By: HANNAH BROADBENT, Lake Voice A helicopter and Coca-Cola sign hang on the ceiling, a toddler sits in their booster seat next to grandpa, while mom takes care of the baby and dad is watching the game on one of the dozen TV’s, just like most of the other men in the building. They sit beneath a lantern and wagon that hang from the a wall.
This is Grandma’s Saloon and Grill, low lighting finishes the family-friendly environment. The waiters and waitresses wearing t-shirts and jeans are perfect models for the relaxed dress-code. The wood floors, walls, tables and booths make it feel like home or your family’s cabin.
A waitress is immediately there to help and waters have already been delivered. Everything is set the way a restaurant should be.
Now, onto the menu.
The menu is as classic as the rest of the restaurant, with fair prices to match.
The starter menu is golden. It’s a respectful mix of America’s favorite and America’s favorite with a twist. Onion rings, buffalo wings, fried shrimp, mozzarella sticks, sesame-ginger green beans and wild rice stuffed mushrooms.
Any good vegetarian knows that if you want to enjoy yourself at a restaurant, that is not specifically vegetarian-friendly, you may have to lower your standards a little bit and eat the celery that comes with the buffalo wings.
That doesn’t happen here.
The sesame-ginger green beans couldn’t be better, and the wild rice-stuffed mushrooms are hard to beat. A meat eater may say they prefer the chicken wings if they haven’t tried either of these and the vegetarian may say, ‘I’m sure they’re fine’. In reality meat eaters and non-meat eaters alike willingly eat both at any time.
True, the stuffed mushrooms are $9.99 and the green beans are $5.99, but that seems standard these days.
Now that the appetizers are out of the way --the main course.
Vegetarians are creative people, they can take any meal and somehow make it vegetarian --delicious-ness to be determined.
There is a whole salad menu at Grandma’s, take out the chicken and you have a decent full-sized salad. Smoked Baked Mac N’ Cheese? No problem, “I’ll have it with no bacon please.”
They have burgers galore, so the patient souls that accompany the vege-heads are pretty much always happy and it’s northern Minnesota so of course they have a full fish menu. A walleye-sandwich for $13.99 and Fish N’ Chips for $10.79. Don’t let the price of the sandwich throw you off, this is America, that thing is huge.
The real reason to go to Grandma’s, vegetarian or not, is for the wild rice burger.
It’s delivery looks normal, a pretty sizeable burger with a side salad. Cut the burger in half though (which you’ll have too) and you can see it’s tastiness.
The wild rice is held together with sharp cheddar cheese, it’s thick and firm. On top is a slice of cheddar cheese piled with lettuce, shredded carrots, sprouts and mayo. For $10.59, make your own judgements, but a meat eater will willingly eat this over the other “real” burgers on the menu.
Grandma’s doesn’t have one dish with a “V” next to it.I’m not sure about gluten-free either, but Grandma’s really is for everyone.
Vegetarian’s easily get use to the fresh veggies, black beans and tofu but Grandma’s let’s us indulge in those American classics, without feeling guilty about it.
Look at the menu yourself, here.