“Haven’t we been here before?” Well, yes, we have.
This location was Carson’s. It’s now Picasso’s Grill, which was in Athens, but is now at County Line and Browns Ferry in Madison. Got all that?
We visited Picasso’s for dinner and were seated immediately in a comfortable booth. The menu surprises from the start. As we perused the appetizers, we saw American cuisine standbys like chicken fingers and wings. But there are also intriguing departures like goat cheese fritters and fried green tomatoes. We asked our server for pulled pork egg rolls, as well as hummus and pita to share. Both were fresh and tasty.
As we started looking at our entrée choices, we found more surprises. Again, there are predictable plays like fish and chips, steaks, and fried chicken. But there are also several fish selections, signature pastas, and even a zucchini cake in ratatouille. Lea went with that, accompanied with the same goat cheese fritters we saw on the appetizer menu.
Picasso’s Grill Entrees
For dinner I had the shrimp and tip pasta: blackened shrimp and ribeye tips in bleu cheese sauce with mushrooms and onion over penne. I selected it over the seared ahi tuna, which our server said she preferred as an appetizer. (Indeed. Next time.) Then, she said the shrimp and tip pasta was a larger entrée so I could maybe get a to-go box. I said “do I look like I get a lot of to-go boxes?” Heh.
It was indeed as decadent as it sounds, and an interesting take on such a pasta dish. You generally don’t get large bites of honest-to-goodness steak in such! Lea also enjoyed her zucchini cake in ratatouille, and her shared bits of goat cheese fritter were well-received around the table.
The boys stayed fairly standard, with a BLT for one and a bacon cheeseburger for the other. Two happy plates made. They both selected big steak fries, but ginger lime slaw, soup, or side salad are also available as accompaniment.
The full menu presents a great deal of variety, appealingly mixing customary offerings and unexpected delights, and including multiple vegetarian options. Appetizers, entrée salads, and sandwiches are in the $7-10 range, with most full entrees at $14-18.
There is a full bar, with rotating house specials. For dessert, the four of us shared the fried Oreo and fried strawberry cheesecake, both of which were delectable and delightfully presented with vanilla ice cream.
The Kid’s Menu & Accommodations
The dedicated $5 children’s menu contains grilled ham and cheese, chicken tenders, a cheeseburger, and other items familiar and friendly to a young palate. Highchairs and booster seats are available. Restrooms are clean and spacious. There are no changing tables, but there is plenty of room to install them. These would be high-value additions.
We encountered multiple friendly and capable Picasso’s employees on our visit, and the owner checked in with us a time or two as well. Our service was excellent, with appropriate attention and pacing. Reservations are accepted but not required, and catering services are also available.
Picasso’s seems to be aiming for a casual elegance, with just enough of the unexpected to stay interesting. It also does a good job of being a place that both children and adults enjoy. We’re looking forward to returning.
Picasso’s Grill Details
Address: 12060 County Line Rd., Suite E, Madison (map)
Phone: (256) 262-4655
View Website | Picasso’s Grill on Facebook
Open 3 pm – 11 pm Monday through Thursday
Open 11 am Friday and Saturday (no solid closing time specified)
Open 11 am – 10 pm Sunday