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Review: Old School Grill


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Restaurants & Bars 15

Review: Old School Grill

dinaofdoom | Aug 14, 2011 09:49 PM

Old School Grill
6301 W. Parmer Lane 
(Plaza w/Chipotle's and Little Woodrow's)
(512) 722-6353

2 out of 5 stars = "Meh"

I was really looking forward to this place.
It's right down the street from my house and office.
There are very limited non-chain places here in Northwest Austin, a.k.a. Land of the Bland.
As an uptown girl going on 5 years now, I make it a point to try all the new non-chain places.
Reading several articles beforehand just made me even more excited.
They never responded to my email asking about the opening date.
But, I just chalked it up to being crazy busy before the grand opening.

Sadly, my experiences have not lived up to the excitement and expectations.

Considering the neighborhood, the casual space and comfort food, the prices are way too high:
$9 for a hamburger, with $1 a topping, including cheese.
One $5 appetizer (veggies with dressing), three in the $8 range and the last four for $9-13.
Two vegetarian pastas available for around $10; the rest skyrocket to just under $20.
$29 for a ribeye with mashed potatoes and black beans-- that's
Note, some of the prices on the website are less than those on the menu.
For instance, it lists the burger at $7, with $.75 for toppings, which is incorrect.

My burgers were burnt beyond recognition, resembling black hockey pucks.
Even the fried egg was coated in black, which usually means a dirty grill.
No moisture of any kind remained in the meat, and it crumbled apart.
Given the description of a daily ground sirloin blend, this is a sin!
They also lacked the usual lettuce/tomato/onion set-up.
However, that may be due to the Texas Two Thep.
They use mass-produced bread, as I could see the rack of it.
The fries were mealy, lukewarm, and oversalted with some kind of seasoning.
Usually, I'm a starch fiend and eat the fries first but I had to leave these behind.
They were also the dregs of the batch, most of them being broken off or crumbs.
The owner was sitting behind me at a table, so he definitely wasn't in the kitchen.
Sadly, the person in the kitchen today needs to learn how to cook properly.
I decided against sending my food back because I was hungry and pressed for time.

I did feel a bit rushed to order at the beginning.
My waitress ended up being enthusiastic and attentive.
She filled up my water glass a few times.
There were more staff members than patrons.
A large group of them gathered at the bar, talking.
It was an off time for a meal so it wasn't that big of a deal.

They kept some previous elements, like the metal walls, but distressed them.
There are no booths, just 4 and either 6 or 8 top tables (can't remember).
The artwork was muddled; faux vintage prints for Lillet and sardines, then some paintings.
They were psychedelically colorful, and perhaps from a local artist, which would be a great if they were.

Since I didn't drink any adult beverages, I have no idea about their bar.
It was oo far away for me to read, but it looks like they have at least 8 beers on tap.
It's a big bar with three tvs, so it can definitely support hanging out with a drink.
The bathroom was relatively clean, and the kitchen is open so you can see the cooking.
There is a lot of parking, but if this place and Woodrow's is busy, you may have to walk.

Overall, it's all about inconsistency. Inconsistent pricing. Inconsistent cooking. Even inconsistent decor.
I would like to come back in a few months, which will give them time to work on all of this.

Convenient location
Happy Hour food and drink specials
Full bar (with tvs, if you are into that)
Kitchen hasn't found its groove
High price points

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