She recalled a defining moment after they opened when she looked across the restaurant and saw a diverse crowd, ranging from city commissioners to bikers, all finding common ground at “That Place.” Her vision had come to life: a welcoming atmosphere for everyone to come together and enjoy the experience.

The menu is where culinary innovation meets the classics, with a commitment to crafting everything in-house, even the sauces.

With starters like deviled eggs, warm seafood dip, shrimp cocktail, crabby sweet peppers, meatballs enveloped in ricotta cheese, charcuterie boards and baked lobster mac and cheese, you may not want to move on to a main course.

Sandwich enthusiasts delight in choices like the Italian Hokie, the Gobbler, meatball parm grinder, turkey Cuban panini, meatloaf panini and the seafood panini. The burger menu presents huge options like the mushroom Swiss, cheddar bacon, the Hangover (complete with a fried egg, bacon, BBQ sauce and cheese), Surf ‘n Turf, Black & Bleu, Mac & Cheese Melt and the Ultimate burger that boasts peppers, onions, provolone, bacon and Thousand Island dressing.

For those seeking lighter options, the salad selection includes classics like the chicken Caesar, chef salad or the stuffed tomato salad featuring a choice of chicken, tuna, or crab meat salad served inside a fresh whole tomato.

You’ll also want to explore the flatbreads, which include unique options like the cordon bleu, Fly’n Hawaiian, Broccoli 4 Me, meat lovers, cheeseburger and the roasted grapes and bleu cheese. The latter may sound like a weird combination, but Denise says that once you try it, you’re hooked. 

That Place also does daily specials. They have included the turkey Swiss wrap, loaded crunchy beef burrito, French dip, open-faced roast beef sandwich, warm caprese sandwich, chicken cordon bleu sandwich, chicken fajita flatbread and even a pickled jalapeño flatbread. 

Of course, a sports bar would not be complete without an array of large-screen TVs, and That Place offers 14 screens broadcasting games, including the NFL Ticket. To elevate the game-day experience, a full liquor bar is at your service.  

Recipes

The Trifecta

  • 1 cup chicken salad
  • 1 cup tuna salad
  • 1 cup crab meat salad
  • 1 cup romaine, chopped
  • 1 diced tomato
  • 1 cup cottage cheese
  • Assortment of crackers
  1. Combine 1 to 2 chopped grilled chicken breast with 1/2 cup of mayo, 1 oz. pineapple juice, a pinch of white sugar, 1/2 cup of cranberries and 1/4 cup of crushed walnuts.
  2. Mix together and chill. 
  1. Combine 1 to 2 cups tuna, drained well, with a splash white vinegar, a pinch of salt and pepper and a little mayonnaise to texture.
  1. Combine 1 to 2 cups of crab meat with thin sliced scallions, 1/4 to 1/2 cup of sour cream, mayonnaise to texture and a splash of lemon juice.
  1. On a plate, place chopped and washed romaine, sprinkle diced tomatoes as a garnish, and take one scoop each of crab meat salad, tuna salad, chicken salad and arrange them with crackers around the plate. *Note: You can also choose egg salad or pasta salad as one of your choices. 

Roasted Grapes Flatbread

  • 4 – 6 red onion rings
  • 7 – 10 fresh red grapes, sliced in halves
  • 1/2 cup feta cheese crumbles
  • 1/2 cup bleu cheese crumbles
  • 1 flatbread
  • Parsley as garnish
  • Honey
  1. Place flatbread in the oven at 350 degrees for around 2 minutes or until golden brown on one side.
  2. Brush honey on the crispy side up as a base.
  3. Completely cover the flatbread with feta and bleu cheese crumbles.
  4. Add a layer of sliced fresh red grapes, followed by sliced red onion rings.
  5. Place in the oven for 2 minutes or until melted and golden brown.
  6. Slice into triangular pieces.
  7. Drizzle honey on top.
  8. Garnish plate edge with parsley.

Baked Buffalo Mac & Cheese

  • 1 grilled chicken breast
  • 1/4 cup diced tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup finely sliced scallions
  • 1/2 cup bleu cheese crumbles
  • Buffalo sauce for chicken
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 3 cups of water
  • 1 tsp. black pepper
  • 1 tsp. seasoned salt
  • 1/2 block white cheddar cheese, melted
  • 1/2 stick of melted butter
  • 1/2 cup shredded white cheddar cheese (same for topping)
  1. Boil the water with a pinch of salt.
  2. Once the water is boiling, add pasta.
  3. Let pasta boil until soft or al dente (to your liking).
  4. Drain water and place pasta in a mixing bowl.
  5. Melt a block of white cheddar cheese in a saucepan over low heat.
  6. Stir often to avoid burning. Once completely melted, add the pasta.
  7. Add seasoned salt, pepper, melted butter, scallions, tomatoes and shredded white cheddar cheese to pasta and mix.
  8. Place mixture in a 9×13 baking dish and top with shredded white cheddar cheese and bleu cheese crumbles.
  9. Spray the dish with olive oil to avoid sticking.
  10. Bake in the oven at 350 degrees for about 10 minutes until the top is golden brown.
  11. Remove the dish from the oven and top it with chicken breast tossed in buffalo sauce.
  12. Garnish with diced tomatoes and sliced scallion.

Stuffed Tomato Salad

  • 1 whole tomato
  • 1 cup chicken salad
  • 1/2 cup romaine lettuce, chopped
  • Shredded Parmesan cheese for garnish
  • 1/4 cup garlic croutons
  1. Wash and core center of tomato, making a bowl inside for the filling.
  2. Make the chicken salad by grilling 1-2 chicken breasts and cutting them into small cubes.
  3. In a mixing bowl, add diced chicken, around 1/2 cup of mayo, 1 oz. pineapple juice, a pinch of white sugar, 1/2 cup of cranberries, and 1/4 cup of crushed walnuts.
  4. Mix all together.
  5. On a plate or bowl, add washed and chopped romaine lettuce, and a few croutons.
  6. Place the tomato in the center.
  7. Stuffed the tomato with chicken salad or your choice of crab salad, tuna salad or egg salad.
  8. Garnish with a light sprinkle of Parmesan cheese. 

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About the Author: Cindy Peterson

Originally from the small town of Berryville, Arkansas, Cindy has become a multimedia specialist in journalism, photography, videography and video editing.

She has a B.S. in Communications from the University of Central Arkansas and is a correspondent for The Daily Commercial, LakeFront TV and Beacon College’s PBS talk show, “A World of Difference,” where she received an Anthem Award and Telly Award.

When she isn’t working, Cindy spends time with her husband, Ryan, and son, David, traveling and taking photos of landscapes and wildlife.

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