Sometimes, food has the ability to transport us to another time and place, in this case, the 1950s diner.
It’s all about comfort food at Griffin Grill — cheeseburgers, fries, shakes — and once in a while, it’s OK to indulge. Go ahead. We did.
The tidy little eatery in a strip of shops off La. 73 features white walls accented with purple and black stripes. A large, colorful mural on one wall pays tribute to the three nearby high schools, Dutchtown, East Ascension and St. Amant. Customers order at the counter and seat themselves at one of several small tables for four.
As a first-timer at Griffin Grill, I went with a co-worker’s recommendation and ordered the cheeseburger ($5.75). This offered a thick and juicy beef patty with a nice, grilled flavor between a soft bun, with thinly sliced pickles, iceberg lettuce, tomatoes and cheese, and all the usual condiments. No way around it, this is a big, delicously messy burger. The fried okra, was of course, unnecessary, but crunchy little tasty gems nonetheless. The order ($3.25) would be plenty enough to share.
Expect a generous portion of chicken when ordering the grilled chicken sandwich ($5.50) as well. The large portion is also well-seasoned and moist. The sandwich is dressed with mayonnaise, lettuce and tomatoes, and many diners may want to slice it in two and save the second half for later, it’s so filling. A side order of French fries ($3.25) completed the order, though there are a variety of sides from which to choose. The fries also were moist on the inside and not overcooked.
A half a dozen shrimp filled the fried shrimp basket (small, $8.75; large, $10.75). The peeled shrimp were pounded flat, coated and fried in a spicy, but not too spicy, and flavorable breading. Although minus the tails, these were still a convenient size to just pick up and eat. Two hush puppies and fries accompanied this selection. The hush puppies, too, were a convenient bite size, quite crunchy on the outside and seasoned well with green onion on the moist interior.
And what would a trip to a 1950s diner be without something frothy and creamy served in a cup? Griffin Grill answers the call with its pineapple shake (small $3.25; large, $3.75), chock full of pineapple bits, and root beer float (small, $3.25; large, $3.75). The latter old-fashioned drink reminded us of something our moms would whip up — making it an even more special treat.
We all agreed the counter clerk couldn’t have been more friendly and efficient.