Today the random pick was Grills & Greens, one myself and a few coworkers have been very curious about for a while. They are located in part of what used to be a Jack in the Box on Sunrise Blvd @ Sunrise Park Dr. Subway uses the other portion, including the drive thru. I was expecting a tiny little space, thinking that Subway would get a larger section, but was surprised to see that it was divided right about in half and was very spacious. Tables line the right wall from the front to the back, in the middle towards the front is a larger communal or group table, and the at the left there are some big cushy-looking chairs and couches. That corner feels very much like a coffee shop.
I wasn’t sure that they had salads or not, and I really didn’t even know what type of food it was at all. Once inside I was greeted by several of the staff. The owner/manager was very friendly (as was the rest of the staff), asked me if it was my first time in, then proceeded to serve me some samples of chicken, beef and three of their sauces so I could get an idea of the flavors. He mentioned that it was Persian cuisine and wanted to be sure I would order something that I would enjoy and not be surprised by possibly unfamiliar tastes. They’ve been open for almost 3 weeks now and some of the staff was still in training, so he took the opportunity to teach one of them how to present and describe the sauces. Both the chicken and beef were good. The beef in particular was delicious. The sauces included one which was sesame-based, one which was mayonnaise-based and one which was yoghurt-based. All three were pretty good but I think I really enjoyed the sesame the most. They make everything in-store – meats, sauces and even lemonade.
(Click on menu image to open larger version)
They had five salads to offer (he mentioned that he was going to be making some changes to the menu including simplifying it soon, so this may very well change), a hearty Kale & Quinoa [$7.49], a Ceasar [$6.49], a standard House [$6.99], a Fattoosh [$6.99] and a Tomato Avocado [$7.99]. I asked about the Fatoosh and was told it was baby greens, tomatoes, cucumbers, parsley, onions and a bit of salt/pepper, served with a pomegranate molasses dressing. That sounded pretty great. I went with it and added felafel for $2.99 (beef and chicken are also available to add for the same price). To wash it down I picked a bottle of Pesi [$2.49].
My salad took maybe 5 minutes to prepare and was brought out to my table. The little container was interesting and I spent an embarrassing amount of time trying to figure out how to open it (the edge of the lid is almost perfectly flush with the edge of the container so it was very hard to see). Inside I found several pieces of felafel sitting atop the salad and a big cup of the pomegranate molasses snug against them. At first it didn’t look like there was much salad below these, but once I removed the dressing container and prodded the felafel a bit it kind of bounced up and filled the bowl pretty well. The felafel was warm to hot and still quite crisp, probably fresh from the fryer. They were awesome and I will definitely be returning and ordering more of these, weather in a salad or as part of another dish. An ingredient I ran into that was not expected was fried chunks of pita bread. Indeed, Google describes ‘Fattoush’ salad as “a Levantine bread salad made from toasted or fried pieces of pita bread combined with mixed greens and other vegetables“. Although they forgot to list this ingredient, obviously it is a primary one. It added a nice crouton-like texture/crunch to the salad, even with the crisp felafel. Everything else greens-wise was nice and fresh. The pomegranate molasses was really, really good. Just taking a preliminary whiff of it, I knew it would be delicious. It was pretty intensely sweet and strong with pomegranate flavor, so I only used maybe half of it. Any more would have taken this salad over the top.
Overall I was surprised and very pleased by Grills & Greens. The staff and owner/manager were fantastic, the space clean and comfortable, and the food delicious. What more could you ask for?
Website: None. Click the photo of the menu above for a bigger version of it.