School House Restaurant & Tavern in Sanger (Fresno County)
I've been wanting to try this restaurant for some time & back when I was looking at Urbanspoon regularly (which has been a while & the quality of the reviews seems to have really gone downhill in this area), the reviews were very up & down. For every person who thought it was excellent, there seemed to be someone posting a terrible review. Noise, slow service, & general chaos seemed to be a theme.
We finally tried it recently for lunch on a Sunday. While it didn't blow my socks off the first visit, it was very enjoyable. We sat in the restaurant rather than the bar. There was music but it was not obtrusive in the least. Our server was very friendly. Not 100% polished, but I don't recall the last time one was in this area. It was nice to have someone so friendly & pleasant. The service was also paced just fine for the atmosphere. It was neither slow nor rushed. No chaos at all.
Since they serve brunch on Sundays, some of us had brunch & some had lunch. I had a burger with garlic fries & although I'm usually a wine/beer person, I had a Crabby Apple, which is hard cider & cherry juice. And then I had a Mimosa, being a passenger rather than a driver.
I only have 2 criticisms.
One is that the food was less than ideally hot, which was odd given it wasn't that busy. One of the people in our party commented on it & I noticed it was true with my food & my kids' food. Not such that it needed to be sent back, but still, not as hot as one would expect.
The other - & this happens to be a pet peeve of mine - was being offered a table in a less than ideal location in an uncrowded restaurant. In this case, we were offered a table right at the entry in the flow traffic. I really dislike it when that happens, but I just asked for something more out of the way & it was accommodated with no issue.
I would definitely like to go back & try some other menu items, for dinner if possible. We don't eat out that much currently, but I do prefer to support local chefs working with fresh, local ingredients, if possible.