John Hagen comes to Rhythm City Casino's Hit Parade Buffet every Friday without fail.
His favorite dish is the catfish, which is prepared just a few at a time throughout the day to ensure the buffet is always kept fresh. But Hagen often switches up his meal choice, trying everything from the beef brisket to the perch stuffed with crab meat. He has yet to find a dish he doesn't like.
"The Riverboat Casino is a great place to come eat," said Hagen who comes on Fridays because the buffet price is reduced from $8.99 to $6.99. "For today's economy, how can you beat that for the buck? As much food as you can eat, for the price you pay here - you can't and it's excellent."
Hagen's favorite catfish dish is a daily staple at the Hit Parade Buffet along with beef brisket that has been slow cooked overnight in house sauces. The other entrees are served on an eight-day rotation. The more popular items are the pork loin, honey roasted garlic chicken, crab cakes, fried shrimp and barbecue ribs.
"Our barbecue ribs, we run them every once in a while and that is very popular," Gary Nass, executive chef at the Hit Parade Buffet, said. "We can't hardly keep the pan full because they're going so fast. The meat falls off the bone and they're very tender."
Keeping the lunch buffet price steady is important to Nass. The restaurant has cut costs elsewhere in order keep prices the same in the current economy.
"I think people are really shocked at the price that we do have and that we're maintaining at the price even though we raised the quality of the product," Nass said. "We are still keeping and maintaining our low price to bring the customers in, because we want to give the value and have them enjoy their meal."