When a friend told me about a restaurant that had nationally-known bread pudding, her eyes lit up with excitement. I soon learned that this was no ordinary neighborhood cafe, but a gourmet diner with a twist—it’s located inside a gas station.
Chef Point Cafe is located in Watauga, Texas, and has made quite a name for itself. Don’t let the Conoco sign fool you, once you step inside the gas station, you are immediately greeted with savory aromas, a packed dining room and a friendly staff.
Before opening the cafe, Owner and Head Chef Franson Nwaeza and his wife, Paula, could not get approved on a loan to open a restaurant. They were told they did not hold enough experience in the restaurant business. Franson did not let the banks crush his ambitions of opening a restaurant of his own. He thought outside the box and was approved on a loan to open a gas station, where he cleverly put his restaurant inside.
“I am living my dream,” Franson said. “I always knew it would work out because of my belief in God.”
Today, Chef Point Cafe has been successfully operating for more than 10 years.
The cafe has been featured on Food Network’s “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives,” in Paula Deen’s magazine and respected news outlets, ranging from The New York Times to Texas Monthly. People come from all over Dallas-Fort Worth to experience Chef Point Cafe firsthand.
My first time at the cafe was on a Sunday. I was pleasantly surprised that Sunday was comfort food day. Overwhelmed with all of the mouth watering options on the menu, we finally narrowed down our choices.
From chicken and waffles to seafood pastas, Chef Point Cafe offers a wide variety of succulent dishes that leave you feeling full and satisfied. I devoured the blackened stuffed chicken, which was filled with fresh crab meat and pepper jack cheese, served on a bed of angel hair pasta.
We could not walk away without having a taste of the chef’s famous bread pudding. The bread pudding is served warm and smothered in a rich, maple cognac sauce. Each bite melted in my mouth. It was difficult not to order a second. Be it breakfast, lunch or dinner, the bread pudding is a dessert that is perfect anytime of day.
When asked what his favorite thing is to cook, Chef Franson Nwaeze responded, “Everything” with a chuckle. You can see his passion for what he does in every recipe he has perfected.
Chef Point Cafe is known for more than its decadent bread pudding. Cioppino soup, which is filled with a hearty helping of fresh seafood, is another favorite among the locals. I was lucky enough to sample chef’s “What Nots,” which are tender mushroom caps stuffed with a blend of three cheeses and baked to perfection in a secret garlic butter. The “What Nots” are packed with flavor and the recipe is so secret that only the chef is allowed to prepare them.
The current location is expanding, with new additions that will include a banquet area, bar and enlarged dining area. The new renovations are set to be completed soon.
If you can’t make it up to Chef Point Cafe in Watauga, they are now bringing the food to you. Catch Chef Point on Wheels every Wednesday near the hospital district in Fort Worth. Chef Point on Wheels offers the restaurant’s succulent dishes, made to order on Chef Point’s very own food truck.
Chef Point Cafe is a unique dining experience. Eating a gourmet meal inside a gas station is something one wouldn’t expect, but each bite you take is packed with flavor and love.