Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Yet another reason to visit Virginia

Today's Specials are Pulled Pork Barbeque Sandwich with Cole Slaw, Broccoli Spinach Soup (vegan) and Tomato Basil (vegetarian) soup.

Do you know anyone in Harrisonburg, Virginia or for that matter anyone in the south western corner of the state? Thinking about James Madison University for grad school? I grew up in the area and now have yet another reason to look forward to going home.

On the way back from Roanoke, my friend and I stopped by to see a mutual pal and the three of us ventured out into the pouring rain for lunch at Little Grill Collective. The Little Grill has been a restaurant since the 1930's and worker owned since June 2003.

To just call The Little Grill Collective a worker owner restaurant would be selling it short. It is clearly a vital member of the community, a social hub and a music/entertainment venue. Maybe the day was making me a bit romantic, but this place felt alive. Alive like some rock in outer space that Bones and Kirk discover was sentient after accidentally killing some of its young. The Little Grill practically breaths.

Their menu is an eclectic mix - from a local organic hamburger to BBQ tempeh to Chicken Burritos. And the pancakes! Buttermilk, Blueberry, Apple Cinnamon, Banana Walnut, Buckwheat, Blue Monkeys (can't believe I didn't find out what this is), Vegan Flax Jacks and a whole list of "add-ons".

I had the Felafel Sandwich and my companions had the Chicken Burrito and the BBQ Tempeh, all of which were presented beautifully and tasted delicious. The very nice owner/worker who waited on us graciously allowed me to poke about with a camera (I almost tried to get into the kitchen, but decided to save that adventure for another time).

On Tuesdays they have an all you can eat night, every Wednesday there is a guest chef (and I hear they pull from a lot of Peace Corps volunteers so Wednesday often become international cuisine night), Thursday is breakfast for dinner night and on Friday Down-Home night is all about the south - chicken, catfish, vegan ribs, cornbread and more....

I seriously can't imagine ever driving by Harrisonburg again without stopping by the Little Grill. The large variety of homemade healthy foods with an emphasis on supporting other local businesses and farmers makes the Little Grill part of Carma's Cafe's extended restaurant family. It's a genuine place really trying to do the right thing in their little corner of the world.


Unknown said...

Sounds like a great place. But I have to ask... vegan ribs? The only vegetable with ribs I know of is celery...