Location: reconstructed strip mall
Sandwiches: deliciously classy
Alcohol: decent wine list, short on beer
Crab rangoons: no
He says: My brain was horrendously confused when I first walked into Blackstone Grill. Being situated at the end of a strip mall, there’s really not a whole lot you can do with the space. I’ve been to many restaurants in strip malls in my time, and they all end up having the same sort of feel because there is little room for creativity with the layout. The room, in general, is a giant square. I mean sure, you can put up some partitians, throw in a bar, and make the walls out of some really neat-looking black stones, but in the end it still feels like a Chinese buffet. While my eyes were taking in a nice, classy establishement, my sense of spatial reasoning was screaming, “Where the fuck are the crab rangoons?!”
The Blackstone Grill, however, does not have any crab rangoons. What they do have is a pleasant assortment of high-end American steakhouse dishes. It’s certainly pushing the limits on the sensibilities of my wallet, but with the effort they put into making the place feel as if it has even a shred of architectural intrigue, I’m okay with it. At least they have a few things on the menu that won’t completely empty your pocket.
And by a few things, I mean two. Those would be the sandwiches on the menu – a hamburger for $10 and a prime rib dip for $12. Seeing as you can get a burger anywhere but actual prime rib hoagies are as rare as jackets being worn on winter nights in this town, I went with the latter. Aside from the au jour tasting like a salt lick, the sandwich was nearly perfectly formed. It has a nice ratio of cow to veggies to bread and basically melted in my mouth. It’s easily one of the better sandwiches I’ve had in town, though it’s still a tad on the steep side cash wise. I’d happily pay $9 for this quality of a sandwich on a weekly basis, but $12 is pushing it. But given the quality of the sandwich, the next time I want to celebrate a bit with an expensive dinner, I think I’ll give Blackstone’s entree menu a try.
My only other criticism is the beer list. They’ve only got two taps in the place, and they’ve chosen to go with ubiquitous macro brews instead of local options. One tap is completely wasted on Blue Moon while the other is predictably filled by Sam Adams. I mean, I love me some Sam Adams, but a place trying to be as classy as this should really be trying a little harder.
She says: What does one do when they want a classy date with their significant other before a movie at the oh-so-fabulous Regal New River Valley Stadium 14? Well, you go to Blackstone Grill of course! Nothing screams class like being in a strip mall next to a Fed Ex.
The Mr. and I met after work at 6 p.m. on a week night. Be warned: you will have to fight your way, tooth and nail, through absolutely NO ONE for a seat. Place was virtually empty save for two older folks at another table.
Pleasant service, limited alcohol list, and a very vague ‘happy hour’ that I think may have been $1 off one of their AppleFlirtiniToodleWoodles.
So I ordered the salad I’d been eyeing on the menu – pistachio crusted goat cheese salad (small) with grilled salmon. Small was definitely a small, and the grilled salmon ran me an extra $5 but it was very tasty. Honestly, how can anything with goat cheese not be tasty? There were cranberries and balsamic onions and ever some pears cut into nice little sticks. Way to go, guy with the knife!
Overall it was a good meal, albeit a little pricey for what it was. If everything on the menu was a few dollars shy of slightly ridiculous, I’d be far more inclined to go there regularly before our weekly movie dates. Don’t worry – it’s not as pricey as good ol’ feather boa Poor Billies, but as the Mr. mentioned, there’s not much for the money conscious couple who don’t want to spend $50 on dinner. I’d go back and try the burger that (as I peered at another table) looked great.
Seems like burgers are something the NRV does well. Moo.