Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Franklin Grille Food Review

I used to own a stationery shop (Pen to Paper) right next door to Franklin Grille at 4000 Wisconsin Ave., a few blocks south of Tenley Circle. Sorry to say, I haven't been back in quite a while: After all, it's a local sandwich shop... hardly a destination stop (no offense intended.) It took a few minutes inside to rekindle fond memories of friendly customer service with solid, affordable food... not to mention the thrill of buying a burger, fries and soda for all of eight bucks (tax included.)

Franklin Grille has a great layout... with creative seating throughout, including a counter and narrow (yet plentiful) dining area, hidden in the back. Service is quick and efficient (this place gets pretty busy in the morning and at lunch) and they offer a number of (once again, solid) menu choices. You won't be able to specify the doneness of your burger: It's a frozen patty, cooked one way and cooked well... but it gets the job done. Toppings are surprisingly fresh, and they're rarely stingy with portion sizes. Even the bun's of good quality.

Best of all, fries arrive piping hot and delicious (courtesy of optional Old Bay, via shaker.) As I've asked before, why don't more places offer Old Bay as a serve-yourself seasoning? The cooking oil was clean too (yet another surprise, especially when you consider it was just after 4:30 PM... almost closing time.) The burger lacks flavor, but ketchup always helps. I can't recommend it; but at $3.99 for the burger alone, you could do a lot worse for lunch. It's also available with bacon & cheese for a few cents more, if you're so inclined. My fountain drink (Sprite) was disappointing: Not sure, but perhaps their CO2 needed changing?

I miss their breakfast specials (almost as much as the $1 Sausage Biscuits from McDonald's... It seems I ate a lot of food back then too.) A neighborhood favorite, I counted half a dozen personal greetings and farewells from random customers in the 15 minutes I spent here: This tells me the owner takes care of his regulars... Bravo. Thanks for taking care of me years ago, and yesterday as well. I'll be sure to return sooner than later next time.

Atmosphere: B (Plenty of seating, TVs to keep you busy.)
Burger: C (It's a fancy coffee shop, don't expect miracles.)
Fries: B (Covered in Old Bay, I couldn't get enough.)
Service: B (More efficient than friendly, it's still plenty nice.)
Value: B- ($8 for a burger, fries and pop? No complaints.)
Overall: B- (Compared to similar establishments, even better.)