1514 S Marshall St
Boone, IA 50036
White Cheddar Nuggets (Appetizer was complimentary)
Grilled Cheese (Chloe)
Reuben Burger (Me)
Black Diamond Pita (Tress)
Two Diet Cokes and a kids milk
$29 (Tax and tip included)
Grade: 1 Spoon, 1 Knife
Having visited many times prior, I felt it was due to visit the Grill (as local Boonians call it) and reviewing it. I think after an early light lunch and a train ride, all of us we’re ready to eat.
Ambiance: Formally in an old Godfather’s building (the only evidence of this is the kitchen wall with the small window, the party rooms, and the sign outside) this little Applebee-similar restaurant has, you guessed it a Rocky Mountain feel about it in the menu and with some items on the wall. Additionally the presence of the DMACC Bears Boone Campus is evident as there are team signed volleyballs and basketballs in cases on the way. A great place to watch a sporting event as there are at least seven flat screen TV’s, most of which are larger in size. Kids get a “fun bag” with random items in it. Chloe just happened to get one (I picked) with a play jewel ring, soccer sticker, color sheet, and a really long and strong bendy straw.
Menu/Price: It seems that management changes the menu from time to time as certain things looked new to us, while other things we’re missing. I asked our awesome waitress (whom also happened to be an Assistant Manager herself) and she said that they change about once a year. That made sense, but seeing as we were there just few months ago, the menu change might have happened between the two visits. The Rocky Mountain/Colorado theme is evident in the menu as there are plates such as the Black Diamond Pita, Mile High Dinners, Colorado Nachos and so on. Additionally, this is one of the few places where you can get breaded pickles! Probably the weirdest item on the menu was the Reuben Burger which I got and will describe below. Pricing is very reasonable as you can get a burger and a soda for just about $10 (figuring tax and tip in). If you care to spend more, the 12 oz Ribeye and Prime Rib (when available) top the menu out at $15.99.
Meal: It goes without saying that we were hungry! One highly positive note is every time we have eaten here, I have never felt skimmed on portions. Portions and preparation here is given high detail. For an example, Chloe’s grill cheese was just like we would make it at home, loaded with cheese (albeit bad for you). Plus they used two kinds of cheese for it! Tress’s Black Diamond Pita was similar to a club sandwich with “sliced ham, turkey, bacon, lettuce, tomato, cheddar and white American cheese layered between two lightly toasted pitas.” The pita came with a side of a sauce that is mayonnaise based and is great to dip fries in. Now if you will imagine you take a Reuben (for those of you who don’t know what that is, 2 marble rye bread, Swiss cheese, thousand island dressing, and corned beef, all grilled) and insert a hamburger (freshly made, not preformed) into that Reuben. Then you have the Reuben Burger. It was a bit odd at first, but I grew to like it. It is a great option for those who can’t decide between a patty melt or a Reuben. The White Cheddar Nuggets that we started on were heaped into a nice skillet plate and served with a side of ranch dressing. They were nothing short of pure awesomeness. Culvers does a decent job on white cheddar as well, but the Grill has them beat because their breading is lighter, which makes the cheese more gooey.
Service: None of this would have happened if not for the customer service oriented waitress we had. When we walked in we waited probably at least five minutes to be seated. Normally this is not a big deal if there are folks in front of you waiting to be seated. No one was in front of us however. Added to that, three separate waitresses (none of them our waitress) walked buy and kind of gave a little acknowledgement that we were there but otherwise ignored us. Finally, one of them seated us and gave us menus. We then waited an additional ten minutes (approx) before being noticed by an assistant manager who ended up waiting on us. I tend to be a bit quiet to see how the server will remedy the situation on their own accord. This usually shows where there concerns are and is a huge indication about the server’s character. Tress on the other hand is a bit more vocal as she volunteered that we have been waiting forever. I did not volunteer that they were two minutes away from our walkout time, and yes I was seriously going to walk out. Regardless our waitress knew the issue (as another couple who sat down as we were leaving waited a bit of time to be waited on also), and offered to remedy it on her own. Instant gratification!
Overall: I had full intentions of giving the Grill a 1 Fork, 1 Spoon rating. After sitting and waiting for service I was going to give them the 1 Fork rating. However thanks to the customer service oriented assistant manager, I went ahead and bumped them up to the 1 Fork, 1 Knife rating. I like it when a business and their employees and managers put their customers first. Our waitress did this and excelled, which coupled with the quality of the food (which was great) the 1 Fork, 1 Knife is well deserved of the Grill.