Underneath a familiar neon Open sign, simple paintings of burgers, steaming coffee, and pepper-flecked eggs adorn House of Grub’s storefront windows, bespeaking its menu’s confluence of comfort food and craft. Inside, diners while away their breakfast and lunch hours reading the paper over french toast and hash browns, splitting orders of wings, or turning their backs on their botany careers by savagely tearing into a salad. On the grill, cooks fold bacon, steak, and pork sausage or fajita-style peppers and onions into fluffy omelets. The eatery also serves up burgers topped with classic or unconventional fixings such as pico de gallo, coleslaw, and grilled onions.
Slice into the menu with a cool, cold sandwich such as the veggie sub, with your choice of three cheeses and avocado, the salami-turkey-provolone, or the ham-salami-capicolla-pepperoni-provolone. Load a gastronomic cargo carrier with a medium fountain drink ($1.59) or chips ($0.99), or turn on the mouth heat with a stomach-warming griller, such as the 12-inch New York steak ’n’ cheese ($4.99–$8.99) or the 8-inch barbecue pork ($6.99). Any sandwich can also be made into a wrap starting at $5.99).
At Baja Fresh, spice-yearning patrons can swing by to sample comforting casual fare comprised of fresh-made guacamole, salsas, and never-frozen meats. An array of burritos or tacos swaddle themselves within the stuffed blanket of a warm flour or corn tortilla. Similarly, the signature Baja burrito smothers its protein with melted jack, guacamole, and pico de gallo ($6.69–$7.89), prepping itself for a burrito battle against the spicy nacho burrito stuffed with chicken, cheese, black or pinto beans, rice, queso fundido, jalapeños, crunchy tortilla chips, and salsa crema ($6.39). For lighter lifting, the kitchen also outputs fire-grilled mahi mahi tacos ($2.99 each), mango-chipotle chicken salad ($6.49), and tortilla-free burrito bowls in need of a sharp, prong-powered friend.
The expansive eatery boasts understated and elegant décor, with dining and banquet rooms furnished with cozy booths and plush banquettes. An outdoor patio sits atop Roberts Lake and offers respite for diners stressed from awkward first dates or unwelcome marriage proposals from sneering, haughty dukes in black neck ruffs.
The BBQ Spot transforms regular pork, beef, and chicken into a smorgasbord of Texas– and Memphis–style barbecue. Hardworking chefs meticulously prepare feasts through traditional Southern methods⎯slowly roasting each meaty slab over a smoky fire of hickory chips and rival-college football-team memorabilia. Succulent cuts of brisket peacefully share table space with St. Louis ribs as well as tender morsels of pulled pork. A menagerie of classic barbecue sides garnishes plates or sops up leftover sauce with portions of baked beans, tangy coleslaw, and wholesome cornbread. The friendly staff delivers the protein-rich cuisine amid homey, no-frills diner décor outfitted with red-, green-, and yellow-checkered floors and surrounded by earthy pale-yellow walls. Wood chairs and tables impart a natural feel to the aesthetic, and The BBQ Spot further enriches its relationship with local diners by providing catering services for weddings, parties, and corporate events, such as CEO firings.