HOME > Chowhound > Washington DC & Baltimore >
What are you cooking today? Get great advice
TELL US

Austin Grill sold :-(

chowser Nov 3, 2006 12:56 PM

I know some of you don't like it but I thought it was a good place for everyday eating out. I really like the salads they have. Anyway, it's been sold to a food production company. They are planning on taking it nationwide. I guess it's going be another Chevy's because there is a shortage of that type of restaurant...not. Is this where the accountants take over the quality?:-(

http://washington.bizjournals.com/was...

  1. w
    WestIndianArchie Jul 2, 2008 02:05 PM

    Anyone here from Austin?

    AG's take on Magnolia and Kerbey (and to a lesser extent Maudie's) was interesting to say the least

    3 Replies
    1. re: WestIndianArchie
      t
      theoneontheleft Jul 2, 2008 08:48 PM

      Do you mean Kerbey Lane Cafe? If so, AG has nothing in common with them. When they started here, they seemed to be an homage to Chuy's, both in terms of interior design and menu selections. But they've long since strayed from that. Count me as one who thinks AG is running on fumes, a shadow of its former self.

      1. re: theoneontheleft
        c
        cocoagirl Jul 3, 2008 05:50 AM

        the glover park resto when it opened - was fresh, original and tasty with a great vibe- none of the other stores come close- and some like the Silver Spring store are awful

        1. re: theoneontheleft
          t
          Transplanted Texan Jul 4, 2008 06:49 PM

          Oh, my Austin Grill can't be remotely compared to Kerbey Lane. AG used to be SO much better. When the Bethesda restaurant opened, it was amazing -- but not as good as Chuy's, although I see what you mean by the homage. It stayed good for several years but then went downhill. The new one in Rockville Town Center is the better choice nowadays.

      2. BigEats Jul 2, 2008 07:05 AM

        I'm surprised with all the complimentary comments. In Springfield, the Austin Grill is a horror story. It's incredibly tasteless and dreary food is only surpassed by the grimy and dingy surroundings. It's the exact opposite of a pleasant dining experience.

        1. d
          dcish Jul 1, 2008 01:25 PM

          Has anyone been to the Austin Grill in Bethesda lately? a friend suggested it, but I haven't been in years. How is it? or should we go elsewhere.

          3 Replies
          1. re: dcish
            d
            Doh Jul 2, 2008 07:27 AM

            I like the one in Bethesda. It's not particularly cheap, but it's a nice place to sit outside and drink margaritas and I think the food's fine. I've never really noticed a difference between it and the Rio Grande a couple of blocks away (I used to go to Rio Grande when it was closer to my house, now I go to Austin Grill because it's closer, and less noisy.)

            P.S. I wonder if the new buyers will realize the irony in having a chain restaurant promoting "Keep Austin Weird".

            1. re: dcish
              m
              MarcDC Jul 2, 2008 12:43 PM

              I went a couple months ago to the one in bethesda and thought it was TERRIBLE. the only reason i think people were there was because of the long wait at Rio Grande one block over.

              1. re: MarcDC
                d
                Doh Jul 2, 2008 02:07 PM

                Hmm, I wonder if my standards are that much lower, or if I just stick to safer items (fajitas, enchiladas, soft tacos). What did you have that was so terrible?

            2. c
              caphill2320 Nov 7, 2006 02:37 PM

              Does anyone know if there is any buzz about what is going into the space where Austin Grill was in Glvoer Park?

              1. m
                MikeR Nov 6, 2006 10:23 PM

                There was an article about Austin Grill in today's Washington Post indicating that they were going to come up with a "food court" version of the restaurant. I hope one is coming to a food court near me. I think I've eaten at an Austin Grill maybe three times since they've been around and kind of liked it, but it just wasn't convenient enough to put on my regular route.

                It would be nice to get a not too big Austin Grill style lunch nearby. But I guess it'll be at least another year for that to gear up.

                1. n
                  NoHun Nov 6, 2006 06:53 PM

                  We had lunch at the Baltimore location yesterday.
                  Not only was the food very good (and plentiful),
                  our waiter was attentive, the restaurant was clean
                  and business steady. We spoke at length with the
                  store manager Steven in re to the recent merger.
                  He said the transition has been smooth and seemed
                  quite upbeat about the future of the chain.
                  Before passing judgment, go back and give it a try.
                  I think anyone who previously enjoyed eating at
                  this establishment will continue to do so in the future.

                  1. t
                    Tugboat Nov 6, 2006 06:25 PM

                    I liked going there for cheese grits on Sunday mornings then taking my tummy to Rocklands for some Q.

                    The only time I go to the one in Baltimore is when we have a fundraiser there. Not a big fan of the food, but it was a nice local chain.

                    1. s
                      smittydc Nov 6, 2006 02:54 PM

                      They have also closed their Glover Park location -- which sucks. The GP location was the original one and always had better food. The 'chain' locations have much bigger kitchens and I think the cook doesn't pay as much attention to what he's doing.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: smittydc
                        Chocolatechipkt Nov 7, 2006 12:35 PM

                        That one closed? Aww, that's sad ... I used to work across the street way back when and spent a lot of time there.

                      2. Chocolatechipkt Nov 3, 2006 03:30 PM

                        I just received an email from them about this. They claim (of course) that things won't change, but based on the WBJ article, it sounds like big changes are ahead. I have various issues with AG, but they are great for some things.

                        Show Hidden Posts