Terra American Bistro closed over the weekend and will reopen on Thursday, April 11 after a quick refresh. The 21-year-old restaurant, which started off in Hillcrest but has called the Rolando/La Mesa area home for the last eight years, will shift its New American comfort food menu to focus squarely on the Southern dining style of the meat-and-three.
Chef/owner Jeff Rossman, who is updating the space with brighter colors and new furniture and fixtures, has been slipping in his versions of classic Southern dishes over the last few months including a Nashville hot chicken sandwich and shrimp po’ boy. Terra’s meat-and-three options, inspired by many trips to Nashville and acclaimed eateries like Brenda Meat & Three in San Francisco, now anchor a reconfigured menu that features no dish priced over $20.
The tradition of a meat-and-three starts with the choice of a base protein, from fried chicken to a pork chop, accompanied by three sides from a selection that could include smothered greens, creamed corn, and lima beans. At Terra, meat options range from meatloaf and pot roast to brisket and roasted chicken while side dishes include mac and cheese, red beans and rice, and biscuits and gravy. This being Southern California, lighter alternatives include local fish and balsamic-grilled tofu as well as braised spring vegetables.