I live in a beautiful quiet place. It’s the type of place many from cities like Atlanta and those living in Florida rush to when vacation means a trip to the serene mountains. While we love our hometown, things can sometimes get a little too quiet for the locals….especially by way of having things to do and places to go when we’re ready for a little restaurant or retail therapy.
That’s why many were especially excited when a new local Grill opened this week in our community. Now if you’re from a larger city or even a mid-sized town that might have a mall, a large variety store like a Wal-Mart, or some mom and pop grills mixed in with the bigger offerings such as Longhorn Steakhouse or Chili’s, a little grill might not even seem worth writing about. But in a town that national sit-downs chains seem to avoid like the plague, where our only sit-down options include a variety of ‘meat and three’, more than our fair share of Mexican restuarants, and a worth-the-drive-from anywhere Italian restaurant, a new option is most welcome indeed. This restaurant introduced a few new options for sit down dining in our community….fish and chips, sirloin steaks, fried pickles, fried mushrooms and a new and interesting ‘knife and fork’ dog. Because these new choices were available along with some other typical offerings, such as burgers, pizza and chicken fingers citizens, for the first time, finally have an option to go to a restaurant where everyone is going to find something they enjoy without the former necessary drive of 30 minutes or more.
We took advantage of opening day to check the place out. While we went in with low expectations (after all a new restaurant has a new waitstaff, new cooks creating new dishes, and it just takes everyone some time to grow into the job so that things run efficiently) we were pleasantly surprised. Scott, who usually goes for fish and chips whenever it’s on the menu, reported that it was some of the best fish and chips he’d ever tasted. I myself usually head for the burgers, and I certainly couldn’t complain. Other diners could be hear raving about the food themselves and, because this is a small town, we knew quite a few of them, which allowed for me to be able to take some pictures of their plates:
Spinach and Pimento Cheese Dips
Salad with seared Salmon
What the restaurant calls the ‘Fork and Knife’ Dog
Some pita bread chips and pork skins (both made on site) for those yummy dips.
It’s not the first time a ‘steak’ restaurant or grill has made a go of our hometown, but all the others have come and gone. This, however, I have hope for. The owners have owned a local pizza establishment for 31 years, and this is a second location to which they are bringing their tried and true menu while also offering all of these new and unique dishes. That combined with the fact that one of them recently attended a chef’s school in Atlanta specifically to learn how to prepare some of these dishes, it’s a good bet that this one might just be around to stay.
Do you also live in a small town where getting restaurant and retail establishments can be a challenger? Or do you have one or two local dives that are considered a best kept secret? Share your story with me in the comments section!