I didn’t expect this little hold-in-the-wall, midtown diner to be as impressive as it truly was. The exterior didn’t scream, “I have the best burgers in Mobile”, but I fell for the oldest trick. Never judge a book – or restaurant – by its cover.
Butch Cassidy’s Café pulled me in first with its name and its rating. While looking for a good casual dining joint to eat at before leaving Mobile, this came on my search and I committed to it.
Roy Seewer opened his restaurant in 1993, its name inspired by the Paul Newman and Robert Redford movie, as well as his favorite biker bar in Houston, Texas. The interior, bar-like atmosphere is reminiscent of the Wild West with its low ceiling, dark wood flooring, and the copious posters of outlaws and bandits like Jesse James. But it’s not until one sits down that they realize why this place has done so well for itself. The polished wood tables are covered in advertisements of local businesses. Butch Cassidy’s has leaned on the support of the community for over twenty-five years and the loyalty of its customers has paid forward to the restaurant’s notoriety.
Its once “Soon To Be Famous” Butch Burger has risen to the acclaimed status of “Famous” and I would have to agree. It’s a simple burger, no fuss or fancy dressings. Just a 9oz patty, bacon, cheese, lettuce, onion, tomato, and pickles. It’s the sort of thing you can get at just about any other pub or diner in America, but Butch’s has raised the bar and we can’t put our finger on just why. It’s straight-up great! And not just their burgers, but the other 40-some-odd affordable menu items like nachos and chicken wings. And the Western theme doesn’t stop with the ambiance. It bleeds onto the menu as well with items like the “Calamity Jane Patty Melt”, “Prairie Burger”, “Pinkerton Club”, “Sundance Reuben”, “Desperado Taco Salad”, and “Butch Cassidy Chili Cheese Fries”. They’ve got burgers, sandwiches, salads, and seafood entrees for just about any variety of appetite that walks in.
Butch Cassidy’s Café may look like a typical bar on the outside, and while it does have a bar counter inside to cater to those who are looking for something a little stronger than soda, they aren’t open terribly late (9pm) to entice the kind of crowd that might make it not so “family friendly”.
My experience was a brief, but pleasant one. The minute I walked in, I felt a little lost. No hostess was there to greet me, but a man at the bar shouted, “Sit anywhere you want, honey”. In hindsight, I realized this was the owner himself. That set the casual, familiar tone of my visit. I took the cue and chose a table by the window where I gawked at the collage of business cards and advertisements under my table covering. I realized a little too late that I was also sitting close to the fish tank (yes, there’s a fish tank!) and this provided some amusement later in my meal. I also didn’t plan well enough because I left just as the live music was about to warm up. If you go in on a Tuesday night, be sure to grab a table before 6pm so you can enjoy the entertainment.
To humor myself, I got the Butch Burger just to see what all the hype was about. And I don’t regret it a bit! The burger was cooked exactly how I wanted and incredibly filling. I had to get a box for just under half of it and I didn’t even finish my fries! If I didn’t want to be miserable later, I would have pushed myself for a few more bites. My only complaint might be that it was a bit messy, but I think that’s the mark of an excellent burger. That and the lack of sufficient parking. I’d suggest parking elsewhere that isn’t too cramped and walking there. I think that’s what most of everyone did because it was pretty packed when I arrived and there weren’t many parking stalls filled. The service was just as excellent as the food and the comfortable energy transcended through my entire stay. Regulars at the bar joked and laughed over the bluesy music and it had a kind of “Cheers” vibe but with a Western flavor. I especially liked the décor because, though I’ve focused much of my studies in the Civil War, I’ve researched plenty about the decades following the conflict and recognized many of the names and faces posted on the walls.
Overall, Butch Cassidy definitely lives up to its name was being one of the “Best Locally Owned Restaurants” in Mobile, Alabama.
Mon – Sat: 11:00 am – 10:00 pm
Sunday: 11:00 am – 9:00 pm
Address: 60 North Florida Street, Mobile, AL 36607
To browse their menu and read more about their success: