Wednesday, August 19, 2009

George's Neighborhood Grill

It was midweek, I didn’t want to cook, and we didn’t have a babysitter. Sick of all our usual haunts with the kids, so we decided to give George’s another go. We had been once before for lunch and weren’t overwhelmed, but a few of you guys have recommended it to me since, and I always believe every restaurant (well, except maybe one in this city that will go unnamed) deserves at least 2 chances. Sometimes it is just a bad night and you never know what you might be missing. (And hey, it is really close to my house!)

Anyway, the first thing I like about this place is the little room in the restaurant with old style stand up video games. Instantly, my kids were over there checking them out—and my kids are so young it was like 10 minutes before they even asked for a quarter to play them. They just liked watching the screens and the example games just as much as playing. So basically hubby and I enjoyed some quiet time during what is usually the grumpiest part of a meal out with our kids (they’re hungry and impatient). So I really like a place with something for the kids to do.

As for the food, well, I ordered some onion strings to snack on to start. They were good. They were onion strings. Served with a horseradish sauce which was pretty tasty, but I still am old fashioned about this, and like my ketchup. They were similar to most onion strings I have had in Indy, so I am starting to thing that they must all come from the same place.

For my main, I had the steak salad which was a small filet served over lettuce with blue cheese crumbles, provolone and your choice of dressing (I chose blue cheese of course). Others have recommended the salads at George’s, but based on this one, I would not. The meat was fine, and cooked to my requested temperature, but it wasn’t the highest quality of meat for sure (but what do you expect for $9.95 I guess). However, that being said, the meat and blue cheese crumbles were the best part, the worst part was the lettuce mix itself. It was just like those bagged mixes with iceberg and little hard strips of carrot. Yuck-o. The dressing was also nothing special—seemed like it came straight from a bottle. I have certainly had better blue cheese dressings at similar midrange restaurants (Arni’s and Scotty’s come to mind). So I guess all in all, the salad was a miss.

Hubby, on the other hand, ordered a pork tenderloin sandwich and it was much better (and marked as a specialty). The pork was juicy (the problem that causes me to rarely eat such sandwiches is that they are usually too dry) and the batter was nice. I think one of the things that kept it pretty juicy was that it wasn’t pounded so thin to beat all the tenderness out and then overcooked. A lot of times, restaurants seem to want to go for the biggest looking tenderloin at the expense of tenderness. The egg bun was the proper proportion to the sandwich—not so big you couldn’t fit the sandwich in your mouth and was fresh and tasty. This was a good sandwich and based on it, I might just give George’s another go (well, that and the video games).

Here’s the reason I might not rush back too soon though. My son (he is 3) picked up a mint on the way in (you know those round starlight mints lots of restaurants have sitting out in bowls?) and after he finished eating, he popped it in his mouth (without my knowledge). Well, you can probably guess what happened, he started choking on it and Mommy had to Heimlich him right there in the restaurant. It popped out, along with half his dinner and the whole meal ended a lot more stressful than it began. Needless to say, I don’t know if my son will be wanting to rush back, video games or not, and I can tell you right now, I think he is off mints for good. But note to parents (and anyone really), you may want to brush up on your Heimlich skills, as you never know when you will need them. Instinct sort of took over for me, but I did take a class several years ago after my first child was born and I am sure glad I did.

Nothing like a little drama to end a meal.

George’s Neighborhood Grill
6935 Lake Crossing, Suite B-12-15
Indy 46220


  1. We live very close, and this place was always packed so we gave it a try a year ago. It was dreadful. My steak sandwich was a gristly, dinky steak on a slice of Texas toast, and my husband's cole slaw tasted like bleach/cleaner. The one main room with no partitions felt like a noisy zoo. I'm glad the neighborhood likes it, but it's not for us!

  2. What a story! I'm glad your son is okay. I chocked on a pen cap as a kid and my mom saved my life! It can be so very scary.

    I used to live in the area and went to George's for the Free WiFi and beer. However, I was never a big fan of the food. I wanted to be, but it just never happened. The best thing I had there was their chicken velvet soup. (Probably worthy of a return visit)

    I've heard rumors that another restaurant is moving into that area, over near the new Kroeger. Should be interesting.

  3. So many of these mid-range restaurants cook solely from the restaurant supply catalog -- bag lettuce, bottle dressing, huge jars of pre-made cold salads like potato and cole slaw, and anything that comes frozen that can go in a deep fryer. (Yes, there is a reason all the onion strings are the same -- thank you, US Foods.) Keep calling them out -- they can, and should, do better.