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Feed Your Soul: The Iron Cactus

1304 US-80, Calhoun, LA 71225
Published: Sep. 27, 2021 at 7:14 PM CDT
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CALHOUN, La. (KNOE) - In Calhoun off US-80, tucked in a strip mall, sits the Iron Cactus. It is somewhat inconspicuous until you walk in. From the bull’s head hanging in the bar to the statues and paintings around, you know there is something different about the place. The restaurant is run by Brad and Leah Parker who come from a restaurant background. Parker said he has worked in a restaurant for 15 to 16 years and started from the bottom.

The western feeling of the place is interesting and fun.
The western feeling of the place is interesting and fun.(KNOE)

“So yeah, I was just started as a busboy and you know, was managing it,“ said Parker. “That’s where I get my background from, from Ernesto’s was the name of the restaurant.”

They make sure that you are taken care of when you walk in. With fresh ingredients and dishes made fresh, their focus is on the food. Many of his customers come back time and time again, and try to get a taste of each dish.

“The food is good, so, we’re down here every Thursday,“ said Roy Walton, a long-time customer who followed him from Ernesto’s.

He started this restaurant 11 years ago, all because he didn’t know what he wanted to do but loved the restaurant business.

“I’ve got to get back into the restaurant game; I miss it, miss the people, miss the atmosphere, just miss everything about it, you know,” said Parker.

I tried the Mexican Cornbread, one serving is quite a bit of food, so get ready to take some home, and the margaritas are top-notch.

The Mexican Cornbread is something that will feed an army. It is a staple at the restaurant and...
The Mexican Cornbread is something that will feed an army. It is a staple at the restaurant and made from scratch with more cheese than you can imagine.(KNOE)

Parker believes that food and service are the qualities of his place that keep customers coming back.

Parker said, “I really just think it’s that I mean, everything is, is fresh is cooked, right when you order it, you know, I mean, first of all, you’re not going to have a successful plate just because they like Brad, you know what I mean?”

Many people I spoke to followed him to his new restaurant because they remembered him from Ernesto’s. With great food and amazing service at the Iron Cactus, you can believe you will leave full, and come back for seconds.

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